Houston-based Novak Druce + Quigg has entered into “exclusive merger discussions” with Connolly Bove Lodge & Hutz of Wilmington, Del., the two intellectual property law firms announced today.
Pending final discussions, certain closing conditions and partnership votes, the firms will merge on Jan. 1, 2013. The firm will be known as Novak Druce Connolly Bove + Quigg and it will be headquartered in Houston and will continue to be the largest intellectual property firm based in Texas, according to a press release.
In addition to Houston and Wilmington, the merged firm will have offices in San Francisco, the Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and West Palm Beach, Fla.
Jeffrey B. Bove, managing partner of Connolly Bove, refers questions to Gregory V. Novak, the D.C.-based managing partner of Novak Druce.
Novak could not be reached for immediate comment, but in a statement, he writes that the pending combination with Connolly Bove puts Novak Druce “well on the road of emerging as an IP super boutique.”
In a written statement, Bove writes that clients of both firms will benefit from the combination, and the merger “fits perfectly with our long-term strategic goals.”
Novak will serve as managing partner following the merger and Bove will be senior partner, according to the release.
Novak Druce has 70 attorneys and Connolly Bove has 60.
UPDATE: Gregory V. Novak says merger talks began in late 2011.
“We’ve been aware of Connolly Bove and they’ve been aware of us . . .,” Novak says. “We share some clients and large aspects of client portfolios would move between the firms, which is kind of odd, but we always had great relationships.”
Novak says the merger makes sense because the firms have offices in different markets and each firm’s clients are concentrated in different industries. “They are heavy in chemicals, pharmaceuticals and life sciences; we are heavy in high tech . . . smartphones and the like,” Novak says.
-- Brenda Sapino Jeffreys