Business & Leadership

Baker McKenzie Makes a Life Sciences Play

The firm is building its healthcare & pharma practice on the East Coast

The firm is building its healthcare & pharma practice on the East Coast


Randall Sunberg, former co-chair of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius’s life sciences department, left for Baker McKenzie this week; he was joined by corporate and securities expert Denis Segota. Though technically belonging to the firm’s New York office, both partners will be working in Princeton, New Jersey – a state that employs over 117,000 people in the life sciences industry.

 

Life sciences contribute $47.5bn to New Jersey’s economy every year; indeed, the Garden State is home to the key operation facilities of 12 of the world’s top 20 biopharmaceutical companies. The sector is spanned comprehensively in the area, from drugs and pharmaceuticals to medical devices to distribution, and so it makes sense for law firms making healthcare and life sciences plays to strengthen their base there, as well as in the so-called “life sciences corridor” in Massachusetts. Indeed, we covered this trend here last month.

 

Sunberg, who will be co-heading Baker McKenzie’s North America life sciences department, has longstanding expertise in assisting a range of clients in the sector with commercial and financing matters. Sunberg and M&A and financing expert Segota both cited their new firm’s expertise in emerging markets as a key reason for their move. “Our pharmaceutical clients are focusing on growth and they’re looking at emerging markets for [that] growth,” said Segota.

 

Another reason was Baker McKenzie’s industry focus. The firm fields hundreds of lawyers around the world who advise healthcare, biotech and pharmaceuticals companies on the full range of legal matters, and while it may not rank among the very top healthcare & life sciences dealmakers in the US by volume or value, its global platform, strength in depth and breadth of service within the healthcare and life sciences sector are undeniable.

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