Case study: Charles Russell Speechlys

‘We have worked very hard since the outset to demonstrate that we are not simply a private client firm,’ says James Carter, managing partner of Charles Russell Speechlys (CRS). His comments come nine months after the union of Charles Russell and Speechly Bircham, creating a 530-lawyer practice that moves into the UK top 30 with revenues of £134.5m, slightly ahead of the legacy firms’ combined income for 2013/14.

When Carter says private client, he means old-fashioned trusts and estates work. The firm is looking to position itself as a leading private wealth player, covering the full range of commercial legal services for the privately wealthy, including litigation and corporate. Carter wants CRS to leverage its strong reputation in areas including employment, media, sport and fraud practices, alongside private client in all its guises, including a second-tier family practice. Speechly Bircham, alongside its recognised strength in both contentious trusts, personal tax and probate, had a well-regarded mid-market corporate practice. Continue reading “Case study: Charles Russell Speechlys”

Deal machines – the resilience of Macfarlanes, Travers Smith and the mid-tier deal team

The forced obsolescence of Macfarlanes and Travers Smith as City-focused M&A teams has been as long predicted as it has failed to materialise. Since 2010, after both firms quickly recovered from a brutal post-Lehman shock, the pair have proved not just resilient but able to thrive.

The pair performed robustly again in 2014/15, with Macfarlanes having been one of the most successful top-100 firms over the last five years with organic revenue growth of 73%. Around 20% of revenue is generated by its corporate department, reflecting the size of its private client practice and a concerted push to broaden its disputes, regulatory and finance teams. Continue reading “Deal machines – the resilience of Macfarlanes, Travers Smith and the mid-tier deal team”