Skip to Content »

My new law firm – Franks & Ogilvie

  • July 26th, 2009

My former Chapman Tripp colleague, Rob Ogilvie, and I have established a new law firm – Franks & Ogilvie.  We’re fully operational from tomorrow, at 2 Woodward Street in the heart of Wellington, looking over Midland Park across from Astoria Cafe.

The other partner in the firm,  Rob Ogilvie, worked with me in Chapman Tripp before becoming a senior in-house lawyer with Telecom. He led Telecom’s negotiations with the government last year over the compulsory separation that has created Chorus.

I like helping people to see how simple decisions can be made, by cutting legal mumbo jumbo down to size. The mix of clients we’ll enjoy will include:
  • Directors who want a second opinion after being scared into paralysis by legal warnings and complexity,
  • Businesses threatened by new law coming down the parliamentary track, looking for ways to improve it or derail it;
  • People wanting to cut through to the key alternatives in complex multi-party negotiations,
  • Cousins arguing over the family  business and looking for a shareholders agreement to take them out of deadlock
  • Investors wanting to know their real balance of risks if they have to ignore some parts of securities law to raise capital
  • People wanting an objective opinion on their chances and the balance of costs, risks and benefits in a lawsuit.
Our particular advantage will be in untangling  legal issues at the intersection of commerce and government. See here for an idea of what public law covers.
 
In combination we have a unique mix of public, official and private business experience. We know  the differences between theory and how things actually work in practice because we’ve worked on both sides of the where commerce/government divide. We have been:
  • commercial lawyers,
  • company directors,
  • in Parliament,
  • a regulator,
  • government advisers,
  • in-house counsel, and
  • commercial negotiators. 
There are few commercial legal areas where we have not learned from experience on both sides. See here for more on our experience.
 
I’m looking forward to interesting commercial and public law work that has been blocked until now by conflicts of interest. Conflicts are inevitable because of Chapman Tripp’s very size and success. Partners and staff in one part of a law firm may not work for a client whose interests conflict with existing clients of other parts of the firm (without all clients’ informed consent).

All the large top flight firms have major clients with strong and sometimes conflicting interests in the outcome of public law advocacy. 

We see a real gap for public law legal advice tied to deep commercial experience.  Sir Geoffrey Palmer left Chapman Tripp in the early 1990s to set up Chen and Palmer but we have an additional element – we both start and end with a career-long interest in business law.

 I’ll miss the everyday time with the colleagues from the firm in which I’ve spent most of the last 30 years but building something new is exciting.
 

Comments

Gravatar
  • jeremy laurenson
  • July 26th, 2009
  • 9:44 pm

All the very best Stephen.

Regards

Jeremy

Gravatar

Good for you.

Gravatar

Best wishes and all success to you.

Gravatar
  • Cactus Kate
  • July 27th, 2009
  • 2:28 pm

Best of luck Stephen. Shame about Chen & Palmer :)

Gravatar

All the best, Stephen. I hope you put Chen & Palmer out of business. :-)

[…] The other partner in the firm, Rob Ogilvie, worked with me in Chapman Tripp before becoming a senior in-house Lawyer with Telecom. He led Telecom’s negotiations with the government last year over the compulsory separation that has created Chorus. I like helping people to see how … Sir Geoffrey Palmer left Chapman Tripp in the early 1990s to set up Chen and Palmer but we have an additional element – we both start and end with a career-long interest in Business Law. … StephenFranks.co.nz » Blog Archive » My new Law firm – Franks … […]

Gravatar

Congratulations Stephen – enjoy your new path!

Gravatar
  • Orange Roughy
  • July 28th, 2009
  • 10:03 am

Are you in Donna Hall’s old offices? Best of luck.

Gravatar
  • Carol
  • July 29th, 2009
  • 9:49 pm

Good luck with the new venture, do you have a website yet?

Gravatar

Good Luck and Congratulations Stephen

Leave your comments:

* Required fields. Your e-mail address will not be published on this site

You can use the following HTML tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>