Global 50

  • Global top 50: the battle for 'elite' status

    Driven by international mergers, the world's 50 largest law firms by revenue saw turnover climb by an average of 7.4% last year to reach a combined total of $63.5bn (£40bn).

    Georgina Stanley |November 13, 2014
  • New world orders: the 2012 Global 100

    At first glance the 2012 Global 100 rankings, which show revenues for the world’s largest law firms rising to an all time high of $81.9bn (£50.8bn) during the last financial year, do much to prove the well-coined expression that, rain or shine, people (or at least major public companies) always need lawyers.

    Georgina Stanley |October 18, 2012
  • Global 100: Strong dollar helps US leaders set the pace as City firms face fierce competition

    Rising profits at expansive US law firms and continued weakness in sterling look set to sustain competitive pressure on globally ambitious UK firms for years to come, according to new research. This year’s Global 100 – a joint initiative from The American Lawyer and Legal Week – shows leading US players gaining a stronger grip on the upper echelons of the profession globally, based on both profitability and fee income. The three largest law firms in revenue terms are either US-based or the result of unions structured through vereins – with Baker & McKenzie, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and DLA Piper topping the income rankings.

    Alex Novarese |October 12, 2011
  • Major UK law firms suffer drop-off in 2009 Global 100 results

    The UK’s leading law firms have fallen back in the league of the world’s largest legal practices, according to new research, with three City-based firms falling out of this year’s Global 100. The ranking – a joint project between The American Lawyer and Legal Week – found total revenues at the world’s 100 highest-billing law firms inched up 1.7% from the previous year, from $78.53bn to $79.92bn. Average fee income for a Global 100 practice was $799.2m, up from $785.3m in 2008.

    Legal Week |October 07, 2009
  • Global 100: The great game

    Soon after Simon Davies took over as Linklaters' managing partner at the end of 2007, he brought together a group of the firm's partners for some scenario planning. Turbulence in the subprime mortgage sector had not yet grown into a global economic downturn, but Davies knew that the legal services market was already changing. "We had been striving to run ourselves as efficiently as possible to deliver clear value to our clients and avoid increasing rates," he says. The purpose of the gathering was to run through some 'what-ifs,' determine how the firm would be affected, and consider how it would respond. Scenario three, the worst one under consideration, was the collapse of a major investment bank.

    Legal Week |October 06, 2009
  • Global 100 league shows City closing gap on US

    UK law firms have moved sharply up the league of the world's 100 largest law firms as evidence mounts that the City's top firms are poised to outperform key US rivals in a prolonged slowdown.The Global 100, a joint project by Legal Week and The American Lawyer, this year ranks 17 UK-based law firms in the league of the world's largest law firms, including 10 in the top 50.The combination of robust growth at UK practices and the relative strength of sterling against the dollar during the last financial year saw many London-based firms rise up the revenue rankings.

    Ben Wheway |October 16, 2008
  • Magic circle trio break into profits top 10 as City firms move up Global 100

    Profits per equity partner (PEP) at top US law firms still narrowly exceed key UK rivals - despite the significant increases the magic circle have achieved in turnover and profitability in recent years. Figures compiled by Legal Week and The American Lawyer show that just three UK firms make it into the global top 10 by PEP - Slaughter and May, Linklaters and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. In contrast, seven US firms make the grade - headed by elite firm Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.

    Ben Wheway |July 10, 2008