Last year proved to be lucrative for Crowell & Moring. The D.C.-based firm showed strong financial gains in all of our metrics for 2012.
The biggest jump for Crowell – a full 16.3 percent, to $93 million – was in net income, according to our reporting. The firm also posted profits per partner of $925,000 and gross revenue of $349.5 million, increases of 9.5 percent and 6.1 percent, respectively. Likewise, revenue per lawyer crept up 2.7 percent to $760,000.
Firm chairman Kent Gardiner said that the financial success of the firm cannot be attributed to a single factor, but rather a prolonged push to strengthen core practices at the firm. Two top practices in 2012 were litigation and trial work, as well as in the firm's government and regulatory groups. Within those broad areas, antitrust, government contracts, patents and trade secrets and environmental matters remained robust, he said. In the last year, the firm also bulked up its health care group, particularly in California, as well as its tax and regulatory practices.
During the year, Crowell handled several major acquisitions. The firm represented United Technologies in its $18.4 billion acquisition of Goodrich Corporation. The firm also represented Coventry Health Corporation in its $5.7 billion acquisition by Aetna Inc. When DuPont sold its automotive and industrial coatings business to The Carlyle Group for $4.9 billion, the chemical company was represented by Crowell attorneys.
On the litigation front, the firm continues to represent AT&T in consumer class action litigation related to the Apple iPad and associated data plans.
Gardiner said that the firm also was able to collect on some matters that used alternative fee arrangements. "That has a risk component and we share risk with the client," he said. "We had some nice success fees in 2012 and those are a creature of when matters end and when they are fully successful. They contributed as well to the firm's performance."
Looking forward, Gardiner remained skeptical that the market for legal services would dramatically increase. Instead, he said the firm will remained focused on building its relationships with new and existing clients.
"We're not forecasting vaulting out of the recession," Gardiner said. "What we are predicting and hoping for is to continue to grow in a steady way as we continue to be more sophisticated in the world of pricing."