The law firm’s 466% turnover increase, the ex-senior partner’s fraud and the ambiguously worded press release

It makes for an explosive combination

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A London PR outfit has dropped a press release-shaped clanger by appearing to indicate — to our eyes, at least — that a law firm’s recent success stemmed from fraudulent activity. This is of course not the case.

The firm in question, Holborn-based ELS Legal, was keen to trumpet the impressive 466% increase in turnover it had generated after recovering from near devastation in 2012 when a partner committed fraud. So it hired self-proclaimed “expert noise makers” EdenCanCan to disseminate its good news.

Unfortunately for all concerned, an email sent to the press (reproduced below) clouded the intended message somewhat.

edencancan#

ELS Legal’s past troubles have been well-documented, with the firm hitting the headlines for reportedly presiding over the disappearance of €9.8m (£8.4m) from a property fund. But it seems to be enjoying a formidable recovery, with 2015 turnover hitting £1,832,341.40 — up from from £323,928 in 2012.

Nick Fulford, managing director of EdenCanCan, insisted that the wording of the email was not ambiguous, telling Legal Cheek:

Neither we nor our client ELS believe that that the press release or the accompanying summary of ELS news outlined in the email and reproduced here suggests that the recent success of ELS is due to the fraudulent activities of an ex director. Also none of the many journalists who have received this release have suggested it either. In fact we believe it would take a pretty staggering leap of grammatical imagination combined with a deliberate misinterpretation of all the information provided to reach that conclusion, so we are at a loss in understanding why Legal Cheek is concocting this rather thin story — other than it being possibly a quiet news day with a deadline looming?

12 Comments

Anonymous

Wouldn’t he have been better laughing along with the ambiguity, rather than such a charmless response, which doesn’t exactly generate much confidence in their drafting abilities?

(9)(1)
Anonymous

The PR company can’t even spell ‘specialist’.

0/10

(12)(1)
Anon

I don’t think it’s ambiguous but do not understand why they are even mentioning the fraud… just say a 466% increase over three years.

Proudman and now this… slow news day or, alternatively, the site is on autopost while the gang enjoy a Friday pub session. If it is the latter, strong work LC and Happy Friday!

(8)(0)
Durr

Forget the grammar, why did the PR company mention the fraud in the release? That’s madness. You don’t pitch a good news story to the press by first reminding them of the bad news that will get their attention, and which they will then no doubt repeat in any copy they produce. That has to be a text book example of how NOT to write a press release. Wow.

(13)(0)
Anonymous

“we are at a loss in understanding why Legal Cheek is concocting this rather thin story — other than it being possibly a quiet news day with a deadline looming?”

Lol. Kudos for publishing that.

(11)(0)
Anonymous

How dare you support this absurd insinuation that LC publishes thin stories out of desperation to meet deadlines!? This is a site that ran “Toilet in a Manchester court is temporarily out of order”. Only the most pressing cutting-edge legal news here!

(4)(1)
Anonymous

Maybe it doesn’t imply that the increase in turnover is because of the fraud, but the fraud is listed in-between the two positive developments, and the phrasing implies that it’s one of the ‘exciting moves’.

(1)(0)
Boh Dear

1. Why mention the fraud?
2. Why mention the fraud?
3. Why mention the fraud in a grammatically ambiguous context?

(8)(0)
Anonymous

LC should really give up on Friday articles. They are always crap and compete with the one day ROD bothers to update their front page.

(0)(0)

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