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This year, The Lawyer’s annual ranking of the largest UK law firms by turnover is available as an interactive, digital benchmarking tool. For the first time this will allow you to manipulate each data set against the metrics of your choice.
Exeter-based Ashfords and South East firm Thomas Eggar have both had a relatively flat year, in terms of revenues with 2011-12 turnover remaining largely unchanged while average profit per equity partner (PEP) increased by a double-digit figure.
Thomas Eggar’s revenue rose by 1 per cent to £34.6m, while its net profit dropped slightly from £6.2m to £5.9m. However, the firm’s PEP hiked by 14 per cent to £249,000. The increase in PEP was largely due to a reduction in the number of equity partners at the firm. Compared to the previous financial year, the firm’s full-time equivalent average equity partner headcount was down by five to 23.
However, Thomas Eggar’s newly appointed managing partner Vicky Brackett (2 April 2012) cited that a more effective business model was the key contributor and in today’s tough market keeping consistent revenues is the the firm’s main goal.
“We’ve worked very hard on improving the way we operate, increasing the efficiency of our workflow and structuring our business more smartly,” said Brackett. “Although our top line remains static year-on-year, we’ve achieved a healthy increase in PEP. In this market, maintaining consistency is our aim and we’ve achieved that.”
Meanwhile, Exeter’s Ashfords revealed its 2011-12 turnover to be £24m, the same as last year. However, its net profit increased significantly from last year’s £4m to £7.5, representing a profit margin of 31 per cent. The firm’s PEP also rose, by 17 per cent to £239,000.
The firm merged with London-based Rochman Landau earlier this year (5 March 2012), creating an enlarged firm with nearly 500 members of staff and turnover of around £30m under the Ashfords brand.
The firm’s figures took into account two months of working as an enlarged firm, with the additional revenue and PEP calculated on a pro-rata basis. The London merger has contributed £800,000 of revenues to the firm since the merger, meaning that legacy Ashfords’ revenue dropped year-on-year from £24m to £23.3m, a 3.3 per cent reduction.