AFS Leaders Quoted on Biggest Law Firm Merger Announced in 2021
Anthony described how both firms considered multiple factors in looking for the right merger partner: “geographic footprint, complementary practices and industries, cultural fit, and a shared commitment to client service and DEI. Culture was certainly at the top. Both firms felt like they had worked with each other for years. In addition, both firms brought expertise the other didn't have.”
Joe explained why the combination was a good fit for both firms.
“Schiff Hardin had been looking to increase its scale, both in terms of services and geographically, particularly to enhance our regulatory and transactional capabilities,” he said. “We quickly realized that a merger with Arent Fox offered all that and many more advantages: deeper benches of talent, and complementary practices and industries that would create exciting new opportunities for us and our clients.”
According to Anthony, what cinched the deal was that “We merged at a time when both firms had record-breaking years in production and profitability. The combination doubled our corporate, finance and litigation capabilities.”
However, he noted that merging during a global pandemic produced unique challenges.
“We created a 180-day business plan before the merger even occurred,” he said. “A large amount of time was spent introducing practices and industries to each other and then identifying the low-hanging fruit. Six weeks into the merger we had already recognized a substantial amount of business generated that might not have happened but for the combination.”
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