Australian law firms are looking overseas for growth as the legal services industry suffers revenue decline due to decreasing demand for services, according to a new report. With clients implementing cost cutting measures, price pressures and increased competition are taking their toll. Industry revenue is projected to grow by an annualised 2.1 per cent over the five years through 2014-15, hampered by declines in 2009-10 and 2012-13. The industry's fortunes are expected to improve in 2014-15, with revenue forecast to increase by 2.7 per cent to reach $22.7 billion.
Mergers on the cards
The report points out that Minter Ellison and Clayton Utz are the only two remaining major firms yet to merge or align with an overseas partner but that both have indicated a willingness to do so in the future. It forecasts industry revenue will grow over the next five years. 'Merger and acquisition work is expected to increase as businesses become more comfortable with challenging conditions and begin to invest more strongly,' says IBISWorld industry analyst Sebastian Chia Chia. Initial public offering work is also expected to rise on the back of strong activity in 2014. Source: Ibisworld.com