Dykema: Expands into Wisconsin with the opening of a Milwaukee office

Milwaukee – January 10, 2022 – Dykema, a leading national law firm, today announced that it is expanding its platform with the addition of a capital markets team and the opening of an office in Milwaukee, the firm’s first in the state. The incoming capital markets team is an integrated and seasoned group of M&A, securities, finance, and health care attorneys including Kate Bechen, who will serve as the Office Managing Member. The office will be located in the Milwaukee Center at 111 E Kilbourn Avenue.

“We’re thrilled to announce our expansion into Milwaukee and welcome this multidisciplinary team to our Business Services Department,” said Len Wolfe, Dykema’s Chair & CEO. “Given our strong presence in the Midwest, we’ve looked at opportunities to move into markets that are home to a number of Fortune 500 companies and large private businesses and that align with our platform from a cultural, practice, and client representation perspective. Very soon after meeting this talented team we understood they would be an excellent fit for our platform and our existing client base, while also creating opportunities for additional growth in the region and nationally.”

The incoming team joins from Husch Blackwell and, in addition to Bechen, includes Steven Laabs, Andrew Frost, Jessica Zeratsky, Julie D’Angelo, Robin Lehninger, and Eric Lenzen.

“It’s exciting to add an energetic team of this caliber to our practice,” said Jin-Kyu Koh, Director of Dykema’s Business Services Department. “The team is nimble, and the sophistication and scope of their practice, and their diverse client base coming from nearly every sector with varied needs from small domestic deals to large multinational transactions, complements the work being performed by our corporate finance group. Our lawyers in key practice areas such as M&A, securities, employee benefits, real estate, lending, L&E, and antitrust consulting will no-doubt embrace near-term opportunities to collaborate on behalf of our clients.”

The capital markets team focuses their practice on six core verticals (buying, selling, financing, securities issuance, insurance, and investment) and counsels a wide range of clients that all engage in these activities. Those clients include public and private entities, private equity groups, bank and non-bank lenders, insurance companies, family offices, and high net worth individuals. The team focuses on transactional matters including strategic M&A, specialty and healthcare M&A, M&A involving Special Purpose Acquisition Companies (SPACs), finance transactions, cross border transactions, transactions involving private equity, venture capital and emerging companies, family offices, fund formations, and Initial Public Offerings (IPOs). 

“Our clients are based across the country and operate around the globe and require a law firm that supports the most sophisticated corporate needs while maintaining a pragmatic value-driven approach. We have found that at Dykema and we are making this move in furtherance of our unwavering commitment to those clients. It was quickly clear that Dykema offers both a best-in-class practice platform and culture that shares our values of teamwork, service and collaboration,” said Kate Bechen. “As the firm continues to cement its presence in Milwaukee, we look forward to deepening our bench of talented attorneys and supporting an ecosystem that empowers us to best serve our clients and their growth.”

Advancing Dykema’s National and Midwest Strategy

As a premier firm with Midwestern roots, Dykema has developed a national footprint focused on serving Fortune 1000 and middle-market companies. Building on its roots and driven by the needs of its clients, the firm has extended its platform nationally by developing sophisticated practices in areas including automotive, consumer financial services, energy and electric distribution, international counsel, infrastructure finance, intellectual property, and pharmaceutical/medical device litigation. With over 370 lawyers and government policy advisors, Dykema continues to engage in strategic expansion discussions with leading attorneys who can add further depth to key practices.

Throughout 2021, Dykema strategically added bench strength in key regional markets including Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Lansing, and Washington D.C.

Situated between existing Dykema offices in Chicago and Minneapolis, Milwaukee has a robust and dynamic legal market, and the new office creates opportunities for the firm to share work across the region and continue its growth trajectory in key Midwest markets. Dykema has been active in Milwaukee and Wisconsin broadly and this combination and the opening of a physical office significantly enhances that existing presence.

About the Lawyers

Kate Bechen is a corporate transactional attorney with a strong focus on healthcare M&A and public company transactions. She has led health system M&A transactions totaling hundreds of millions of dollars, and also guides her healthcare clients through regulatory compliance matters. In addition, she handles IPOs and SPAC deals, venture capital financings, fund structuring, securities matters, including public and private placement of securities, and portfolio investments.

Bechen received a B.A., with distinction, and her M.H.A. from the University of Iowa, and a J.D., with distinction, from the University of Iowa College of Law.

Steven Laabs advises on complex commercial transactions including corporate M&A, commercial finance, and real estate transactions. He guides clients including manufacturers, logistics companies, insurers, digital media organizations, and real estate investors and developers on M&A, joint ventures, and reorganizations.

Laabs earned a B.S., cum laude, from Marquette University, and a J.D., cum laude, from Marquette University Law School.

Andrew Frost helps companies navigate through all stages of their corporate growth, from securities and corporate governance matters to M&A, joint ventures, reorganizations, and other transactions. He also handles M&A involving SPACs. Frost represents private equity firms and both buyers and sellers in corporate transactions. In addition, he assists clients on labor and employment matters including employee benefits issues and executive compensation. 

Frost earned a B.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a J.D. from Marquette University Law School.

Jessica Zeratsky is a commercial finance attorney representing both lenders and borrowers. Her clients include public and private corporations, financial institutions, and secured and unsecured creditors. She manages all phases of commercial finance transactions from loan origination to restructurings, reorganizations, and workouts.

Zeratsky received a B.A., summa cum laude, from the University of Minnesota and a J.D. from Marquette University Law School.

Julie D’Angelo is a securities attorney who focuses her practice on public company M&A transactions, public and private securities offerings, and investment company transactions. She previously held a vice president and senior counsel role at an international financial services institution, and has experience with regulatory compliance, and federal and state securities laws.

D’Angelo earned a B.A. from Columbia University, and a J.D., cum laude, from the University of Wisconsin Law School.

Robin Lehninger is an M&A and healthcare regulatory attorney and guides a wide range of clients in the sector on compliance including state licensing matters, healthcare fraud, and data privacy. She is deeply familiar with federal laws including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), the Anti-Kickback Statute, and the Stark Law. In addition, she handles healthcare M&A and joint ventures, and the compliance issues that come along with those transactions.

Lehninger earned a B.A., summa cum laude, from Valparaiso University, her M.P.P from the University of Minnesota, and a J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Minnesota Law School.

Eric Lenzen previously led a financial services and capital markets practice of over 100 attorneys at a national law firm. He represents domestic and international companies, including emerging companies, private equity and venture capital funds, institutional investors, insurance companies, underwriters, and family offices on M&A transactions and financing transactions. He also handles domestic and cross-border transactions, leveraged recapitalizations, public and private offerings of debt and equity capital, fund structuring, portfolio investments, and business succession planning.

Lenzen earned a B.S. from Marquette University and a J.D. from Washington University School of Law.

About Dykema

Dykema serves business entities and individuals worldwide on the broadest range of complex corporate transactions and litigation matters. Dykema lawyers and other professionals in 13 U.S. offices coast-to-coast work in close partnership with clients – from start-ups to Fortune 100 companies – to deliver exceptional results, unparalleled service, and unrivaled value in every engagement.