Shearman hit by downbeat financial results

Shearman & Sterling has reported stagnant 2006 revenue figures both globally and in London, falling short of many of its US-headquartered rivals.

The New York heavyweight recorded gross global revenue of just $842m (£457.6m) last year, less than 1 per cent up on the previous year’s figure of $835 (£468.7m)

The London office met a similar fate following the loss of several star partners. Gross revenue in the City for 2006 was $115m (£62.5), just $2m up on the previous year’s figure of $113m (£62m).

Global average profit per equity partner (PEP) for the firm’s 196 equity partners performed far better, up almost 14 per cent to $1.48m (£804,000) from $1.3m (£714,000) in 2005.

This result was generated off global net profit of $290m (£157.6m) in 2006.

But London’s troubles continued with PEP for the City’s 25 equity partners just $1.44m (£783,000) in 2006, after the office generated net profit of $36m (£19.6m).

There is, however, some confusion in the market over the firm’s PEP figures and number of equity partners. Some reports are skewed by calculations being based on the firm having 176 equity partners and 20 non-equity partners, despite Shearman retaining an all-equity partnership.

The figures are in direct comparison to the headline grabbing results of the London offices of US rivals. White & Case and Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker.

White & Case saw PEP increase an impressive 67 per cent in London to $1.28 (£693,000), while Paul Hastings reported an 84 per cent increase in London revenues to hit $21.4m (£11.6m).

Shearman’s disappointing London results follow a tough period for the office following a spate of partner losses, including rated corporate partners Jonathan Coppin to Hogan & Hartson in July 2006 and Adrian Knight to Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom in November 2005

But the office is understood to be forecasting growth in 2007, following several lateral hires, such as former Freshfiled Bruckhaus Deringer partners Ian Harvey-Samuel and Lois Moore in January.