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Kirkland's Palo Alto Team Moves Into New Office

Kirkland & Ellis LLP's Palo Alto, Calif., team moved into a new office this week to accommodate a burgeoning private equity- and intellectual property-focused Silicon Valley unit that has doubled in size since opening four years ago, the firm announced Tuesday.

The new space, which Kirkland spent the last several months remodeling, boasts a slew of amenities and a "beautiful, very light and airy" state-of-the-art design, IP partner Marc H. Cohen told Law360 on Tuesday.

"Hopefully, everybody working here will appreciate the new [space]," Cohen said from Palo Alto. "We work hard. We want to be in a nice building."

The new office is situated at 3330 Hillview Ave. in the Stanford Research Park area of Palo Alto, just a few miles from Kirkland's old home, which it shared with another tenant.

After the firm brought in its 25th attorney, the Kirkland partners knew it was time to look for a new Silicon Valley headquarters, Cohen said.

"The previous space really was temporary," said the IP attorney, who has been a partner with Kirkland since 2000. Cohen moved from Los Angeles to Palo Alto in August 2008 to help found the firm's Silicon Valley outpost.

Kirkland now leases the entire Hillview Avenue building, a 30,000-square-foot, two-story structure with five conference spaces. Cohen declined to discuss specifics of the rental agreement, but acknowledged that Kirkland has inked a long-term lease for the property, which is owned by Stanford University.

300 Hillview Ave. affords the firm plenty of room to grow, Cohen said, as well as space for attorneys who transfer into the Palo Alto group from Kirkland's San Francisco office, with which the Silicon Valley team has a tight working relationship.

The new building encapsulates all the major principles of modern office design, including a high degree of flexibility manifest in features like movable desks — "If you want to work standing up, you hit a button and you're standing," Cohen remarked — and energy efficiency. The office, which is designed to minimize water usage and maximize air quality, is expected to achieve LEED certification, according to the firm.

As always, Kirkland's Palo Alto office — one of 10 the firm occupies on three different continents — will focus on patent litigation and private equity investments into Silicon Valley technology businesses, an area that has been generating a lot of work, Cohen noted.

"The deals [team] has been very active over the last year," Cohen said. "Things have been very busy with our corporate lawyers, not only in San Francisco, but also in Palo Alto — really across the firm."