Mid-tier firms gear up for bumper year as PEP predictions set to challenge City elite

Mid-tier firms are predicting another strong year, with Addleshaw Goddard, Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP), Nabarro Nathanson and SJ Berwin all anticipating sharp increases in profits per equity partner (PEP).

With just days to go until the financial year-end, BLP, which reported a 40 per cent rise in PEP from £303,000 to £425,000 in 2004, is aiming to get it above £500,000. SJ Berwin is also expected to report bumper results, with an anticipated PEP of £500,000.

As first revealed on Lawyer News Weekly (20 April), further down the pecking order Addleshaws and Nabarros are aiming for a PEP figure of £400,000.

However, Pinsent Masons is bracing itself for flat results due to the costs associated with last December’s merger between legacy firms Pinsents and Masons. The merged firm is expecting its PEP figure to be between £247,000 and £270,000, which were the figures reported last year by Masons and Pinsents respectively.

The biggest City firms are predicting modest improvements in their year-end results. Herbert Smith is anticipating last year’s PEP of £700,000 to increase by between 5 and 10 per cent. Allen & Overy and Clifford Chance, which reported PEP figures of £609,000 and £562,000 respectively last year, are hoping for a marginal uplift. However, PEP at Lovells is likely to fall below £500,000.