Law Firm News Roundup: 17th to 23rd June

Welcome to the fourth edition of 'Law Firm News' from the SundayLawReview team. The aim of this column is to primarily focus on what happened at law firms in UK as reported through online legal publications.

A number of firms reported a rise in profit this week although much of this rise could be attributed to cost cutting elsewhere in the business. The most encouraging news of the week came from a Legalweek report on UK top 100 firms recording average fee income rise of 7% for 2011-12. There was a 5.6% rise in fee earner headcount among the top 100 firms with firms ranked between 26 to 50 being the consistently strongest performers at a rate of 9.7% fee increase.

Equality and diversity monitoring in law firms is increasingly under the spotlight. The process is unlikely to get any easier what with the Solicitors Regulation Authority proposing a thematic pilot to obtain data on diversity profiles within the legal profession. The Law Gazette reported that law firms would have to 'report on equality and diversity issues in the annual reporting cycle from 2013. So, as firms grapple with outcomes-focused regulation and annual reporting of breaches of the Handbook and accounts rules, this will be another area where firms will need to collect data and report for the SRA'.  

The ultimate aim of the SRA in this issue is to increase diversity in the legal profession to reflect the world that we live in. However, it is not all doom and gloom as a recent Legalweek article suggested that the country's largest firms are pushing forward with measures to boost gender diversity in senior ranks, resulting in an increase of more than a third in female partner promotions across the UK top 10 firms.

Saturday 23th June

Friday 22nd June
  • Shearman & Sterling has overhauled its leadership structure, introducing three regional managing partner positions for EMEA, the Americas and Asia | Legalweek 
  • Wragges boosts revenues by 5% after strong disputes showing and international push | Legalweek 
  • Riverview Law set for further expansion to Far East and offshore | Legalweek 
  • Wragge & Co has posted a 5 per cent rise in turnover for the 2011-12 financial year, up from £113m to £118.2m. The firm missed its target for the 2011-12 financial year, which was made at the end of 2010-11 when the deal pipeline was strong | The Lawyer:  

 Thursday 21st June

Wednesday 20th June

Tuesday 19th June

Monday 18th June
  • Two Shanghai partners who left Salans earlier this month have resurfaced at the firm’s former alliance partner Pinsent Masons | The Lawyer: 
  • Eversheds turnover inches up after three years of static revenues. Net profit leaps 10 per cent as revenues rise to £366m | The Lawyer: 
  • The re-opening of the Information Commissioner Office’s (ICO) investigation into Google Street View’s data collection practices will mean further instruction for Bristows | The Lawyer: 
  • Details have emerged that King & Wood Mallesons is looking beyond the UK and US to broaden its global footprint, with Singapore and Canada being two key locations it is considering opening in | The Lawyer: 
  • Scotland-headquartered Dundas & Wilson has launched a probe into a sector head who obtained confidential information about a client that prejudiced a tender process | The Lawyer: 

A synopsis of the the movers and shakers in law firms as featured in Law Society Gazette

We would like to thank all the publications cited in this week's 'Law firm news'. Direct links to the law firms have been included where firms had been mentioned. Please notify via @SundayLawReview Twitter handle of any errors or omissions.