Foley & Lardner combines with Gardere Wynne Sewell

Will be known as Foley Gardere in some cities

Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc.'s headquarters is in the U.S. Bank Center in downtown Milwaukee.

Milwaukee-based Foley & Lardner LLP, Wisconsin’s largest law firm, has merged with Dallas, Texas-based Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP.

Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc.’s headquarters is in the U.S. Bank Center in downtown Milwaukee.

BizTimes Milwaukee reported in November the companies were in potential merger discussions.

The combination of the law firms will take effect April 1, forming a company with $830 million in joint revenues and 1,100 lawyers across 24 international offices that will be ranked among American Lawyer’s Top 50 U.S. law firms. The combined firm will be headquartered in Milwaukee and will be known as Foley Gardere in Denver, Colorado and Austin, Houston and Dallas, Texas. In Mexico City, it will be called Foley Gardere Arena. And in all other cities, it will be Foley & Lardner LLP.

Jay Rothman, chairman and chief executive officer at Foley & Lardner, will continue in that role for the combined firm. Holland O’Neil, who was chair of Gardere Wynne Sewell, will become a Foley Gardere partner and member of the firm’s management committee.

The combination will give Foley greater geographic reach by adding Gardere’s five offices and 250 attorneys, and add expertise in corporate, litigation, intellectual property, energy, government solutions, and financial restructuring and reorganization. Foley will bring knowledge in automotive, life sciences, sports, technology and government affairs.

“In short, Foley and Gardere are better together,” Rothman said. “As the demand for legal services evolves, so must the legal providers. With that top of mind, the most important reason for this combination is the enhanced capacity it provides our attorneys to better serve our clients. We expect a seamless transition, in part because the core values of both firms overlap in significant ways, but also because Foley and Gardere have a long relationship by way of referrals, and so our clients will be able to consolidate their legal providers and tap a deeper bench of talent and expanded capabilities.”

“The synergies between the firms are clear,” O’Neil said. “Both Foley and Gardere have historically been recognized for a commitment to client service and an ability to counsel clients through their most multifaceted legal and business challenges. By integrating our resources, we’ll have distinctive capabilities and channels to provide our clients with strategic and innovative counsel, ultimately continuing to enable our shared client-first culture.”

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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