Edwin Coe turnover edges up, profit drops by 20 per cent

Edwin Coe has seen average profit per equity partner (PEP) drop nearly 20 per cent during the last year.

The litigation specialist increased its turnover by six per cent, with revenues rising from £13m to £13.8m in the 2008/09 financial year.

But PEP fell from £456,000 to £368,000 in a year of rapid expansion for the firm.

Chief executive Tim Nash said: “We are quite pleased with the results given the economic climate.

“The reason PEP has dropped is because we have invested in staff and property. We’ve taken on five new partners and extra office space.”

Since the start of the year, Edwin Coe has taken on new partners in IP, litigation and employment. The latest arrival is Fladgate Fielder corporate partner Andrew Bretherton. Partner headcount is now 33, up from 27 last year.

Litigation remains the largest practice in the firm, led by star litigation partner David Greene who won the Outstanding Achievement Award at The Lawyer Awards 2009.

He advised a group of shareholders in action over the collapse of Northern Rock and has been instructed by investors in Bernard Madoff ’s $50bn (£35.02bn) Ponzi scheme.

The litigation practice makes up 41 per cent of the firm, with corporate the second largest practice at 28 per cent.

The firm has debtors of £3.7m, some 27 per cent of its turnover. However Nash said that the firm would be looking to bring that figure down this year and added that it currently has no bank debt.

He added that it would continue to look for opportunities to expand with lateral hires.