The standout performer from this year’s second 25 is once again Mishcon de Reya which, along with Macfarlanes, has been the pace setter in this peer group over the last five years. The firm has come a long way since it first made its debut into the top 50 four years ago in 2012. Over five years, revenue has climbed more than 100% from £65m.
Mishcon revealed robust profits for the 2015/16 financial year, with profit per equity partner (PEP) up 11% to £1m as global revenue grew to £132.7m from £116.7m, an increase of 14%. The firm did, however, this year downsize its Manhattan practice to focus on IP. As such, New York revenue came in at £4.8m, a considerable drop given the business in recent years generated upwards of £13m.
In the last year, Mishcon made a host of key hires, including private client partner Martin Davies from Clyde & Co, who has experience in the Middle East; disputes partners Sonia Campbell and Annabel Thomas from Addleshaw Goddard and Enyo Law respectively; and Nick West, the London general manager of alternative resourcing business Axiom, to the newly-created role of chief strategy officer.
Litigation makes up the lion’s share of the firm’s £127.9m UK revenues – accounting for 34%. Major disputes include acting in a £128m claim against The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and KPMG brought by former Torex Retail chief executive Neil Mitchell, as well as representing several institutional claimants in the long-running £4bn shareholder group action against RBS, a dispute brought over the bank’s £12bn rights issue in 2008.
Looking forward, the firm is set to execute a refreshed business strategy for the next decade, with a target to lift UK revenue by 40% to £175m within the next three years. Significant investment in technology and assessing the potential for artificial intelligence initiatives is on the cards in a bid to liberate fee-earners, and ultimately, for the firm to become a broad-based consultancy business following the rollout of its private client and e-discovery ventures in recent years.
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