The Lawyer Asia Pacific 150 is the only research report to provide a ranking of the top 100 independent local firms and top 50 global firms in the region. The report offers critical review of some of the fastest growing firms and their strategies, a country-by-country guide to leading legal advisers and legal services market trends, plus exclusive insight into the current business development opportunities in the Asia Pacific. Read more
This year, The Lawyer’s annual ranking of the largest UK law firms by turnover is available as an interactive, digital benchmarking tool. For the first time this will allow you to manipulate each data set against the metrics of your choice.
And so it was for Eversheds chief executive Bryan Hughes, who was given a second four-year term at the helm on 9 October.
“It’s difficult to run a law firm in times such as these,” says Hughes. “It’s a time of uncertainty and you have to make difficult decisions that people won’t like.
“Six or seven years ago it was a case of - even a turkey can fly in a high wind,” adds Hughes, meaning that in the boom years firms did not have to be lean to make money.
Indeed, with his first term beginning in September 2008 Hughes’ reign so far as chief executive has been defined by the global economic crash. And with chief executives at Eversheds limited to two four-year terms - “I’m Obama-like in that respect,” quips Hughes - it’s possible that he will have stood down before markets recover. “I used to joke that I didn’t want to spend my whole time as a chief executive in recession, but that’s come back to bite me in the arse.
“It would be nice to get a bit of wind in our sails. We’ve got a streamlined business now so any growth would jump straight onto the bottom line.”
Asked what his proudest achievement has been, Hughes concedes that it has “probably been more a case of relief than pride in these difficult times” but says he has been happy with the firm’s return to profitability and keeping staff and partners informed and engaged during successive rounds of cuts.
Eversheds’ next three-year strategy is focused on making its international offices of a uniform quality.
That, says Hughes, would be his legacy: “If I can do it I’ll leave a happy man.”