British firm adds $34m to Slater revenue
SLATER & GORDON'S expansion into Britain is providing dividends for the listed law firm, which delivered a 61 per cent increase in first-half profit.
Slater & Gordon on Wednesday reported a December-half net profit of $19.1 million. Total revenue also jumped, by 46.5 per cent to $145.7 million. Nearly a quarter of that, or $34.3 million, came from its recently acquired British arm.
Revenue from Australian legal fees were $111.3 million and the new British operations contributed $34.3 million.
The firm, which listed on the Australian Securities Exchange six years ago, declared a fully-franked interim dividend of 2.75¢, up from 2.5¢.
Last year Slater & Gordon took over British firm Russell Jones & Walker and recently rebranded it. Managing director Andrew Grech said he was optimistic about the growth opportunities.
"It's a market which is undergoing quite a lot of regulatory change at present and we see that change as auguring in some real opportunities," Mr Grech said.
The changes relate to legislation introduced in October 2012 allowing law firms to be owned by non-legal practitioners.
Australia and Britain are the only two jurisdictions in the world that have such laws.
Slater & Gordon affirmed its guidance for the full financial year of $290 million.
In Australia, earnings increases came from more personal injuries work and specialised litigation.