Dewey Ballantine has been rocked, with seven of its IP litigation partners jumping ship to Dechert.
The departures include the highly rated James Elacqua, who only joined Dewey in 2003 as part of a raid from the now-defunct Brobeck Phleger & Harrison.
Craig Allison, Jonathan Baker, Elacqua, Noemi Espinosa, Bryan Farney, Stephen Rosenman and Andrew Thomases have all joined Dechert as partners.
Dechert is launching an office in Austin, Texas, which will be headed by Farney. Allison, Baker, Elacqua, Espinosa and Thomases will join Dechert's Palo Alto office, while Rosenman will join the Washington DC office. Dechert chairman Barton Winokur said in a statement: "The opening of the Austin office and the addition of this renowned team underscores our commitment to IP." The exits leave a huge hole in Dewey's IP litigation practice and follow a raft of London office departures. Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has raided Dewey for three of its London partners. Jonathan Simpson left to head BLP's new international projects team and was followed by energy specialists Mark Saunders and Adam Dann. The departures left Dewey with just two English partners.
Dewey executive director Dennis D'Alessandro said: "Dewey Ballantine remains committed to IP litigation. We'll keep our presence in Palo Alto and we hope the associates remain with us.
"The team that left were good lawyers and we appreciate the contribution they made to the firm."