Tamara Kayser – GC Powerlist
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Australia 2022

Industrials and real estate

Tamara Kayser

General Counsel and Company Secretary | REA Group

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    Australia 2022

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    Tamara Kayser

    General Counsel and Company Secretary | REA Group

    Team size: 10

    What are the most significant cases and/or transactions that your legal team has recently been involved in?

    In 2021 REA Group Ltd (REA) completed two transformative M&A transactions. First, we were involved in the combination of its Malaysia and Thailand operations with PropertyGuru, and the acquisition, by way of a scheme of arrangement, of Mortgage Choice. REA transferred ownership of its Malaysia and Thailand entities to PropertyGuru in exchange for an equity interest in PropertyGuru, a leading digital Proptech business operating in Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia. Before completing the transaction, REA was required to divest its interest in 99 Group, an entity that conducts operations in Singapore and Indonesia. Second, ThePropertyGuru transaction was of particular significance as it gives REA a strategic shareholding in a larger, more diversified business in Asia. The transaction, which was complex and multi-faceted, completed in August 2021. REA also acquired Mortgage Choice, a leading Australian mortgage broking business with more than 380 franchises and over 30 lending partners across Australia. This transaction aligns with, and accelerates, REA’s financial services strategy. Following shareholder and court approval, the transaction completed in July 2021 and integration is now well progressed. The legal team has also been involved in a wide variety of work supporting a broad range of initiatives across the business. Among other things, the team has supported new product offerings and the business’s ongoing focus on privacy, including preparing a submission on the Online Platforms Bill.

    How do you feel the pandemic has changed the world of work for in-house counsel and the function of the general counsel?

    The role of the legal team continues to be to provide strategic advice to support business initiatives and decision making across the group, combining strong legal skills with commercial acumen and a customer focus. But the pandemic has created additional challenges both due to impacts of the pandemic on the business and also the need to work remotely for many months at a stretch. Legal teams have been called on to support innovative initiatives which have needed to be introduced at short notice, some of which involve legal issues that had not previously been encountered. In terms of engagement, working from home increases the risk of burnout and necessarily involves a loss of incidental interaction. When face to face in a workplace, it enables people to learn through informal interaction with others and allows people to gain a better appreciation of the context of business initiatives. It also supports a personal and enriching working experience. The challenges of the pandemic have also heightened the importance of monitoring and supporting the wellbeing of team members. It is also helpful to appreciate an upside of the pandemic; the introduction of unprecedented flexibility in work practices allows an ongoing opportunity for enhanced work/life balance, if carefully managed.

    Tamara Kayser - Australia 2019

    Group general counsel | Incitec Pivot

    What are the most important transactions and litigations that you have been involved in during the last two years? I have provided leadership and advice in relation to group issues...

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    Tamara Kayser - Australia 2018

    Group general counsel | Incitec Pivot

    Prior to joining Incitec Pivot in 2008, Tamara Kayser practised M&A and corporate law in Melbourne, with King & Wood Mallesons, and for three years at Linklaters in London. Initially...

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