Revenue jumps 19% at Osborne Clarke to €407m as UK PEP nears £800k
Top 25 UK firm hands out 5% profit share to its UK employees along with performance bonuses of up to one quarter of base salary
Osborne Clarke has reported a bumper set of financial results for 2021/22, with firm-wide revenue jumping 19% from the previous financial year to hit €407m against an 11% rise in UK profit per equity partner (PEP) to £796k.
The London-based firm’s UK income increased by 20%, from £166.4m to £199.1m, while UK net profit rose by 14% to £77.2m.
The firm also increased its cash resources to £45.8m, up by 12% on the previous financial year, when the firm posted another strong set of results with UK PEP increasing by 16% against a 7% increase in revenue.
Coming at the start of the UK financial reporting season, the results set a strong but not unexpected benchmark for the UK top 50 firms given the strength of global deal markets last year and in the first quarter of 2022. The 2021 Global Legal Post UK Law Firm Financial Results Tracker saw the top 50 reporting an average revenue increase of 6.8% against a PEP rise of 19.8%.
Omar Al-Nuaimi, Osborne Clarke's international CEO, commented: "It's been a fantastic year and I'm so proud of the hard work and dedication of our teams. While market conditions have been favourable, our business strategy is driving stronger client relationships and delivering strong results.”
Al-Nuaimi said the firm’s US arm continues to be key for helping it to develop more global client relationships and pointed to March’s addition of 30 lawyers in Warsaw to launch an office in the city, the firm’s first in the CEE region, as significantly boosting its European offering.
“Elsewhere we've grown aggressively through lateral hires, strengthened our approach to ESG and we are investing in new technologies that will support our firm's ongoing digital transformation," he added.
All four of the firm’s UK service lines saw revenue increases: business transactions recorded a 27% hike in income; projects, real estate and finance fees jumped by 25%; advisory was up by 15%; and disputes and risk saw an 8% uptick in revenue.
The firm saw ‘strong income growth’ across its UK sectors in real estate, financial services, TMT, life sciences and healthcare and transport and automotive. It said its other sectors were ‘broadly flat but against strong 2020/21 results.’
Off the back of the results Osborne Clarke is again giving its UK-based employees a 5% profit share based on annual salaries that will be paid this month. The minimum payment this year will be £2,500, up from £1,500 last year. The firm is also increasing performance bonuses to up to 25% of base salaries, which will be paid in July.
Since the start of the year the firm has made a number of lateral hires in the UK, among them a trio of energy and infrastructure partners in London in March from Orrick that included sector veteran John Deacon. And last month the firm added a five-strong pensions team from BDB Pitmans led by partners David Hosford and Chris Netiatis that took its pensions lawyer headcount to 20.
The firm also boosted its partner ranks through internal promotions, adding eight new partners in the UK last month across its corporate/M&A, TMT, energy and utilities, real estate and financial services teams.
Looking to Europe, the firm added tax partner Claudio Grisanti in Milan last December from Italian firm Foglia & Partners and began the year by promoting five to partner in its Amsterdam office and another five in Germany. Later it hired finance partner Anne Vrignaud and environmental law specialist Joanna Peltzman in Paris from King & Spalding and local firm DS Avocats respectively.
Earlier this month Osborne Clarke announced its commitments to the long-term Science Based Targets Initiative Net Zero Standard, one of only a few UK firms to have made similar commitments. It efforts to improve diversity and inclusion over the last year have also seen it jump 33 places to rank 48th out of 203 on the UK Social Mobility Index and rocket 159 places in the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index, now ranking 113th out of 403 and 16th of 34 in the legal sector.