Expansive US litigation boutique Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan has posted conflicting global and London results for 2013, with overall turnover up by 14% to $972.7m while the firm’s City office has posted its first ever decline in revenue and profit since launching in 2008, both down by around 30%.
The top 35 Global 100 firm’s 14% spike overshadows the majority of US 2013 increases so far, although by its own 2012 benchmark of an 18% increase to $852.6m represents a slight drop. Meanwhile, the firm’s profit per equity partner increased by 7.1% to $4.5m from $4.2m in 2012.
However, in London net profit fell by one third (33%) to £12.4m, as City revenues also dropped 28% to £19.8m. The firm said the decline in its London income was down to three major pieces of litigation for clients Oleg Deripaska, Unicredit and Derek Quinlan either coming to trial or ending in 2012.
London co-managing partner Richard East (pictured) said: ‘2012 represented the end of a number of very significant cases that we started work on in the two years previously. These matters made up a substantial proportion of the London office’s revenue in 2012 and it is impossible to replace such significant matters overnight, especially given our relatively small scale in London.
‘However, during the course of 2013 we have picked up a number of major new instructions for clients both in commercial litigation and arbitration and are confident that 2014 will be a good year for London.
‘We knew that 2013 would be a transitional year for us, but we feel we are in a uniquely strong position to capitalise on our investments in London in 2014 and we look forward to another year of growth.’
The London office currently houses around ten partners including global head of arbitration Stephen Jagusch and partner Anthony Sinclair, both who joined from Allen & Overy in 2012, and litigation partner Ted Greeno who joined from Herbert Smith Freehills last year. The firm also launched its seventh office in Brussels to focus on European Union and member state competition litigation and investigations in February 2014.
Elsewhere, following a year that saw a round of redundancies and a number of high profile partner departures, Weil, Gotshal & Manges has unveiled a drop in 2013 revenue of 7.4% to $1.14bn from $1.23bn, while PEP is down to $2.07m from $2.23m in 2012.
In June 2013 the top 20 Global 100 US firm announced it was placing 60 associate jobs under review, as the departures include corporate partner Mark Soundy’s move to Shearman & Sterling, funds partner Nick Benson’s move to Latham & Watkins in January this year, not to mention an eight partner team that moved to Sidley Austin in Dallas last September.
For a detailed analysis of Weil’s performance see Comment: Weil Gotshal and the narrative of the New Normal