Magic circle firm Linklaters has attributed a 6% rise in profits to new efficiencies in the way it works.
According to accounts filed with Companies House yesterday, the firm recorded £395m profit before tax in the year to April 2014. This compared with £371m in 2012/13.
The figures represented a turnaround from last year, when pre-tax profit fell by 3.4% compared with 2011/12.
Turnover rose from £1.19bn to around £1.25bn during the year – again reversing a slight dip recorded the previous year.
In his report to members, senior partner Robert Elliott said the strength of the firm’s performance was down to a new emphasis on efficiency.
‘The firm invested heavily in bringing non-legal project management skills to the running of our largest deals and matters,’ he said.
The use of document automation, making the best use of paralegals and new outsourcing arrangements were also important to create a ‘tailored infrastructure’ helping the firm to improve profits.
Operating expenses rose during the year, largely through staff costs increasing from £566m to almost £600m.
The number of practising lawyers at Linklaters rose from 2,290 to 2,325, while the number of non-fee-earners also increased slightly. The highest paid member of the LLP had their pay increased from £2.3m to £2.4m.
Consolidated amounts owed to the firm increased from £558m to £571m, while the figure owed to creditors increased from £286m to £304m. As at 30 April 2014, the consolidated balance for creditors due after one year was £38.3m.
The firm now has 29 offices in 20 countries, most recently expanding into Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, in 2011. It formed an alliance with Allens of Australia in 2012.