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Fieldfisher reducing UK reliance following third consecutive year of double-digit growth

Fieldfisher is looking to further reduce the percentage of overall turnover generated in the UK following a year defined by geographic expansion.

Turnover at the mid-market pace-setter hit £242m, up a better-than-expected 17% in the third consecutive year of double-digit growth at the firm. Profit per equity partner (PEP) rose 7% to £805,000, and has nearly doubled over the last five years.

One of the largest contributors to the firm’s growth was Germany, where revenue grew 48%, including the firm’s newly-opened Frankfurt office. Within the UK, revenue increased 11%, while the firm’s corporate practice grew 28%. Financial services was highlighted as the best performing sector, growing 14% to £31m.

The performance eclipses the single-digit growth Chissick had last year predicted amid Brexit-induced uncertainty. In addition to its Frankfurt opening, Fieldfisher also launched in Barcelona, Madrid, Guangzhou, Luxembourg and most recently, Dublin.

‘We’re looking to reduce the percentage of overall turnover generated in the UK,’ Fieldfisher managing partner Michael Chissick (pictured) told Legal Business. ‘Our zeal to be a European law firm is unblemished, but we won’t be going for so many office openings. There will be more focus on consolidation and integration in the year ahead.’

The firm also saw headcount grow, with 24 lateral hires and a 14-strong promotion round leading to a 24% growth in fee earners. But the revenue growth represents a relative slowdown on last year, when the firm’s revenue soared 24% and PEP grew 17%.

Despite lingering Brexit uncertainty and a degree of caution at the firm, Chissick remains confident for the year ahead and hopes to grow the firm’s European brand further.

‘We’re chuffed with the results,’ he told Legal Business. ‘The firm has had a really standout year.’

Other financial results this month have seen Stephenson Harwood return to growth while CMS pushed forward its UK revenue by 5%.