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Keypoint adds HWL Ebsworth partner as consulting principal

A franchise partner from BigLaw firm HWL Ebsworth has joined the Queensland office of emerging BigLaw player Keypoint Law.

user iconJerome Doraisamy 15 August 2023 Big Law
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Derek Sutherland (pictured) has joined Keypoint, bringing with him more than three decades of experience as a franchise lawyer. He is the longstanding chair of the legal committee of the Franchise Council of Australia and the chair of the Queensland Law Society franchising committee.

His practice, Keypoint said in a statement, sees him assist overseas master franchisors and franchisors, as well as master franchisees and franchisees, in all aspects of franchise law, including due diligence and acting for parties in mergers and acquisitions, drafting franchising code compliant franchise documentation, preparing trade practice compliance programs, issuing transaction documentation, and providing strategic advice on compliance with the Franchising Code of Conduct and the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.

Mr Sutherland was most recently with HWL Ebsworth, and prior to that, he was the owner and director of Icon Law and a partner at Dibbs Barker.


Keypoint, an emerging BigLaw player in Australia, was established in 2014 and has nearly 70 partner-level lawyers working across more than two dozen practice areas in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Canberra.

The news follows the firm’s appointment of a property and commercial consulting principal in early July and its addition of two tax principals from Coleman Greig in early June.

Speaking about the hire, Keypoint chief executive Warren Kalinko said: “Derek’s well-regarded expertise in franchise law will be of immense value to our firm.”

“Our team continues to grow with partners who are pre-eminent in their respective fields. Derek’s joining further adds to the quality of our growing Queensland team, and we are delighted to welcome him to Keypoint.”

Mr Sutherland added: “I am pleased to be joining such a vibrant and innovative firm.

“I have watched them grow for some time and have former colleagues who work there. I truly look forward to growing my legal practice at Keypoint, and I am so pleased to have the support and expertise of Keypoint to help me service clients.”

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