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Leading Japanese Practice Group Joins Bingham, Dana & Gould.

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 1, 1997--

Large Boston-based firm expands into New York and Los Angeles

Bingham, Dana & Gould LLP, a 280-lawyer full-service firm based in Boston, today announced that the 30-lawyer Japanese practice group of Marks & Murase LLP, led by Jiro Murase and Fumiaki Mizuki, has joined the firm.

The Murase practice group specializes in providing legal services to Japanese financial institutions and multinational corporations in the United States and abroad, and to U.S. financial institutions and multinational corporations in Japan. The announcement was made jointly by Murase and Jay S. Zimmerman, managing partner of Bingham, Dana & Gould.

With the addition of the Murase practice group, the New York and Los Angeles offices of Marks & Murase will become part of Bingham Dana, which currently has offices in Boston, Washington, Hartford and London. In conjunction with the transaction, Bingham, Dana & Gould will change its official name to Bingham Dana LLP, and the firm's newly acquired Japanese practice group will operate primarily out of the New York and Los Angeles offices under the name "Bingham Dana Murase."

In addition, Toshijiro Nakajima, former Justice of the Supreme Court of Japan, who is currently Of Counsel to Marks & Murase, will become Of Counsel to Bingham Dana, resident in Tokyo. Justice Nakajima was formerly Japan's Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs. He also served as Ambassador to Singapore, Australia and the People's Republic of China.

According to Zimmerman, the addition of the Murase practice group is a near-perfect fit. "Since much of our work is already national and multinational in scope," Zimmerman said, "we've been looking for the right opportunity to expand into New York, and we found it with Jiro Murase, Aki Mizuki and their practice group. They have a stable base of blue-chip Japanese clients who will be well served by Bingham Dana's depth and capabilities in a variety of practice areas. In addition, this constitutes a logical geographic expansion of our already well-established European and Latin American international practices."

Murase echoed Zimmerman's enthusiasm. "Many of our clients began their relationships with us when they entered the U.S. markets," Murase said. "We helped them establish their business here and continue to work with them as they grow through internal expansion, joint ventures, acquisitions and other new business opportunities. Bingham Dana's size and ability to handle larger, more sophisticated transactions will be of immense value to our existing clients."

According to Zimmerman, Bingham Dana, which has long been known for its financial services, corporate, and litigation practices, sees the capital markets, project finance, investment management and securities litigation areas as primary targets for further expansion, now that the firm will have a New York presence. "In addition," Zimmerman said, "a Los Angeles office is also a natural fit for Bingham Dana. We are already handling a significant amount of work on the West Coast, and it will be more efficient for us to service those clients from Los Angeles, than it has been to service them from Boston."

The Murase practice group represents some of the world's most recognized Japanese companies. In addition, the two firms have a variety of shared clients including Mars, Incorporated.

Edward J. Stegemann, Vice President and General Counsel of Mars, Incorporated has had experience with both firms. "I've worked extensively with both firms for many years," Stegemann said, "and I'm very excited about the combination. I think their joining forces creates a synergy that will benefit the combined firm, as well as its clients."

Bingham Dana will be moving several Boston partners, associates and staff members to New York, and the New York office initially will have approximately 25 resident lawyers, including ten partners and two Of Counsel. In addition, a Bingham Dana partner will be relocating from Boston to Los Angeles.

CONTACT: Bingham Dana LLP

Hank Shafran, 212/318-7700 - 10/1-2

617/951-8193 - after 10/2
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Oct 1, 1997
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