Australia: M&A and Governance 2017

We recommend 44 leading practitioners in corporate governance as well as mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures.

Most Highly Regarded
1. Rodney T Halstead Clayton Utz, Sydney
2. David Friedlander King & Wood Mallesons, Sydney
3. Tony Damian Herbert Smith Freehills, Sydney
4. Andrew Walker Clayton Utz, Melbourne

CLAYTON UTZ excels in our research, securing the most nominations among its listed lawyers of any firm this year. Overall, nine of its top practitioners are recommended.
Rodney Halstead is a “leading figure at Clayton Utz” and a key name in the market according to our respondents. He has over 30 years’ experience in corporate matters, with particular expertise in takeovers and M&A.
Andrew Walker gains plaudits from peers who describe him as “technically outstanding” for his abilities in transactional matters. He also is adept at advising on corporate governance issues.
Simon Truskett is another highly experienced member of the firm’s excellent corporate team, with notable expertise in transactional infrastructure matters.

HERBERT SMITH FREEHILLS also performs extremely well in this edition, and boasts seven listed practitioners.
Tony Damian stands out as “one of the best in Australia” for corporate matters, according to leading peers. Among his recent significant matters was advising Metcash on its purchase of Home Timber & Hardware from Woolworths in a A$165 million deal.
The Melbourne-based Rodd Levy is a leading practitioner at the firm who sources say “performs extremely well in the corporate space”.
Rebecca Maslen-Stannage and Philippa Stone are both highly experienced lawyers, widely recommended for their expertise in M&A and other corporate matters.

KING & WOOD MALLESONS remains a leading firm for corporate work in Australia and seven of its lawyers are listed in this chapter.
David Friedlander is a “standout” practitioner who is “definitely top of the market” and “would be my first choice in Australia” according to various international peers. He is highly skilled in complex transactions as well as defending clients against shareholder activism campaign.
The Sydney-based Greg Golding is commended as being “technically very strong” by impressed sources. He handles matters across a wide range of sectors including financial services and TMT.
The “superb” Stephen Minns also garners praise for his M&A work in areas such as infrastructure and natural resources.

Six of GILBERT + TOBIN’s top M&A and governance lawyers are listed this year.
Craig Semple in the firm’s Sydney office is widely cited for his outstanding capabilities in corporate law. He is particularly known for his work in schemes of arrangement, takeovers and M&A.
Costas Condoleon is an “extremely good” attorney who joined the firm in 2016 from Minter Ellison. He has worked on numerous multibillion-dollar cases, including Vocus Communications’ A$3 billion merger with M2 Group.
Neil Pathak is cited by a number of sources as “one of the best there is” for corporate matters, particularly cross-border M&A, while Peter Cook brings outstanding experience in the transactional field, with notable experience in private equity deals.

Three top lawyers from ASHURST are listed.
Gary Lawler boasts exceptional experience in the corporate field, with over 30 years spent in the area. He has vast expertise in corporate governance and has sat on the board of several natural resources companies.
Another of the firm’s senior figures, Garry Besson is a respected name who has “a strong following from his clients” for corporate matters.
Roger Davies is also recommended for his depth of expertise in contested transactions.

At CORRS CHAMBERS WESTGARTH, Andrew Lumsden is a prominent figure in the market with notable experience on the Australian takeovers panel. He has notable experience in natural resources and financial services deals.

Bart Oude-Vrielink of MINTERELLISON is a leading corporate lawyer who acts for clients across a wide range of sectors and industries, including media, technology, natural resources and pharmaceuticals.

Karen Evans-Cullen at PWC LEGAL AUSTRALIA has a “fine reputation” in the market for her corporate expertise. She recently joined the firm from Clayton Utz.

Michael Parshall at ALLEN & OVERY in Sydney is a “lateral thinker” who impresses sources with his breadth and depth of expertise in the field. He advises a number of leading global financial institutions on complex transactions.

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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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W11 1QQ, UK