Simmons’ turnover up 7 per cent to £269m, profit up 13%

Simmons & Simmons has unveiled a 7 per cent increase in turnover for the 2013/14 financial year, with revenue rising to £268.6m from £250.3m in 2012/13.

Net profit has gone up by 13 per cent, to around £75m from £66.2m, while average profit per equity partner (PEP) increased by 5.3 per cent to £553,000 from £525,000 last year.

The results mark a turnaround for Simmons, which saw revenue decline in 2012/13 (9 July 2013), with net profit and PEP remaining roughly stable.

The full-year results follow a good first half-year for Simmons. The firm said revenue was up by 8 per cent after six months (20 November 2013), with half-year turnover at £130.6m.

Managing partner Jeremy Hoyland said the growth was predominantly due to a good year for the firm’s transactional practices.

“The corporate and finance practices certainly had an improved performance over the previous year, and disputes and employment maintained good levels,” Hoyland said. He added that while the firm’s litigation team had not seen the same increase in activity as the transactional groups, there was still plenty of contentious work.

Hoyland said the UK had been particularly strong.

“There’s no doubt that London and the UK had a very good year,” he said. “We saw greater improvement in market conditions here than in Western Europe.”

Hoyland said the profitability rise was due mainly to the firm managing to hold costs “pretty flat” despite investment in people and offices.

Simmons made up eight new partners at the end of the financial year (1 May 2014), following several lateral hires during the course of 2013/14. Those included Bristol-based Burges Salmon funds partner Mahrie Webb (29 May 2013), who joined the firm at the start of the current financial year, RPC insurance partner Jason Bright (13 August 2013), Ashurst real estate partner Matthew Hooton (21 October 2013) and Dentons’ Middle East construction and litigation head David Risbridger (7 November 2013).

The firm also re-elected senior partner Colin Passmore for a second term (27 June 2013), and was given the green light for a Singapore launch (8 May 2013).

Meanwhile Simmons lost finance partner Philip Abbott to Fieldfisher at the end of the year (12 March 2014).