THE DISTILLERY: Woolies wobbles

One commentator looks at Gina Rinehart's play for a bite of Fairfax, while others pick apart Woolworths.

Australia’s geographical remoteness has hardly been more apparent than through the prism of global law firms. In the past, local firms have been inclined to saddle up with larger practices in the UK and US, because that’s where the business was and we’re small fry in the middle of nowhere. But while the merger between Australia’s Mallesons Stephen Jacques and Hong Kong firm King & Wood finally announced the arrival of a new breed of global, Asian-based legal firms, The Australian’s Chris Merritt explains that Slater & Gordon’s acquisition of UK firm Russell Jones & Walker is turning just as many heads. Quite simply, it’s normally expected that UK firms take Aussie firms, not the other way around, and the Australian dollar is playing a part. Elsewhere, Gina Rinehart’s play for a slice of Fairfax will likely come with expectations of a board seat says one writer, while a number of commentators swamp the latest Woolworths numbers and the decision to scrap Dick Smith Electronics.


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