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Patton Boggs, Locke Lord end merger talks

The powerhouse law and lobby firm Patton Boggs has ended merger talks with the law firm Locke Lord.

In a a joint statement issued Thursday, the two firms said they have decided to go their separate ways.

“Following preliminary talks and routine due diligence, Locke Lord and Patton Boggs have jointly decided to end their recent discussions regarding a possible combination,” the firms said in a statement.

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“We enjoyed getting to know each other and learning about our firms’ respective philosophies and strategic plans. The discussions were informative and beneficial in creating new friendships and referral opportunities.”

Patton Boggs, the No. 1 lobby firm by revenue, opened the merger talks amid an overall slump that has spurred it to make some layoffs, including 23 in its Washington office earlier this year.

The firm could have expanded its scope by merging with Dallas-based Locke Lord, which has 13 offices, including branches in Hong Kong and London.

The move to a more global business model could still be an option for Patton, perhaps if another potential partner emerges.

While Patton rules over K Street, it has seen its lobbying revenue decline this year. The firm reported $30.7 million for the first three quarters of 2013, down from the $35.2 million it recorded at the same point last year.

— Kevin Bogardus and Megan R. Wilson contributed. 

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