Philadelphia-based law firm Blank Rome is opening an office at 301 Carnegie Center this Wednesday, April 2. Five partners – Jack Pribish, Seth Lapidow, Michael Conlan, Adrienne Rogove, and Virginia White – will run the office. Blank Rome says Princeton’s attraction is its blossoming market for healthcare, technology, intellectual property, and venture capital.

"Princeton continues to experience growth in many of the industries served by our clients, and we believe that this entrepreneurial market is a terrific fit," Carl Buchholz, Blank Rome’s CEO, said in a prepared statement.

The firm was profiled in an article in the Legal Intelligencer on March 21, which reported that the firm’s 11 percent increase in gross revenue in 2007 was the result of the opening of new offices as well as lateral hiring, which comes down to recruiting partners, and often groups of partners, from other firms. This has been a hot trend among Princeton law firms for a year or two.

Last year Blank Rome brought in more than 25 partners. It also left less profitable markets, including Media, Pennsylvania, and Allentown, Pennsylvania, and went looking for more lucrative locations, which, in addition to Princeton, include Hong Kong, where has nine attorneys and plans to add sixteen more.

In the Legal Intelligencer article Buchholz is quoted as saying "we’re a very different law firm today than we were just a few years ago." The change, he said, is the result of a focus on industry teams over the past few years. In Princeton this means a concentration on technology, venture capital, health care, and intellectual property.

Government relations is another Blank Rome specialty. Its highest profile attorney in that specialty is former Democratic vice presidential candidate Geraldine A. Ferraro, who joined the firm shortly before her remarks about presidential contender Senator Barack Obama’s qualifications for office caused outrage in some quarters. Ferraro asserted that Obama would not have been seriously considered for the highest office in the land were he not a black man, an opinion that led to accusations of racism against Ferraro, who subsequently resigned her position on Hillary Clinton’s finance committee.

Blank Rome, 301 Carnegie Center, Princeton 08540; 609-750-7700; fax, 609-750-7701. Jack Pribish, partner. Home page: www.blankrome.com.

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