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Mills Oakley Lawyers

LEVEL 6, 530 COLLINS STREET, MELBOURNE, VICTORIA 3000, AUSTRALIA
Tel:
Work +61 3 9670 9111
Fax:
Fax +61 3 9605 0933
DX:
DX 558 MELBOURNE
Email:
Web:
www.millsoakley.com.au
Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney

Australia

Capital markets
Leading individuals: Capital markets: equity

Iain Laughland - Mills Oakley Lawyers

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Competition and trade
Competition and trade - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers' practice is headed by ‘exceptional lawyer’ Kathryn Edghill, who joined from Bird & Bird, alongside Graham Maher; Edghill is noted for her ‘deep industry knowledge’ and ability ‘to distill complex issues and provide simple and practical solutions’. The team's arrival has added a number of clients to the roster, most notably Microsoft, which receives ongoing advice on Australian competition and consumer law issues. A further highlight saw the team defend Mazda Australia in consumer law class action proceedings in the Supreme Court of NSW stemming from the Takata airbag recall. Contentious matters are a focus area for the practice, which is also representing Cameron Harrison, formerly of Country Care Group, in the first-ever criminal prosecution for cartel conduct issued against an individual.

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Construction
Construction - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers fields ‘a fully committed team with real partner interest and involvement’, and partners ‘understand business drivers and pitch advice at an appropriate level, without sugar coating’. The ‘highly experienced’ Scott Laycock, who has ‘deep understanding of the Australian construction market’, continues to act for Coca-Cola Amatil on all property and construction aspects of the redevelopment of its largest Australian distribution centre. On the contentious side, Greg Richards represents Arup in proceedings brought by McConnell Dowell in relation to the design and construction of the Gold Coast Light Rail project. The ‘energetic, committed’ Scott Higgins ‘always ensures a commercially sensible outcome’; he assisted UGL in contractual claims in respect of TfNSW’s Digital Train Radio System project. Also recommended are Andrew Wallis, who ‘clearly communicates risks and gives recommendations’, and Rechelle Brost, who keeps advising Shayher Properties in relation to the Brisbane Quarter development. Special counsel Sean Henderson joined from Cooper Grace Ward.

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Corporate and M&A
Corporate and M&A - ranked: tier 6

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers has particular expertise in mid-cap transactions; the team’s ‘business acumen and focus on objectives are second to none’. Key figures in the 16-partner team include Daniel Livingston, who ‘works well with other advisers’, is ‘very commercial and always drives the transaction towards signing and completion’; Tim Cox, who is ‘outcome-focused and quick to respond’; and the recommended Gavin Douglas. Livingston advised Bureau Veritas Australia on its acquisition of a 65% equity stake in McKenzie Group Consulting, and Warren Scott assisted Laser Group with a multi-stage pre-transaction restructuring and the equity sale of its Australian business to Belgium-based Belron. The team has seen some growth, with corporate finance lawyer Virginia Waterhouse joining from Russells, Juanita Rayson from the now-defunct DibbsBarker, Iain Laughland from Norton Rose Fulbright, and Simon Panegyres from HopgoodGanim.

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Dispute resolution
Dispute resolution - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers fields a team of ‘highly competent lawyers with a sound technical skill base’. It possesses litigation expertise across a number of sectors including insurance, construction, infrastructure and financial services, as well as expertise in toxic torts. The team has been bolstered by the addition of Stuart Walter from M+K Lawyers and Graham Maher from Bird & Bird. It continues to act for the liquidators of Timbercorp Finance in the recovery of Timbercorp Finance’s A$500m loan book, a matter led by Melbourne-based Darren James. The practice is jointly headed by Stephen Dickens and Andrew Brown.

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Insurance
Insurance - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

David Slatyer, Daren Curry and Michael Down jointly head Mills Oakley Lawyers' 'first rate' team. Front-end insurance specialist Louise Cantrill joined from now-defunct firm Henry Davis York and adds blue-chip clients, including Berkshire Hathaway, and two medical malpractice insurers to the roster. The practice represents publicly listed insurers and the private insurance market, but also attracts significant government mandates. Curry assisted the Home Building Compensation Fund with redrafting of its insurance policies and security documents. Statewide Mutual and Suncorp also count among the team's clients.

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers' team, led by Teresa Nicoletti , includes patent litigator James Lawrence and Blair Beven, who has substantial experience in IP litigation but also acts for retail and fashion clients in transactional matters. Lawrence has a focus on the pharmaceuticals and life sciences industries; he continues to defend Dr Reddy’s Laboratories in patent infringement and revocation proceedings filed by Helsinn regarding the launch of its palonosetron generic product. Nicoletti acts for plaintiff Phoenix Eagle in proceedings regarding the misuse of a proprietary papaya cream formulation and related confidential information by former directors and employees.

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Labour and employment
Labour and employment - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

'Outstanding on all fronts', Mills Oakley Lawyers 'provides a service that is consistently of the highest standard' with 'a very fast and attentive approach, strong and reliable advice and a genuine interest in its clients' businesses'. Ross Levin has 'second-to-none knowledge and industry understanding', Lisa Anaf is 'focused, reliable and great to deal with' and Daniel White 'provides practical advice based on a holistic approach'. In a recent highlight, Anaf defended Jaggad in a discrimination and general protection clam; other work includes advising Koko Black on transfer of business issues and an enterprise agreement, assisting Laing O'Rourke with its executive contracts, model code of practice compliance and workplace investigations, and handling contractual disputes, discrimination claims and unfair dismissal proceedings for First Solar. Malcolm Davis and Adam Lunn are also recommended.

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Labour and employment: workplace health and safety (WHS)
Leading individuals

Harold Downes - Mills Oakley Lawyers

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Real estate
Real estate - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers is ‘excellent in every respect’ and advice is ‘always sound, commercial and to the point’. Melbourne-based practice head James Price leads a team that is ‘sufficiently large across the country to ensure smooth and efficient delivery’. The Melbourne practice has expertise in acting on mixed-use, commercial, industrial and residential developments and the Sydney team specialises in portfolio leasing. On the transactional side, it advised GPT Group on the $55m purchase of four industrial buildings and assisted Investa Property Group with the $251m sale of the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) building in Sydney. It also acted for Winten Property Group in relation to premises leased to Channel 9. Melbourne-based ‘problem-solver' Pablo Fernandez has been promoted to partner. Edwina Reynolds joined from a role in-house and is ‘very practical and understands her clients' needs’.

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Restructuring and insolvency
Restructuring and insolvency - ranked: tier 4

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers 'has developed a good culture of legal expertise and client-friendly delivery' and the team 'is consistently on top of the law, results-driven and focused on its clients' needs'. Group head Stuart Lewin is 'excellent with clients and always achieves commercial outcomes', Ariel Borland is 'a true star, great strategist and tough negotiator' and Gerard Breen is 'highly knowledgeable'. The group is active in the retail and manufacturing sectors. Recent highlights include commencing recovery actions for Timbercorp Finance and handling its administration and liquidation, and acting for a representative party appointed by the Supreme Court in proceedings brought by the liquidators of BBY relating to the distribution of client monies held by BBY. Matthew Kelly joined from Corrs Chambers Westgarth in 2018.

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Australia: Transport

Transport: aviation
Transport: aviation - ranked: tier 3

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers ‘responds to issues quickly’ and the team is ‘very strong and client focused’. The ‘calm and collected’ Gavin Douglas receives praise for his ‘adaptability’ and ability to ‘very quickly get up to speed with different laws’; he jointly heads the practice with Tom Lennox. Key strengths include domestic and cross-border transactions in the sector, aircraft trading and financing, charter agreements, regulatory compliance and aircraft operating agreements. It has a niche specialism in fixed and rotary wing aircraft operations and regulations. The client roster includes Qantas, Regional Express Holdings and Babcock Offshore Services.

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Transport: shipping
Transport: shipping - ranked: tier 3

Mills Oakley Lawyers

Mills Oakley Lawyers has a strong marine insurance track record, ‘demonstrates strong experience and skills in handling high-value, complex cases’ and ‘delivers effective, successful results’. It represents a substantial proportion of marine insurers in Australia, and regularly acts for a number of European insurers. It represented Australia Capital Financial Management in relation to a claim against a freight-forwarder for misleading conduct and breach of warranty in relation to the issuance of bills of lading. Practice head Frazer Hunt and senior associate Maurice Lynch are the names to note; both deliver ‘work of the highest quality’, which is ‘always clear, concise and to-the-point’, and have ‘unparalleled knowledge of marine claims’. The team’s ‘depth of knowledge provides a great level of comfort from a client’s perspective’.

Leading individuals

Frazer Hunt - Mills Oakley Lawyers

Next generation lawyers

Maurice Lynch - Mills Oakley Lawyers

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