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Embedding with Entrepreneurs

By Kari Santos | Oct. 2, 2014

Law Office Management

Oct. 2, 2014

Embedding with Entrepreneurs

Sheppard Mullin embeds itself in Silicon Beach.

Looking for a nimble way to draw business from Santa Monica's entertainment and technology entrepreneurs, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton opened a branch in the Silicon Beach start-up community. (Main offices in downtown Los Angeles and Century City are preserved.) The firm rents a small space (less than 200 square feet) in a facility that is host to 150 early-stage companies in a three-story building previously occupied by Google.

Sheppard Mullin lawyers from various offices use the space to serve their existing Silicon Beach clients, and new clients from within the building also arrive as walk-ins. "The office is strategic for both reasons," says partner Brian J. Pass. The lawyers who spend the day there usually are the ones with meetings in the area.

"The design style is no design," Pass says with a laugh. "It's completely spare." ROC provided the furniture, which includes desks, filing cabinets, and a trash can. Sheppard Mullin did put the firm name on the office entryway, and it bought a painting from an online art retailer in the building "to support local business." It's a far cry from the firm's more stylish main offices, says Pass, who describes himself as a "digital business lawyer."

"By not overdesigning or making it look like a typical lawyer office - which is shining and chic - it becomes a comfortable place for entrepreneurs to meet with us."

"The support within the firm has been very positive, and the attorneys who participate are especially enthusiastic," Pass says. "Apart from the practice benefits, being in the office and surrounded by entrepreneurs is simply energizing and fun."


Kari Santos

Daily Journal Staff Writer

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