find the latest legal job
Corporate Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Highly-respected, innovative and entrepreneurial Not-for-Profit · Competency based Board
View details
Chief Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Dynamic, high growth organisation · ASX listed market leader
View details
In-house Projects Lawyer | Renewables / Solar | 2-5 Years PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: All Australia
· Help design the future · NASDAQ Listed
View details
Corporate Lawyer
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· 12 months fixed term opportunity
View details
Property lawyer - Melbourne
Category: Property Law | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Impressive client list, national firm · Well-led and high-performing team
View details
Sparkes seeks to ignite banking practice

Sparkes seeks to ignite banking practice

Sparke Helmore has teamed up with a number of Australia’s most powerful finance companies as part of a push to get more work in this lucrative area.

Sparkes has joined Macquarie Capital, Deloitte, Westpac and the Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCAL) as sponsors of the inaugural Australian Growth Company Awards on 25 October at the Westin Hotel in Martin Place, Sydney.

All of those award co-sponsors, with the exception of AVCAL, are current clients of the firm, with Sparkes seeking to shift its image from being a firm with a government focus to one with a broader depth of capabilities.

“Sponsoring these awards is part of a determined strategy to move into that integrated debt and equity market,” said Nick Humphrey (pictured), the head of corporate at Sparkes when speaking with Lawyers Weekly.

“We want to demonstrate that we can do M&A work and that we have the capabilities to act for firms in the mid-market space on the debt-raising side.”

Humphrey, formerly the head of private equity at Norton Rose, was poached by Sparkes late last year to develop its corporate and banking practice. He said he had been talking with the other award sponsors for 18 months to two years about launching these awards.

“I was surprised that there was no awards program that focused on the growth market, particularly on the companies side,” said Humphrey. “I think all of the awards partners wanted to go to the market with something that was a little bit different.”

The awards are pitched to companies that have been in business for more than two years and generate revenue between $20 million and $250 million.

The three award categories are: growth company of the year, growth company CEO of the year and exit of the year.

The latter category is expected to attract the interest of private equity consortiums.

“It might seem at first blush a strange category to include,” said Humphrey. “Roughly one in four deals have a private equity fund involved and whether it is a secondary buy-out, an IPO, [or] a trade sale, that is a key milestone.

“Whether it is backed by private equity or it is part of a strategy backed by a management team that has grown it [a company] and managed to sell it, this award looks at that exit event as a thing to celebrate.”

Humphrey will be one of the awards’ judges, joining leading business figures including: Greg Clark, the head of leveraged acquisition finance, debt capital markets, with the Westpac Institutional Bank; Belinda Cooney, a director with Macquarie Capital, and Tony Garrett, a partner with the corporate advisory team at Deloitte.

Humphrey said that if the awards receive 60 to 100 submissions it will be judged a success and that the organisers might seek to expand the number of award categories next year.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Sparkes seeks to ignite banking practice
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Warning
Aug 23 2017
NT Law Society sounds alarm on mandatory sentencing
The Law Society Northern Territory has issued a warning over mandatory sentencing, saying it hasn’...
Unite
Aug 22 2017
Professionals unite in support of marriage equality
The presidents of representative bodies for solicitors, barristers and doctors in NSW have come toge...
Aug 21 2017
Is your firm on the right track for gig economy gains?
Promoted by The way we do business, where we work, how we engage with workers, even how we take a...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...