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Linklaters has become the latest U.K.-based firm to unveil massive increases in fee revenue and profits per partner, as London continues to underline its strength as an international finance center. The Magic Circle practice saw revenue increase by 19.9 percent to �1.121 billion ($2.2 billion) while profit per partner grew by 21.8 percent, up from �1.062 million last year to �1.294 million ($2.56 million). Linklaters’s figures come as part of a sustained period of growth for the firm. In the last three years revenue has increased by 57 percent, while profits per partner have risen by an impressive 108 percent. Managing partner Tony Angel pointed to the upsurge in cross-border work as a major driver in Linklaters’s growth � two-thirds of the firm’s workload now involves more than one office. He said that the global U.K. firms were reaping the rewards of their international growth. “Six or seven years ago several U.K. firms took a bet and became global,” Angel said. “At the time there was skepticism that you could create firms of that scale with the same profits of New York firms.” Linklaters, he said, now has higher PPP than several of New York’s leading firms. “If I said to you three years ago that we would be more profitable than Davis Polk & Wardwell or Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, I don’t think you would have believed me,” he said. Skadden posted PPP of $2.09 million and Davis Polk had per-partner profits of $1.82 million on the latest Am Law 100. Linklaters’s Magic Circle rivals Clifford Chance and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer have both seen their PPP pass the �1 million mark. Allen & Overy, which has yet to report its figures, is also expected to see similar profitability levels. All four have benefited from the boom in international M&A, which in the first half of 2007 saw $2.7 trillion worth of deals announced worldwide, according to Thomson Financial. On the international front, Linklaters has continued to grow its Dubai office, which opened at the start of last year. The firm now has five partners in the Emirate. And it made key hires in The Netherlands and Italy, two markets where Linklaters has been underweight. It has also added nine partners to its New York office, which now has 130 lawyers, but Angel acknowledged that the firm needed further growth there. Angel is due to step down as managing partner at the end of year after nine years in the role. Simon Davies, who heads the firm’s Asia practice, will take over.

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