Bird & Bird spent more than £14m – 18 per cent of its net profit – on its new London headquarters in the last financial year, its LLP filings have revealed.
The firm also saw a 5.5 per cent turnover increase from from €327m to €344m.
At the same time as releasing its LLP filings, Bird & Bird also revealed it had posted a 4 per cent increase to €175m in the first half of the 2016/17 financial year.
In 2015/16, net profit grew from €94.7m to €96.2m in the same period, while Bird & Bird’s highest paid member dropped from €1m to €962,000 in the 2015/16 financial year.
Staff numbers increased from 1,759 to 1,838.
“It was pleasing to have a year when we have taken most of the costs of taking the building and to have a decrease in debt,” Bird & Bird CEO David Kerr told The Lawyer. “There was no adverse effect on results at all.”
Across the network, Kerr says that the firm has benefited from a focus on the tech sector.
“We have benefited from our focus on tech,” Kerr said. “We have seen improvements across all countries and all practice areas. We expected it to be more mixed. It’s the sense of overall improvement that’s really caught us unexpectedly. We expected the corporate M&A work to be hit, but we have seen an increase in M&A across the world probably fueled by tech-rich activities.”
Bird & Bird’s London office has shown good performance and has not been impacted by market uncertainty, Kerr claimed.
“Everyone thought Brexit was going to have an immediate effect on the UK economy and no one has seen that,” he said. “So far we have seen continued improvements in our trading.”
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