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Akerman LLP

Work +1 407 423 4000
Fax +1 407 843 6610

United States

Real estate
Real estate - ranked: tier 4

Akerman LLP

Akerman LLP’s ‘highly skilled’ team regularly advises on urban redevelopment, financing matters and construction projects along with distressed real estate and loan origination. The firm’s nationwide practice covers the Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and Miami areas, and has been notably active in the retail, transportation and healthcare sectors, among others. In a recent highlight, William Ellis advised borrower Lion Vail on the $115m refinancing of The Lion, a luxury condominium project in Colorado. The group also regularly handles the full range of transactional matters; notable recent examples include acting for Host Hotels and Resorts on its $215m acquisition of Loews Don CeSar Hotel and the Beach House Suites in Florida, and advising Israeli real estate investor Altshuler Shaham Provident Funds and Pension on the mezzanine loan funded acquisition of Standard Hotel as well as its acquisition of the mortgage loan on W Hotel in Florida. The practice is chaired by Miami-based Richard Bezold, who has strong transactional and litigation expertise across the US and Latin America. Other names to note include Steven Polivy, who leads the firm’s economic development and incentives practice; Eric Rapkin, who is the key figure in Fort Lauderdale; and Andrew Robins, who focuses on hospitality-sector matters.

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United States: Labor and employment

Immigration - ranked: tier 2

Akerman LLP

Akerman LLP’s immigration team assists a broad range of clients from across the hospitality, restaurant, media, communications, banking and manufacturing sectors. The group’s workload includes PERM planning, compliance issues, naturalization and citizenship matters and EB-5 applications. Orlando-based Thomas Raleigh has a strong track record in handling immigration work for corporate and private clients seeking to expand their businesses in the US. Miami-based Maria Casablanca is chair of the practice.

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United States: M&A/corporate and commercial

M&A: middle-market (sub-$500m)
M&A: middle-market (sub-$500m) - ranked: tier 2

Akerman LLP

Akerman LLP’s national corporate practice group includes more than 70 lawyers who handle complex work on both the buy side and the sell side, and it stands out for middle-market private equity deals. Highlights included advising Trivest Partners, the oldest private equity firm in the US’ Southeast, on numerous transactions, including the purchaseof 3D printing technology company NovaCopy. Martin Burkett and Carl Roston are the M&A and private equity practice chairs; Roston acted for middle-market private equity firm Comvest Partners on the sale of its portfolio company, Groundlink/Limo Holdings, and its subsidiaries, the Groundlink and Limo Anywhere apps, to MTG Technologies. National corporate practice group leader Mary Carroll advises a diverse roster of companies and private equity funds operating in the healthcare, life sciences, aviation, restaurant and technology sectors; and Jonathan Awner is a nationally recognized attorney for purchases and sales of car dealerships across the US. Awner led advice to the US’ largest automotive retailer, AutoNation, on the sale of the Fox Chevrolet automobile dealership; and Teddy Klinghoffer specializes in M&A transactions and private equity investments, as well as corporate compliance and governance issues. Klinghoffer acted for Associated Grocers of Florida on its sale to publicly traded Supervalu; and Stephen Roddenberry has represented clients in hundreds of M&A deals, spin-offs and restructurings of private and public companies. In a $360m deal, he advised The Geo Group, a Florida-based real estate investment trust, on its acquisition of New Jersey-based Community Education Centers. Other highly rated advisers are David Birke and Paul Quinn, who divides his time between the West Palm Beach and Chicago offices. Attorneys listed are based in Miami unless otherwise stated.

Leading lawyers

Carl Roston - Akerman LLP

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United States: Real estate

Construction (including construction litigation)
Construction (including construction litigation) - ranked: tier 2

Akerman LLP

Akerman LLP advises on many types of public and private construction projects and is recognized for its experience in transportation, energy, public infrastructure, housing, government facilities and healthcare projects. Practice head Jeffrey Gilmore, who splits his time between Tysons Corner and Washington DC, represented Engineered Systems Alliance in litigation related to a $200m contract for the design, construction and installation of gas combustion turbine generators and ancillary machinery for the Food and Drug Administration’s Agriculture Research Center. Fort Lauderdale-based Stacy Bercun Bohm is currently advising Faena Group on a project worth in excess of $750m to develop a three-block long mixed-use project in Miami Beach, including site plan approval, zoning and land use amendments, and related development approvals and design and construction contracts. The team also acts on international matters, with Gilmore representing Rizzani de Eccher as a prime contractor for a $2bn facility improvement project for Al Udeid Airbase in Doha, Qatar.

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Land use/zoning
Land use/zoning - ranked: tier 1

Akerman LLP

Urban redevelopment projects throughout Florida and nationally are a cornerstone of Akerman LLP’s practice. The team, led by Cecelia Bonifay and Robyn Neely, is well versed in all land use matters, including water rights, entitlements and environmental due diligence. Recent key mandates include assisting Miami Beckham United with the site acquisition, entitlement and development of a new Major League Soccer stadium in Miami and advising Ridgewood Real Estate Partners on the site plan approval process for a 1,136-home neighbourhood development before the Orange County Commission. Another stand-out piece of work was advising Magellan Development Group on the development of the $4bn Lakeshore East project. The practice expanded its bench strength in its Chicago office with the hire of four partners: Jack George, Chris Leach and Kathleen Duncan joined from Schuyler, Roche & Crisham and Meg George joined from Neal & Leroy. Ellen Berkowitz and Brady McShane are now with Greenberg Traurig LLP.

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United States: Tax

US taxes: contentious
US taxes: contentious - ranked: tier 5

Akerman LLP

The ‘excellentAkerman LLP has been assisting Citibank with four litigation matters before the Illinois Department of Revenue concerning refunds of sales tax attributable to sales made in Illinois that resulted in bad debts on private label credit cards. Other key clients include Global Mail/DHL eCommerce and Expedia. Practice heads Peter Larsen and Michael Bowen, David Otero and Chicago-based David Blum are ‘highly intelligent lawyers skilled at litigation strategy’. Attorneys mentioned are based in Jacksonville, Florida, unless otherwise indicated.

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