Merged firm grows on day one

1 November 2012

The merger of Queensland law firm HopgoodGanim and Perth-based Q Legal comes into effect today and coincides with the appointment of a senior property, construction and corporate lawyer to the Perth office.

According to managing partner Bruce Humphrys, the merger (creating one firm with 30 partners and 240 staff) will enable HopgoodGanim to improve the service and value it offers clients by increasing the reach and breadth of the resources it has on the ground from the East coast to the West.

“HopgoodGanim has often spoken about the importance of ongoing growth in markets where we’re needed by existing clients and where we see significant future potential, he says.

“This merger enables us to achieve this goal on the back of our core strengths, including energy and resources, property and infrastructure. We are committed to now cementing our position in WA and growing our firm in line with client demand.

Mr Humphrys says he is delighted by the amount of interest potential lateral hires have shown in the firm since the announcement and notes that the WA team is already growing with the addition of Bert Gianotti, a former national law firm partner with almost 40 years of corporate transaction and property experience.

“We continue to attract high calibre legal practitioners, like Bert, who have opted to join upper mid-tier specialist firms because they want to develop strong, mutually rewarding and long-lasting relationships with their clients, Mr Humphrys says.

These sentiments are echoed by Mr Gianotti, who says, "I embrace and share the culture and work ethic of the partners and staff of HopgoodGanim, and in particular the level of service provided to clients. I am excited to be part of a team which believes in putting the interests of the client first and with whom I can work to service my clients nationally and internationally.

Mr Gianotti’s experience in commercial negotiations, construction and project delivery, and all aspects of property (including financing, acquisitions, planning, leasing and joint ventures), will further strengthen HopgoodGanim’s presence in Perth in these key areas.

Admitted as a partner of Stone James in Perth in 1979, Mr Gianotti remained a senior member of the firm for more than 15 years, including through its transition to Mallesons Stephen Jaques (now King & Wood Mallesons).

With extensive experience advising public and private clients in the corporate and property arenas in all mainland states of Australia, Italy, Singapore, Indonesia and the UK, Mr Gianotti returns to private practice after spending the past 15 years as an in-house lawyer and representative for national tenants, private property developers, and most recently a public listed company specialising in developing commercial property assets throughout Australia. He has also held board positions for listed property development and investment vehicles.

Perth partner Kevin Dundo says the appointment of Mr Gianotti coinciding with the first official day of the merger of HopgoodGanim and Q Legal reinforces the firm’s position in the market and its ability to offer existing clients greater depth within the full breadth of services.

"We are already following through on our promise to offer our clients access to a larger number of advisors who truly understand the industries and markets in which they operate. We're excited to welcome Bert and to be offering increased reach and breadth of legal expertise across a greater number of practice areas," Mr Dundo says.

According to Mr Humphrys, HopgoodGanim acts for over one-third of ASX-listed mining and resources companies that are Brisbane-headquartered, and is also aiming to replicate that position within the Western Australian resources market.

“A lot of our clients are either based in Perth or have operations in Western Australia, and this merger means we’ll be able to better service our existing client base. As growth is firmly on our agenda, we’re also looking to extend our reach further to other emerging and growth-oriented mining, resources and energy clients in Western Australia, as well as those in other sectors.

“We will also continue to grow the size of our Perth office to meet demand, and have already been buoyed with the interest being shown in our firm since the announcement.

Esther Cohen, Senior Communications Advisor
Tel: 07 3024 0192