Small and midsize Australian firms are optimistic about the future, believing that the worst has passed and expecting growth in 2014 after a year of good performance. In fact, a third of the surveyed firms expected growth to exceed 10 percent.
The findings are from the 2013 Macquarie Legal Best Practice Benchmarking Report, which surveyed 134 small and midsize firms. The report is a follow-up to a similar survey Macquarie conducted in 2011.
According to the new survey, most respondents expect 2014 to be about the same. While only 31 percent of respondents thought that the industry would improve, an even smaller percentage (22 percent) believe it will be worse in the coming year.
“While most firms see little prospect for improved conditions over the year ahead, the picture is far from bleak,” the report states. “Midsize firms generally believe that the worst has already passed, while practices in some states are increasingly optimistic about the future.”
For FY2013, 74 percent of midsize firms and 57 percent of small firms increased their gross fee revenue, compared to 71 percent of midsize firms and 70 percent of small firms that increased fee revenue in 2011. And 72 percent of midsize firms and 64 percent of small firms saw their profits grow in 2013, with 29 percent of both small and midsize firms increasing profits by over 20 percent.
Looking ahead at 2014, 66 percent of all Australian firms expect revenue growth, with 33 percent predicting revenue growth at over 10 percent. And 58 percent also expected to increase profits, with 35 percent believing they will do so by over 10 percent.
To read the full report, click here (reg. req.).