EY Law to increase Irish headcount to 50 within three years

EY Law to increase Irish headcount to 50 within three years

Alan Murphy, head of EY Law Ireland

EY Law Ireland, which opened its doors last October, has announced plans to increase its headcount from 15 to 50 by 2025.

The legal division of the accountancy giant currently has 200 lawyers in the UK and Ireland, but told Law.com that this could rise to 1,000 in the coming years.

Alan Murphy, head of EY Law Ireland, said: “I think the Big Four are capable of being very strong competitors to the traditional law firm model, because I think what the Big Four have to offer makes sense to clients.

“As someone said to me the other day, usually in a large transaction, it’s a job in itself project managing the advisors. Whereas if you deal with a Big Four offering in terms of that end-to-end service, you’re removing that job entirely. You’re dealing with one team that’s used to interacting with each other, and who understand each other’s capabilities.”

Philip Goodstone, head of EY Law in the UK and Ireland, said: “We would like to be between three and five times bigger over the next three years. We won’t grow for growth’s sake but we are very committed to the strategy. Everything has to be how do we find market-leading partners [and] how do we ensure that they will work really well on our platform.”

The plans will see the firm’s legal advisory and legal consulting business grow. The latter includes outsourced lawyers as well as technology for in-house lawyers.

EY is not the only Big Four accounting firm making headway into the law. PwC is planning to double its legal division, while KPMG last year recruited former Baker McKenzie partner Richard Needham for its international business reorganisation team in London. In 2020, Deloitte Legal bought law firm Kemp Little.

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