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Discussion in 'Commercial Awareness Forum' started by Numerius Negidius, Nov 21, 2020.
What are the main weaknesses of and threats facing Magic Circle firms?
In terms of threats, I think you can't really look past the rise of the US firms in London and how US firms are now dominating the market share in various different practice areas such as private equity. You could talk about the perceived weaknesses behind the lockstep pay structure that many MC partnerships have and the lack of flexibility within it which has caused star performers (look up David Higgins and Adrian Maguire who left Freshfields for Kirkland over the last few years) to move to US firms where they can be paid significantly more as the 'eat-what-you-kill' structure is much more flexible.
There's for sure many others but I reckon that's a good place to start for your research.
Hope that's helpful!
Similar to the excellent point @Daniel Boden made, the magic circle has historically struggled to break into the US legal market, especially compared to the inroads US firms have made in London. Some of the magic circle are trying to change that (A&O's attempted merger/Freshfields' silicon valley opening etc.), but they have a long way to go.