Law firm Taylor Wessing is reported to have spent around £31 million on moving to new City premises in the last financial year. Details of the firms accounts also show a £20 million bank loan to help cover the cost of the move and renovations in the new building.
The details were filed within the limited liability partnership accounts for 2008-2009. The premises, in New Street Square, have been occupied by the firm since November 2008. The move to the new premises cost a total of £31.2 million – accounts show £17.2 million covered the cost of improvements, while £14 million was spent on office equipment and furniture.
The £20 million bank loan to cover the expense of the move was taken out in summer 2008 and the firm also had to dip into a multi-million pound overdraft facility. However it is estimated that only about £13 million remains to be paid back at the time of reporting, the firm plans to clear the debt by 2011.
Taylor Wessing are reported to have successfully negotiated a rent-free period on the the building and new offices, helping ease the strain on the financial strain on the firm after the move.
Despite this however, the top earners and partners at the firm have seen a 41% drop in profits and earnings. Compared to the previous financial year, there was also a 29% drop in overall profits. The bulk of the decline in profits has been attributed to the recession, as well as the move, and is set to be back on the track for the coming year. However, in the face of the recession the amount of staff at the firm remained fairly static and even increased slightly, unlike other firms during the economic crisis.
Overall desite the high costs of the move to the new office premises, Taylor Wessing have proved that the recession hasn’t beaten everyone and the firm has a bright forecast for the next financial year and is an asset to London’s recovery.