Law firm Mason Hayes & Curran increases revenue 8% to €48m

Recovery speeds up following strong finish to 2013 driven by improved investor confidence

Law firm Mason Hayes & Curran increased its turnover by 8 per cent to €48 million in 2013 following a strong finish to the year driven by increased international investor confidence in Ireland and a rise in transactional volumes.

Declan Black, who was appointed as managing partner of the firm at the beginning of April, said yesterday that this strong momentum has continued into the first quarter of this year and he expects its revenues to rise by "over 10 per cent" in 2014.

This would take the firm’s turnover to around €53 million for the year and mark the 12th successive year of revenue growth for the group, which is one of the few law firms in Ireland to publish information about its revenues.

Loan portfolios
"Things turned a little bit towards the end of the third quarter last year and the firm got a lift on the transactional side, particularly from the increased appetite for investment in the acquisition of loan portfolios and renewed interest from international investors in Ireland."


In spite of the turn in the economy, Mr Black said the downward pressure on fees remains a feature of its business.

“It’s pretty relentless. International investors are less fee sensitive because Irish law firms are cheaper than their counterparts in say London or New York but domestically there remains downward pressure.”

Mason Hayes & Curran increased its headcount by about 25 during the year and currently employs 340 staff, including 73 partners.

The firm's corporate transactions last year included advising Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners in its acquisition of the renewables business of Bord Gáis Éireann; a mandate with Toshiba in connection with its acquisition of OCZ Technology; and advising Lone Star on its successful bid for a portfolio of loans at Irish Bank Resolution Corporation called Project Evergreen.

It also acted for US-based Liberty Mutual in its acquisition of IBRC's 50 per cent stake in Dublin-based Liberty Insurance and advised Celesio in connection with the acquisition of pharmacy group Cahill May Roberts by Uniphar.

In terms of dispute resolution, Mason Hayes & Curran acted for European Computer Driving Licence Ltd in the defence of an €80 million claim, and represented Defender Ltd in a €600 million claim against HSBC arising out of the Bernie Madoff collapse.

Ciarán Hancock

Ciarán Hancock

Ciarán Hancock is Business Editor of The Irish Times