The price of everything – Law firm metrics cannot measure broader values that will define their future

The price of everything – Law firm metrics cannot measure broader values that will define their future

Pinsents senior partner Richard Foley argues the industry needs new benchmarks for success

As Legal Business publishes its LB100, it seems apt to step back and ask ourselves whether the industry is focusing on the right things as it seeks to measure success. It should be uncontroversial to say that if law firms are to work better – for themselves, the wider business community and society – they must be diverse and inclusive of all talents. Measuring that type of success is every bit as important as whether a firm moves up or down a place or two in the financial league table. So, perhaps one measure we should look to in the next year’s LB100 is the progress firms are making in tackling issues of inclusion and diversity? Continue reading “The price of everything – Law firm metrics cannot measure broader values that will define their future”

Knights talks up selective acquisition policy amid strong first-half financials

Knights talks up selective acquisition policy amid strong first-half financials

The chief executive of Knights says its listing last June  has instilled market confidence in its ability to deliver an ambitious acquisition pipeline. This comes as the law company announced a third law firm acquisition today (15 January) and reported a 37% increase in revenue to £23.9m for the six months to 31 October.

Knights, the largest law firm initial public offering (IPO) to date after raising £50m last year, has acquired Leicester-based employment specialist Cummins Solicitors, which has five fee-earners and £784,000 in revenue, in a £1.5m deal. It takes Knights’ total fee-earner numbers to 485 across eight offices. Continue reading “Knights talks up selective acquisition policy amid strong first-half financials”

Rosenblatt battles Brexit uncertainty in post-IPO financials as it launches litigation funder

Rosenblatt battles Brexit uncertainty in post-IPO financials as it launches litigation funder

In its first financial results since the £43m IPO in May, Rosenblatt has recorded a slight uptick in revenue and profit as it simultaneously launched its own litigation funding arm.

For the first eight weeks of its listed life, Rosenblatt generated £3m in revenue, compared to £2.6m for a two month average in the last financial year. EBITDA edged up from £0.9m to £1m on the same metric while profit before tax was also marginally up: from £0.8m to £0.95m. Continue reading “Rosenblatt battles Brexit uncertainty in post-IPO financials as it launches litigation funder”

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”

Latham surges to become world’s first $3bn law firm… but can Kirkland take its crown?

Latham surges to become world’s first $3bn law firm… but can Kirkland take its crown?

Latham & Watkins has become the first law firm ever to report revenues over $3bn with the Los Angeles-bred firm adding nearly $250m to its top line.

The US giant today (22 February) confirmed financial results for the 2017 year, showing an 8.5% hike in revenues to $3.06bn, against $2.82m the previous year. Profit per equity partner (PEP) shifted up 6% to $3.24m, arguably sealing its status as the most potent global law firm, underwritten by credible transactional and disputes coverage spanning the US and Europe. Revenue per lawyer grew at a modest 1.5% pace to $1.26m while the firm increased its headcount 6.9% to 2,436 lawyers. Continue reading “Latham surges to become world’s first $3bn law firm… but can Kirkland take its crown?”

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”

Reversal of fortunes – how three mid-tiers outgunned the City elite for a decade

Reversal of fortunes – how three mid-tiers outgunned the City elite for a decade

It is dominated by mid-sized firms while global players and City leaders lag far behind. Watson Farley & Williams (WFW) sits in the third spot. You must scroll down nearly 40 positions before finding the likes of Linklaters and Clifford Chance.

It is not the chart for revenue, profits or partner earnings. It is a table of major British law firms’ organic growth over the last ten years, marking the period since the financial crisis. Continue reading “Reversal of fortunes – how three mid-tiers outgunned the City elite for a decade”

Investing in London: Cooley sets City agenda with turnover targets and committee appointments

Investing in London: Cooley sets City agenda with turnover targets and committee appointments

Having made its audacious entrance into London’s legal market in January, US tech giant Cooley has begun rolling out the agenda for its new 55-lawyer UK practice, including appointing two City lawyers to its management committee, a further two to its compensation committee, and setting a revenue target for the team.

Continue reading “Investing in London: Cooley sets City agenda with turnover targets and committee appointments”

Evasive Action – Can Olswang live up to its own ambitions?

Evasive Action – Can Olswang live up to its own ambitions?

TMT leader Olswang is hard to pin down these days as profits ebb, reports of discord emerge and a leader suddenly departs. Can the firm push on with its ambitions to take brand Olswang global?

‘David is in back to back meetings every day for the next four weeks,’ says the Olswang staffer. ‘It would be just impossible to set up a call.’

The Legal Business correspondent listens to another evasive response after again asking to speak to Olswang’s then chief executive David Stewart. It’s not very convincing.

Continue reading “Evasive Action – Can Olswang live up to its own ambitions?”