The contrast between the Global 100 reports in 2012 and 2022 is startling: in 2012 the global elite was feeling the pinch with transactional markets stagnant in the wake of the global financial crisis a few years before. For the 63 firms that appeared in both years’ reports – unchanged by significant merger activity between those dates – 2012 was marked by single-digit rises in revenue, profits and lawyer numbers at the top 100 firms. With inflation running at around 3% in the UK and US then, performance in real terms was even more muted than the top-line figures suggested – it was essentially a flat year for many, set against the backdrop of shock and awe that came from Dewey & LeBoeuf filing for bankruptcy in May 2012 that gave many law firm leaders pause. Just five firms had gross revenues of $2bn or more, while only the top 23 firms in the table turned over more than $1bn. Five-year growth for Global 100 firms following the boom of 2007, was pedestrian – at best.
Continue reading “Global 100: Ten-year view – Playing the long game”
Despite the Russia/Ukraine war fuelling concerns, firms still found time to make strategic hires, open new offices and become embroiled in the odd scandal. Here are the headline stories of the last 12 months.