By Casey Sullivan
Feb 27 (Reuters) - The Pittsburgh law firm Reed Smith is
planning to expand its newly leased Houston office to staff as
many as 40 lawyers to increase its work in energy lending,
pharmaceutical and healthcare, according to Greg Jordan, the
firm's managing partner.
The firm announced on Tuesday it had hired 12 partners from
seven competitor law firms and the firm's leaders told Reuters
it plans to hire another 20 lawyers by midyear.
Michael Pollack, Reed Smith's global strategy leader, said
the firm intends to lease another floor of office space in its
Houston office and eventually staff more than 100 lawyers,
although he declined to set a time frame.
A number of law firms have expanded to Houston recently in
an effort to tap into the region's energy work. Last year,
Sidley Austin and Paul Hastings both opened offices in the city
and hired several partners from Texas-based law firms to bulk up
their energy practices.
"Energy lending is a huge segment of financial services,"
said commercial litigator Ken Broughton, a lawyer who recently
joined Reed Smith from Haynes and Boone and who has represented
St. Luke's Episcopal Health System and The Methodist Hospital
System in contract disputes with medical association groups and
A number of the other Reed Smith hires also have experience
in the health sector, an important market in Houston, which is
home to Baylor Health Care System, MD Anderson Cancer Center and
Memorial Hermann Health Care System, among other providers.
Stephen Scheve, a product liability lawyer from Baker Botts,
represents large pharmaceutical and medical device companies and
joins the firm's life sciences health care industry group. Lee
Haag has represented hospitals in construction matters.
The recent 12-partner move pulls lawyers in Houston from
law firms Fulbright & Jaworski, Sutherland Asbill & Brennan,
Jackson Walker, Haynes & Boone, Baker Botts, Seyfarth Shaw and
Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman.
Six out of the 12 partners join the firm's energy and
natural resources industry group, including Charles "Stan" Perry
from Haynes and Boone, as well as transactions lawyers Paul
Turner from Southerland Asbill and Craig Enochs and Daniel Nossa
from Jackson Walker.
Representatives from the law firms that lost lawyers to Reed
Smith did not respond to requests for comment.
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