by Michael Mata
While King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) has been steadily increasing its rankings on Acritas’ Global Elite Law Firm Brand Index every year since 2010, the Hong Kong-based multinational law firm slipped two spots to 14th
place this year.
Baker & McKenzie topped the index this year, and increased its already sizeable lead from 40 points to 45 points (with the leading brand setting the index at 100 points).
To put together the index, Acritas conducted a global survey between January and August of this year. The extensive survey consisted of 1,059 telephone interviews with legal buyers from multinational organisations with more than $1 billion in revenue. The respondents were asked to name the five firms at top-of-mind, the three firms they felt most favourable towards, and up to three firms they considered for multi-jurisdictional litigations and transactions. Firms gained points according to order of mention.
According to Lisa Hart Shepherd, chief executive officer of Acritas, more than 500 firms were mentioned by the respondents. Additionally, out of the top 20 firms ranked in the index, 11 are Acritas clients.
Even though KWM experienced a slight demotion in Acritas’ 2016 Global Elite Law Firm Brand Index, the firm gained 18 points and took the number one spot in Acritas’ 2016 Asia Pacific Law Firm Brand Index. Baker & McKenzie trained just one point behind.
For firms looking to improve their rankings on the global index, the first step should be to "get an understanding of how clients see you in the market," Hart Shepherd said.
Firms that think big and go multinational are also more likely to raise their scores in the global index. "The bigger the firm, the more touches around the world, the more likely [a firm is] to rise in the survey," noted Mary K. Young, a consultant at Zeughauser Group and former chief marketing officer at Howrey LLP.
These are firms that are "trying to provide seamless services across the globe" in a wide variety of areas, she affirmed.
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