Revealed: City’s fastest growing US law firms

Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw (MBRM) and White & Case are the fastest-growing US firms in London, as The Lawyer reveals the revenues for the top 10 US firms in London last year.

Latham, which revealed official London figures for the first time, posted a revenue of $136m (£74m) in the year to 31 December 2006, an impressive 15 per cent increase on 2005’s $113m (£64.4m).

But White & Case bettered Latham’s performance considerably. The firm posted a 38 per cent rise in revenue thanks to increased billings across the whole practice, and a staggering 67 per cent increase in average profit per equity partner (PEP), which London senior partner Peter Finlay put down to “tight cost controls”.

PEP at White & Case last year rose to $1.28m (£693,000). The strong results followed a 24 per cent drop in PEP in 2005 to $731,000 (£418,000).

The order for first and second places remained constant, although MBRM closed the gap on market leader Baker & McKenzie considerably.

MBRM’s UK revenue rose by 21.8 per cent, from $145m (£83m) to $176.64m (£96m), which is less than £4m off Bakers’ $183.3m (£99.6m). MBRM London senior partner Paul Maher said all practice areas had performed particularly well.

“After completing a strategic review, we set ourselves some very aggressive targets,” said Maher. “The growth strategy for London over the next three years is to almost double in turnover and to double the headcount in the corporate and finance departments, which are the two practice areas that need to be much bigger in order to continue to support growth.”

In the most significant change at the other end of the top 10 table, provisional figures show that Dechert‘s London office overtook Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom to secure ninth place, with the larger firm dropping to tenth.