Debevoise snubs City for fourth year running in eight-strong promos round

Debevoise & Plimpton has added eight lawyers to its partnership, with almost all of those made up in its New York headquarters. 

The firm has made up no partners in London for the fourth year running. The last person to be promoted in the City was litigation partner Sophie Lamb in 2010. 

However the office has made various lateral hires, bringing in litigation partner Tony Dymond from Herbert Smith Freehills last December (17 December 2013), a year after taking in heavyweight Kevin Lloyd (5 December 2012) from the same City rival. 

The firm also promoted London-based Aimee-Jane Lee to international counsel in its dispute resolution group back in January. It now has more than 80 lawyers in London, including 19 partners and 12 international counsel.

Among Debevoise’s new partners, seven are based in New York and one in Washington DC. Corporate saw the largest intake of new partners with five promotions, followed by two in litigation and one in tax.

This year marked the first time the US firm had elected a UK-qualified lawyer to lead its London base, after former attorney general Peter Goldsmith QC was named co-managing partner of its London office (16 January 2014). 

Goldsmith joined Debevoise & Plimpton in 2007, on the same day that prime minister Tony Blair stepped down. The move came as a shock to the legal community. After six years as the UK Government’s Attorney General, Goldsmith admitted at the time that he was looking forward to a fresh challenge (1 October 2007).

Debevoise posted a 2 per cent rise in total revenue for the 2013 financial year, with turnover growing from $675.43m to $688.2m (4 March 2014).

Average profit per equity partner stood at $2.31m last year, an 11 per cent rise on the previous year’s $2.075m while net profit was $318.78m, up more than 7 per cent from $296.84m. The latter gives Debevoise a profit margin of 46 per cent.