KVCF PLC (previously known as Kaplan Voekler Cunningham & Frank), one of the more prominent legal firms in the alternative investment space, is in the process of being absorbed by Williams Mullen, one of the largest full-service law firms based in Richmond, Virginia.
While not technically a merger of the firms, given different corporate structures that would make a direct acquisition challenging, the firms announced that KVCF is essentially winding down operations and the bulk of its attorneys will join Williams Mullen no later than Oct. 1, 2023.
Founded in 2005, KVCF is well known for their work as a firm specializing in various real estate and securities structures, including real estate investment trusts, Delaware statutory trusts and Regulation A offerings. The move to Willams Mullen includes the remaining two named partners in the firm, Thomas Voekler and Richard “Chip” Cunningham. Co-founder Robert Kaplan departed KVCF last year to join Whiteford Taylor & Preston in Richmond, Virginia in January 2022 before jumping to Red Oak Capital a year later. Grady C. Frank Jr. died of cancer in 2016.
“This team further strengthens our ability to help our clients in the areas of REIT capital markets, as well as tax-advantaged and exempt securities,” said Woody Fowler, chief executive officer of Williams Mullen. “We are pleased they are making the move to Williams Mullen.”
Williams Mullen’s revenue in 2022 was about $163 million and the firm said it expects KVCF’s book of business to add an additional $6 million to $8 million annually.
Voekler, who joined what was then known as Kaplan & Frank in 2012, said the move also was driven in part by KVCF’s own real estate needs. The firm’s lease at its Richmond headquarters is coming due at year’s end.
“It kind of accelerated because we are supposed to be out of this space in September and were looking at what are the next steps for the firm,” Voekler said in an interview with local news outlet Richmond BizSense.
Williams Mullen is a regional, full-service law firm with approximately 240 attorneys in offices across North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.