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King & Spalding accounts for London and France show revenue up 11%, while profit dips 10%

Revenue at the London and Paris outposts of US firm King & Spalding surged 11% in 2015 to £41.9m as the firm continues expanding, but profit dropped by 10%.

Turnover rose in London, up by 12% to £30.5m from £27.2m in 2014, according to recent filings at Companies House. In Paris revenue rose by 9% to nearly £11m from £10.1m in 2014.

Despite improved revenues operating profit across the two outposts decreased to £15.6m in the 12 months to 31 December 2015 from nearly £17m in 2014.

Operating expenses were also up by more than 25% to £25.8m from £20.3m in 2014, and the total number of staff increased by 2, which is nearly 3% up from last year’s increase of 34%.

Amounts owed to creditors within one year rose by a hefty 40% to £19.5m from £13.9m, although this included group undertakings rising by approximately £5m.

There was also a continued increase in partner headcount, rising by 30% from 23 in 2014 to 30 in 2015. Total profit share to key management personnel sat at £2.4m.

London managing partner Garry Pegg said in the City, the firm had seen growth across the board.

Pegg (pictured) said: ‘This has been encouraging because the pressure on oil & gas prices in recent years has shaken confidence. Indeed, energy-related work in Africa has remained active, especially for new innovations and technology, such as gas-to-power plants. Our corporate and disputes teams have also been busy working on both UK and international matters.’

Pegg added that the firm accounts as a single, international entity and not on the basis that each office is a separate profit centre.

He said: ‘So much of our work is cross-border and not all revenues funnel neatly through specific offices. In general though, the firm has been expanding as a whole and this often requires investment. We do this strategically but, of course, it involves costs.’

The firm hired Latham & Watkins’ former European vice chair of tax Daniel Friel in March 2015, as well as Stuart Isaacs QC formerly Berwin Leighton Paisner’s lead of the advocacy unit, Allen & Overy’s former European head of US law Thomas Jones and Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson’s head of international disputes Nick Cherryman.