Proskauer posts 10 per cent drop in average PEP

Proskauer Rose has posted its financial results for 2008, unveiling a 10 per cent drop in average profit per equity partner (PEP).

Average PEP dropped from $1.55m in 2007 to $1.4m last year, one of the most significant reductions in average profit among US firms so far.

Total revenue at Proskauer however grew last year, increasing around 1 per cent from $627m in 2007 to $634m in 2008.

The past 12 months or so have seen Proskauer ramp up an increasingly expansionist strategy. Last September, The Lawyer reported the firm was opening its first offices in Asia. hiring a trio of lawyers in Beijing and Hong Kong including two partners from the now defunct US firm Heller Ehrman’s Beijing office (9 Sept 2008).

The previous year Proskauer opened in Sao Paulo (17 July 2007) and London (6 September 2008).

More recently, Proskauer expanded the office it opened in Chicago last April with the hire this month of three partners from Winston & Strawn’s restructuring and insolvency group, including former co-chair Jeff Marwil.

However, the firm has recently been forced to cut back on headcount, shedding 35 associates and 25 support staff last December (5 December 2008).

“Last year’s revenues were up but there was very little attrition throughout the firm,” said one Proskauer partner. “We had too much headcount.”