Shares in Keystone Law jumped by nearly 15 per cent today after it said it expects to be “comfortably ahead” of market profit expectations for its financial year.
Keystone, which became just the third UK firm to float when it went public in November 2017, said it continued to trade strongly in the second half of the year as it approaches its year end on 31 January.
Following the announcement Keystone’s share price jumped nearly 15 per cent to 390p.
Keystone floated on London’s junior Aim market in November 2017 at a share price of 160p.
The firm, which launched in 2002, operates a platform model, recruiting partners with their own books of business, with Keystone providing an overarching brand and centralised functions such as IT and finance.
Lawyers do not receive a fixed fee from Keystone, instead, the firm passes down between 60 and 75 per cent of fees charged to individual lawyers.
Chief executive James Knight said: “Our distinctive platform model has successfully attracted a significant number of new, high-quality lawyers which has helped us scale the business. This impressive growth coupled with the excellent performance and hard work of our lawyers means that we are confident that we will comfortably beat market expectations.”
Panmure Gordon analyst Tom Callan said the strong profit expectations were a function of “sustainable margin improvements” and “strong growth in new net hiring” allied with strong revenue per fee earner figures.
Keystone is one of only five law firms on the public markets in the UK.
Top 25 law firm DWF is aiming for a £600m main market float in the first quarter of this year, in what would be by far the largest law firm listing to date if it gets away.