Morning Briefing: KWM profits ‘rocketing’ in EUME region

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KWM profits ‘rocketing’ in EUME region
Asia-Pac headquartered law firm King & Wood Mallesons has posted “rocketing” financial results for its European and Middle East region. The firm’s income increased by 9 per cent to AU$396.58 million for the 2014/15 financial year and profit per equity partner soared by 39 per cent to $1.266 million. Private equity clients were an important part of the growth of the business in the region.
Clifford Chance profit dips despite underlying growth
Profits per equity partner at Clifford Chance dipped by 2 per cent in the 2014/15 financial year. Newly released results show that revenue was up by 3 per cent to £1.350 million (AU$2.80m) with all regions showing underlying growth to achieve the firm’s second-highest revenues. However currency exchange fluctuations meant that revenue was flat in pounds Stirling. Partnership profit and PEP was therefore 2 per cent lower than a year earlier. CC has announced a range of strategic changes including streamlines management structures and a reduction in its office space in some key locations.
DAC Beachcroft satisfies both practice sectors with new management 
International law firm DAC Beachcroft has elected a partner from its insurance practice and one from the non-insurance side of the firm to key leadership positions. The new senior partner is real estate partner Virginia Clegg who succeeds Simon Hodson. Clegg is the regional senior partner at the firm’s Leeds office in the north of England. Meanwhile David Pollit who currently heads the insurance group has been elected managing partner succeeding Paul Murray. Both appointments take effect from November 1st 2015.
US law firm mergers at record level
Law firm mergers and acquisitions in the US reached a record level in the second quarter of this year according to Altman Weil MergerLine.  There were 19 combinations in the three months bringing the half-year total to 48 – the highest number recorded at mid-year in the nine years that the firm has been compiling data. The largest announced was the merger of global law firm Dentons and Atlanta-based McKenna Long & Aldridge, finalized on July 1.  In January, Dentons announced its intention to merge with Chinese firm Dacheng, a deal which, when final, will make Dentons the largest law firm in the world with over 6,000 lawyers. Eric Seeger of Altman Weil said he expects M&A activity to continue for the foreseeable future.