The 21 London-based firms that sit in the second half of the LB100, many of which are specialist, focused players, are known for packing a punch that belies their size. These firms average 179 lawyers and 29 equity partners and have a combined turnover of more than £1bn. The group contains some of the strongest private wealth and family firms in the country (Boodle Hatfield, Farrer & Co, Forsters, Harbottle & Lewis, Payne Hicks Beach); the strongest disputes and tech firms (Bristows, Kingsley Napley, Stewarts, Wiggin); and the definitive boutique, pensions specialist Sacker & Partners.
Perhaps because many of these outfits were lean going into the pandemic, and perhaps also their service lines are tighter than firms elsewhere in the table, the changes overall have been less dramatic than elsewhere in the LB100. Average revenue is broadly in line, up 3% from £47m to £48.3m, with a revenue per lawyer (RPL) of £271,000. But in profitability terms, while these firms are clearly high-performing, the gains in the last financial year have been modest. Profit per lawyer (PPL) and profit per equity partner (PEP) are both up by just 2%, to £85,000 and £469,000 respectively. Continue reading “LB100 Second 50: City and Boutique – Percentage play”
The regional and smaller national firms that sit in the 51-100 bracket of the Legal Business 100 (LB100) have again proved their mettle. Twenty nine firms, with an average of 250 lawyers and 30 equity partners, have shone again.
Following last year’s 7% overall revenue growth, the group’s collective revenue was down to £1.41bn for 2020/21 – although there are two fewer firms in this category than last year. It is the average performance that tells the complete story: a striking revenue increase of 11% from £47m to £53m. This growth is also reflected in per lawyer metrics across the group. Revenue per lawyer (RPL) held steady at £192,000, but profit per lawyer (PPL) jumped 14% from £37,000 to £43,000. Average profit per equity partner (PEP), however, also moved up an impressive 8% to £352,000. And, while the performance of non-City firms in the second half of the LB100 is not nearly as strong on average metrics as their London counterparts (see part III), the gap is certainly narrowing and the firms in this group have far outperformed City and boutique firms on a year-on-year basis. Continue reading “LB100 Second 50: Regional View – Faster, higher, stronger”