Year ahead will present challenges we have not seen before, says Pinsent Masons ME’s Catherine Workman

The head of Pinsent Masons Middle East says she expects the firm to emerge “better than before” despite the industry facing unprecedented   challenges during the last year.

The multinational firm’s annual results published this week revealed that it posted a 4% increase in revenue totaling $630 million in FY2020. It has also continued to make substantial progress in the region, despite the Covid-19 pandemic, as it shifts focus from a traditional law firm to a professional services business with law at the core.

“The year ahead will present challenges the like of which we have not seen before,” said Catherine Workman, head of Pinsent Masons Middle East. “Despite obvious headwinds brought about by Covid-19 in the last year the firm has closed a number of big deals including Neuron LLC’s merger with NAS United Healthcare Services LLC in Bahrain, advising Hubpay with its regulatory license application in the UAE, and advising Sonder on the establishment in the prop-tech sector in Dubai. We firmly believe that if we continue to do business in the right way and for the right reasons, our business will come through this year strong, united and better than before.”

Revealing the annual financial report, managing partner at Pinsent Masons, John Cleland, said the pandemic has accelerated a cultural and behavioural shift across the business community. As such, the firm published a new set of benchmarks measuring trust in its advocacy and its impact on communities alongside its financial reporting this year.

Cleland said the move signals a “step change” as it expands its professional service business.

He added: “Our refreshed strategy commits us to measure and communicate performance and progress by reference to metrics that reflect our purpose and measure our impact on our colleagues, clients and communities. This means measuring – and valuing – much more than just revenue and PEP. We’ve chosen four headline metrics that we believe will hallmark our progress and at the same time be meaningful for colleagues, clients and a wide set of stakeholders.

“We run the risk of alienating clients and future recruits by judging success primarily by reference to turnover and equity pay. Those are probably the two metrics our current and future stakeholders care about the least. It’s time to start the process by which we change that.”


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