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Consolidation now: The implications of the 
law firm merger mania

Richard Tromans and Tony Williams explore the reasons behind the ?law firm merger mania and the market implications

21 February 2012

There is a higher level of consolidation in the legal market today than ever before and it is gaining pace. This consolidation is occurring at three levels: the global, the national and the local.

In the US, over 50 of the mergers reported in 2011 involved at least one firm in the AmLaw200; many were in the AmLaw100. In the UK, there were 11 mergers involving at least one top-100 firm last year. That may not sound significant at first, but it means over 120 commercial law firms – mostly in the world’s two largest legal markets – joined forces in one year, or ten per month. If that isn’t a sign of market consolidation, then what is?

At the global level, there have been more mergers and takeovers to launch foreign practices in the past two y...

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