Longtime Drinker Biddle Dealmaker Jumps to Hogan Lovells

Hogan Lovells sign

Hogan Lovells' Washington, D.C., offices. (Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM)

Robert Juelke, a longtime Drinker Biddle & Reath partner and former corporate and securities practice chair, has left for Hogan Lovells' Philadelphia office.

Juelke, an M&A and capital markets lawyer, is now a partner at the global firm, which opened its Philadelphia location in 2010. In addition to his practice group leadership at Drinker, he previously served as the firm's executive partner and chair of the compensation committee. He spent 25 years at the firm.

Most of his practice involves representing insurance and financial services companies, including offshore businesses that are acquiring U.S. businesses, he said. His principal client is Bermuda-based Enstar Group, he said, and the Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust is another client.

He said he expects his clients to follow him for M&A work, though some other kinds of matters may stay with Drinker Biddle.

Juelke has been behind a number of nine-figure transactions, according to his biography on Drinker Biddle's website. He has worked on multiple such deals for Enstar, such as its $692 million acquisition of Torus Insurance Holdings in 2013, its $181 million acquisition of Household Life Insurance Co. of Delaware in 2012, and its $252 million acquisition of Seabrings Holdings that same year.

Given the nature of his practice, "Hogan’s global footprint was incredibly attractive to me," Juelke said. "I’m joining a global firm … with deep industry expertise in the areas that are beneficial to my clients."

He said Ginny Gibson, who managed the Philadelphia office until partner John Duke took over that role earlier this year, reached out to him about 10 months ago. He was content at Drinker and not looking to move, he said, but after he heard more about Hogan Lovells "it just made a lot of sense" to join an international law firm.

Duke said the firm is dedicated to its presence in the city, but isn't looking to simply add head count to the office.

"We recognize there are very strong practitioners in the Philadelphia market and we have the ability to grow here strategically," he said. In pursuing that strategy, Duke said, "Bob checks all of those boxes."

Drinker Biddle has seen several prominent Philadelphia partners defect in the last year: a commercial litigation team that went to Cozen O’Connor in April of last year, and five class action partners with a national practice left for Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld in July.

But Drinker Biddle also added a large group of litigators earlier this year from Carlton Fields, in Washington, D.C., and Hartford, Connecticut. The 14-partner group, led by James Jorden, represents financial institutions, life insurance companies, mutual funds and investment firms.

"Bob has long been a member of the Drinker Biddle family and we appreciate his years of service, leadership and numerous contributions to our firm," Drinker Biddle CEO Andrew Kassner said in a statement Wednesday. "More than a partner, he has been a mentor and friend to many of us. Those relationships continue and we wish Bob well."

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