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A&O partner profits leap 17% to £1.9 million

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Revenue rises to £1.77 billion

Allen & Overy’s London office

Allen & Overy has posted strong financial results for 2021, with profits rocketing thanks in part to “exceptionally high levels of M&A activity”.

The magic circle player confirmed revenues rose 5% to £1.77 billion and profit per equity partner (PEP) jumped 17% to £1.9 million. Profit before tax is up 19% to £822 million.

The figures are a marked improvement on the firm’s 2020 performance, which saw both firm and partner profits shrink 2.5% and 1.7%, respectively.

The firm — which is the first of the magic circle to go public with its 2021 results — said it had enjoyed increased revenues across all transactional and disputes practices, as well as strong performances in all regions, in particular the UK, Western Europe, Central and Eastern Europe and the US.

Commenting on the results, global managing partner Gareth Price said:

“Like many organisations, we have been really tested over the last year and I’m proud of all our people and the way we responded. We took the time to find out the specific needs of our clients as Covid hit and gave them the support they needed. We focused on the wellbeing of colleagues as they worked remotely and often very long hours. And we looked after the people in our supply chain in a responsible way.”

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Price continued: “The culture we have built over many years and the short-term decisions we took early on ensured that our business not only survived but thrived during the pandemic, without seeking any government support. Our services are more in demand now than ever in our history and we have started the new financial year strongly, driven in particular by exceptionally high levels of M&A activity.”

Elsewhere, Taylor Wessing enjoyed a 12% increase in UK revenue to £175.5 million and a 23% uptick in UK profit to £71 million. It also posted an 18% jump in PEP and firm record for global revenue at £371.3 million.

UK managing partner Shane Gleghorn said: “Our focus this financial year has been our people and clients, and these pleasing results are attributable to their commitment to the firm. We anticipated, and had, a slow start to our financial year due to the contraction caused by the onset of the pandemic.”

He added: “We were confident, however, that the focus of our sector and practice groups positioned us well for a significant uptick in activity coming out of the second quarter, and that proved to be the case. That has resulted in the firm recording the highest ever revenue and profit for the UK business, which is a credit to our people. We saw the onset of our investment strategy in people and technology contributing to these strong results.”

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