Brazilian law firm Mattos Filho reported revenue grew 24% in 2021, amid hearty demand for legal services.
The full-service firm, one of the only law firms that disclose financial results in Latin America, said its gross revenue topped 1.24 billion reals (US$245 million) in 2021—a 24% increase over the firm’s 2020 results.
“This result is the sum of various factors,” said managing partner Roberto Quiroga, who highlighted the adoption of more digital tools and a hybrid workplace as bringing greater efficiency to the firm.
“We have many talented, highly renowned professionals who are experienced in handling complex transactions, which clients look upon favorably,” Quiroga said, reflecting on the firm’s hearty expansion.
The firm does not disclose its profits or profits per equity partner (PEP).
Brazilian law firms, in general, benefited from a boom in capital markets, M&A and financial services work in 2021.
Last year, in addition to corporate work, Quiroga says the firm’s litigation and infrastructure practices produced strong results, and that its life sciences and health care practice stayed busy with pandemic-related demands.
With ever-more attention being paid to climate change, the firm’s environmental law practice also experienced heightened demand from companies looking to shore up their sustainability efforts.
Head Count Balloons
The growth in legal work is reflected in the firm’s head count.
Fourteen new partners joined Mattos Filho last year, via both internal promotions and lateral hires. And so far in 2022, another 15 new partners have been added—13 of whom were promotions. The firm currently has 133 partners.
Most of the new partners work in practice areas that have been experiencing rapid growth, such as tax, intellectual property, labor, executive compensation, corporate, infrastructure, energy, litigation and arbitration.
This year, Mattos Filho launched venture capital and crypto assets practices while expanding operations in the nation’s capital, Brasília, where the firm employs six partners—the largest number of any full-service Brazilian law firm. Brazilian lawyers tend to concentrate in the business hubs of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, though the country’s executive and legislative branches, as well as the high courts, are in Brasília.
The firm employed 1,600 people at the end of 2021, a 15% increase over 2020. It added more than 200 associates and legal assistants and 100 interns, trainees and paralegals. The firm’s management and development group also added 100 positions, hiring in finance, operations, technology, human development, communications and marketing.
“I believe our integrated and collaborative work culture, which allows all professionals to participate and show their ideas and expertise, is favorable to the business and boosts our growth,” said Quiroga.
Mattos Filho adheres to a modified lock-step compensation system, which the firm believes encourages collaboration. It also places an emphasis on diversity and inclusion, with efforts such as an affirmative action program for hiring Black interns.
The firm implemented a rebranding campaign this year—30 years after its founding. It cut the names of some founding partners and now has a shorter, punchier name.