Global 100 Overview – Heavyweights

Global 100 Overview – Heavyweights

A busy US deal market saw rainmakers pack a bigger punch than ever at the world’s largest law firms but the contest remains tough for aspiring firms. Legal Business separates the champs from the contenders.

Linklaters managing partner Simon Davies chooses his words carefully when describing his partnership’s feelings on the City giant’s performance in 2014/15: ‘they appear content’. The Magic Circle collectively went into the financial year with considerable hopes of rekindling their momentum after a long grind through the post-banking crisis wilderness.

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Global 100 – Market Comment 2015: Word from the World

Global 100 – Market Comment 2015: Word from the World

From an intensely competitive market in Asia to renewed fears of states breaking from the EU, law firm leaders give us the global perspective.

Done deals

‘It is encouraging that the factors contributing to a high level of dealmaking over the past year remain in place, and we are optimistic that these conditions will sustain robust M&A activity, particularly in the telecoms/media and energy sectors, and consolidating industries, such as pharma and healthcare. We may see increased interest in inbound M&A into Europe as its economic recovery continues.’

Eric Friedman, executive partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom

Asia struggle

‘Most people underestimate how competitive it is in Asia to win work against UK and US firms. Clients are very selective and it’s very price competitive, even for the complex cross-border work. Everyone is competing hard to get to know the client.’

Stuart Fuller, global managing partner, King & Wood Mallesons

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Global 100: New York report – City heat

Global 100: New York report – City heat

Legal Business took a tour of New York for our Global 100 special and found Wall Street’s elite in a confident mood amid robust deal markets and the ongoing regulatory push.

New York, June 2015. Once the summer arrives in Manhattan, everyone wants to leave – to head upstate or to the Atlantic Coast. Anything to escape the oppressive heat. But among the city’s top-performing law firms, the mood is hot but not bothered. The nine months since Legal Business last visited the Big Apple have brought favourable conditions.

In 2014, the 20 firms in the LB100 that are predominately New York-based amassed $17.03bn at an average revenue per lawyer of $1.2m – well ahead of the Global 100 average and those of the first and second quartiles.

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Global 100: Clifford Chance – The shoulders of giants

Global 100: Clifford Chance – The shoulders of giants

The trailblazing global law firm has had more than its share of knocks since the banking crisis. Will a popular new leader and strategic shake-up help Clifford Chance regain the magic?

‘There seems to be a point at every lunch and every cocktail party where the conversation turns to Clifford Chance. It always happens with conspiratorial whispers and knowing laughter, lawyers in City firms recount the latest tittle-tattle about the second largest firm in the world…

‘Why are people so obsessed with Clifford Chance? Because it is big? Because the lawyers are aggressive? Because the firm challenges City convention? Or it is because they are pioneers? Whether competitors know it or not, Clifford Chance has become a marker by which they measure themselves.’

Legal Business, June 1993

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Global 100: Clifford Chance – The shoulders of giants

Global 100: Clifford Chance – The shoulders of giants

The trailblazing global law firm has had more than its share of knocks since the banking crisis. Will a popular new leader and strategic shake-up help Clifford Chance regain the magic?

‘There seems to be a point at every lunch and every cocktail party where the conversation turns to Clifford Chance. It always happens with conspiratorial whispers and knowing laughter, lawyers in City firms recount the latest tittle-tattle about the second largest firm in the world…

‘Why are people so obsessed with Clifford Chance? Because it is big? Because the lawyers are aggressive? Because the firm challenges City convention? Or it is because they are pioneers? Whether competitors know it or not, Clifford Chance has become a marker by which they measure themselves.’

Legal Business, June 1993

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Global 100: The regional view – Stick and move

Global 100: The regional view – Stick and move

2014 saw US firms continue to build on a solid home base but extend their reach in Europe, Asia and Africa. As clients seek to consolidate their law firm panels internationally, the Global 100 continue to slug it out.

‘The last 18 months have seen clients increasingly want to internationalise panels – not just country panels, but want to review which firms they are using in each country and assess whether this can be streamlined to use [fewer] firms that can cover more jurisdictions,’ says Hogan Lovells chief executive Stephen Immelt. ‘Rather than have ten different firms, they want five, so they can have greater consistency and more leverage in terms of pricing.’

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