Abreu Advogados announces record revenue and a growth of 14% in 2021
The law firm led by Inês Sequeira Mendes had a 14% growth in revenue compared to 2020, followed by a strengthening of its main practice areas, in an exceptional year marked by the advisory of major transactions and the development of innovative projects.
With more than 200 lawyers, Abreu Advogados closed 2021 with a record revenue of €37.8 million, which represents a growth of 14% compared to 2020, when it announced a total of €33.6 million. Between 2019 and 2021, in a period deeply marked by uncertainty and unpredictability caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, Abreu Advogados’ revenue grew by 24%, the equivalent to €6.2 million, reinforcing its position as one of the leading independent law firms in Portugal.
“2021 was another challenging year for everyone. To be able to achieve this record number in a context of such unpredictability is demonstrative of our teams’ great capacity to overcome and adapt, and of the trust that clients and partners place in our work. We want to continue to grow in a sustainable manner and to be pioneers not only in the provision of legal services but also in technological innovation, sustainability and social responsibility. It is this humanist perspective that differentiates us and the basis for everything we do”, highlights Inês Sequeira Mendes, Managing Partner of Abreu Advogados.
In 2021, Abreu Advogados surpassed 4,000 active clients, following the growth path that has been intensified since 2019. The firm’s internationalization strategy has been reinforced, with the international market representing 35% of all active clients, with an emphasis on the European, African and North American markets.
The teams from the 12 practice areas and the multidisciplinary groups focused on the main industries of the economy advised on some of the most important transactions of 2021, with emphasis in the work developed with Embraer Portugal in the sale of its factories in Évora, for a total amount of around 151 million euros; the advisory services on the entry in the Portuguese market of the technological company Getir and the German fintech Vivid; the advisory to Vortal on the acquisition of Nexus Information Technology or the advisory to a group of private shareholders on the sale of a majority stake in Sirplaste to SCG Chemicals; and finally the innovative work carried out with Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa in the creation and launch of the NFT platform “Artentik”, which illustrates the investment Abreu Advogados has made in one of the emerging markets on a global scale: Crypto assets.
The increase in revenue and in the number of active clients was accompanied by a slight increase in the total number of Abreu Advogados’ professionals, to which contributed the strategic hiring of Professional Partners Nuno Luís Sapateiro, who reinforced the Finance Law practice, in particular the insurance and aviation sectors, and João Bravo da Costa, who reinforced the Angola Desk; and the integration of senior Of Counsels Teresa Anselmo Vaz and Diogo Orvalho.
2021 was also marked by the promotion of four new Partners – Marta Costa; Marta Romano de Castro; Pedro Alves da Silva and Rodrigo Formigal – and by Abreu Advogados’ growth in the north of the country with the integration of ACRLEX Advogados and part of its team, namely Pedro Pessanha and Diogo Pessanha, Partner and Professional Partner, respectively.
The work developed by Abreu Advogados’ teams was distinguished throughout 2021 with more than 370 awards from various rankings, directories and international entities, including the Financial Times, which nominated two of the Firm’s projects – Tokapi project and “Dislexia day by day” – for the FT Europe Innovative Lawyers Awards.
New flexibility policy and a greater focus on the promotion of knowledge and technological innovation
With global changes in working models, Abreu Advogados implemented a new flexibility policy, which allows employees to opt for a hybrid working model, with the possibility of working remote up to two days per week.
This flexibility is also evident in the new recruitment campaign “People like you” launched in the second half of 2021, which promotes the diversity of profiles and strengthens the unique characteristics of each candidate, in a perspective that continues after the recruitment stage, with the creation of a personalized internship tailored to each Abreu trainee.
In parallel, the law firm has been reinforcing its commitment to the promotion of knowledge, boosted in 2021 by the certification of the Knowledge Institute as a training entity by DGERT and by the development of several partnerships with educational institutions, namely with NOVA School of Law, which envisages the creation of the “Abreu Chair in ESG Impact” or with the Law Faculty of Universidade Católica and with Católica Global School of Law, in order to create the “Abreu Professorship in International Business Law”, and also with the Brazilian school “Future Law”, to promote training and conferences, which already had an important initiative in 2022 with the launch of the “In house 4. 0”, a training programme created for in-house lawyers.
In the technological innovation area, Abreu Advogados continued to develop new projects in 2021 to create innovative services for its clients. In addition to the transversal programmes for data enhanced knowledge and e-discovery, with gains in efficiency, the law firm integrated a robot – TOM:Time.Optimal.Manager – which has been automating the consultation and sharing of notifications and management of deadlines of the CITIUS and SITAF portals, helping teams with bureaucratic tasks, freeing them for other types of work.
More than 2,400 pro bono hours in support of 30 associations
Sustainability and social responsibility is a key area for Abreu Advogados, and reached last year 2,450 hours of pro bono services by the law firm’s teams, who supported 30 associations in the development of their projects and in the resolution of legal issues. In addition, Abreu Advogados remains at the forefront of environmental promotion and in 2021 became the first law firm in Portugal with a carbon neutral website, joining the global initiative “CO2 Neutral Website”, after being the first to join the United Nations Climate Ambition Accelerator programme, which aims to help companies fight climate change more efficiently.
“We want to play a relevant role in building the future of the legal sector, of our clients and the society we live in. To do so we will have to continue to be innovative and bold, not just following global trends. The share of multidisciplinary knowledge, ESG, creation of services adapted to new challenges, the strengthening of our teams and the knowledge and experience from our practice areas are strategic features that we will continue to follow and that we believe are fundamental to continue to establish ourselves as one of the leading independent law firms in Portugal”, concludes Inês Sequeira Mendes.