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DWF reports 18% revenue growth driven by international expansion and investment in innovation

Posted: 13th September 2018

• Revenue up by 18% to £236m, while PEP also increases
• New openings in Singapore, Italy and Qatar, with additional offices in Australia
• Connected Services division launched to deliver innovative products and services
• More than 35 partners recruited as DWF positions itself for the next phase of development

International legal business DWF today announces its full year results for the year ended 30 April 2018. Revenue increased by 18% from £199m to £236m, while profit per equity partner also increased.

Andrew Leaitherland, Managing Partner and CEO commented:

“This has been another very strong year for DWF, with growth across all of our businesses. Our differentiated offering of services, with innovative non-legal services supporting our core strengths in commercial and insurance, is having a real impact with clients.

“We have prioritised making significant investments which will drive the long-term success of our business and enable us to transform the way legal services are delivered. Through these investments we have furthered our international reach and launched our Connected Services division. We have also invested in senior leadership, with the appointment of Sir Nigel Knowles as Chairman, the recruitment of more than 35 partners to the business and a further eight promoted from within the business to that level.

“Combined, these investments will help us meet the needs of our clients more effectively, as we continue to focus on innovation.”

International expansion

The past year has seen further notable international expansion, with DWF opening its first offices in Singapore, Italy and Qatar and entered into a strategic alliance in Turkey. The firm also opened additional offices in Australia, with Brisbane and Melbourne added to its existing Sydney location. Recruitment in international markets also saw the addition of new offerings, including the launch of an intellectual property practice in Paris and a banking practice in the UAE.

Investment in Connected Services

In October, DWF formally launched its Connected Services capabilities as a separate division. Connected Services consists of a range of professional, business or consulting services which are complementary to the traditional legal services offered by DWF’s other three divisions. Connected Services are offered either directly to clients as stand-alone services or as part of a complementary offering to DWF’s other services. The Connected Services division’s offerings allow DWF to provide multi-disciplinary teams across different professional and business services in an integrated package.

Client successes

We have strengthened our relationships with a wide range of blue-chip clients and public bodies, including in the past 12 months advising Tokio Marine Kiln, Lloyds Banking Group, Serco, Telefonica, Whitbread, adidas and the Pension Protection Fund. Overall, we advise 28% of the FTSE100.

Leaitherland added:

“It has been an excellent year. The combination of our core legal strengths, sector focus, geographic reach and most importantly, our commitment to doing things differently is delivering for our clients. Our innovative business model has been recognised, with DWF ranked as the 10th most innovative legal business in Europe in the 2017 Financial Times Innovative Lawyers report – and scoring highest of all firms for innovation in the business of law.

“Looking ahead, in June we confirmed that we are considering a number of strategic options for our business, including the possibility of an IPO on the London Stock Exchange. We are already positioned positively for the next phase of our development, but we believe an IPO would be one of the options that would allow us to achieve our strategic objectives, notably by further increasing our capacity to invest in IT and Connected Services, while also enhancing our ability to attract and retain the best talent.”

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