Italy's Top-Grossing Law Firms

Revenues and RPL for the richest Italian firms and their international rivals.

, Focus Europe

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In October, the 2-year-old Italian legal business news site legalcommunity.it published its first list of the 50 highest-grossing firms in Italy—a list that includes a dozen Italian offices of global firms. The site relies on the firms themselves for the head count data; revenue numbers are estimates gleaned via extensive reporting in the legal community, according to the site's founder, Aldo Scaringella.

Below is 2012 financial and head count data for the five highest-grossing Italian firms and the 10 international firms with the highest Italian revenues. Lawyer numbers refer to full-time equivalents for the calendar year. Revenue per lawyer (RPL) calculations show that, among global firms, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton had the most productive Italian offices in 2012, with $686,000 and $670,000 in RPL, respectively. The climate for legal business in Italy has been tough since the financial crisis. Legalcommunity.it found that the top-50 highest grossing Italian firms collectively trimmed 516 legal positions between 2008 and 2012. But the top-tier firms, as in the United States, mostly continued to grow. Many of the strongest performers relied on the same recession-proof practices, including white-collar criminal, disputes, insolvency and compliance advisory work, among others.

 

  Revenues Number of Equity Partners Number 
of Nonequity Partners Number of 
Associates Total 
Lawyers RPL (euros) RPL (USD)
Highest-grossing Italian Firms
Bonelli Erede 
Pappalardo €133 million 51 8 158 217 € 613,000 $791,000
Chiomenti €131 million 57 0 205 262 € 500,000 $645,000
Gianni Origoni Grippo Cappelli & Partners €104 million 43 33 191 267 € 390,000 $503,000
Pirola Pennuto Zei & Associati €95.5 million 121 0 309 430 € 222,000 $286,000
NCTM €73 million 48 30 172 250 € 292,000 $377,000
Highest-Grossing U.S. and U.K. firms in Italy
DLA Piper €58.9 million 45 0 100 145 € 406,000 $524,000
Clifford Chance €48 million 18 0 100 118 € 407,000 $525,000
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer €45.2 million 17 0 68 85 € 532,000 $686,000
Baker & McKenzie €40 million 20 8 65 93 € 430,000 $554,000
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton €40 million 10 0 67 77 € 519,000 $670,000
Allen & Overy €34.5 million 14 0 54 68 € 507,000 $654,000
Linklaters €30.6 million 8 0 56 64 € 478,000 $616,000
Hogan Lovells €24.5 million 15 6 51 72 € 340,000 $439,000
Simmons & Simmons €19.5 million 16 0 52 68 € 287,000 $370,000
Norton Rose Fulbright €13 million 6 4 46 56 € 232,000 $299,000

Data: legalcommunity.it

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