For the second time this year, Cooley Godward Kronish is axing employees.
Fifty-eight staffers were cut Thursday, although no attorneys were let go, according to an all-hands memo from Cooley Chief Operating Officer Mark Pitchford.
"This reduction was conducted to eliminate pockets of staffing overcapacity throughout the firm," wrote Pitchford.
The firm laid off 52 lawyers and 62 staff in January amidst the deluge of law firm layoffs. The Palo Alto, Calif., firm has had a rough go of it lately, losing a string of partners, including some of its top M&A lawyers.
Thursday's cuts represent about 5 percent or 6 percent of the firm's staff, said Pitchford, and the majority were secretaries. The information services and marketing departments also took a hit. Pitchford said that laid-off employees will be getting severance based on their seniority, but declined to elaborate. He contended that the cuts had nothing to do with the recent departure of partners or boosting 2009 profits.
"This is not being driven by the year-end performance or the need to cut x dollars of the 2009 budget," Pitchford said. "This is recognition that we were overstaffed in certain areas."
Cooley has about 625 lawyers. Last year the firm saw a 14 percent jump in revenue to $552 million, but profits dropped 7 percent to $1.32 million. Pitchford said "time will tell" whether Cooley hits its financial projections this year.