BLG chief predicts great things as figures go north

Barlow Lyde & Gilbert (BLG) has posted a 35 per cent jump in net profit, from £16.8m to £22.7m, at the end of a year of significant change for the firm.

David Jabbari
David Jabbari

Revenue is also up, rising by 17 per cent to £94.5m from £80.8m in 2009-10.

The buoyant figures mark a resurgence for BLG after a year of high-level partner departures and the arrival of 19 partners from failed firm Halliwells.

BLG chief executive David Jabbari said the firm had underachiev­ed in ­previous years, but was ­getting back on track.

“These are the kind of ­figures we could have ­produced two or three years ago [if we’d cut overheads],” he said. “Since then we’ve had a reduction in costs and a huge cultural change. We also have a higher level of partner and associate ­utilisation.

“In a lot of firms people are working harder for lower rates; our rates have held up very well.”

Until now the firm has refused to declare its results publicly. However, its LLP accounts reveal that the average profit per equity partner (PEP) for 2009-10 was around £250,000. That is significantly lower than at its insurance peers, with leader of the insurance pack Clyde & Co recording a PEP figure of £550,000 in 2009-10, while Holman Fenwick Willan posted £517,000.

Jabbari predicted that the figure would rise substantially this year. “We’re ­budgeting for it to move more clearly into the £300,000s,” he said. “It’s still not where we want it to be, but we’re moving in the right direction and next year it will be £350,000.”