Class action lawsuits are not the massive business in Australia as they are in the United States, but following the success of the world’s first public-listed law firm, Slater & Gordon, another Australian firm is now looking at expanding into the lucrative litigation market.
Shine Lawyers, who use environment lawyer Erin Brokovich for their advertisements in a deal that runs until 2020, listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in May and are now looking at taking over firms in the UK, to add to the 20 firms they acquired since their foundation in Queensland in 1976.
The firm’s growth is aggressive, like the predecessor Slater & Gordon who have achieved considerable success in terms of growth and it now features as the third biggest plaintiff law firm in Australia.
Shine listed through its A$45m IPO (£27.2m), valuing the firm at A$155m and it intends using some of its bank facilities and cash to make its UK and possible US expansion.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that
Investors will also be putting their faith in executive director Roche, who has first-hand experience of the difference between writing a bill and getting it paid.
In 2003, Roche’s ticket to practise as a lawyer was suspended for a year after the Queensland Solicitors Complaints Tribunal found him guilty of gross overcharging.
Roche had charged a client who got a $2 million settlement more than $570,000 for services including sending a box of chocolates to the secretary of a doctor who had provided a medical report. That exercise cost the client $156.