UK top 200 ranking: 3
Linklaters’ revenue was roughly flat last in 2011–12 at £1.207bn (compared with £1.2bn the previous year). Average profit per equity partner (PEP) at the firm was £1.184m, a 3 per cent rise on 2010–11.
The fairly static figures came amid a period of movement for the firm. In late 2011 its second partnership restructuring in three years saw roughly 10 per cent of partners affected: however during the year the firm also launched an Italian disputes practice, set up an Amsterdam competition offering and picked up a duo of partners from Dewey & LeBoeuf as the US firm collapsed.
Most notably, it went live with an exclusive alliance with Australian firm Allens Arthur Robinson (now Allens) and, in December 2012, made a similar arrangement with South Africa’s Webber Wentzel.
Internal politics was heated. Some partners revolted against the handling of the partner cull by abstaining from voting in the poll to re-elect global managing partner Simon Davies, the sole candidate. The protest resulted in the vote being re-run at the partners’ retreat in Montreux, Switzerland, with his election eventually ratified.
Overall, 2011–12 was a year in which Linklaters realigned its approach. The firm is now moving away from a global all-equity strategy focused on core hubs to one involving non-financially integrated joint ventures in emerging locations. It is also seeking out new sources of client fees rather than relying on its big-bank relationships.
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Of all the magic circle firms Allen & Overy (A&O) is probably the most transparent when it comes to reporting figures. It was the first of the group to become an LLP under senior partner Guy Beringer, an ardent advocate of transparency.
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OverviewOne Silk Street
Turnover (£m): 1,207
Total lawyers: 2,150