DLA Piper among slew of firms to post first-half revenue increase

DLA Piper has exceeded its revenue budget for the first six months of the 2010-11 financial year as UK firms continue to report growth.

Paul Edwards
Paul Edwards

DLA Piper International, the UK and EMEA arm of the business, has posted income of £280m, an 8.5 per cent increase from the £258m it made during the comparable period last year.

DLA Piper had budgeted £277m for the period ending 31 October 2010, with the expectation that its profit pool would grow by 35 to 40 per cent.

Chief financial officer Paul Edwards told The Lawyer: “We’re seeing a nice recovery in the UK, which is trading above its budget.”

He pointed to “a good year despite the recession”, highlighting that the largest economies of Germany, France and Italy are running slightly below budget and that the CIS “continues to be challenging”.

Meanwhile, Herbert Smith said that revenues have increased by around three per cent on the first six months of last year, although the firm has not released revenue figures.

Other top 10 firms to post results so far include Allen & Overy, which saw income grow by three per cent to £526m (8 November 2010) and Norton Rose, which expanded by nine per cent to £155m (9 November 2010).

Outside of the top 10 Pinsent Masons is the latest firm to announce its results. The national firm has grown slightly, bringing in £98.3m compared with £97.8m last year – a 0.5 per cent increase.

Managing partner David Ryan said: “I’m pleased with the progress that we’ve made so far. While no one can predict how the economy will pan out, we’ve made a solid start to the year and have a strong foundation, which we can build upon over the coming months.”

The largest percentage rise so far is from Barlow Lyde & Gilbert (BLG), which grew fee income by 17 per cent to £44.5m. Earlier this year BLG took a 17-partner team from Halliwells after the Manchester law firm collapsed (21 July 2010).

The only firm to have shrunk fee income so far is Olswang, whose figure decreased by two per cent.

Firms’ first-half results:

UK 200 rank Firm Revenue H1 2010-11 (£m) Revenue H1 2009-10 (£m) % change
4 Allen & Overy 526 511 +3
5 DLA Piper 280 258 +9
7 Herbert Smith NS NS +3
10 Norton Rose 155 142 +9
25 Nabarro 53.5 52 +3
27 Wragge & Co 54 47.5 +15
39 Barlow Lyde & Gilbert 44.5 38 +17
32 Olswang 42.2 43 -2
42 DWF 36 32 +12
53 Weightmans 26.9 25.2 +7