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BOSTON —� Ropes & Gray plans to open its first international office in Tokyo this fall with two intellectual property partners. Ropes plans to name the office Ropes & Gray Gaikokuho Jimu Bengoshi Jimusho. Jim DeGraw, a corporate and intellectual partner in the firm’s Boston headquarters, and Washington-based intellectual property partner Steve Baughman, will be Ropes’ resident partners in Japan. Two associates who are fluent in Japanese will also staff the Tokyo office. Japan’s Ministry of Justice has approved Ropes’ application, but the firm is awaiting final approval from the Daini Tokyo Bar Association. Patricia Martone, a New York-based intellectual property partner and co-head of Ropes’ international practice group, said the office would support Japanese clients and U.S. and European companies with offices in Japan. Martone also said the Tokyo office will initially focus on intellectual property litigation and private equity work. Martone and Hiroyuki Hagiwara, another New York-based intellectual property partner at Ropes, will support the Tokyo office. Both have extensive experience working with Japanese clients. “Japanese companies are constantly restructuring, so their intellectual property assets are very important,” Martone said. “They’re constantly licensing intellectual property, buying intellectual property and selling intellectual property. Ropes opened its last new office in January 2005 in Palo Alto, Calif. when it acquired intellectual property shop Fish & Neave.

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