find the latest legal job
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
Insurance Lawyer (1 PAE)
Category: Insurance and Superannuation Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Great Career Opportunity ·
View details
Insurance and Health Lawyer (1-4 PAE)
Category: Insurance and Superannuation Law | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· New position to support Growth ·
View details
Perth boutiques join forces to take on competitors

Perth boutiques join forces to take on competitors

Mark Borrello

A Perth-based dispute resolution practice and a property specialist firm have announced their merger, although the managing principal vows to retain the existing "boutique feel".

Graham & Associates and Borrello Legal have come together under the newly-formed Borrello Graham Lawyers banner, comprising around 21 staff.

Managing principal Mark Borrello told Lawyers Weekly the firms were aligned, both in growth strategy and culture.

“We had been working behind the scenes with James Graham and the firm Graham and Associates for quite a period of time with some referrals for dispute resolution matters and found that they had a similar ethos in terms of pragmatism and commercial reality,” he said.

Borrello Legal was a full-service property firm but needed the addition of a dispute resolution practice; similarly, Mr Borrello suggested Graham & Associates was “light in the property space”

He suggested the merger created an opportunity for both firms to continue expanding.

“I always said, at a base level, one plus one has to equal more than two. Ultimately there were significant rewards for both firms to pull together,” he said.

The firm has already hired an additional senior counsel and an experienced human resources executive, and intends to announce a lateral partner hire in coming weeks.

Mr Borrello suggested growth was a top priority for the new firm but that its strategy would remain specialist and boutique.

“Our growth plan is not to become a generalist firm; we want to maintain our boutique feel. We're not going to bring on, for example, a family law practice. It has to fit with what the vision for the firm is,” he said.

Similarly, he suggested the firm would retain Borrello Legal’s horizontal structuring, with senior lawyers taking on the bulk of the work.

“When you consider a traditional law firm model, we'd be considered top heavy,” he said. “But our calculated plan for growth is to bring across senior practitioners who can stand on their own feet – it's a best of breed mentality. We're not about leveraging off our junior lawyers.”

According to Mr Borrello, his firm had turned down past merger offers that failed to offer the same benefits.

He suggested small firms contemplating a merger needed to do it for the right reasons, based on strategy and clear criteria.

“There are a whole bunch of informal allegiances that smaller firms create in terms of cross-referrals and the like,” he said.

“But the reality is that I don't necessarily think merging small practices will result in a better outcome for the clients. Sometimes I think there are selfish reasons why firms do so and ultimately it has to work for the clients.”

Borrello Graham's equity principals (l to r): Joe Lazzara, Mark Borrello and James Graham


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

Perth boutiques join forces to take on competitors
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Quentin Bryce
DV has worsened in a generation: Quentin Bryce
Former governor-general of Australia Dame Quentin Bryce AD CVO has spoken of her deep distress about...
Academics entertain the idea of law without lawyers
Researchers from Queensland will explore some of the most disruptive trends tipped to transform the ...
Please, Continue (Hamlet), Melbourne Festival
Oct 16 2017
Hamlet suffers slings and arrows of top Victorian barristers
Victorian judges and barristers have performed the unique play Please, Continue (Hamlet) at the Melb...
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 & ...