SAN FRANCISCO — King & Spalding is poised to poach an IP litigation partner from Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe.

Michael Heafey, who handles a wide range of patent and trade secret litigation, has agreed to leave Orrick to join the Atlanta-based firm in Silicon Valley, though his start date has not yet been set, said Timothy Scott, who leads King & Spalding's Valley office. Scott said Heafey's arrival will build on the hiring of veteran patent litigator William Abrams, who came to the firm from Bingham McCutchen last summer.

"When we hired Bill, we said that he was a great first step, but we're not stopping with him," Scott said.

Heafey did not respond to a request for comment. He joins King & Spalding on the heels of two other IP litigators — partner Kenneth Steinthal and counsel Joseph Wetzel — who defected from Greenberg Traurig in February.

Heafey specializes in litigation involving integrated circuit packaging, fiber optics, DRAMs, packet switch networks and light emitting diodes, according to his biography on Orrick's website. Before joining Orrick, he served as the general counsel of Sunrise Telecom, a Valley company that designs and manufactures telecommunications equipment.

"We have enjoyed having Mike as a colleague for the last nine years," an Orrick spokesman wrote in an email. "We wish him the best of luck at his new firm."

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