Allen & Overy: Alternatives services “added significantly” to record results with PEP up 26% to £1.5m

Allen & Overy has announced record figures for the year ended 30 April 2017, with revenue up by 16% to £1.52bn and profit per equity partner up by 26% to £1.51m, which it credits in part to its alternative delivery models achieving their strongest year yet.
The magic circle firm said that demand for multijurisdictional work continues to drive growth with 74% of revenue from matters involving two or more countries and 30% of revenue derived from matters involving five or more countries.  A&O achieved real growth in all of its practice groups, with particularly strong results for litigation, corporate and real estate.
However, it notably also gives credit to the performance of its alternative delivery models such as online services business aosphere and digital derivatives compliance system MarginMatrix, which over the past year have “added significantly” to the firm’s bottom line.
In a statement out today (7 Juy) A&O said: “Our range of alternative client delivery initiatives, which includes our Legal Services Centre in Belfast, our consultant lawyer business Peerpoint, the Project Management Office which assists clients in managing complex projects, our online services business aosphere and digital derivatives compliance system MarginMatrix have added significantly to our bottom line in this set of results.
“aosphere had a particularly strong year after a concerted drive to expand its client base beyond banking.  The success of MarginMatrix has been exponential, generating income for 18 offices throughout the financial year.”
Aosphere, a subscription-based product that provides clients with analysis and documentation for cross border legal issues, extended its reach to over 340 clients after a concerted drive to expand its client base. It has been actively targeting opportunities in the asset management sector and in the U.S., with over 60% of its clients now in the asset management sector and one third of its client base now comprising U.S. institutions.
Peerpoint has grown to over 200 lawyers in London and AsiaPac, with an increase in demand from clients for placements, while The Legal Services Centre in Belfast now comprises a team of 80. A statement from the firm said: “The Project Management office has gone from strength to strength, with dedicated project managers now supporting five of our largest matters.”
Global Managing Partner Andrew Ballheimer (pictured) commented: “We are always challenging ourselves to ensure our client proposition is fit for purpose in a fast changing world and this has been the driver for our innovative solutions. What this last year demonstrates is that these innovations are increasingly attractive to clients as well as ensuring the future sustainability of the firm.”
He said of the results overall: “These are strong results, achieved against a challenging backdrop of political and economic uncertainty, and they underline once again the strength of our client proposition – including our international platform – and the calibre of our people.  While these results include one off foreign exchange rate gains, this does not detract from the real underlying growth we have seen.
“Demand for multijurisdictional advice is driving the success of, and validating, our strategy of long term investment to achieve unrivalled global reach coupled with local expertise.  We have worked hard to maintain a compelling offering for clients, through developing our international platform and establishing innovative solutions to meet their changing needs, and so this is a gratifying set of results.”