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Simmons & Simmons has been hit by a 19.6 per cent drop in average profit per equity partner (PEP) after seeing four consecutive years of growth.
In its financial results for 2008-09, Simmons’ PEP fell to £520,000 from a high of £647,000 last year.
Turnover grew slightly, from £289m to £291m.
Managing partner Mark Dawkins said the weakness of sterling had boosted revenues because Simmons’ extensive European network bills in euros.
He added: “The financial results reflect a year of two halves. The first six months were strong and built on a good performance in the previous year. For obvious reasons the second half was more difficult.”
Between 2004 and 2008 Simmons’ PEP more than doubled, from £275,000 to £647,000.
The latest figure is now at the same level as it was during the 2006-07 financial year.
Commenting on the fall, Dawkins said: “The drop was for a combination of reasons, including reduced transactional work levels in some key jurisdictions and one-off costs relating to our redundancy programme.”
The firm’s largest sector grouping, financial institutions, saw turnover increase despite the banking crisis. Clients include UBS and Barclays, with the latter recently naming Simmons on its revamped legal panel.
Geographically, the corporate practices in France and Italy performed strongly. In the Middle East the Doha and Abu Dhabi offices achieved growth, but Dubai had a difficult year.