Led by Managing Director Philip Gleed, WARD Lawyers is a boutique corporate advisory, financial services and real estate law firm. Philip Gleed will become the Executive Head for DWF's Melbourne office, while Scott Stewart, currently Director at WARD Lawyers, will lead the Australian Planning & Environment team.
Mark Hickey, Chairman of DWF Asia Pacific, said: "This is a major expansion for our business in Australia and especially for our practice in Melbourne. It further establishes DWF as a force in the Australian market, where we are growing at pace and attracting quality people who share our desire to do things differently. This new team will complement DWF's existing strengths in our global sectors of financial services, insurance and real estate. We now have more than 130 people in Australia, including 26 principal lawyers and more than 60 other fee earners providing our clients with a range of complex, managed and connected services."
Philip Gleed said: "We are excited to be joining DWF and look forward to helping them further build their already fast-growing business in Australia. We believe this move enables us to continue along our path of doing law differently and to further strengthen existing client relationships and build new ones by capitalising on DWF's strengths nationally and scale globally."
DWF can also announce the recruitment of a further three principal lawyers in its Sydney office. Brent Henderson joins from Sparke Helmore, Goran Gelic from McCullough Robertson and Sina Zevari from Australian Business Lawyers. Brent and Goran will further develop DWF's Commercial Services practice and specialise in construction, infrastructure and procurement projects. Sina Zevari joins DWF's growing Employment and Safety practice, specialising in employment litigation and industrial matters. In addition, Kara Thomson joins the Insurance practice in Brisbane as a supervising lawyer. She joins from Cooper Grace Ward and has expertise in advising and providing advocacy to businesses who are facing insurance claims.
*As of 1 February, DWF Australia became an Incorporated Legal Practice (ILP). Under this new corporate structure, the title of partner will change to principal lawyer.