Baker & McKenzie has confirmed its status as the world’s biggest law firm, posting a turnover of $2.54bn (£1.51bn) for the year ended 30 June – its highest-ever sum.
Total revenue was up 5% on the previous year as Bakers became the first firm to pass the $2.5bn mark since the global financial crisis. Profits per equity partner increased by 7% to $1.29m (£770,000).
Bakers is also the world’s largest firm by headcount, with 4,245 lawyers, 1,430 of whom are partners.
Standout practices in 2014 included banking and finance, tax and dispute resolution; with M&A, intellectual property, and trade and commerce also performing strongly.
Key deals included: advising Dai-Ichi Life Insurance on its $5.7bn (£3.4bn) acquisition of New York Stock Exchange-listed Protective Life Corporation; acting for Deloitte and the lenders in the $1.1bn (£660m) receivership of the Gherkin; and the $638m (£380m) acquisition of the largest retail pharmacy chains in Mexico and Chile by Alliance Boots.
During the year Bakers opened offices in Yangon, Myanmar and Dubai in the UAE. Further expansion into new markets planned for 2015 has already begun with the opening of an office in Brisbane, Australia in July.
Firm chairman Eduardo Leite (pictured) said: ‘The market for legal services gets more competitive every year and the last twelve months were no exception, despite an improving global economy.’
He said: ‘Baker & McKenzie defined the global law firm in the 20th century, and we are redefining it to meet the challenges of the global economy in the 21st by becoming even more competitive, strategically agile and above all focusing on client satisfaction.
‘We have been passionately global since our founding 65 years ago and that is reflected in our continued expansion into new markets, and the recruitment of new lawyers and professionals around the world.’
Leite added: ‘We remain confident that the combination of our deep local roots and our strong common global vision, strategy, brand, culture and operating philosophy will continue to reinforce our ambition to lead our profession globally and offer our clients exceptional service wherever they are in the world.’