Eversheds cuts debt on back of growth year, accounts reveal

Eversheds paid down nearly £20m of its debts in 2011/12, as the firm’s top line returned to growth for the first time in three years.

Sources at Eversheds are bracing themselves for a more difficult 2012/13, however, as half-year figures show no signs of growth.

According to Eversheds’ LLP accounts, the amount owed by the firm through its bank loans and overdrafts dropped from £20m to £639,000 in 2011/12.

Last year also saw the firm tapping into its cash reserves, with cash at the bank and in hand at Eversheds falling from £20.374m to £4.798m.

Turnover at Eversheds was £366.021m in 2011/12. It was up from £354.543m in the previous year and put an end to three years of declining revenues at the firm. Meanwhile profit for the financial year before members’ remuneration and profit shares in 2011/12 was £113.591m, up from £109.836m in 2010/11.

Staff costs were up slightly over the same period, from £146.593m to £151.470m, though the average number of staff at the firm throughout the year was down from 2,850 to 2,761.

Eversheds highest paid partner received £1.159m in the last financial year, up from £967,000 in 2010/11, as average partner pay rose from £364,000 to £388,000. Average profit per equity partner in 2011/12 was £632,000.

For a more detailed look at Eversheds’ finances over a longer period, see The Lawyer’s number crunching article.