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JWS hires six in major capability boost

JWS hires six in major capability boost

A law firm has appointed six senior lawyers, including three partners, to its financial services, M&A, competition and commercial disputes practices._x000D_

JOHNSON Winter & Slattery has appointed six senior lawyers, including three partners, to its financial services, M&A, competition and commercial disputes practices.

The people boost includes the appointment of John Powell, former Clayton Utz partner, to the firm's Brisbane office as partner. A commercial disputes lawyer with 30 years experience, Powell has experience managing large-scale litigation, the firm said.

Craig Wappett, who joins as partner in Brisbane, was formerly with Mallesons STephen Jaques. Wappett is a financial services and major projects specialist with experience in across governance, structured finance, financial product regulation and commercial transactions.

Deborah Overstead joins as special counsel in Brisbane from Piper Alderman. She is a finance expert with experience in major projects, structured finance and insolvency. Prior to her most recent role Deborah was a senior associate at Mallesons.

Grant Lawler joins the firm as a senior associate in Sydney. He joins this month from Gilbert + Tobin. The new recruit is a mergers and acquisitions specialist advising on company takeovers, schemes of arrangement and private business and share acquisitions, as well as competition law issues, the firm said.

James Burchnall, who starts as a senior associate at the firm's Adelaide office, 10 January, relocated from London where he was a senior associate at Herbert Smith LLP. His experience covers public and private mergers and acquisitions, capital raisings, restructures, corporate advice, public takeovers, listings, share sales, infrastructure sales, convertible notes and commercial matters.

“These new appointments highlight the diversity of the firm’s expanded offering to clients geographically and across keys areas of practice. We entered the Brisbane market in 2010 and expansion there is important to the firm’s growth nationally,” said Peter Slattery, Managing Partner.

The firm also promoted Sar Katdare to the partnership in Sydney on 1 January this year. Katdare has been a member of the competition group since joining the firm as a senior associate in 2009. Katdare specialises in all aspects of competition law including advising ASX listed companies on Australian Consumer Law.

These new appointments follow a lift in the firm’s M&A league table rankings, with Johnson Winter & Slattery recording a completed deal value totalling US$25.6 billion in 2011. The firm recently acted in CP2 Limited’s A$2.7 billion acquisition of ConnectEast Group and the reconstruction of the Centro group, involving the aggregation of Centro funds with an equity value in excess of $3 billion.

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