At the start of the summer The Lawyer sent a questionnaire requesting financial and headcount data to almost 300 firms.
Most answered every question. Where firms refused to divulge either headline total revenue or average profit figures (or both), we have marked these as estimated. Only seven firms in the top 100 and a similar number in the second 100 refused to divulge the key results: turnover and profit for the top 100 and turnover for the second 100. Sixteen barristers’ chambers where figures have been estimated have also been indicated.
Headcount figures are full-time equivalent averages of the 2010-11 financial year. Net profit has either been provided by firms or is a multiplication of average profit per equity partner figures and the number of full-equity partners. It does not include remuneration to non-equity partners, including junior equity, fixed-share equity or salaried partners, which is considered a cost to the firm. A total remuneration figure for all classes of partner is used to calculate earnings per partner.
For the top 100 firms we have also calculated revenue per partner and per lawyer, as well as cost per lawyer. Cost per lawyer is calculated by subtracting net profit from revenue and dividing the resulting figure by the total number of qualified lawyers at a firm. Profit per lawyer is calculated by dividing net profit by the total number of qualified lawyers.
Leverage indicates the number of qualified lawyers, including all non-equity partners and associates, to each equity partner.