Law firm consolidations continue at a rapid pace, driven mostly by deals involving larger firms acquiring smaller firms. According to Altman Weil MergerLine the volume of deals in the first quarter of 2019 continue at a pace set by the previous year, with a record-breaking 106 law firm mergers and acquisitions recorded in 2018. All the deals involved acquisitions of firms with fewer than 20 lawyers.
Altman Weil Principal Eric Seeger said in a press release, “Strategic acquisitions generally provide a high return on investment. Unlike a lateral group that may not successfully retain their full complement of clients after a move, a whole-firm pick up is more of a sure bet for the acquirer… A lot of small, local combinations arise because of the retirement of a founder or major originator. For a small firm, a merger is often the best succession strategy. Litigation funders are often used in acquisitions and mergers to assist both acquirers and sellers in finalizing deals.”
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