Feb 9, 2017

Smith, Gambrell & Russell Expands Real Estate and Litigation Practices with Acquisition of Balber Pickard Maldonado & Van Der Tuin in New York


ATLANTA (February 9, 2017) – Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP (SGR) is pleased to announce the expansion of its Real Estate and Litigation Practices with the acquisition of New York boutique law firm, Balber Pickard Maldonado & Van Der Tuin (BPMV). The acquisition brings seven new attorneys, Eric Balber, Roger Juan Maldonado, Michael Manzi, Todd Pickard, Robin Silberzweig, John Van Der Tuin, and Nicole Haff to the firm.

“Smith, Gambrell & Russell is pleased to welcome the BPMV team to our firm,” said Stephen M. Forte, SGR’s chairman and managing partner. “BPMV has built a stellar reputation within the New York legal community. We look forward to joining with our new Partners in the interests of adding depth and capabilities that will be helpful to our clients in New York.”

Mr. Balber is a Partner in the Real Estate and Corporate Practices. For more than 30 years, his practice has included advising operating companies as outside general counsel, guiding cooperative housing corporations, condominiums and their boards, and structuring mergers and acquisitions. In addition, Mr. Balber negotiates real property financings, acquisitions, dispositions, and leases, prepares and negotiates construction contracts, architect agreements, management agreements, and bid packages and drafts and negotiates software development and other technology agreements utilizing experience as an acknowledged information technology expert.

Mr. Maldonado is a Partner in the Litigation Practice. He has more than 35 years’ experience as a trial lawyer, commercial litigator and leader of the organized bar. Mr. Maldonado represents musicians, publishers, and record labels in litigation to enforce their copyrights and contractual rights. He also assists corporate and commercial institutions in litigation involving claims arising from software development/license disputes, lease agreements, and contract disputes.

Mr. Manzi is a Partner in the Real Estate Practice. He has practiced real estate law in New York for 25 years with a concentration on representing cooperative and condominium boards, as well as sponsors.   Mr. Manzi also has extensive experience in a wide variety of real estate transactions including financing, leasing, sales and acquisitions.

Mr. Pickard is a Partner in the Real Estate Practice. He is a transactional corporate and real estate lawyer with more than 30 years’ experience. Mr. Pickard endeavors to work with his clients to determine both their needs and those of their counter-party to structure and close successful transactions. He has represented cooperative apartment corporations and condominiums in all manner of legal and business issues.

Ms. Silberzweig is a Partner in the Real Estate and Corporate Practices with more than 20 years’ experience. She counsels a wide range of business enterprises, from Fortune 100 to small entrepreneurs and start-up companies. Ms. Silberzweig negotiates and closes the purchase, sale, and leasing of commercial real property, advises corporate, institutional, and private clients in connection with building construction projects and negotiates and prepares construction-related contracts. She also handles mergers and acquisitions and mortgage, asset-based, and construction financing transactions.

Mr. Van Der Tuin is a Partner in the Litigation Practice. He has specialized in real-estate related and cooperative/condominium related litigation and dispute resolution for 30 years. Mr. Van Der Tuin has experience advising and representing cooperative and condominium boards, corporate and individual real estate owners, partners, commercial tenants and investors in a range of real-estate related matters including partner/deal disputes, commercial and residential lease disputes, shareholder and unit owner litigations, construction disputes, land-use and environmental matters and lien foreclosures.

Ms. Haff is an Associate in the Litigation Practice. She has prosecuted and defended a variety of disputes on behalf of corporations, closely-held companies, and individuals ranging from Fortune 100 companies to local music collectives. Ms. Haff has experience litigating and advising clients in the areas of contract, copyright, trademark, non-competitive agreements, fraud and other business torts, civil claims under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”), and real estate.

The acquisition comes on the heels of SGR’s expansion of the New York corporate practice with the hire of three new attorneys in January. The New York office now totals 48 full-time lawyers. The firm also recently announced the opening of three new international offices in London, Southampton and Munich as part of its growth globally.

About Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP

SGR is a full service, international law firm that advises regional, national and global businesses on a wide range of legal matters. The firm’s more than 200 attorneys provide legal counsel in more than 45 specialized practice areas, including corporate transactions, litigation, intellectual property, aviation, banking, construction and employment law. Founded in 1893, SGR has offices in Atlanta, Austin, Jacksonville, London, Munich, New York, Southampton, and Washington, D.C.

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