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Hogan Lovells makes major Silicon Valley play with Weil Gotshal corporate team

While the transatlantic firm has repeatedly stated its aim to bulk out its corporate weight, Hogan Lovells is expected to land a veteran team of former Dewey & LeBoeuf partners to its Silicon Valley office following a partnership vote.

Hogan Lovells is set to take on Richard Climan and a team of three other corporate partners from Weil, Gotshal & Manges, a heavyweight team that previously held talks with Greenberg Traurig and Reed Smith during their move from a collapsing Dewey in 2012. Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer were even reportedly tempted to launch on the West Coast at the prospect of signing the team.

However Climan is now understood to be moving again, along with partners Keith Flaum, John Brockland and Jane Ross.

Climan joined Dewey in 2011 from Fulbright & Jaworski and was previously at Cooley until 2009.

Climan’s practice focuses on M&A, hostile takeovers, defensive strategies and leveraged buyouts, with specialities in the technology sector and in life sciences.

Recent clients have included Oracle on its acquisition of Responsys for $1.5bn and acting for Illumina on takeover defence against Roche in a $6.7bn bid.

While the rainmaking team are on significant pay packets, Hogan Lovells pay system has a degree of flexibility for bringing in high-profile hires, with an equity spread of around 10:1 and a 15% bonus pool.

Hogan Lovells has made clear its ambitions to reinforce its corporate offering since its 2010 merger, with early aims to bulk out its transactional capacity in London and New York.

The team move would be the most significant corporate hire for Hogan Lovells in recent years. The firm recently added three life sciences M&A specialists into its Philadelphia office, Steve Abrams, Rachael Bushey and John Duke, all from Pepper Hamilton.

Weil and Hogan Lovells both declined to comment.