Shoosmiths' average profit per equity partner (PEP) rose by just 3 per cent last year, to £407,000, as the firm bore the added salary costs of a major recruitment drive.
The small increase follows five of years of outstanding growth in the firm's PEP. Last year PEP rose by 16 per cent and the year before it was up by a stunning 47 per cent.
Despite the firm’s profit flatlining, fee income rose by 27 per cent to £95m. Net profit also showed solid growth, with a 17 per cent increase on last year to £16.3m.
Shoosmiths' chief executive Paul Stothard said the firm "continued to amaze" with its achievements and would have been happy with static PEP in the context of its expansionist year.
"We’ve recruited more than 140 people into new posts in the past 12 months to build depth in our teams and ensure we can compete nationally," said Stothard. "We have also increased our equity partner numbers by five this year, so this PEP growth is very pleasing."
Shoosmiths continued to grow rapidly during 2006-07. It took an extra 15,500 square feet in its Birmingham office and also announced it would take 31,500 square feet as the first occupier of newly built offices at the Waterfront Plaza development in Nottingham.
Partner numbers reached 105 last month following 10 partner promotions.