The Global 100: Here are the law firms swimming in revenue this year

by Sol Dolor30 Sep 2016
For the fiscal 2015 year, the world’s largest law firms collectively saw higher revenues thanks to slow and steady growth.
 
That’s according to American Lawyer, which has just released The Global 100 annual rankings of the world’s largest law firms by revenue.
 
But while revenues for The Global 100 in 2015 stood at US$96.6b, a record for the group and an increase of 3.1% year-over-year, average revenue per lawyer (RPL) dropped 2.1% to $812,701.
 
This is a significant finding as the publication noted that this is only the third time the group’s RPL declined in this millennium. The only other times a similar incident happened was in 2008 and 2009.
 
The first Global 100 RPL decline without the US economy being in recession is all thanks to Dentons, the rankings reveal.
 
Without Dentons weighing down its peers, RPL would have increased by 0.2% to $841,346.
 
Nonetheless, it should also be noted that more than a third of The Global 100 saw RPL declines in 2015. Among the 100-strong group, 23 firms saw RPL increases.
 
Meanwhile, profits per equity partner was strong, growing 4.9% to nearly $1.6m, American Lawyer revealed.
 
Below are the top 10 firms of the 2016 Global 100 ranked by revenue. Dentons, after merging with Dacheng, entered the top 10 which led to Jones Day dropping from the group:

1. Latham & Watkins: US$2,650,000,000
2. Baker & McKenzie (verein): US$2,620,000,000
3. DLA Piper (verein): $2,543,000,000
4. Skadden Arps: $2,410,000,000
5. Kirkland & Ellis: $2,305,000,000
6. Dentons (verein): $2,120,000,000
7. Clifford Chance: $2,118,500,000
8. Freshfields: $2,028,000,000
9. Allen & Overy: $2,002,500,000
9. Linklaters: $2,002,500,000
 
Meanwhile, the 2016 Global 100 top 10 ranked by profits per equity partner tells a different story:
1. Wachtell Lipton: $6,600,000
2. Quinn Emanuel: $4,420,000
3. Paul Weiss: $4,085,000
4. Sullivan & Cromwell: $3,870,000
5. Kirkland & Ellis: $3,605,000
6. Slaughter & May: $3,590,000
7. Cravath: $3,555,000
8. Simpson Thacher: $3,470,000
9. Davis Polk: $3,305,000
10. Gibson Dunn: $3,185,000
 
The same can be said of the top 10 list ranked by headcount:
1. Dentons: 6,568
2. Baker & McKenzie: 6,045
3. Yingke: 4,929
4. DLA Piper: 3,756
5. Norton Rose Fulbright: 3,372
6. CMS Legal Services: 2,610
7. Jones Day: 2,562
8. Hogan Lovells: 2,516
9. Clifford Chance: 2,503
10. King & Wood Mallesons: 2,250
 

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