The 21 London-based firms that sit in the second half of the LB100, many of which are specialist, focused players, are known for packing a punch that belies their size. These firms average 179 lawyers and 29 equity partners and have a combined turnover of more than £1bn. The group contains some of the strongest private wealth and family firms in the country (Boodle Hatfield, Farrer & Co, Forsters, Harbottle & Lewis, Payne Hicks Beach); the strongest disputes and tech firms (Bristows, Kingsley Napley, Stewarts, Wiggin); and the definitive boutique, pensions specialist Sacker & Partners.
Perhaps because many of these outfits were lean going into the pandemic, and perhaps also their service lines are tighter than firms elsewhere in the table, the changes overall have been less dramatic than elsewhere in the LB100. Average revenue is broadly in line, up 3% from £47m to £48.3m, with a revenue per lawyer (RPL) of £271,000. But in profitability terms, while these firms are clearly high-performing, the gains in the last financial year have been modest. Profit per lawyer (PPL) and profit per equity partner (PEP) are both up by just 2%, to £85,000 and £469,000 respectively.