The Lawyer Africa Elite 2014 features an in-depth look at 46 leading independent firms’ strategies in 15 key sub-Saharan jurisdictions, as well as the views of in-house counsel from some of Africa’s largest companies... 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.
City mid-tier firms face battle for business with regional players
It is no secret that clients are putting pressure on legal advisers for greater value. A growing number of City firms are responding by opening low-cost regional offices. Simmons & Simmons’ decision to open in Bristol is the latest example.
But now a reverse trend is emerging. Several regional firms have expressed a desire to acquire a small firm or bolt-on team in London to win more work from mid-tier City firms. Their biggest advantage, as Ashords chief executive Ian Daniells noted, is being able to offer cheaper rates from their regional bases.
Daniells’ Exeter-based firm merged with small London outfit Rochman Landau in March, adding 35 lawyers and £5.1m in revenues.
“With a credible office in London and lots of work being done in our regional base we save money by not having more people than we need in a place where overheads are so high,” said Daniel, who estimates that his firm can help clients save up to a third of their legal costs.
Regional firms’ London push is partly driven by the arrival of the likes of Co-operative Legal Services, which makes winning certain traditional types of work more difficult for regional players. “We’re trying to win all the work mid-tier London firms are doing and expect our growth will be largely driven out of London,” asserts Daniells.
His firm is aiming to take a bigger share of the mid-tier legal services market and is budgeting for revenue growth rate of between 7 per cent and 14 per cent for 2012-13 - ambitious in the current climate.