Chief executive officer David Stewart said total fee income was down by around 2 per cent on the same period last year, dropping from £43m to £42.2m. Stewart added that while the UK end of the practice had been effectively flat the performance of Olswang’s international offices had been solid.
“Our German practice was 12 per cent up at half year while Brussels was 15 per cent ahead of budget,” said Stewart.
“Spain has also launched well, there’s a good pipeline.”
Stewart said Olswang’s half-year performance in 2009-10 had been “exceptionally good”, a fact that he said also skewed this year’s lacklustre performance.
However, he admitted that the current trading environment remained tough.
“I think the year’s turning out to be more of a struggle than many of us expected,” said Stewart. “We’ve seen an uptick in November but I don’t think anyone is overly confident that it’ll be maintained for the rest of the financial year.”
Stewart added that despite this the firm was still budgeting for a slight increase in total fee income for the full financial year.
“It leaves us a lot to do in the second half but I’m confident we can get the job done,” Stewart said.