Spreading its wings

Bird & Bird’s year-end results, published today (see story), show the benefits of a long-term investment strategy.

In particular the firm’s 29.7 per cent hike in fee income to £186.3m highlights that if you’re prepared to take some bold strategic decisions – in 2Birds’ case, casting its international net about as far and wide as possible – then, even in the worst downturn in living memory, you’re likely to see a good return on that investment.

In the past two years alone, Bird & Bird has opened offices in Helsinki (with its 1 May 2008 merger with Finnish firm Fennica), Bratislava (September 2008), Prague, Warsaw, Budapest and – this year – Singapore via its global association with Alban Tay Mahtani & de Silva on 1 January 2009.

Oh, and it took over the respected aviation boutique Lane & Partners in the UK in October 2008. Apparently it also did some legal work.

So while most of its rivals are struggling in its wake, 2Birds keeps on going.

Even its PEP only fell 6.5 per cent to £481,000. In a year of bolt-ons, office openings and lateral hires, that’s really flying.