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Cleveland firm Squire Sanders & Dempsey is to become one of the top 20 US firms after finalising a merger with California-based Graham & James.
The acquisition of the practice and its offices in California and Asia gives the firm 675 lawyers in 25 locations around the world.
Only Graham & James' New York office, which includes a highly profitable intellectual property practice, is breaking ranks with the rest. It has not yet finalised new arrangements. The firm's 14-lawyer Milan practice will become an independent firm associated with Squire Sanders while full merger talks continue.
The move gains Squire Sanders a presence in San Francisco, Palo Alto, Los Angeles, Tokyo and Beijing.
London managing partner Joe Markoski says the fit was obvious.
He says: "We are strong in the telecoms area and Graham & James had expertise in the IP/IT dotcom Silicon Valley economy. This gives greater depth to our technology practice.
"Secondly, their geographical coverage in Tokyo and Japan complements our presence in China."