find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
DLA narrows focus

DLA narrows focus

The head of DLA Piper in the Asia-Pacific has told Lawyers Weekly that his firm will not look to compete against its global competitors in every area in the Australian market.

The head of DLA Piper in the Asia-Pacific has told Lawyers Weekly that his firm will not look to compete against its global competitors in every area in the Australian market.

Bob Charlton (pictured) was appointed as the managing director of DLA Piper in the Asia-Pacific on 1 May.
The former Clifford Chance and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer partner visited each of the firm’s five Australian offices when he was in the country for two weeks in June.

When interviewed by Lawyers Weekly in the firm’s Sydney office, Charlton said that DLA Piper was closely monitoring the movements of its global rivals when deciding what areas it would target.

“In banking and finance, I think we need to look very carefully at where we stand in the market and look at what good clients like Westpac expect from us and make sure we can deliver that adequately,” he said. “Is it sensible, now that Clifford Chance and Allen & Overy have moved here, alongside Freehills and King & Wood Mallesons, is it sensible for us to really be having a crack at general lending wok for the National Australia Bank? That is a question we need to think about it.”

DLA Piper have targeted the trade and commodities area in advising Westpac in an attempt to challenge the hegemony large firms like Allens and Freehills have with regard to banking and finance work from the ‘big four’ banks.

In the equally lucrative area of energy and resources, DLA Piper has also attempted to challenge the large global and national firms with offices in Perth.

“We want to avoid being a jack-of-all-trades,” he said. “We want to be able to distinguish ourselves on the back of the geographic base we have and the ability to deliver top-class products for this group of clients that look to us as an international provider.”

Canberra conundrum
Charlton spent time in Canberra during his stay in Australia.

While DLA Piper was one of only seven private practice law firms to be named on all four panels of the Federal Government’s Legal Services Multi-Use List last month, just over 12 months ago its Canberra office was decimated when six of the firm’s eight partners jumped ship to join HWL Ebsworth.

The office now has four partners, and Charlton put a positive spin on the global law firm’s diminished presence in the region.

“Often fantastic things happen out of adversity,” he said. “I think the size and shape we now have in Canberra is sensible, particularly in relation to the Government and its recently announced budget position. “Alongside a number of other governments, such as in the UK , it  doesn’t  have the money to spend on legal services that it once had.”

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

DLA narrows focus
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Oct 20 2017
Podcast: One of law’s most infamous alumni – in conversation with Julian Morrow
In this episode of The Lawyers Weekly Show, Melissa Coade is joined by The Chaser’s Julian Morrow....
Oct 20 2017
High Court overturns ‘excessive’ anti-protest legislation
Bob Brown’s recent victory in the High Court over the Tasmanian government was a win for fundament...
Oct 20 2017
Changes to Australian citizenship laws blocked
Attempts to beef up the requirements to obtain Australian citizenship were thwarted this week, after...
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'...
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...
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 & ...