The winner of this award will be a managing partner, senior partner, head of chambers, chief executive or chief operating officer who has truly lead the way for their business in 2016. Key factors influencing our judging panel include market profile, outstanding strategic thinking, superb communication skills and the extent to which individuals have the support of their peers, partners, staff and clients in driving the firm’s business forward.
2017 WINNER: Charles Martin, Macfarlanes
Senior partner Martin has been at the centre of each impressive move this City deals heavyweight has made over the last five years, not least the startling 70% growth between 2011 and 2016, putting Macfarlanes among the top-five firms in the Legal Business 100 for organic revenue growth.
Since being re-elected for a third term as managing partner uncontested in 2015, Eyles has recently presided over strong performance at this top 25 LB100 firm. It has been under Eyles that the firm has begun to look like an aspiring global player, and his initiatives to foster a culture that recognises achievement have been critical.
Our 2016 Law Firm of the Year continues to impress and it is under the guidance of Foley that on a three-year track the firm has seen revenue growth of 24% and a 36% increase in PEP, at a time when direct competitors experienced declining or flat revenues. Financial growth has not been dampened by investment, with the launch of a Johannesburg office in January one recent example.
Widely viewed as leading a renaissance at this national powerhouse, Joyce was re-elected uncontested for a second term as the firm continued its growth through significant mergers, including the acquisition of HBJ Gateley's three offices in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as discussions with German firm Luther and US firm Hunton & Williams.
MARK RIGOTTI; SONYA LEYDECKER
Herbert Smith Freehills
While sensitivities over the integration of legacy firms Herbert Smith and Australian leader Freehills have endured since the union was agreed in 2012, the pairing of Leydecker and Rigotti has surprised some with its adroit leadership, which saw the firm deliver its best post-merger revenue performance yet with revenues up 7% to £870m.
Westwell has led by example and is widely credited with being a catalyst for impressive growth at this south west-based law firm. Under Westwell, Foot Anstey has moved away from high-volume, low-cost instructions to focus on specialist sectors, high-quality work in niche areas of expertise. Revenue growth of 12% year-on-year exemplifies the improvement.