Minters’ consulting arm acquires Wells Advisory
National law firm MinterEllison has moved to bolster its education legal services with the addition of the higher education consultancy Wells Advisory and its entire team.
Minters has acquired Wells Advisory, which was established seven years ago and specialises in strategy, regulation, research commercialisation, corporate advisory, governance, and leadership to clients in the higher education sector.
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The incoming team – led by Michael Wells and Paula Kelly – will join MinterEllison Consulting, which has more than 120 principal advisers and consultants. Mr Wells and Ms Kelly are joining as partners and bring a management consulting team of nine with them.
That team will continue, Minters said in a statement, to service Australian clients and maintain their UK presence and client base.
Minters chief executive Virginia Briggs said the acquisition “comes at a critical time, as education providers are adapting and innovating to remain student-centric and sustainable, and the government is undertaking its first comprehensive review of the higher education sector in 15 years through the universities accord”.
There is demand from clients, she explained, for seamless, end-to-end solutions that combine legal and management consulting capabilities.
“Education is one of six key industries for our firm. Our education specialist lawyers work with leading universities, and tertiary, school, and childcare providers, in every state and territory of Australia,” she posited.
“Combining the Wells Advisory consultants into our consulting business and our education sector offering will allow our education clients to access coordinated advice and support to better achieve their organisational objectives.”
Wells Advisory, Ms Briggs concluded, will elevate the firm’s current education sector offerings.
“We are excited to be bringing them to our consulting business and to MinterEllison,” she said.
Mr Wells added: “This is an exciting opportunity for our team to be joining MinterEllison’s consulting business. We are looking forward to extending our scale and building our reputation further in the education sector, both in Australia and in select overseas markets.
“Our team is known in the market for their high-quality work, deep sector expertise, and consultative working style. That will not change. But, we will be able to collaborate more closely with the sector’s leading legal experts to best meet our clients’ needs.
“Higher education institutions in Australia and worldwide are facing similar strategic challenges ranging from digital transformation, partnerships, generative AI, cyber threats, online education, student and staff safety, workforce management to sustainable funding models.
“We are committed to collaborating and supporting our clients as they adapt and build new capabilities and offerings.”
The Wells Advisory team joined Minters earlier this week, on 2 October.