find the latest legal job
Corporate and Commercial Partner
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Full time · Join a leading Adelaide commercial law firm
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Sydney NSW
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
Legal Inhouse / Lawyer / Company Secretary
Category: Other | Location: Brisbane QLD 4000
· Fantastic Company · Potential to be Part Time / Flexible Work Pattern
View details
Part Time Risk & Compliance Officer
Category: Other | Location: Brisbane QLD 4000
· Brisbane City · Flexible Part Time Hours
View details
Even national firms need a 'global mindset': KWM

Even national firms need a 'global mindset': KWM


It is important to ‘think global’ regardless of whether you are a top-tier national or an international law firm, according to King & Wood Mallesons’ managing partner in Australia.

Sue Kench (pictured) told Lawyers Weekly that Australia is attracting more clients that have global needs and that domestic firms must rise to the occasion.

“Even for firms who don’t have a global presence or multinational clients it is important they have a global mindset as markets, products and practices increasingly have an international exposure,” she said.  

“Firms may be comparable in terms of quality in Australia, but if one firm can offer that same level of quality consistently across multiple jurisdictions that will be appealing to the client since they only need to work with one firm and a brand that they trust.”

Ms Kench said that firms need to be able to offer clients the global insights, relationships and cross-border capability they are looking for.

“Clients want depth and breadth – firms that have deep local capability across multiple markets,” she said.

Some practice areas lend themselves to globally-connected law firms more than others, particularly those practice areas tied to cross-border capital, investment and trade flows, according to Ms Kench.  

“However, we are finding that our clients increasingly need global support across almost every practice and product area,” she added.

Winners and losers

It is too soon to tell whether Australian law firms have gained as much as they hoped they would from international mergers, according to Ms Kench.

“It is a long game and we will need to wait and see,” she said.

“What is clear is that firms, whether national or international, need to follow their clients. Firms with an international platform and local depth are doing well.”

While Australia has always had a very competitive legal market, the arrival of global firms has upped the ante, she continued.

However, not all global firms have been successful in Australia and there have been some recent examples of very well-respected international firms exiting the Australian market, according to Ms Kench.

“They did not have the depth and breadth of capability and relationships to successfully compete,” she said.

“To achieve growth you need to defend your existing market share here by deepening and broadening new and existing client relationships while also tapping into international opportunities.”

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

Even national firms need a 'global mindset': KWM
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Nov 23 2017
Anti-radicalisation programs playing ‘second fiddle’ to terrorism laws
Several academics have questioned the balance between Australia’s counterterrorism legislation and...
 William Ah Ket
Nov 23 2017
‘Bamboo ceiling’ thought piece wins inaugural law prize
A paper that explores the idea of affirmative action to achieve greater diversity among members of A...
Nov 22 2017
Reduced investment protections will make robust commercial arbitration mechanisms all the more critical for investors
Promoted by Maxwell Chambers. This article discusses the current trend away from investor protect...
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 & ...