KWM administration report shows £18.3m hole for creditors as former staff set for payouts

KWM administration report shows £18.3m hole for creditors as former staff set for payouts

Two years after the collapse of King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) the saga rumbles on, with administrators primed to pay former staff as an £18.3m funding deficit leaves unsecured creditors out of pocket.

A progress report filed last week details how some former employees of the firm have been ranked as preferential creditors following KWM’s 2017 insolvency. These employees will now be eligible for successful claims on failing to consult on the redundancy process, as well as payouts on wages and holiday pay. Continue reading “KWM administration report shows £18.3m hole for creditors as former staff set for payouts”

NRF partner promotions delayed as firm moves to US financial reporting ‘to align with the global business’

NRF partner promotions delayed as firm moves to US financial reporting ‘to align with the global business’

Norton Rose Fulbright (NRF) is shifting its financial reporting to the US calendar year-end in a symbolic move towards a more integrated business.

The move, which the firm describes as a bid to align the European operations with the global business, also means NRF will not be announcing Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) partner promotions until December this year. Continue reading “NRF partner promotions delayed as firm moves to US financial reporting ‘to align with the global business’”

Come together – Bakers unites UK and EMEA under single profit pool but Germany and France stay out

Come together – Bakers unites UK and EMEA under single profit pool but Germany and France stay out

Integration has long been one of the key issues for Baker McKenzie, a firm with heritage as a franchise and a long fight against the much-loathed ‘McFirm’ tag. A sign that things are changing came in February, when Legal Business reported that the firm is to bring London and eight of its offices in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) into one profit pool – a landmark step towards full financial integration in the region.

Global antitrust chief Fiona Carlin has been elected to lead the integrated business, uniting 1,000 lawyers in the City, Brussels, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Madrid, Barcelona, Johannesburg, Bahrain and Qatar. Continue reading “Come together – Bakers unites UK and EMEA under single profit pool but Germany and France stay out”

Comment: Slashing to victory – the most dangerous law firm myth

Comment: Slashing to victory – the most dangerous law firm myth

‘Turnover for vanity, profit for sanity.’ How many times have you heard that phrase or variations of the theme espoused in the legal industry? A lot since the banking crisis recast the profession.

Commercial firms are forever chasing the grail of higher profitability to the extent of fashioning strategy around the notion of slashing the business to achieve it. People used to forecast consolidation and the dawn of the $10bn law firm – now it is as common for law firm leaders to talk of City-bred institutions getting smaller. Continue reading “Comment: Slashing to victory – the most dangerous law firm myth”

Slashing to victory – the most dangerous myth

Slashing to victory – the most dangerous myth

‘Turnover for vanity, profit for sanity.’ How many times have you heard that phrase or variations of the theme espoused in the legal industry? A lot since the banking crisis recast the profession.

Commercial firms are forever chasing the grail of higher profitability to the extent of fashioning strategy around the notion of slashing the business to achieve it. People used to forecast consolidation and the dawn of the $10bn law firm – now it is as common for law firm leaders to talk of City-bred institutions getting smaller. Continue reading “Slashing to victory – the most dangerous myth”

The Icarus syndrome – the highs and lows of Slater and Gordon

The Icarus syndrome – the highs and lows of Slater and Gordon

Pride before a fall. Everything was going well when the world’s first listed law firm, Slater and Gordon, announced another blockbuster UK buyout in early 2015.

‘In getting to this point, we undertook a very extensive due diligence process,’ said the firm’s managing director, Andrew Grech. ‘The business we are buying is of high quality with robust infrastructure and systems, and good people. This move will accelerate and consolidate our position in the UK market, and bring benefits to the clients and staff of both businesses.’

Continue reading “The Icarus syndrome – the highs and lows of Slater and Gordon”

Freshfields ushers in sweeping reforms to ditch heritage as lockstep shop in hugely symbolic move

Freshfields ushers in sweeping reforms to ditch heritage as lockstep shop in hugely symbolic move

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has pushed through a wholesale overhaul of its partnership structure that will see top earners bringing home as much as five times its most junior equity partners.

The move – which was backed in a partners’ vote concluding today (14 November) – will see Freshfields’ core equity range widen from between 17.5 points and 50 points to between 12 points and 60 points, though the ‘core ladder’ will run from 12 to 40 points. Continue reading “Freshfields ushers in sweeping reforms to ditch heritage as lockstep shop in hugely symbolic move”

KWM insolvency report reveals cost of everything from artwork to legal fees as ex-staff agree payout

KWM insolvency report reveals cost of everything from artwork to legal fees as ex-staff agree payout

Eight months on and the King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) saga continues, with a progress report filed this week revealing the cost of the firm’s European administration amid confirmation that ex-staff are set to receive a payout.

According to a report filed by administrator Quantuma at Companies House on 5 September, CMS Cameron McKenna received a total of £826,740 for ‘assistance in attending to the complex legal issues which have arisen both in the pre and post administration periods’. This figure also includes costs of £235,544 incurred by the firm in dealing with KWM’s German offices while additional legal fees of £186,318 go to Pinsent Masons for advising the administrators as well as £70,000 to iLaw Legal Services. Continue reading “KWM insolvency report reveals cost of everything from artwork to legal fees as ex-staff agree payout”

Freshfields to deploy second-tier lockstep for more partners as profit drive continues

Freshfields to deploy second-tier lockstep for more partners as profit drive continues

As Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer continues its profitability drive, almost a quarter of the global partnership is expected to be on the firm’s second-tier lockstep as early as 2020.

When the firm introduced the second-tier lockstep around three years ago, less than 10% of the then 400-strong partnership was on the separate track. However, from 2020, the proportion of the partnership on the second lockstep is expected to be a quarter.

Continue reading “Freshfields to deploy second-tier lockstep for more partners as profit drive continues”