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Bakers gets biggest slice of legal pie

Bakers gets biggest slice of legal pie

A major international survey has listed Baker & McKenzie as the world’s highest-earning law firm.

Yesterday afternoon (25 June), Beaton Capital released its list of the top 450 professional services firms by revenue for 2010.

While the legal profession had the highest number of entries, with 206 law firms on the list, it didn’t feature among the biggest earners.

Deloitte topped the list, with over $US26.5 billion in revenue for 2010 (all figures are in $US), just pipping its “big four” accountancy rival PricewaterhouseCoopers and management consultancy company Accenture.

Bakers was the highest-earning law firm, in 33rd position overall, with just shy of $2.7 billion in revenue. The only other law firms in the top 50 were: DLA Piper ($1.961bn); Latham & Watkins ($1.929bn); Clifford Chance ($1.884bn); Linklaters ($1.854bn) and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer ($1.762 billion).

The traditional six “top-tier” law firms were the only Australian-headquartered law firms on the list.

As the 2010 calendar year provided the basis for the analysis, three of those Australian firms have since merged with global law firms, with Freehills close to becoming the fourth such firm given its expected imminent tie-up with Herbert Smith

Minter Ellison was the leading Australian firm, pulling in $463 million in 2010, placing it in 196th position.

Mallesons Stephen Jaques followed Minters in 199th position ($455 million), with Clayton Utz in 207th ($442 million), Freehills in 210th ($439 million), Allens Arthur Robinson in 238th ($359 million) and Blake Dawson in 259th ($329 million).

Interestingly, Mallesons ranked well ahead of its merger partner King & Wood, which was in 380th position.

A spokesperson for Beaton told Lawyers Weekly that the exhaustive nature of the list, which included headcount figures, alliances and the number of offices, meant that the 2011 figures could not be collated for release before the middle of this year.

The spokesperson also said that Beaton was currently analysing the 2011 revenue figures of the largest 450 professional services organisations and hoped to produce its next report before the end of the year.




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