Tom is an internationally recognised, award-winning technology law specialist with strong “black letter law” skills that he combines with a commercially pragmatic approach – traits highly valued by clients.
Head of the firm's leading TMT practice, Tom is passionate about technology and telecommunications, their everyday use, and their ability to transform organisations. This is a passion borne out of working in the industry for more than 20 years in both New Zealand and the UK. Clients appreciate Tom’s “high level of intimate knowledge of the marketplace” (Chambers Asia-Pacific 2021). Drawing on significant in-house experience at Telefonica O2 UK and Spark New Zealand, Tom provides clients with commercial, practical, and pragmatic advice.
Listed and private companies, universities, banks, health boards, public sector entities, government agencies, and start-ups all benefit from Tom’s expertise. He has developed a particular specialism negotiating agreements with software and service providers such as SAP, Salesforce, HPE, Oracle, Infor, and Microsoft, and system integrators and business integrators such as PwC, TCS, and Infosys.
Tom enjoys building relationships with his clients and assisting with all their technology needs. He advises on all technology law issues including outsourcing projects, managed services and “as a service”/cloud arrangements, agile contracting, technology transformation projects and large-scale technology procurement, as well as general software licensing and support agreements. Tom also has a wealth of experience in transitional services arrangements, assisting our market leading M&A team through asset and share sale arrangements.
Tom advises on emerging technology areas such as cyber security, artificial intelligence, and blockchain-related advice. He co-leads MinterEllisonRuddWatts’ Tech Innovation team, which is responsible for the development and implementation of technology solutions for internal use and for commercialisation. He is an author and regular speaker on transformational and strategic technology issues and developments.
Tom is recognised by all major directories as a leading TMT lawyer, including in Chambers Asia-Pacific (since 2013), The Legal 500 Asia Pacific, Best Lawyers NZ, and Doyles Guide for Technology. Clients have described Tom as “fantastic to work with, he was approachable and able to communicate complex legal matters in a way that all parties could readily understand enabling sound decision making”. Tom is also praised for being “accessible at all times and very responsive and given the length of time we often had to work together his sense of humour was very much appreciated” – The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific 2021. Another client considers Tom “an expert in IT contract law” – Chambers Asia-Pacific 2022.
Acting for MediaWorks Holdings on the sale of MediaWorks TV Limited to Discovery, Inc. MediaWorks is New Zealand’s largest independent commercial broadcaster.
Advising Fletcher Building on a “once in a generation” ERP transformation project for critical technology infrastructure, hyperscaler arrangements, and agreements with both systems integrator and business integrator.
Acting for LIC in the sale of the assets of Livestock Improvement Corporation’s (LIC) Automation company to MSD Animal Health (a division of Merck & Co).
Advising Watercare on its Strategic Transformation Programme for both the critical technology infrastructure (cloud-based) and the associated implementation project (under an agile methodology) with Infor.
Advising a number of large New Zealand-based banks and other major corporates on strategic and business critical cloud/licensing and critical systems projects with companies including ACI Worldwide, Oracle, SAP, Salesforce, Microsoft and Infor (amongst others).
Advising New Zealand Lotteries Commission on its upgrade and replacement of its core gaming platforms.
Advising Auckland University of Technology on a Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription agreement and implementation project with supplier, Instructure Inc, for an on-line learning environment.
Advising Te Whatu Ora - Te Toka Tumai Auckland (formerly Auckland DHB) on its agreement with Intersystems to deliver a cloud-based, modern, extensible, and fit-for-purpose Patient Administration System.
- Member, Institute of Directors
- Affiliate member, IT Professionals NZ
Achievements and recognition
- Leading Individual, Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT), The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific
- Tier 1 team, Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT), The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific
- Recognised, Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT), Chambers Asia-Pacific
- Recognised, Information Technology Law, Best Lawyers
- Recognised, Privacy and Data Security Law, Best Lawyers
- Recognised, Telecommunications Law, Best Lawyers
- Winner, Consumer, Media and Technology Deal of the Year, New Zealand Law Awards, 2018