Karen Evans-Cullen is a partner in Gilbert + Tobin’s Corporate Advisory group.
She has over 20 years experience as a strategic mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance and advisory lawyer. Karen has acted in a number of Australia’s significant strategic corporate transactions, including a range of takeovers, schemes of arrangement, mergers, demergers, acquisitions and divestments, and equity capital raisings.
She advises clients on transactions across a broad range of industry sectors and is highly regarded for her ability to deliver innovative solutions to achieve her client’s objectives.
Karen has established a strong reputation for advising boards and management on corporate governance issues including governance practices and processes, risk management, board effectiveness, continuous disclosure, regulatory investigations, related party transactions, directors’ duties and executive remuneration.
Karen was a part-time member of the Australian Takeovers Panel, a government appointed peer review body that regulates corporate control transactions in widely held Australian entities, from 2014 to 2023.
Karen has a Master of Laws (Distinction) from Georgetown University USA, which she completed as a Fulbright Scholar. She also has a Bachelor Laws (1st class Honours) from the University of Western Australia, and a Graduate Diploma in Applied Finance and Investment (Securities Institute of Australia). Karen regularly guest lectures in takeover laws at the University of New South Wales and is a member of the Corporations Committee of the Law Council of Australia.
Prior to joining G+T, Karen was Head of Corporate in PwC Legal from 2017 to 2021, and prior to that, was a partner at Clayton Utz for 15 years.
Karen’s experience includes advising:
- CIMIC on its response to the unsolicited takeover bid by HOCHTIEF Australia, valuing CIMIC at $6.85 billion.
- Virtus Health on the competing proposed scheme of arrangement and simultaneous takeover bid by CapVest, and unsolicited but ultimately recommended takeover bid by BGH Capital, dubbed by the Australian Financial Review as "the M&A deal of the year".
- Macquarie Asset Management and its co-investors on the $3.58 billion sale of Axicom.
- Sydney Airport trustee on its 2020 $2 billion entitlement offer and various governance issues.
- Opteon in relation to the investment by Anacacia Capital.
- Telstra on a major corporate transformation strategy involving a comprehensive review of Telstra’s operations and strategic demerger options.
- Newmont Mining Corporation on the restructure of its Australian business.
- Saracen Mining on its takeover bid for Bligh Resources.
- Guzman y Gomez in relation to the investment by TDM Asset Management.
- Colinton Capital Partners in relation to its investments in AMA Group, Alexium International and IntelliHR.
- Calibre Group in relation to strategic review, sale process and takeover bid by the O’Connor family group.
- Wisetech Global in relation to its acquisition of a French logistics software business.
- Founders of Transport Engineering in relation to its acquisition by Ricardo plc.
- Founders of Nexgen on its acquisition by Spirit Technology Solutions.
- Investa Property Group in relation to the acquisition of Investa Office Management and the successful defence of the proposed merger between Investa Office Fund and DEXUS Property Group by scheme of arrangement.
- Macquarie Capital and Pepper in relation to their bid, as part of a consortium, for the GE Consumer Finance business.
- Proprium Capital Partners in relation to its proposed acquisition of Devine Group Limited by scheme of arrangement its acquisition of Investa Land, a residential and commercial property development business, from Morgan Stanley Real Estate.
- Warrnambool Cheese & Butter on its acquisition of the everyday cheese business of Lion-Dairy & Drinks Pty Ltd, its renounceable entitlement offer in 2016 and the restructure of its business and corporate structure.
- Tenix Pty Limited on the divestment of the Tenix engineering and construction business to Downer EDI Limited.
- Spotless Group in relation to the acquisition by Pacific Equity Partners.
- Singapore Airlines on its acquisition of a 19.9% stake in Virgin Australia.
- Singapore Exchange on its proposed merger with ASX Ltd by scheme of arrangement.
- SFG in relation to the acquisition by IOOF by scheme of arrangement.
- HBOS on its sale of BankWest and the St Andrew’s wealth and insurance business to Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
- Seven Group and Australian Capital Equity in relation to the merger of Seven Network and WesTrac, and ASX Listing of Seven Group Holdings Limited.
- Symbion Health on the takeover bid for Symbion Health by Primary Health Care as well as various acquisitions and divestments of pharmacy and consumer product businesses.
Awards and Recognition
Karen won Corporate Partner of the Year.
Karen has been ranked in the areas of Mergers and Acquisitions, Corporate and Corporate Governance since 2012.
Karen has been ranked a leading lawyer in the International Who’s Who of Merger & Acquisition and Governance Lawyers since 2012.
Karen has been ranked a leading lawyer in Mergers & Acquisitions and Capital Markets since 2012.
Karen has been ranked in Chambers.
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