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Australia > Capital markets > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. Capital markets: debt
  2. Capital markets: equity
  3. Next Generation Partners: Capital markets: debt
  4. Next Generation Partners: Capital markets: equity
  5. Leading individuals: Capital markets: debt
  6. Leading individuals: Capital markets: equity

Next Generation Partners: Capital markets: debt

  1. 1
    • Paul Cerch√© - Allens
    • Caroline Smart - Ashurst
    • Jamie Taylor - Allen & Overy LLP

Next Generation Partners: Capital markets: equity

  1. 1

Leading individuals: Capital markets: debt

  1. 1

Leading individuals: Capital markets: equity

  1. 1
    • Craig Andrade - Baker McKenzie
    • Elspeth Arnold - Ashurst
    • Stuart Byrne - Clayton Utz
    • Peter Cook - Gilbert + Tobin
    • Julian Donnan - Allens
    • Sarah Dulhunty - Ashurst
    • Shannon Finch - King & Wood Mallesons
    • David Friedlander - King & Wood Mallesons
    • Iain Laughland - Mills Oakley
    • Stuart McCulloch - Allens
    • Tim McEwen - Herbert Smith Freehills
    • Robert Pick - Allens
    • Daniel Scotti - Minter Ellison
    • Tony Sparks - Allen & Overy LLP
    • Philippa Stone - Herbert Smith Freehills
    • Michael Ziegelaar - Herbert Smith Freehills

Allen & Overy LLP delivers 'an absolutely wonderful service with timely, efficient and accurate advice' through a team that 'is highly personable and is trusted implicitly'. Tony Sparks heads up the ECM practice while Karolina Popic leads the DCM and securitisation work; clients also single out the 'excellent' US-focused Mark Leemen and Perth-based ECM partner Meredith Campion, who 'stands head and shoulders above the rest and is invaluable to clients'. Recent highlights include Leemen assisting Citigroup Global Markets and JP Morgan Securities with Boral's first corporate bond offering, Sparks and Leemen acting for Link Group on its A$833m capital raising to fund its acquisition of Capita Asset Services, Popic advising the Bank of Queensland on the establishment of its conditional pass-through covered bonds programme, and Campion handling a listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange for Cardinal Resources. Senior associate Jamie Taylor is also recommended.

As 'a top-notch firm across capital markets', Allens is active in equity capital markets (ECM) and debt capital markets (DCM) with notable expertise in hybrid offers, IPOs and cross-border deals, benefiting from its alliance with Linklaters LLP. On the ECM side, Robert Pick and Julian Donnan jointly head up the group; the pair led advice to Bendigo and Adelaide Bank on its A$320m offer of a hybrid security, Donnan advised Macquarie, UBS and JP Morgan as joint lead managers on Wesfarmer's proposed IPO of Officeworks, and Pick assisted Rivalea on its proposed IPO. James Darcy leads the DCM work supported by managing associate Paul Cerché and recently advised Endeavour Energy on a US private placement (USPP) and Australian medium term note (AMNT) programme and issuance, assisted the arranger and dealers with the establishment of an AMNT programme and USPP issuances for Ausgrid, and handled a euro medium term note programme (EMNT) and issuance for Seek. Benjamin Downie and Stuart McCulloch are the key names for securities work; McCulloch recently advised Westpac on a note offering. Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and Charter Hall are also clients.

With 'exceptionally high service levels, solid business acumen and a strong team', Arnold Bloch Leibler's ECM-focused group handles the full range of equity work including IPOs and ASX listings. In a recent highlight, group head Jonathan Wenig advised Nufarm on its fully underwritten A$450m equity raising to fund its acquisition of a portfolio of European protection products; other key work includes Jane Sheridan assisting Primary Opinion with its A$43m capital raising to fund its acquisition of B-d. Farm Paris Creek and Jeremy Leibler acting for zipMoney on a A$40m strategic equity investment from Westpac. Michael Dodge is also recommended.

Ashurst stands out as 'easily one of the best in Australia for capital markets' with 'market-leading expertise' handling the full spectrum of work across ECM, DCM, securitisation, derivatives and structured finance. The group's recent high-profile DCM work includes assisting Santos with the establishment of a $10bn EMTN programme and the issuance of $800m in notes, advising Rabobank on the issuance of A$150m floating rate notes, and acting for the issuer and guarantors on the update of Anheuser-Busch subsidiary FBG Finance's existing A$3bn medium term note programme and the further issuance of four tranches of notes totalling A$1.95bn. Jamie Ng is 'a top securities lawyer with a unique combination of commercial acumen and deep legal knowledge', newly promoted partner Caroline Smart is 'excellent', managing partner Paul Jenkins handles corporate finance and DCM work, and Bruce Macdonald leads the ECM practice, which also includes Sarah Dulhunty, Stuart Dullard, Elspeth Arnold, Anton Harris and senior associate Andrew Kim. ECM highlights include advising the lead arranger and joint lead managers on MCP Master Income Trust's IPO, assisting Lattice Energy with its proposed IPO by Origin Energy through a dual track process, and acting for nib Holdings on the financing of its acquisition of Grand United Corporate Health from Australian Unity via an underwritten institutional placement and a non-underwritten share purchase plan.

While traditionally strong on the ECM side, Baker McKenzie recently recruited new DCM practice head Duncan McGrath from Gilbert + Tobin; McGrath advised NAB and the other joint lead managers on a share offering by L1 Long Short Fund. Craig Andrade heads up the department and David Holland leads the firm's Asia Pacific capital markets group; other key names include US securities specialist Andrew Reilly, ECM-focused Lauren Magraith and Antony Rumboll. Recent notable ECM highlights are assisting Pyrolyx with its IPO of Chess Depository Interests and ASX listing, acting for the joint lead managers and underwriters on Link Administration Holdings' A$883m accelerated renounceable entitlement offer, and advising Moelis Australia Advisory as sole lead manager and underwriter of the IPO of Windlab. UBS, Macquarie Group and Goldman Sachs are also clients.

Clayton Utz's 'excellent service is characterised by its application of broader market issues and how they relate to its clients, ability to find solutions and consistently commercial approach'. The group handles the full gamut of capital markets work; it recently advised Kirkland Gold on its ASX listing, assisted Australian Technology Innovators with its A$350m term loan B raising and acted for Brisbane Airport Corporation on the update of its Singapore Exchange listed EMTN programme. InfoTrack, Brookfield Capital and Noble Resources are also clients. Stuart Byrne leads the national ECM practice, Brendan Groves leads the Melbourne team, Andrew Jinks is the key name for international and domestic securitisation transactions and 'an absolute pleasure to work with', and the securitisation-focused Sonia Goumenis 'provides a fresh perspective and delivers excellent problem-solving solutions that fill clients with confidence'.

Corrs Chambers Westgarth practises across ECM, DCM and securitisation including high-yield financings, non-bank lending and equity raisings. Perth-based Russell Philip acted for Dacian Gold on a A$110m equity raising by way of institutional placement and accelerated entitlement offer, Sandy Mak assisted Restaurant Brands New Zealand with its foreign exempt listing on the ASX, and Christian Owen advised Greenstone Resources on its role in a combined equity and debt fundraising by Heron Resources. The team also fields debt and securitisation expert Brad Robinson, who is particularly active in the warehouse financing sector and transactions involving non-bank lenders, practice head Robert Regan and ECM specialist Jeremy Horwood, who regularly handles transactions in the energy, natural resources and financial services sectors.

DLA Piper receives recognition for its technology-sector expertise, regularly handling IPO matters for clients in the sector, alongside advice in the mining and resources sector and cross-border expertise, particularly assisting US clients with Australian listings and capital raisings. David Ryan heads up the department and recently led advice to Riversdale Resources on its proposed IPO; he also assisted Credible with its A$300m IPO of Chess Depository Interests and listing on the ASX and acted for Downer EDI on the A£2bn restructuring and recapitalisation of Reliance Rail. Other key practitioners include Joel Cox, Marc Wilshaw and Scott Gibson; Cox and consultant James Philips advised Webjet on the equity raising for its acquisition of JacTravel, Wilshaw assisted a client with a capital raising via oversubscribed placement, and handled an issuance of convertible notes for Berkeley Energia. Catherine Merity joined Maddocks in 2018.

Gilbert + Tobin is 'always available and provides commercial and pragmatic legal advice' under the leadership of Peter Cook and consultant Louise McCoach for ECM and DCM respectively. The team has notable relationships with investment banks and managers; example clients include JP Morgan and Elanor Investors Group. Cook, Adam d’Andreti and Costas Condoleon advised the joint lead managers and the international board committee of Yancoal Australia on its $2.5bn entitlement offer and placement to partially fund its acquisition of Coal and Allied from Rio Tinto, Cook and newly promoted partner Alex Kauye assisted IOOF Holdings on its acquisition of ANZ's OnePath pensions and investments business including the related capital raising, and Cook and d'Andreti acted for Beach Energy on its acquisition of Lattice Energy and related debt and equity capital raisings. Rachael Bassil, John Williamson-Noble and Alastair Corrigall are also recommended. The department also has notable DCM strength and handles securitisation issues, retail bonds, USPP, high-yield bonds and asset-backed securities. Sophie Chen joined from Minter Ellison to lead the firm's China practice.

Herbert Smith Freehills is 'undeniably excellent' in the capital markets arena with expertise encompassing IPOs, secondary capital raisings, hybrid raisings, block trades and debt issuances. In a recent highlight, 'ECM genius' Philippa Stone and Adam Strauss led advice to Yancoal on its A$3.2bn capital rising used to fund its acquisition of Coal and Allied from Rio Tinto; other ECM work includes Stone assisting Woodside Petroleum with its A$2.5bn fully underwritten renouncable pro-rata entitlement offer, Rebecca Maslen-Stannage handling Domain's listing on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) for parent company Fairfax Media, and Michael Ziegelaar acting for Netwealth Group on its successful IPO. Tim McEwen is also a key name to note for ECM deals. On the DCM side, Andrew Booth, Patrick Lowden and securities expert Laura Sheridan Mouton are key names to note; Booth advised NextDC on its A$300m note issuance, Lowden worked with Stone acting for CBA on hybrid raisings including a note issuance, and handling a capital structure refinancing for Hotel Property Investments.

HWL Ebsworth's national practice primarily focuses on the ECM space with occasional debt and hybrid work through its Brisbane office. Recent highlights include assisting Eagle Health Holdings with its IPO and ASX listing, acting for Paragon Care on its A$70m placement and accelerated rights issue, and advising Australian Vintage on the placement of shares to Vintage China Fund. Jamie Restas and Robert Gibson are the key contacts for the group, which also includes Grant Hummel, Thomas Kim and Sam Dwyer. Matthew Reynolds joined Thomson Geer in 2018.

The ECM-focused practice at Johnson Winter & Slattery is jointly led by John Keeves and James Rozsa; Rozsa's recent work includes advising Visioneering Technologies on its ASX listing, and Keeves assisted Cooper Energy with its capital raising via a fully underwritten accelerated non-renounceable entitlement offer. Other work includes Paul Vinci acting for Ausdrill on a share placement and Rozsa and Clare Brown advising Matrix Capital Partners on its investment in Afterpay Touch Group. Northern Minerals, AirXpanders, Osprey Medical, ImpediMed and BSA are also clients. Justin Harris is also recommended.

In King & Wood Mallesons' 'top-tier' department, client single out 'consummate all-rounder' Ian Paterson, Shannon Finch, who has 'an excellent sense of how the commercial interplays with the legal' in the ECM arena, and Joseph Muraca, whose 'grasp of complex ECM issues is extraordinary'. Other key individuals include David Friedlander, who leads the public M&A group and focuses on ECM work, and banking and finance head Paul Smith, who handles securitisation and structured finance work. The team's DCM expertise includes notable experience with Kangaroo bonds; Philip Harvey advised IFC on its issuance of a A$300m five-year Kangaroo social bond, the first of its kind to support woman entrepreneurs and financial inclusion. Other mandates for the team include Harvey and Peter Doyle assisting Ausgrid with all aspects of its A$12bn refinancing programme including a $2.1bn USPP and a A$1.2bn AMTN issuance, Anne-Marie Neagle handling a social bond issuance for NAB, and Muraca acting for Transurban on a capital raising for its West Gate Tunnel project. Ian Edmonds-Wilson is recommended for structured finance and securitisation transactions, and senior associate Amanda Isouard is also a name to note.

McCullough Robertson handles ECM transactions with notable expertise in primary and secondary raisings in the small to mid-cap sector, particularly in the resources, industrial, life sciences, travel, technology and start-up fields. The primarily Brisbane-based group includes Derek Pocock, Reece Walker, Jim Peterson and Diana Lohrisch with group head Adrian Smith and Ben Mortimer practising out of the firm's Sydney office. Walker recently led advice to Wagners on its ASX listing and related restructuring, Pocock acted for State Gas on its IPO, and also assisted Megaport with its A$28m private placement and institutional placement to aid with the expansion of the group's international platform. Metro Mining, Oventus Medical and KGL Resources are also clients.

Key names in Minter Ellison's 'excellent' department include ECM team head Daniel Scotti, 'an amazing capital markets lawyer who expertly guides clients through tricky issues', DCM group leader John Elias, who is 'among those at the top of the pack' and James Hutton, who is the key contact in the Melbourne office for ECM work. Recent mandates include Stuart Johnson  advising Magellan Financial Group on the IPO and ASX listing of the Magellan Global Trust, Scotti, Nathan Cahill and Michael Lawson assisting Metric Credit Partners with the A$520m IPO and ASX listing of its new fund, and Ron Forster acting for Centerbridge Partners on the recapitalisation of Boart Lingyear.

Norton Rose Fulbright covers the full spectrum of capital markets work including DCM, ECM and securitisation transactions; James Morris and Alex Mufford are the key names to note. Mufford recently joined the firm following its merger with now-defunct firm Henry Davis York in 2017 along with Vittorio Casamento. Morris' recent work includes advising on a bond issuance, and assisting a client in relation to a mortgage-backed securitisation programme. Shaun Clyne assisted a client with a two tranche share issuance. Iain Laughland joined Mills Oakley.

In Sullivan & Cromwell's group, Waldo Jones is the key name in Sydney and Robert Chu leads work coming out of the Melbourne office. The group leverages its US capital markets capabilities across ECM and DCM work with notable expertise handling complex financings. On the DCM side, recent work includes acting for ANZ on a $2.75bn note offering including fixed rate and floating rate notes, assisting CBA with a $3bn note offering and advising Fortescue Metals Group on an offering of senior unsecured notes. The practice's recent ECM work includes advising Nufarm on a A$446m equity raising via entitlements offer. APA Group, Macquarie Bank and NAB are also clients.

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