“It’s sad to see [Thelen] going away, but I’m thrilled for the opportunity to go to O’Melveny,” Nissly told Legal Pad today.
Nissly, a well-known IP litigator who does tons of work for Hynix, a huge South Korean memory chip company, will be joined at O’Melveny by two other Thelen partners, Susan Van Keulen and Geoffrey Yost, as well as four associates to be named later.
Career tracks and why Thelen failed, after the jump …
Nissly started his career at Thelen in San Francisco as a labor lawyer and moved down to San Jose when the firm opened an office there in the early 1980s. He started doing more commercial litigation and eventually got in on the IP litigation ground floor in the late 1980s.
Reflecting on Thelen’s demise, Nissly pointed to a couple of factors that drove the firm under, including the ill-starred merger with New York firm Brown Raysman in 2006
“I think it’s a combination of forces,” he said. “The merger with Brown Raysman didn’t work out as well we would’ve liked, and the economy certainly didn’t help.”
Steve Akerley, the O’Melveny partner responsible for building up the firm’s IP practice in Menlo Park, was pleased to have Nissly on board.
“This is a very positive move consistent with our plans to grow our IP practice,” Akerley told Legal Pad.
The Nissly-O’Melveny connection comes because Nissly has handed off Hynix antitrust work to O’Melveny lawyers in the past. That started during Hynix’s nearly decade-old patent fight with Rambus, which Nissly has been handling on the intellectual property side.
— Zusha Elinson