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LLP accounts: Clifford Chance leadership team pockets £16m following strong year

The 13-strong executive leadership team at Clifford Chance (CC) took home £16m for the 2016/17 financial year, according to its latest LLP accounts filed with Companies House.

While the combined remuneration package is up 7% on the previous year, it represents only a slight per head increase on last year’s figure, where the 12-person executive received £15m. The firm’s 2014/15 accounts showed that leadership took home £14m, meaning the figure has increased in £1m increments for the past two years.

CC moved from a 16-member committee in 2013/14 (which received £20m), to a 12 member committee in 2014/15, before increasing to 13 during the last financial year.

According to the accounts, published just before the New Year, CC’s overall revenue for the year was up 11% to £1.54bn from £1.39bn. However as the firm stated in its filing: ‘Excluding the effect of exchange rates, revenue growth compared to last year was 2%.’

Geographical revenue breakdown showed turnover was up in all areas. UK revenue was up 4% for the financial year, rising from £489m to £507m. But Asia Pacific was the region that saw the greatest growth, with revenues increasing 23% from £224m to £276m.

Turnover was more modest in the Middle East, where revenues rose 7% from £46m to £49m. Continental Europe had a strong year, jumping 12% from £452m to £506m, with the Americas seeing similarly robust growth of 15% from £175m to £202m.

CC’s staff costs increased considerably, from £609m to £694m. The number of partners at the firm remained almost static, with 568 compared to 2015/16’s 567. Associate numbers fell however, dropping from 2,315 last year to 2,262. The number of support staff also dipped slightly, from 2,781 to 2,731.

Highlights from 2017 for the firm include landing a spot on American International Group’s (AIG) new UK panel , alongside 29 other firms including Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Berwin Leighton Paisner and DLA Piper.

CC also reappointed managing partner Matthew Layton in December for a second term, which will run for four years from 1 May 2018. Layton was nominated after an uncontested election.