HFW produced a strong showing over the last financial year, its latest financial results reveal, with profits rebounding and revenues up after a muted performance in 2018/19.
Profits were up to £47.3m this year after dipping 9% to £43.3m the previous year, while profit per equity partner recovered 11% to £526,000 following a 11% deficit in the 2018/19 results. Revenue, meanwhile, also grew: up 9% to £195.2m, while revenue per lawyer rose 7% to £389,000.
The engine rooms of the firm’s growth were its global construction group, which increased revenues almost 20%; its aerospace group, which increased output 13%; and its shipping group, which contributed with a 12% rise in output. The recovery from last year’s showing means the firm has grown revenue by over 40% in the last five years, while approximately two-thirds of the firm’s turnover is now generated outside the UK. The firm’s Abu Dhabi, Brussels, Geneva, Houston, Kuwait City, Piraeus, Riyadh and Singapore offices were among those to up revenues by over 15%.
The firm will hope the latest results are a sign of return on investment, with HFW expanding considerably in recent years. Since 2016, the firm has added 11 international offices and since 2018 the firm has hired 20 partners globally, with London, Paris and Hong Kong among the recent beneficiaries.
Despite the standout year, managing partner Jeremy Shebson (pictured) is cautious of what lies ahead: ‘Things have obviously changed significantly over the past six months. We have been very proud at how quickly and well the firm adapted to the challenges of Covid-19, but we are anticipating a more challenging period.’