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Preeminent REIT Group Bolsters, Diversifies National Real Estate Prac…

Preeminent REIT Group Bolsters, Diversifies National Real Estate Practice;
Emerging Company Capabilities Enhanced by Active Triangle Presence

(Raleigh, NC) April 19, 2005 – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary US LLP, one of the world’s leading law firms, today announced the addition of a corporate practice from Alston & Bird LLP. The group, recognized as one of the country’s preeminent REIT securities practices, is led by partners Brad S. Markoff, William R. Klapp, Jr., Robert H. Bergdolt, Jeffrey M. Sullivan and Jeffrey D. Miller. The group also includes Bradford R. Lenox and Christine C. Lehr, who have joined the firm as of counsel, and three associates. To accommodate the group, DLA Piper has opened a Raleigh, NC office located at Six Forks Center I at 4700 Six Forks Road.

These additions expand and diversify DLA Piper’s existing real estate capital markets practice – a strategic objective of the firm – by adding one of the most sophisticated REIT securities and corporate practices in the country. The addition of a Raleigh office also represents an opportunity for DLA Piper’s Emerging Growth and Venture Capital practice by giving the firm access to one of the country’s leading R&D hotbeds for emerging growth companies, particularly those in the life sciences and communications industries.

“It’s not every day that a group of this caliber and quality comes along that perfectly fulfills a strategic growth objective of the firm,” said Lee I. Miller, joint-CEO of DLA Piper. “Adding this outstanding team not only gives us a premier REIT/real estate capital markets practice, it also extends our emerging company practice by giving us a presence in Raleigh. We are fortunate to add this distinguished group to the firm.”

“The skills and experience we bring to the table complement DLA Piper’s existing practice extremely well,” said Brad Markoff, who has been appointed managing partner of the new Raleigh office. “We chose to join DLA Piper because we recognized that our REIT clients would greatly benefit from a world-class practice that can address any real estate-related need, in any geographic location, with the best lawyers.”

Brad Lenox, who focuses his practice on technology companies and venture capital firms, added “We are also excited about combining our corporate practice with DLA Piper’s nationally-recognized emerging company and venture capital practice to serve technology-oriented companies and investors right here in our own backyard.”

Expanding a World Class Real Estate Practice

Consistently ranked one of the world’s top real estate practices by leading industry research firms, DLA Piper continues to diversify its real estate capabilities through the expansion of specialized, niche practices. The new Raleigh group adds tremendous depth to DLA Piper’s existing REIT, real estate private equity fund and real estate finance practices, while bringing added capabilities in the underwriting of REIT securities and corporate governance. Over the past two years, this group has been involved in five IPOs and more than 25 secondary offerings in the REIT industry totaling about $2 billion.

With more than 200 real estate lawyers in offices throughout the country, DLA Piper provides a full range of transactional and advisory services to real estate-related firms, such as developers, investors, lenders and asset managers. The firm also provides relocation, zoning, economic incentive, leasing, acquisitions, disposition, bankruptcy and related legal counsel to corporations.

DLA Piper was recently named global Real Estate Law Firm of the Year 2005 in the inaugural Who’s Who Legal Awards based on nominations received from clients and private practice professionals. The firm is listed as the top real estate law firm in The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers 2005, which was published in March.

Extending a Period of Significant Growth

The addition of the Raleigh office is the latest move in DLA Piper’s growth strategy. In January 2005, DLA, Piper Rudnick and Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich merged to form a legal services organization with more than 2,800 lawyers in 49 offices in 18 countries around the world.

About the Attorneys

• Brad S. Markoff, managing partner of the new office, is well known for his experience in complex financing transactions, including business rollups and strategic investments in a wide variety of industry segments, including real estate investment trusts (REITs), web commerce, technology, and financial institutions. He regularly works with investment banking firms in their REIT underwriting activities and handles a wide range of corporate and real estate securities, finance, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions matters. Mr. Markoff is a member of the board of advisors of NAREIT, past co-chair of NAREIT’s Law & Accounting Conference, and immediate past co-chair of NAREIT’s Governmental Regulation Committee. Working on the Governmental Regulation Committee, he led the drafting of NAREIT’s responses to SEC rulemaking proposals. He is admitted to practice in North Carolina and Missouri.

• Robert H. Bergdolt specializes in securities matters, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions for REITs. Over the past five years, he has helped REITs register more than $10 billion in public offering proceeds in his role as REIT counsel. A frequent author and lecturer on mergers and acquisitions and securities law topics, Bergdolt serves on NAREIT’s Government Relations Committee and is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and New York.

• William R. Klapp, Jr. focuses on joint ventures, structured investment and finance transactions, mergers and acquisitions, and other commercial transactions, with an emphasis on the real estate industry. Mr. Klapp has aided institutional and REIT clients in the acquisition, disposition, co-venturing, and financing of nearly $3 billion of commercial property. He is admitted to practice in North Carolina, Georgia, and New York.

• Jeffrey D. Miller concentrates his practice on mergers and acquisitions, securities, corporate governance and related strategic matters, with a particular emphasis on REITs. He has extensive experience in mergers and acquisitions and securities offerings involving REITs, having worked on over 50 significant transactions with an aggregate deal value in excess of $30 billion. He is a frequent author and speaker on a variety of corporate matters, including deal design and structure and fiduciary duties of boards of directors. Mr. Miller is admitted to practice in North Carolina.

• Jeffrey M. Sullivan concentrates his practice on real estate investment trusts, securities law, mergers and acquisitions, and general corporate law. Sullivan is a member of the North Carolina and Tennessee State Bars.

• Christine C. Lehr focuses her practice in the areas of securities, mergers and acquisitions, with an emphasis on REITs. She regularly represents underwriters in public offerings of equity securities of REITs. She received her J.D. from Duke University School of Law and a B.S. with highest distinction in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

• Bradford R. Lenox focuses on serving entrepreneurial companies and their investors. Brad has represented issuers, angel investors and venture capital firms in securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, research, licensing, and distribution agreements, and technology spin-off transactions. Mr. Lenox spent five years in public accounting before commencing his legal career and maintains his Certified Public Accountant’s license.

About DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary US LLP
DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary US LLP is a business law firm of 1,350 lawyers in 20 offices throughout the U.S., whose core practices are real estate, corporate and securities, litigation, intellectual property and government affairs. Worldwide, DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary has 2,800 lawyers in 50 offices in 18 countries, including the United Kingdom, mainland Europe and Asia, offering leading practices in commercial, corporate and finance, human resources, litigation, real estate, regulatory and legislative, and technology, media and communications. More information about DLA Piper is available at www.dlapiper.com.

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