Revenue was up by 9.6 per cent, from £42.6m to £46.6m. Net profit also rose, by 6.9 per cent, from £10.1m to £10.8m. Much of this growth was driven by Farrers’ larger fee-earner base, up from 176 to 209. Its partnership grew from 66 to 74, with hires including those of real estate partners Robin Holmes and Clive Lovatt from Travers Smith and Addleshaw Goddard respectively.
However, the firm was guilty of a bizarre fudge when it replaced former senior partner James Furber (who stepped down a year early) with not one, but two individuals, Jim Edmonson and Richard Parry, apparantly in a bid to appease different constituencies within the firm.
Farrers’ equity partner base is roughly a third of its partnership, with the firm adding three equity partners last year to reach 25. This had an impact on average profit per equity partner (PEP), which dropped to £403,000 from £442,000 a year earlier.
The reduction is indicative of a long-term trend at Farrers. Since 2007-08 the firm has grown its equity partnership base from 19 to 25, while PEP has fallen from an all-time high of £469,000 in 2007-08.