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Alston & Bird is targeting a simultaneous launch of two offices this week on the US west coast.
Partners at the Atlanta-based firm are expected to be voting either later today or tomorrow on the hire of a group of IP lawyers from Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld’s Silicon Valley office.
The firm is also understood to have all but finalised the details of its merger with 80-lawyer Los Angeles firm Weston Benshoof Rochefort Rubalcava & MacCuish.
Akin’s split with the lawyers in Silicon Valley is understood to be amicable and it is thought to be the Alston vote which is delaying the deal.
Sources close to the Atlanta firm say it is partly the firm’s desire to announce both deals simultaneously that has delayed the announcement of the Weston deal.
Last month, Akin closed its office in Taiwan after the departure of rainmaking IP litigator Yitai Hu. It is thought to be Hu’s group, which handles both IP patent litigation and transactional work for primarily Korean clients, that is poised to join Alston.