Armstrong Teasdale used side hires and new offices to move forward
Armstrong Teasdale’s rapid geographic expansion in recent times has been supported by increased revenues and profits. In 2020, the company posted a 9.1% increase in gross revenue to $ 149.2 million and a 9.4% increase in profit per partner, to $ 673,000 last year.
The firm’s managing partner, David Braswell, attributed the addition of subsidiaries to new business relationships, as well as internal rate control and cost savings related to the pandemic., as the main drivers of financial growth. Armstrong is one of the many Missouri companies that have seen peak profits in 2020.
Speaking on the firm’s growth in 2020, Braswell said he “would attribute it to the onboarding of 53 side lawyers who brought additional income to the table, and our internal controls in terms of overseeing our rates and expense control, and to ensure that we control depreciation and [accounts receivable]. “He added that” our entire team has contributed to this effort. “
While the firm’s headcount increased 4% to 263 lawyers, revenue per lawyer increased 4.8% to $ 567,000. Armstrong Teasdale saw a slight increase in the level of equity to 77 equity partners, while the number of non-participating partners rose 30.5%, also to 77. Braswell said most of the increase came from lateral hires.
Armstrong has opened at least eight offices over the past three years, including new offices this year in London and Wilmington, Delaware. Braswell said he expects continued growth in 2021.
“I would imagine more offices in new locations where we are currently not, and we will continue to aggressively court full-backs,” he said. Regarding potential mergers, Braswell said the cabinet was “always open to strategic opportunities that would help move the cabinet forward.”
Court closures in 2020 reduced the firm’s litigation practice compared to previous years, Braswell noted, and transactional work in mergers and acquisitions, for example, was also on the decline.
Intellectual property, employment and labor, and white-collar practices were strong, however, and Braswell said the firm had intentionally recruited lawyers in some of these areas that would pick up or be relatively isolated from the pandemic, noting the Side hires bankruptcy firm in Delaware.
While there were travel and entertainment savings last year, Braswell said, some of the savings were also spent on improving tools and technology to better enable remote working. He said the pandemic had accelerated the trend towards flexible working arrangements and that would likely stay with Armstrong in some form or another in the future.
“I’m not saying it made us more efficient. It didn’t save us any money. But I think it has improved our culture, and some people at least are happier to have this flexibility in their work schedule, ”he added.
Armstrong Teasdale has a task force studying when he’ll be able to bring more of the team back to work in person, he said, adding that he expects people to be able to return. at the office more freely “probably in the middle of the year, in the second or third trimester.
The company executive said he was proud that Armstrong did not take austerity measures related to COVID-19, such as pay cuts, time off and layoffs. The company applied for and received a PPP loan—approximately $ 9.2 million– but Braswell said the loan was not reflected in the Am 200 Act numbers.
“We have kept our entire team throughout the pandemic and have always been able to deliver results,” Braswell said.