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Ashurst

Sydney

  • Level 36 Grosvenor Place
  • Sydney
  • Australia
  • NSW 2000

Aviation - Asia-Pacific Region

What the team is known for A well-established aviation finance practice which is centred in Australia, with capabilities in leasing, sale and leaseback and a variety of other transactions. Supported by the firm's broader asset finance practice, which includes yellow goods and rail.

Notable practitioners  

Well-recognised practitioner John Field has experience across a wide range of asset finance and project finance work. Sources confirm his eminence in the Australian market and note his strong technical expertise.

Significant clients Qantas, ANZ, Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Banking & Finance - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 18 partners
- 59 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A particularly strong offering on acquisition and property financings. Attracts some of the largest mandates in the market, especially those requiring multi-jurisdictional expertise.

What's new? Brenton Key has been promoted to partner.
The firm was appointed to a number of panels, including National Australia Bank, Westpac Banking, Deutsche Bank, JPMorgan and Eureka Funds. 

Work highlights Acted for a large syndicate of lenders, including ANZ as senior agent and security trustee, on the refinancing of Coates Hire's secured senior syndicated facility. This was one of the largest refinancings in the Australian leveraged market, with a total value of some AUD2 billion.

Acted for Melco Crown Entertainment Group on the funding of its Studio City complex in Macau, including a USD600 million high-yield bond and a USD1.75 billion project loan. The total funding involved amounted to approximately USD3.2 billion.

Notable practitioners  

Martin Coleman is in demand for his extensive corporate finance experience. He acted for National Australia Bank and Bankwest, a division of the Commonwealth Bank, on the AUD150 million financing for the development of the 'Abode 318' residential apartment development in Melbourne.

John Field's clients include Qantas, which he advised on the refinancing of a term loan, part of its AUD1.28 billion syndicated global facility; the value of the loan was upsized to AUD780 million. Field continues to be praised for his technical expertise and his long-standing market experience.  

Shawn Wytenburg is considered to be a leading practitioner and is particularly admired for his leveraged financing capabilities. He led on the Coates Hire refinancing matter. 

Steve Smith is highlighted for his deft handling of acquisition financing deals. He advised Barclays, GE Capital, Investec, NAB and Westpac on the financing package for PEP's acquisition of Peters Ice Cream from Nestlé SA and Nestlé Australia.

With a strong cross-border practice, Robert Ritchie is praised for his assured corporate finance skills. He was the lead partner on the Melco Crown Entertainment financing.

Significant clients ANZ, RBS, Westpac Banking, BHP Billiton, Bank of America Merrill Lynch. 

Capital Markets - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 23 partners
- 40 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Offers expertise on high-value IPOs and capital raisings, being notably active in the energy and natural resources sectors. Also offers a full suite of DCM and securitisation advice, serving blue-chip corporates and leading domestic and international banks and financiers.

What's new? Partner Robert Ritchie joined the team. Appointed to the panels of National Australia Bank and Westpac.

Work highlights Acted for Melco Crown Entertainment on the Studio City project. The financing work included a USD600 million high-yield bond and a USD1.75 billion project loan. It also assisted on the refinancing and increased the bond with a new USD1 billion issue.

Acted for Shopping Centres Australasia Property Group on an IPO and the acquisition of certain real estate assets from Woolworths, which spun off some AUD1.4 billion of real estate assets into the SCA Property Group. A new real estate investment trust was then listed on the ASX. 

Notable practitioners  

Sarah Dulhunty led on the Shopping Centres Australasia Property Group IPO. She is praised for her technical capabilities as well as her constructive approach to issues.

Highly rated practitioner Paul Jenkins is singled out for his skill in handling tough negotiations. In the past year he has acted for a number of major banks including Westpac, ANZ and RBS. 

Special counsel, James Morris receives praise for his good client service. He acted for Crown and Crown Group Finance on a AUD532 million retail subordinated notes offer.

Jamie Ng continues to grow his DCM and securitisation practice. Work in the past year includes acting for Newcastle Coal Infrastructure Group on its AUD435 million US Private Placement. 

Significant clients ANZ, Perpetual, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Seven West Media.

Competition/Antitrust - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 20 other qualified lawyers 

What the team is known for Covers a wide range of matters in this field with a particularly strong reputation for litigation work. Also well versed in handling more complex merger clearance work. Notable experience in regulatory cases in the transportation sector.

What's new? 
Partner Bill Reid joins the Sydney team, having previously been located in the firm's Singapore office.
Alice Muhlebach was promoted to partner. 

Work highlights Acted for BHP Billiton on third-party access issues in connection with the Pilbara iron ore railways.

Defending Samsung Electronics against misuse of market power allegations by Apple.

Notable practitioners  

Partner Bill Reid is widely considered to be a market leader in this area. Recent work highlights include advising BHP Billiton on third-party access issues connected with the Pilbara iron ore railways. He is well versed in handling cross-border and domestic merger clearances for key clients.

Eminent partner, Peter Armitage is highly rated for his work on merger clearances, as well as broader competition maters. He advised Google on obtaining informal merger clearance from the ACCC for its acquisition of Motorola Mobility.

Department head Liza Carver is hailed as an excellent practitioner. She has a particular focus on contentious competition issues, appearing regularly before the ACCC.

Partner Darren Grondal is an expert on access regulation issues in the energy infrastructure field. He continues to advise major market players.

Significant clients BHP Billiton, Google, Samsung Electronics, PetroChina, ANZ, Visa.

Construction - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 18 partners
- 66 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Continues to win high-value mandates, particularly in the resources, energy and infrastructure sectors. Handles all aspects of construction projects, including dispute resolution. 

What's new? Jeremy Chenoweth rejoined the firm following a period in-house. Sarah Ross-Smith was promoted to partner.

Work highlights Advises New South Wales Government Roads and Maritime Services on a raft of complex matters in connection with the M5 West widening project.

Acts for POSCO E&C Australia on the AUD5.7 billion EPC contract for the Roy Hill Iron Ore project. The work includes the development of the new iron ore mine, a mine process plant, a 280 km mine-to-port railway system and new port facilities.

Notable practitioners  

Chris Davidson is sought out by clients for both his front-end and contentious construction expertise. One of his highlights includes advising the New South Wales Police Force on a AUD1.3 billion project involving a range of property management and construction matters. 

Paul Riethmuller is a highly experienced name in this field. His recent work includes acting for POSCO E&C Australia on the Roy Hill Iron Ore project.

Well-regarded Grant Rowlands is noted for his sophisticated understanding of the construction industry. He continues to act on high-profile construction projects, and is assisting the Melbourne & Olympic Parks Trust on the redevelopment of Melbourne Park.

Significant clients National Broadband Network, Downer, Woodside, BHP Billiton, Thiess. 

Corporate/M&A - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 45 partners
- 79 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Maintains a high-profile domestic client base together with a broad international footprint. Specialises in representing leading energy and natural resources clients, combining expertise with industry sector knowledge. 

Work highlights Represented Consolidated Media Holdings (CMH) in its acquisition by News Corporation subsidiary News Pay TV Financing through a court-approved scheme of arrangement. The AUD1.94 billion transaction was one of Australia's largest in 2012 and was also notable for the close ACCC scrutiny it attracted.

Acted for both the Tinkler Group and Farallon Funds, as holders of interests in Boardwalk Resources and Aston Resources, with regard to two linked transactions. In the first, Whitehaven Coal acquired 100% of Boardwalk's issued securities; in the second Whitehaven Coal merged with Aston Resources to create one of the largest independent coal company to be listed on the Australian Securities Exchange, worth some AUD5 billion.

Notable practitioners  

Marie McDonald is highlighted by sources for her rigorous approach and sound judgement. McDonald leads the M&A group and recently advised BHP Billiton on the AUD1.63 billion sale of its interests in the East Browse and West Browse LNG joint ventures to PetroChina International Investment (Australia). 

Garry Besson was joint lead partner advising CMH on its acquisition by News Pay TV Financing through a scheme of arrangement. His commerciality is highly praised by clients.

Gary Lawler advises listed companies and investment banks on both transactional and governance matters. He recently advised the Tinkler Group and Farallon Funds on their involvement in the complex sequence of transactions leading to the AUD5 billion merger of Aston Resources and Whitehaven Coal. 

Elspeth Arnold is noted for the quality of her corporate governance advice. She is also highly experienced in transactional matters and recently advised the ANZ Banking Group on its sale of Origin Mortgage Management Services to Columbus Capital.

Philip Breden combines M&A and capital markets expertise and has particular experience of handling transactions in the energy, resources, infrastructure and building materials sectors.

Roger Davies is based in Perth and is well placed to advise clients in the energy and resources sectors, of which he has particularly extensive knowledge. 

Stephen Menzies is highly experienced in handling public company takeovers, corporate restructures and particularly complex structured transactions. As head of Ashurst's China practice, he is also well equipped to act for PRC-based investors.

Mark Stanbridge has over 20 years' experience of handling both domestic and cross-border M&A, and is noted by clients for his commercial acuity. He recently advised Canadian agribusiness group Viterra during its AUD5.74 billion takeover by Glencore. 

Bill Koeck offers broad corporate, private equity and capital markets expertise and is particularly noted for applying his skills to transactional matters and corporate governance issues in the energy and resources sectors. He recently advised Drillsearch on its AUD118 million bid to acquire Acer Energy. 

John Sartori regularly acts on both public and private acquisitions, joint ventures and schemes of arrangement, including recently acting for St Barbara on its AUD556 million acquisition of Allied Gold Mining.   

Significant clients BlueScope Steel, Crown, NBNCo, Qantas, Transpacific Industries. 

Dispute Resolution - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 22 partners
- 100 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Noted for its superb handling of disputes in the financial services and energy and natural resources sectors. Frequently sought out on major class actions. Draws strength in litigation and international arbitration from the firm's extensive global network.  

Work highlights Successfully represented Bell Group liquidator Tony Woodings in his long-running action against 20 banks concerning securities taken from the group in 1990.

Represented ANZ in Australia's largest class action concerning the legality of a number of exception fees charged by the group since 2004.

Notable practitioners

Ashley Wharton receives extremely high praise for his litigation skills, especially in relation to financial services matters. He was lead partner for ANZ in a class action regarding the legality of a number of exception fees charged by the group.

Andrew Carter is a corporate litigation specialist who is singled out for his strong analytical skills and commerciality. His recent activity has included advising Lehman Brothers Australia as defendant in a class action relating to potential liability for mis-selling synthetic collateralised debt obligations (SCDOS).

Peter Voss has more than 25 years' experience in handling complicated commercial disputes, an advantage cited by clients. He has a particular focus on disputes in the energy and natural resources sectors.

Within his broad commercial litigation remit, John Pavlakis is particularly well known for his expertise in medical indemnity and other healthcare-related issues. Clients commend his work ethic and willingness to go the extra mile.

Significant clients Credit Suisse, Murray & Roberts, PwC, Samsung, Woodside.

Employment - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 16 partners
- 86 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A full-service practice that handles a range of industrial relations matters including enterprise bargaining. It is also in demand for employment matters such as workplace safety and discrimination and is frequently called upon to advise on strategic and policy issues. 

Work highlights Acts for Alcoa on matters related to bargaining with a range of unions in respect of six enterprise agreements. 

Represents ANZ and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia in an application to change provisions of the Banking, Finance and Insurance Award 2010. The award, which will underpin the banks' industrial arrangements, was heard before a deputy president and a full Bench of the Fair Work Commission.

Provided strategic advice to the Australian Public Service Commission in relation to the modernisation of enterprise awards in the Commonwealth public sector.

Notable practitioners

Steven Amendola is widely reported to be amongst Australia's top industrial lawyers. He advises the Australian Public Service Commission on strategy for the modernisation of its public sector enterprise awards.

Practice head Richard Bunting is hailed by clients for his strong strategic advice. Recent highlights include advising Shell on matters related to its sale of the Geelong oil refinery. 

Adrian Morris has a broad ranging practice that covers industrial relations, strategic planning and change management. He supported Shell in its conversion of the Clyde oil refinery into a supply and distribution terminal.

Ian Humphreys draws client praise for both his practical approach and his availability. He acts for BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance as one of the lead partners advising on workplace agreement issues.

Robert Lilburne is commended for his longstanding expertise representing employers on employment, industrial relations and occupational health and safety. Lilburne has a strong focus on handling work for clients in the resources sector.  

David Parker earns client acclaim for his strategic approach. He has wide experience on industrial disputes and is one of the team members assisting Alcoa on industrial action and bargaining issues.

Stephen Woodbury frequently advises clients on a wide range of matters, including discrimination issues. He recently advised Endeavour Coal on good-faith bargaining laws regarding a first enterprise agreement.

Partner Lea Constantine heads the national safety team and is highly experienced in dealing with serious workplace safety incidents.

Partner Stephen Nettleton has a long-standing involvement in this space, and demonstrates particular expertise in occupational health and safety law.

Deputy managing partner Helen McKenzie remains active in this area, having recently acted for Qantas in its industrial action dispute with the Transport Workers Union of Australia.

Significant clients BHP Billiton, Qantas, IBM, Telstra, New South Wales government, Shell.

Energy & Natural Resources - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 30 partners
- 155 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A huge team with dedicated expertise in all facets of energy and natural resources. Acts for major mining and energy multinationals including in the areas of uranium mining, LNG projects and utilities. 

What's new? Katie Winterbourne re-joined the firm after four years as in-house counsel for BHP Billiton and the group has seen internal partner promotions for Lorenzo Pacitti, Clare Lawrence and Mark Hourigan.

Work highlights Advised BHP Billiton on its multibillion-dollar iron ore operations in Western Australia.

Acted for Woodside Energy on its USD2 billion sale to Japan Australia LNG (MIMI Browse) of a minority portion of Woodside’s equity in the Browse project (a global LNG project). It also assisted Woodside with regard to the long-term LNG sale and purchase agreements with MIMI for around 1.5 million tonnes of LNG a year from the Browse development. 

Notable practitioners

James Bruining has expertise in utilities matters as well as oil and gas. His recent work includes acting for a major energy supplier. 

Paul Newman is highly regarded for the depth of his expertise, especially in the field of utilities. He is the relationship partner for Arrow Energy and led the team that counselled Arrow on its liquefied natural gas project in Queensland which was valued in the region of USD16 to USD20 billion.

Rupert Lewi is a well-respected oil and gas expert. He has considerable experience working with Japanese and Korean clients both in Australia, and previously, when based in Japan. He includes Woodside amongst his clients and has acted on some of the most important LNG projects of recent times. 

Sydney-based partner Peter Limbers has a prominent involvement in the utilities sector where he has expertise in both transactional and regulatory work.

Marie McDonald regularly assists BHP Billiton on strategic and transactional matters and is widely-respected for her M&A expertise in the mining industry.

Peter Vaughan specialises in oil and gas, advising clients such as Woodside and BHP Billiton on major international transactions. He advised Woodside with regard to its long-term LNG sale and purchase agreements with MIMI for around 1.5 million tonnes of LNG a year from the Browse development.

Significant clients BHP Billiton, Woodside, Arrow Energy, Rio Tinto, Korea Gas.

Environment - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 9 partners
- 39 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Market-leading firm regularly working on infrastructure, energy and government projects. Expertise ranges from approvals and strategies to compliance and litigation.

What's new? Partner Katie Winterbourne joined the energy and resources group in Perth. Caroline Ammundsen has been made partner.

Work highlights Defending the Victorian Country Fire Authority against its alleged use, in the 1980s, of harmful chemicals at its Fiskville fire-fighting training facility. This involves providing counsel on the litigation strategy as well as on land and water contamination matters.

Acted for GVK Hancock on matters related to the development of its Alpha coal mine.

Notable practitioners  

Mark Brennan receives plaudits for the quality of his advice on environmental work, and is also active in the areas of energy and natural resources and native title. He is the lead partner acting for Newcrest Mining on the approval process for the Cadia East gold project.

John Briggs acted as lead partner for GVK Hancock on environment-related matters in connection with its Alpha coal mine. He is particularly skilled in the application of environmental law and regulations and works with major clients.

Practice head and litigation specialist Robert Jamieson continues to act for clients on a range of contentious matters.

Sydney-based partner Tony Hill is a native title, climate change and environment specialist with over 20 years of experience in the environmental law field. He frequently works on matters involving approvals and assessment processes.

Significant clients BHP Billiton, ExxonMobil, INPEX, Newcrest Mining, Orica, Telstra.

Financial Services Regulation - Australia

Basic facts about the department
-10 partners
-18 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Financial market regulation, particularly market infrastructure matters and regulatory compliance advice for banks are key areas of expertise. Prominent work in enforcement, particularly high-profile class action suits.

Work highlights Represented Lehman Brothers Australia in a landmark class action on the alleged mis-selling of synthetic CDOs. It was the first CDO litigation of its kind in Australia.

Advised Macquarie Bank on various regulatory issues and conducted extensive due diligence on their recent acquisition of Reverse Mortgage Services from RBS.

Notable practitioners  

Jonathan Gordon's expertise includes regulatory enforcement work, where he has represented many high-profile financial services providers in disputes with authorities. Recent highlights include advising London Clearing House on a number of initiatives in Australia.

Assisting banks with compliance issues is Philip Trinca's main area of focus and peers praise his abilities in this area. Recently his work has included advising on how to adhere to the enhanced privacy reforms.

Don Maloney advises a range of brokerage firms, in addition to other financial institutions, on regulatory compliance issues. He is described as proactive and is complimented on his understanding of the market.  

Significant clients Merrill Lynch, UBS, ANZ, JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley.

Insurance - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 11 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Acts for a range of insurers, though is best known for policyholder work. Undertakes insurance mandates related to significant infrastructure projects.

What's new? The firm has been appointed to the panels of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, ANZ and AIA.

Work highlights Advises Surat Basin Rail on insurance matters related to the Surat Basin Rail project in Queensland, including a broad master policy and specific coverage related to construction and operation contracts.

Represents the Department of Finance & Deregulation in Comcover's dispute with Vero Insurance regarding environmental damage in Antarctica, following the Casey Base oil spill.

Acts on insurance matters relating to the AUD1.5 billion Moorebank Intermodal Terminal project in New South Wales, ensuring comprehensive coverage for this multiparty project.

Notable practitioners  

Rehana Box is lauded for her deep experience in the insurance field. She is particularly prominent on non-contentious insurance matters for policyholders. She has recently acted on policy coverage issues for a number of major Australian projects, including Moorebank Intermodal Terminal and BHP Billiton Olympic Dam.

Significant clients ANZ Bank, Arrow Energy, BHP Billiton, Caltex, Genworth. 

Intellectual Property - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 41 other qualified lawyers and paralegals

What the team is known for Highly regarded for both contentious and non-contentious matters. Engaged on high-profile patent litigation cases involving pharmaceutical companies. Also strong in IP commercialisation and design protection work.

What's new? Anita Cade has been promoted to partner.

Work highlights Represented Telstra in obtaining the digital broadcasting and naming rights for the National Rugby League for the coming five years.

Defended BlueScope Steel in design infringement proceedings brought by Gram Engineering concerning fence designs.

Notable practitioners  

Lisa Ritson has an impressive client roster that includes leading international companies and she has recently assisted Coca-Cola Amatil with various trade mark and design matters. Clients appreciate her reassuring manner when dealing with sensitive cases.

Patent litigation is a key area of focus for Peter Chalk, who is representing Apotex and Spirit Pharmaceuticals in a long-running patent dispute against Sanofi. He has an excellent reputation in the fields of both IP and life sciences, particularly on contentious matters.

Grant Fisher is renowned for his representation of pharmaceutical companies in high-profile patent disputes. 

Ben Miller recently represented Apotex and Spirit Pharmaceuticals in a patent dispute with Sanofi. Market commentators are impressed by his work ethic and technical knowledge.

Australia chairwoman Mary Padbury is well versed in a broad range of IP issues, and has been on the domain name panel of the World Intellectual Property Organization since 2000. Sources note her patents expertise as well as her management skills.

Significant clients Samsung, AstraZeneca, Diageo, Google, IBM Australia.

Investment Funds - Australia

This firm is classed as a "Other Noted Firm".

Other Noted Firms are firms that are active in this practice area but have not yet been ranked.

Native Title - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 31 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Has a presence across Australia, with the ability to advise some of the biggest natural resource and energy clients. Also now applying experience and skills to advising on similar traditional inhabitant issues in other parts of the world.

What's new? Clare Lawrence was recently promoted to partner.

Work highlights Advised BHP Billiton in relation to five comprehensive native title agreements, which will provide crucial underpinning to the expansion of the company's AUD10 billion Pilbara operations.

Assisted Arrow Energy in finalising its native title and cultural heritage obligations for its AUD20 billion LNG project in the Surat Basin. The mandate entailed the negotiation of a number of particularly complex native title and indigenous land use agreements.

Notable practitioners  

Tony Denholder is regarded as one of the best native title lawyers in the country. He is a trusted adviser to Rio Tinto with regard to the native title aspects of its Queensland and New South Wales coal mining operations. 

Geoff Gishubl is praised by clients for his exceptional knowledge in this field. He acted as lead partner for BHP Billiton in relation to the native title agreements in respect of its AUD10 billion Pilbara operations.

Jean Bursle's recent work includes advising Buru Energy on native title and cultural heritage issues affecting its oil and gas exploration programme in Western Australia's Canning Basin. Sources are appreciative of her pragmatic approach and her deep expertise in the field.  

Gavin Scott led the team advising Arrow Energy on native title agreements supporting its Surat Basin LNG project. Sources are quick to recommend him as a highly respected and exceptionally industrious practitioner who deserves recognition.

Significant clients GVK/Hancock Coal, Surat Basin Rail, GLNG Operations, Wiggins Island Coal Export Terminal, Cameco Australia.

Private Equity - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 20 partners
- 40 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Represents prominent players in the Australian and regional private equity market. Access to the resources of the worldwide Ashurst network. Noted restructuring and workout capability. 

What's new? Partner Shawn Wytenburg recently joined the firm from Corrs Chambers Westgarth. Partner Doo-Soon Choi joined the practice from Ashurst's London office.

Work highlights Acted for the syndicate of lenders providing, in the form of AUD154 million of debt, financing for Pacific Equity Partners' high-profile acquisition of Peters Ice Cream from Nestlé.

Represented a syndicate of over 40 lenders in the complex AUD2.1 billion refinancing of a secured senior syndicated facility for Coates Hire, Australia's largest equipment hire company.

Notable practitioners  

Mark Stanbridge heads the practice and recently advised Momentum Private Equity on its sale of the Harsyn company, the controller of the Harris Scarfe chain of department stores, to South African investment holding company Pepkor. Clients welcome his keen appreciation of the swiftness with which the private equity market moves and his ability to quickly understand the issues in question.

Significant clients Apollo Management, Archer Capital, The Blackstone Group, CEVA Group, Farallon Funds.

Projects - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 54 partners
- over 100 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Deploys multi-disciplinary teams that deliver on large-scale infrastructure projects. A recognised track record in respect of railways, roads, mining, and telecoms projects and the ability to bring global expertise to bear on Australian projects.

What's new? Mark Hourigan and Lorenzo Pacitti have been promoted to partner.
Shawn Wytenburg, Rob Ritchie, Katie Winterbourne are new lateral hires.
New panel appointments include Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation, AGL Energy, Westpac Banking and City of Melbourne and Woodside's global panel.

Work highlights Acting for the Surat Basin Rail JV company on its mandate to develop a 215 km track linking the mines in the Surat Basin west of Gladstone to the existing Moura Line. The project is valued at approximately AUD1.5 billion. 

Notable practitioners  

David Mason is sought out by clients for his strong skills in respect of large, complex projects and project finance. He is assisting GVK in connection with the financing and development of the AUD8 billion Alpha Coal Project.

Head of infrastructure, Chris Mitchell leads the team advising Moorebank Project Office (Department of Finance and Deregulation) on the development of an intermodal terminal for freight transportation in the Sydney basin area. He is also noted for real estate experience.

Paul Riethmuller's work includes assisting EPC contractor POSCO E&C on the AUD10 billion Roy Hill iron ore project in Western Australia. He heads the Perth office and the office's construction and infrastructure practice. 

Lee McDonald has recently moved to the firm's Sydney office. He is particularly valued by clients for his understanding of the rail industry.

Significant clients National Broadband Network, Mitsubishi, Lend Lease, BHP Billiton, Queensland Government.

Since publication, Chris Mitchell has joined King & Wood Mallesons

Real Estate - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 52 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Works on significant real estate matters for lenders, developers and investors. Represents clients across a range of sectors, including retail, office, leisure, hotels and infrastructure.

What's new? Jason Cornwall-Jones and Rebecca Field have been promoted to partner.

Work highlights Advised the Government Investment Corporation of Singapore on the sale of the Shangri-La Hotel in Sydney, a complex cross-border matter valued at AUD352 million, thought to be one of the largest single hotel transactions in Australia. 

Advised Wiggins Island Coal Export Terminal on the operation, construction and expansion of a coal export terminal in Gladstone. This complex infrastructure project is valued at AUD5 billion.

Advising Surat Basin Rail with regard to the development of a AUD2 billion privately funded coal haulage railway, funded by the Queensland government.

Notable practitioners  

Sydney-based Chris Mitchell is the head of the firm's infrastructure practice in Australia. He has a highly respected practice that covers major real estate and infrastructure work in both the public and private sectors.

Richard Brooks, of the Melbourne office, is the head of the commercial property practice in Australia, and is highly experienced handling work for both government and corporate clients. 

Andrea Rezos operates out of the Perth office, and advises on the acquisition, sale and development of hotels, shopping centres and office buildings. She has a strong reputation in this field and is praised for her efficiency and fast turnaround.

Significant clients Australia Post, Commonwealth Government, Eureka Funds Management, Hilton Hotels.

Since publication, Chris Mitchell has joined King & Wood Mallesons

Restructuring/Insolvency - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 11 partners
- 41 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A powerhouse group with an impressive client roster. Has been involved in many of Australia's biggest corporate collapses, and offers a full corporate service including security enforcement and litigation as well as restructuring.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
Efficiency: "They are effective and commercial." 

What's new? Lionel Meehan was promoted to partner. New panel appointments include those of National Australia Bank, Westpac Banking, Deutsche Bank and JPMorgan.

Work highlights Advised Deloitte which acted as voluntary administrators and then liquidators in respect of the failure of MF Global.

Acting for KordaMentha as receivers and managers in respect of Gunns, and its 35 subsidiaries, which were placed into administration and subsequently receivership. The firm is also advising the secured lender group, comprising both Australian and non-Australian banks and funds.

Notable practitioners  

Sydney-based partner James Marshall is a "very strong restructuring lawyer" and "a good operator" according to clients. His recent work includes advising Fitness First Australia on its restructuring. 

Partner Ray Mainsbridge "is very pragmatic, we have a very strong working relationship" says one client. He continues to counsel clients on a range of insolvency and receivership matters.  

Clients hail Melbourne-based partner and department head Ross McClymont as a lawyer "keen to move things forward, who works well as part of a team and is good at identifying solutions." With over 20 years' experience in this space, he continues to advise administrators and directors, amongst others.

According to clients, the "excellent" Anthony Ryan "has the ability to work through different legal issues to find answers." He advised Deloitte on the MF Global restructure. 

Clients admire partner Michael Sloan for his "very good project management skills and for giving good commercial advice." In the past year, he has acted on a number of receivership matters.

Tim Sackar "is definitely building his network very well and is doing some really good work" according to one client. He is experienced in the restructuring and distressed investments space, particularly acting for investment banks and hedge funds.

Sydney-based partner Tim Klineberg "gets it all done - seamlessly," according to sources. He acts for a range of clients including banks and funds as well as for receivers, administrators and liquidators. His expertise covers both Australian and English insolvency procedures as well as cross-border insolvency laws.

Significant clients National Australia Bank, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Ernst & Young, KordaMentha, PWC. 

Tax - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 20 other qualified lawyers  

What the team is known for Strong tax practice acting for some of Australia's largest companies across a wide range of industry sectors. Noted strength in the coverage of indirect taxation issues. Close focus on the development of tax legislation through the membership of influential boards and working parties.  

Work highlights Advised Industry Funds Management and other investors on the income tax and stamp duty implications of their successful bids to participate in Project Cook, the long-term leasing of New South Wales Ports Botany and Kembla.

Advised the Canadian agribusiness group Viterra on its AUD5.74 billion acquisition by Glencore. The transaction involved the disposal of Australian-listed CHESS depository interests under a Canadian scheme of arrangement, a form of transaction which was not specifically covered by regulatory provisions.  

Notable practitioners  

Ian Kellock has notable strengths in the areas of M&A, corporate restructures and private equity transactions. He lately acted as joint lead partner advising Tronox on the complex, cross-border taxation aspects of its AUD3.5 billion acquisition of Exxaro Resources' mineral sands operations.  

Geoff Mann is credited with combining deep knowledge with a pragmatic approach. He acted as joint lead partner in the Project Cook matter. 

Paul O'Donnell is admired for his outstanding technical abilities and is noted for his income tax expertise and in particular its application to debt restructuring issues and matters of asset, project or structured financing.    

Barbara Phair is regarded as a leading practitioner in the sphere of indirect taxation. She  has lately assisted clients on a number of stamp duty investigations and audits.  

Bill Cannon is another notable indirect tax practitioner, best known for his GST and stamp duty expertise and for his specialisation in tax issues surrounding infrastructure projects.  

Vivian Chang advises clients on corporate taxation issues relating to M&A, reorganisations and the development of financial products. She is especially highlighted for her excellent  technical knowledge

Department head Peter McCullough advises across a wide range of industry sectors, notably with regard to M&A and structured finance transactions.   

Significant clients ANZ, BHP Billiton, Coca-Cola Amatil, Macquarie Group, Spark Infrastructure.

Technology, Media, Telecoms (TMT) - Australia

Basic facts about the department
- 8 partners

What the team is known for Excellent track record in advising multinational IT clients on an array of matters including commercial agreements, procurement and outsourcing.

What's new? Partner Anita Cade joined the Sydney office as a lateral hire. She specialises in media and technology law.

Work highlights Acted for NBN Co on the negotiation of agreements with Telstra for a major infrastructure project that aims to replace the copper wire network and roll out high speed broadband across Australia.

Representing IBM in the Queensland Health Payroll System Commission of Inquiry. The inquiry is examining various aspects of IBM's work on the supply and development of a computer system for the government's payroll system.

Notable practitioners 

The highly regarded Gordon Hughes led negotiations for National e-Conveyancing Development on a project to develop a national e-conveyancing platform to bring together all of Australia's land registries. 

Tim Brookes assisted Qantas in establishing a multicurrency debit card, advising on the privacy and IP issues involved. He is especially sought out for his telecoms expertise. 

Robert Todd has broad TMT capabilities, including notable experience on regulatory issues in the media sector. His recent highlights include acting for IBM in the Queensland Health Payroll System Commission of Inquiry.

Khai Dang is an active figure in the IT and media spaces who is praised for his commerciality and strong client service. His headline work includes advising Commonwealth Bank of Australia on certain outsourcing matters. 

Sophie Dawson is well versed in defamation and media matters and also has experience in  IT and telecommunications and IP matters. 

Significant clients NBN Co, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Australia Post, Qantas, Foxtel.

Corporate/M&A - South Korea

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners in various offices
- 20 other qualified lawyers in various offices
- Korea practice group concentrated in Australia, Japan and Hong Kong 

What the team is known for Extensive work with Korean energy and natural resources clients on outbound deals, particularly in Australia but also in the broader Asia-Pacific region.

What's new? John Kim, formerly of Yulchon, has joined the firm.

Work highlights Represented POSCO on the acquisition of 24.5% interest in the West Pilbara Iron Ore Project.

Represented SK Networks and Korea Resources on the sale of Taroborah Coal Project to Rio Tinto.

Advised the SK Group on a proposed USD313 million share subscription into Cockatoo Coal.

Notable practitioners  

Sydney-based Ian Williams leads the Korean corporate practice group. He has a particular focus upon outbound M&A by South Korean clients into Australia, especially in the resources and infrastructure sectors.  

Rupert Lewi is based in Perth and specialises in energy and natural resources work. He took the lead on representing LG International on its acquisition of a 20% equity interest in GeoPark Colombia.

John McClenahan is the managing partner of the Tokyo office. He is currently advising Daewoo International on a farm-out and joint venture agreement with Woodside for an offshore block in Myanmar.

John Kim formerly practised at Yulchon in Seoul, and continues to handle cross-border M&A and other corporate transactions. 

Significant clients LG International, KEPCO, KEXIM, KNOC, Korea Midland Power, KORES.