I enjoyed a 30 year professional career as a corporate lawyer, predominantly with Corrs Chambers Westgarth, which I joined as a first year lawyer. I retired from practice in 2015 at the end of a four year term as national Chairman of the firm. During that time I achieved a reputation as one of Australia’s leading corporate and M&A lawyers. I was cited as an “Eminent Practitioner” in respected international legal guide, Chambers Global.
Throughout my 22 years as a partner I held several positions external to the firm including as an Associate Member of the ACCC, a Member of the Takeovers Panel and a Director of CS Energy Limited.
Industry experience includes financial services, mining and gaming.
My strengths are in M&A, capital raisings, negotiations, directors’ duties, corporate governance, continuous and other disclosure. As a lawyer I was known for my commerciality, project management and exercise of judgement.
I joined Corrs Chambers Westgarth (Corrs) in 1987 as a solicitor. Corrs has a strong history spanning over 150 years and is recognised as one of the leading law firms in Australia. Corrs has offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.
I was a member of the Corrs National Board from April 2008 to 2015. I was elected Chairman of the firm in June 2011 for a four year term. I retired from the firm at the end of my term as Chairman.
I was involved in the development and implementation of Corrs’ strategy from 2004, when I formed part of the steering committee established to develop the firm’s first five year strategic plan, for 2005 to 2010. On adoption of this strategic plan, I was selected as one of three partners nationally to lead one of the three core implementation work streams throughout the life of the plan. Following my election to the Board, I was part of the Board’s next strategic review of the firm which resulted in the five year strategic plan for 2010 to 2015. The Board monitored the work programmes designed to implement the strategic plan. As Chairman I lead a mid-term strategic review prompted by the significant change impacting on the Australian legal industry and a further detailed review to update the firm’s strategy adopted by the partnership in 2015 prior to my departure.
I have worked on many significant transactions for iconic Queensland organisations including long-term relationships with Suncorp Group Limited, Macarthur Coal Limited and Jupiters Limited. For example, just to name a few:
I acted for Macarthur Coal Limited on all aspects of the $4.9 billion unsolicited joint takeover bid by Peabody Energy and ArcelorMittal (which was subsequently awarded the “Energy & Resources Deal of the Year” by the ALB Australasian Law Awards 2012). I was Macarthur Coal’s principal corporate advisor prior to the takeover.
I advised Suncorp-Metway on all of its significant M&A activity since advising Metway Limited on its merger with Suncorp and QIDC in 1996, including the acquisition of the AMP/GIO general insurance businesses, the $7.9 billion acquisition of Promina Group Limited, the purchase and sale of interests in motor club insurance joint ventures in Queensland, SA, Tasmania and WA and the sale of the Hooker Group. I also advised on establishing Suncorp’s repairs and parts joint ventures, several significant equity raisings and the group’s non-operating holding company restructure.
I advised Jupiters for 15 years prior to its merger with Tabcorp Holdings Limited on all aspects of its business, including mergers and acquisitions, capital raisings, commercial developments and regulatory issues.
I am a Senior Fellow of Finsia and a Member and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD).