The merger with Pepper Hamilton will help Troutman vault into the top 50 largest firms in the U.S., based on yearly revenue, according to industry publication American Lawyer. Its 2020 rankings have not yet been released, but Troutman could move past Alston & Bird to become Atlanta’s second-largest law firm. The publication estimated that Troutman Pepper will generate more than $900 million in yearly revenue, more than the $812 million in revenue that Alston posted in 2019.
Big law firms have been involved in “merger mania” in recent years, as they seek greater economies of scale, more diversified sources of income and broader geographic reach, said Shannan Rahman, managing partner of the Atlanta legal recruiting firm The Partners Group. Troutman Pepper could eventually trim staff to cut costs, she said.
“It’s a definite possibility and something we have seen happen in previous law firm mergers,” Rahman said.
Troutman sought a combination with Pepper Hamilton to expand into new cities, including Boston, Detroit and Pittsburgh, Lewis said. The merged firm will also offer more services to existing clients, he said, as Pepper Hamilton is known for its work advising pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers in product liability cases, while Troutman is known for its energy, financial services and insurance expertise.
Troutman isn’t the only Atlanta law firm to make a major strategic move this week. King & Spalding, the largest Atlanta-based firm, on Wednesday hired former U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who joins its Washington, D.C., office. After James Comey was fired as Attorney General, Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller to lead the investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election.