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Cripps Harries Hall has appointed its first ever intellectual property (IP) partner to head the IP unit within the corporate department. Peter Jennings is a former partner and head of IP at niche City firm Pettman Smith. Prior to his time at Pettmans, Jennings was a partner at Theodore Goddard and Baker & McKenzie. Corporate partner Peter Ashford said: "It's a very strategic move for the firm. Clients are increasingly demanding advice in this area." Jennings joins three other IP solicitors in the unit. Head of corporate Trevor Carney said: "I'm confident that this experience, coupled with his contacts in the industry, will drive the team forward and heighten the profile of our IP department." The firm has made a number of high-profile lateral hires in the past couple of years, including Kate Robinson from Herbert Smith and Stephen Williams, who was formerly a Linklaters & Alliance partner and deputy director at the Office of the Rail Regulator. Cripps now has a total of 34 partners. The firm has announced strong year-end figures with profits-per-partner up 23 per cent to £164,000 and turnover up 12 per cent to £17m. It predicts another 10 per cent increase in turnover in the coming year.