Baker & McKenzie Opens Brisbane Office: Business of Law

Baker & McKenzie LLP opened an office in Brisbane, Australia, the firm’s 76th worldwide, with three new partners in charge.

The attorneys, who are joining Baker & McKenzie from other firms, are Philip Christensen, a former Freehills lawyer who founded his own firm and most recently was on the board of Whitehaven Coal Ltd; Jo Daniels, from Allens; and Darren Fooks, from Clayton Utz.

“There are significant opportunities for our Australian and international clients in resources, infrastructure development and agribusiness in Queensland,” Baker & McKenzie Executive Committee Chairman Eduardo Leite said in a statement.

The partners are joined by a team of associates. They will focus on sectors including energy and resources, infrastructure, corporate/mergers and acquisitions, construction, agribusiness, property and government. Daniels is known for her competition advice on megamergers, the firm said.

Brisbane is Baker & McKenzie’s seventh opening in three years, following the launch of offices in Yangon, Seoul, Dubai, Lima, Casablanca and Johannesburg.

Deals Wachtell Lipton Advises in Gtechs $4.7 Billion IGT Acquisition

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz advised Gtech SpA, which agreed to buy International Game Technology for $4.7 billion in cash and stock, uniting the world’s largest provider of lottery systems with the biggest slot-machine maker. Sidley Austin LLP represented IGT.

Wachtell Lipton’s team is led by Benjamin M. Roth and Andrew R. Brownstein, corporate; Nelson O. Fitts, antitrust; David E. Kahan, executive compensation and benefits; Eric M. Rosof and Joshua A. Feltman, restructuring and finance; and Jodi J. Schwartz, tax.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP represented Morgan Stanley & Co., the financial adviser to IGT, with a team that includes Los Angeles partner Jonathan Layne.

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Orrick, Latham, Steptoe: Lateral Partner Roundup

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP announced that Jason M. Halper joined the firm as co-head of the financial institution litigation practice in New York. He was formerly with Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP.

Latham & Watkins LLP said antitrust trial litigator Lawrence Buterman will join the firm in the Washington and New York offices on the global competition team. He joins from the U.S. Justice Department antitrust division’s Networks and Technology Enforcement Section.

Lyman Paden, who has more than 34 years of experience handling financing matters, joined Baker Botts LLP as a partner in its Houston corporate department from Locke Lord LLP.

Steptoe & Johnson LLP expanded its national intellectual-property capabilities with the hiring of patent litigator John Molenda in New York from Mayer Brown LLP. He will be co-chairman of Steptoe’s health-care and life sciences industry team.

Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP announced that Meredith Martin Addy and Mark H. Remus are joining the firm’s intellectual-property practice in Chicago. Addy, who will chair the firm’s patent-litigation department, was formerly the Chicago managing partner of Steptoe & Johnson LLP.


Google Lawyer Turned Landlord Inflames San Francisco Tech Clash

To an outsider, it might seem that Google Inc. in-house lawyer Jack Halprin’s dispute with his tenants is about money.

But it’s more complicated than rents and return on investment. Halprin’s Google connection has intensified the anger many San Francisco residents already felt over the influx of flush tech newcomers like him. And things have gotten personal, Bloomberg News’ Karen Gullo and Dan Levy report.

Two years ago, Halprin, 45, paid $1.48 million for a 107-year-old Victorian in the city’s Mission District, an increasingly popular destination for the hip -- wealthy and not -- to live and congregate. Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg paid $10 million last year for a hillside home blocks away from Halprin’s Guerrero Street building.

Halprin’s next moves pushed him to the fore in the larger clash between tech’s moneyed workforce and longtime residents laying claim to the city’s Bohemian legacy. Halprin moved into one of the seven rental units he acquired and began a series of evictions to get rid of the other tenants.

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