Fried Frank profits plummet at end of rocky year

Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson has posted year-end results that reveal one of the largest drops in average profits of any US firm.

Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson has posted year-end results that reveal one of the largest drops in average profits of any US firm.

Average profit per equity partner at Fried Frank fell 23 per cent to $1.23m in 2008. Total revenue was also down at the corporate and M&A-focused firm, by 9 per cent to $488m.

The firm, which has a 28 February year end, had a rocky year internationally. It saw the departure of three major teams of lawyers in Paris and Frankfurt, the most recent being the group of lawyers Fried Frank hired from French boutique Veil Jourde in 2005, which left for De Pardieu Brocas Maffei earlier this year.

Other international exits include the niche bankruptcy litigation firm Lantourne, with which Fried Frank merged in 2006. In November last year name partner Maurice Lantourne left with five associates for Willkie Farr & Gallagher.

They were later joined by Frankfurt-based capital markets partner Michael Schlitt, who joined Fried Frank in 2007 and left last September after only 14 months.

Fried Frank did not comment.