The law firm transaction market is heating up, according to a new report, and Womble Carlyle’s combination with Bond Dickinson is the biggest deal of 2017 to date.

Altman Weil’s new MergerLine report found that 52 law firm combinations have taken place in the first half of 2017, compared to 48 in the first half of 2016.

The MergerLine report also named the Bond Dickinson-Womble Carlyle combination, which was announced in June, to be the biggest of the year so far. The combination creates a new transatlantic law firm, Womble Bond Dickinson, and takes effect in the fourth quarter of 2017.

The combined firm will have more than 1,000 lawyers in 23 offices across the U.S. and U.K. The combination will put Womble Bond Dickinson in the UK’s top 20 and in the top 80 in the US listings with combined revenues in excess of US$410million or £340million.

In an interview with Reuters this week, Womble Carlyle Chair and CEO Betty Temple said the combination with Bond Dickinson demonstrates “incredible industry depth, depth that we have not been able to apply before for our clients.”

In light of the MergerLine report, the Bond Dickinson-Womble Carlyle also received mention this week in the following major publications:

  • Philadelphia Inquirer
  • Bloomberg BNA
  • American Lawyer
  • Law360.