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Washington, D.C.’s Steptoe & Johnson on Thursday confirmed it was in the final stages of merger talks with Rakisons — one of the top 100 commercial firms in London. The two firms, which have been in serious discussions for several months, are confident that the final details can be hashed out and the merger will be submitted to the two partnerships for a final vote. Both firms are looking to bolster their telecommunications, technology, and corporate practices. For 300-attorney Steptoe, the marriage would mean a pipeline into Europe. The newly merged firm would have a strong European base for its international trade, corporate, and antitrust groups. “Rakisons significantly expands Steptoe’s ability to handle cross-border transactions,” said Steptoe’s Lon Bouknight in a statement. Similarly, Rakisons, with 45 solicitors in London, would gain inroads into the American market. The future of law is growing more global and the emphasis on telecoms and e-commerce is increasing as well — the rationale for merging is obvious, said Tony Wollenberg, senior partner of Rakisons. In addition to its Washington, D.C. headquarters, Steptoe has offices in Los Angeles, Calif., and Phoenix, Ariz. Rakisons was founded in 1979; its clients include businesses throughout the U.K., European Union, Eastern Europe, and the United States, as well as the Middle and Far East.

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