Size Matters

Author:Iberian Lawyer
Profession:Iberian Lawyer

Revenue at CCA Ontier has doubled in the last five years, but the firm has plans for further expansion and wants to become one of Portugal's biggest hitters

Lisbon law firm CCA Ontier has enjoyed a period of consistent growth in recent years, but managing partner Domingos Cruz wants more. "The firm has had double-digit growth for the last five years, and in 2016 we opened an office in Oporto," he says. "However, in three to five years, we want to be one of the top ten firms in Portugal by any way you measure that, whether it's invoicing, profits per partner (PPP), or number of lawyers - we want to grow to around 70 to 80 lawyers." CCA Ontier does not publicly disclose revenue figures, however Cruz says that the firm's revenue has doubled in the last five years. The total revenue of Ontier - the global firm of which CCA Ontier is the Portuguese arm - increased 10.5 per cent to €51.2m in 2016. Ontier has offices in 14 jurisdictions. CCA Ontier's growth has largely been driven by work for international clients, according to Cruz. "We have been advising on real estate deals, M&A, as well as advising companies opening businesses in Portugal," he explains. "We have also been active in the Brazilian market - when the Brazilian market fell, Brazilian investors saw Portugal as an option." In addition, the firm has been advising a significant number of family offices. "There has been a wide range of investments in Portugal, some clients came from Colombia and we have been advising start-ups from outside Portugal on setting up here," says Cruz. "We have also been advising venture capital firms from other countries, the number of investors coming to Portugal is increasing." Cruz also highlights the firms technology, media and telecommunications practice - as well as its intellectual property team - as having been being particularly active, especially in relation to data protection, compliance and gambling.

Further integration A key objective for CCA Ontier is professionalising the structure of the firm. "We have a very professional structure, including a finance director, an events director, a marketing director - clients want a professional service, the growth of non-lawyers at the firm has been greater than that of lawyers." CCA Ontier currently has 20 non-lawyers in the firm, along with 50 lawyers, which includes seven partners, of which five are equity partners and two are non-equity partners. Strengthening CCA Ontier's ties with other Ontier...

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