The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Chapman Tripp

Work +64 9 357 9000
Fax +64 9 357 9099

Matt Sumpter

Work +64 9 357 9075
Chapman Tripp

Work Department

Dispute resolution, intellectual property, competition




Matt advises on all aspects of intellectual property from protection and commercialisation through to infringement, representing vendors and customers in some of New Zealand’s largest IP disputes.  On the competition side, his practice extends from merger and JV clearance through to cartel and market power litigation. Matt is the author of the prize-winning text book, New Zealand Competition Law and Policy.  The text is regularly cited and relied on by the New Zealand High Court and Court of Appeal.  Matt is a leading voice on policy and law reform and also writes the competition law section of the New Zealand Law Review.  


Matt is a member of the Competition Law and Policy Institute of New Zealand, the International Trade Marks Association and the New Zealand Law Society


BA, LLB (Hons), University of Auckland and LLM (First Class) Gonville and Caius, University of Cambridge, England; Admitted 1999

New Zealand

Competition law

Within: Leading individuals

Matt Sumpter - Chapman Tripp

Within: Competition law

Chapman Tripp¬†'rates very highly - it can be relied upon to deliver¬†legal advice based on very sound business and industry knowledge'. One client remarks that the advice is 'clear, succinct and business-focused'.¬†The firm advises on merger approvals, abuse of market power, cartel activity and compliance audits. Recently it¬†advised Essilor International and Luxottica Group on the local competition law aspects of their ‚ā¨48bn global merger. Matt Sumpter¬†in Auckland and¬†Neil Anderson¬†in Wellington¬†lead the practice. Clients describe Anderson as 'a great lateral thinker who considers problems from a number of angles'. 'Competition law savant' Sumpter is 'clever, knowledgeable, pragmatic, and has good litigation instincts'.¬†Also recommended in Wellington are consultant Grant David,¬†senior¬†associate Simon Peart¬†(who is 'very smart and provides insightful advice') and newly promoted partner Lucy Cooper.¬†Auckland-based senior associate Colin Fife¬†is a rising star.

[back to top]

Dispute resolution

Within: Dispute resolution

Chapman Tripp advises on some of the most significant commercial disputes in the country and is experienced in matters before the High Court and the Supreme Court, as well as in complex, multi-jurisdictional proceedings. Clients are 'very impressed with the level of service - the team is well resourced and well structured to handle large-scale litigation and the advice is clear and considered'. In Auckland, Justin Graham leads the practice and clients describe him and 'extremely gifted litigator' Matt Sumpter, who handles IP, competition law and civil litigation, as 'impressive and strong on strategy with great attention to detail'. Key partner John McKay specialises in commercial litigation with a focus on construction, insurance and media law. He defended BlueScope Steel in a claim arising from an unsuccessful attempt by New Zealand Steel Industries to purchase the Taharoa Ironsands business. Senior litigator Bruce Scott handles commercial and public law litigation, both in the High Court and in private arbitrations. In Wellington, Daniel Kalderimis handles large commercial disputes and leads the firm's international law practice, which focuses on the Asia-Pacific region.

[back to top]

Intellectual property

Within: Leading individuals

Matt Sumpter - Chapman Tripp

Within: Intellectual property

Chapman Tripp is 'highly responsive, knowledgeable and focused on practical solutions rather than theoretical frolics', according to one client. 'We are very impressed with the level of service; the team is well structured to handle large-scale litigation, and the advice is clear and considered', remarked another. Practice head Matt Sumpter and litigator Justin Graham are 'impressive and work well together'. Sumpter is 'strong on strategy' and advised Motion Picture Association of America on its copyright litigation against Kim Dotcom. Graham exhibits 'great attention to detail'. Corporate partner Kelly McFadzien, who is 'a delight to work with', focuses largely on IP matters in the TMT sector and advised Dissero Brands on the sale of its RACHAEL HALE brand portfolio, copyright images and global merchandising and licensing arrangements to Jewel Branding. Senior solicitor Thomas Cleary, who joined from Shortland Chambers, is praised as 'clearly bright, responsive and easy to deal with'. He worked with Sumpter and Graham as counsel to Warner Bros and Univeral Music in a royalty dispute concerning streaming revenue for an Ed Sheeran song.

[back to top]

Back to index

Legal Developments in New Zealand

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Consultation announced on a proposed Medicinal Cannabis Scheme

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚ÄčThe Ministry of Health (MOH) has announced it is consulting on a proposed Medicinal Cannabis Scheme.
  • Supreme Court rules that insurance reinstatement rights cannot be assigned

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚ÄčThe Supreme Court in Xu v IAG New Zealand Ltd has ruled by a 3:2 majority that, under an IAG house insurance policy, homeowners cannot assign their right to reinstate to a subsequent purchaser of the house. Homeowners must undertake the reinstatement themselves, and if they do not, the right to claim the cost of reinstatement under the insurance policy is lost.
  • The Zero Carbon Bill - a closer look

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚ÄčThe long-awaited "Zero Carbon Bill" was finally released¬†on 9 May, but despite being greeted by considerable media interest there are a number of significant issues that have yet to come to the fore.
  • A link tax in New Zealand?

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚ÄčA controversial payment to publishers for content in Europe has implications for New Zealand ‚Äď despite escaping mention in a recent paper that set out the key issues for review for our own copyright laws.
  • News media exemption under the Privacy Act: now a matter of "responsibility"?

    The role of the news media as the "eyes and ears" of the public, and the corresponding right of such news media to be exempted from the Privacy Act 1993 ( Privacy Act ), is entrenched and well accepted. However, the extent to which the news media exemption applies to non-traditional forms of "news" published by "civilian journalists", such as online commentary and blogs, is a hotly debated subject.
  • Derivatives Margin Bill a step closer to becoming law

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚ÄčIn an article in February this year, we reported on the introduction into Parliament of the Financial Markets (Derivatives Margin and Benchmarking) Reform Amendment Bill (the Bill ).¬†
  • Climate-related risk highlighted in Reserve Bank Act review

    The role of the Reserve Bank in assessing and responding to the risks climate change poses to financial stability features in the current consultation on New Zealand's financial policy framework. Inclusion of climate change as part of the wide-ranging review of the Reserve Bank Act is further evidence of the growing trend towards climate-related risk reporting and disclosures.
  • Taxation of the Digital Economy: update

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚ÄčIn early June¬†the Government released a d‚Äčiscussion document on New Zealand's options for taxing the digital economy.¬†
  • Who reads online terms, and does it matter? Lessons from the US

    ‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč‚Äč"Any internet user knows, website terms and conditions are burdensomely long. One rarely reads the fine print when they create a social media account, buy an e-book or movie, use a ridesharing service, or download a mobile app."
  • Mandatory reporting requirements soften in Privacy Bill

    The Privacy Bill began its second reading before parliament on Tuesday 18 June. The proposed legislation is set to reshape the privacy landscape and bring New Zealand in line with global trends.