Equity partner profits fall at Linklaters despite revenue rise

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Magic circle firm’s bosses still on over £1.5 million

Linklaters has reported a slight drop in the average earnings of its mega-wealthy partners for the first time in nearly a decade as it announced a mixed set of financial results.

The global player has announced that profit per equity partner (PEP) had fallen by 1.9% to £1.538 million — putting it behind its magic circle rivals Freshfields, Allen & Overy and Clifford Chance.

Still one of the most profitable firms in the world, Linklaters cited tweaks to the way it counts its partners for the unexpected dip. The remaining magic circler, Slaughter and May, does not disclose its results, but it is understood to be the most profitable of the elite fivesome.

The 2018 Firms Most List

Partner profits aside, the Silk Street firm saw revenues jump to £1.523 billion, up 6% from £1.44 billion, and pre-tax profits rise from £664 million to £676 million, an uplift of 1.7%.

Magic circle 2018 financials

Firm Profit per equity partner (PEP) Profits Revenue
Freshfields £1.734 million £683 million £1.403 billion
Allen & Overy £1.64 million £690 million £1.57 billion
Clifford Chance £1.596 million £626 million £1.623 billion
Linklaters £1.538 million £676 million £1.523 billion
Slaughter and May N/A N/A N/A

Gideon Moore, Linklaters’ firmwide managing partner, said: “The firm has performed strongly again this year, achieving a 4.8% increase in income at constant currency. Our performance has been driven by the efforts of our people, our deep client relationships and our sector focus.” He added:

“During the course of the financial year we rolled out the global implementation of our firmwide strategy refresh: increased focus on investing in clients, our people and technology. We’re already seeing the results of some of the initiatives we’ve put in place and I’m excited about how we take the firm forward this year, acting for clients as a united, global team.”

Linklaters is the last of the magic circle firms to announce its results this year.

Clifford Chance saw its PEP jump by 16% to nearly £1.6 million, while revenue increased to £1.62 billion. Meanwhile, PEP at fellow magic circle duo A&O and Freshfields rose to respective figures of £1.64 million and £1.73 million — up 4% and 12%. The partner profit rises at the magic circle duo come on the back of overall revenue uplifts of 4% at A&O to £1.57 billion and 5% at Freshfields to £1.4 billion.

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If S&M doesn’t make public its financial results how do you know it’s the most profitable?



it’s obvious isn’t it you ejit!?



Er, no. Care to explain?



No, it’s so obvious!! If you don’t get it you don’t belong in the law!!!



You obviously don’t know.



I’m not the eejit don’t forget…??!!!



I remain convinced that slaughters are bluffing



Wow I would never have believed someone as dumb as you existed… !!


WOO GO MACFARLANES smashing it with the £1.74 milly oi oi – one can only dream!


Dr Frankenstein

Your ‘millys’ and ‘oi..oi(s)’ indicate that you work for Mills & (Regional) Reeve!



Damn it! My seemingly well-crafted veneer has been shattered and my true identity revealed!



Payrises for NQs at Macs?



Yeah, it’s great if your in the equity. A good number are salaried partners though.





End greed..for the many..etc etc

I wrote it before some tovarishch arrives


Maccies partner

feelin’ smug ngl



£1.5 million is a massive chunk of change, but it doesn’t put Linklaters anywhere near being “one of the most profitable firms in the world”.

It’s the 33rd “most profitable firm in the world”, behind basically every major US firm (prestigious or otherwise). LC, stop drinking the Linklaters kool aid.



Great to see leadership at Linklaters so sanguine about the temporary drop in PEP. Some firms actually invest in their people. *cough* Freshfields.



Oh yeah….

My office window has a great view of the now half-empty empty Northcliffe house that used to be full of business services staff before they were made redundant and moved to Manchester; the PA bay opposite my office is now 1/3rd full because of the PA redundancies; and the mail room no longer delivers mail because the Firm has just fired most of the posties. But yes, Freshfields really invests in their people…..


Sharply Dressed Essex CityLad in a business support role

Where’s my salary increase? Those double G&Ts at Dirty Martini won’t buy themselves.



Is it worth it for £1.5m? I think I’d rather have a normal life.



When you can lateral to kirkland for $10million, yeah.


city lawyer

Only the star partners can do that. Maybe 1% of MC partners are at that level.


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