Partners at London law firm Mishcon de Reya have voted to explore a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange later this year, it announced today.
A long-rumoured move, it would be only the second firm after DWF to list on the main exchange rather than AIM, where the others law firms are.
The firm has mandated JP Morgan Cazenove to advise on the potential initial public offering (IPO), “which, subject to market conditions, might take place as early as the fourth quarter of 2021”.
Around 28% of the business is likely to be floated, and as part of it, every member of its 1,000-strong staff would become a shareholder.
Mishcon expects to report revenues of £188m for the 12 months to 9 April 2021, up from £130m in the first five years of its 10-year plan, and aim to increase that to over £400m in the next five. DWF’s turnover for the year to 30 April 2020 was £297m.
It said floating “would enable the firm to accelerate its expansion in the provision of legal and advisory services and to invest in high-growth potential opportunities contiguous to its current operations”.
This would include further expansion in Asia following its launch in Singapore last year.
Kevin Gold, Mishcon’s executive chairperson, said: “I am delighted that the leadership team is mandated to explore a public listing as we look to further develop our offering to clients.
“It will enable us to invest in talent, our core areas, our allied services, as well as technology and Asia.
“I am also proud that my partners have decided to award shares to all staff. It means every single one of our people will have a meaningful stake in our business.”
The firm offers a range of connected services through standalone businesses in the Mishcon de Reya Group: MDR Brand Management, cybersecurity and investigations practice MDR Cyber, e-disclosure provider MDR Discover, MDR Mayfair – offering private advisory services for wealth families, based in London, Singapore and Dubai – digital solutions provider MDRxTECH, and pioneering lawtech incubator MDR LAB.
The firm’s statement added that it “continues to engage with the Solicitors Regulation Authority on historic matters which it reported to the SRA”, but does not explain what those are.
It was recently reported that Irwin Mitchell was also eyeing up a listing but the national firm said no decisions have been made. This too would be on the main exchange if it happened.
There are in all eight listed law firms – if you include alternative asset business MJ Hudson, which has a law firm at its heart, and Annexo Group, which owns a law firm and credit hire business – along with other businesses that own law firms as part of their wider operations, such as Redde Northgate and NAHL.