Sam Delaney

Partner. Sydney.

+61 2 9210 6598 / +61 417 440 975 |   |  vCard
Sam Delaney

Specialising in commercial litigation and insolvency, Sam has advised in some of Australia’s largest corporate collapses including Allco Finance Group, Primebroker Securities, Octaviar and HIH and acted in many high value complex commercial disputes involving directors duties, property rights, professional negligence, franchising, trade practices, securities lending, white collar crime and insolvency.

Show full profile

Specialising in commercial litigation and insolvency, Sam has advised in some of Australia’s largest corporate collapses including Allco Finance Group, Primebroker Securities, Octaviar and HIH and acted in many high value complex commercial disputes involving directors duties, property rights, professional negligence, franchising, trade practices, securities lending, white collar crime and insolvency.

Sam brings a very commercial approach to the resolution of all problem situations – a skill that is highly valued by his clients. His thoroughness and responsiveness has earned the trust of globally-recognised and major national brands such as BP, ABN AMRO Clearing, Dulux, Johnson & Johnson, Laing O’Rourke and Fuji-Xerox; and established financial institutions such as NAB, Bankwest and Suncorp.

“An incisive, thorough and dependable commercial litigation and insolvency lawyer”
Sam Delaney

Sam's Expertise

  • Directors' duties Acting for the plaintiff in NSW Supreme Court proceedings against the Australian Wholesale Property Fund in connection with the unwinding of a $90m loan transaction. The Australian Financial Review described the Court’s decision as “an important judgment that reinforces the heavy responsibilities of directors under the Corporations Act” (Chanticleer 13-14 September 2014).

    The proceedings concerned a claim by the receivers of the Allco Finance Group to recover a $90m loan which the receivers claimed was given in circumstances involving a breach of duty by two of the borrowers and lenders’ common directors. The court agreed with the receivers and unwound the loan transaction, reconverting an otherwise worthless receivable into a 47% equity holding in the Fund: Allco Funds Management Ltd v Trust Company (RE Services) Ltd [2014] NSWSC 1296, Allco Funds Management Ltd v Trust Company (RE Services) Ltd [2014] NSWSC 1251.
  • Agriculture As the operator of a mixed farming business in central NSW, Sam is uniquely placed to advise on complex legal issues and disputes arising in agricultural investment and finance.

    Advises Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Bankwest and National Australia Bank in connection with various agricultural exposures, including in relation to Farm Debt Mediation, workout and enforcement of securities. Sam has advised financiers on exposures across many market segments including viticulture, cotton, beef, broad acre cropping and agricultural machinery dealers (2010 – 2015).
  • Restructuring, workout, distressed debt Advised a major Australian trading bank on its $20 million exposure to an inner city property developer and on security, intercreditor arrangements and restructuring (2014).

    Advised a private Australian property development company on its acquisition of $200m of distressed debt and associated securities (2015).
  • Cross border disputes and cross-border insolvency Advised Luxembourg based BGP Investments in NSW Supreme Court proceedings with Babcock & Brown regarding a disputed €21 million intercompany transaction involving Luxembourg and Maltese based former subsidiaries of Babcock & Brown.

    Acted in NSW Supreme Court application by the liquidator of a Singapore company with assets located in Australia for recognition of the liquidator’s appointment under s 581 of the Corporations Act and recognition of the orders of the High Court of the Republic of Singapore: Re Chow Cho Poon (Private) Ltd [2011] NSWSC 300.
  • Securities lending Acted for ABN AMRO Clearing Sydney Pty Ltd in Victorian Supreme Court (and in the Victorian Court of Appeal) proceedings commenced by the receivers of Primebroker Securities in a dispute concerning the close out netting provisions of an Australian Master Securities Lending Agreement. The dispute arose upon the collapse of Primebroker Securities and the termination by ABN AMRO Clearing of its AMSLA with Primebroker. At the time of termination, Primebroker owed money to ABN AMRO under a substantial commercial facility and ABN AMRO held a substantial portfolio of borrowed securities in respect of which it was required to account to Primebroker: Primebroker Securities v Fortis Clearing Sydney (2009) 28 VR 479, [2010] VSC 358, (2011) 83 ACSR 119; ABN AMRO Clearing Sydney v Primebroker Securities [2012] VSCA 287.
  • Insolvency Advised the receivers of Allco Finance Group in relation to all contentious and potentially contentious aspects of the receivership, including asset sales, directors’ examinations and asset recovery (2008 - 2015).

    Advising National Australia Bank on numerous receiverships of substantial businesses and properties (2008 - 2012).

    Advised Laing O’Rourke, John Holland and BGC Constructions in connection with the insolvency of counterparties on various construction projects.

    Acted for Commonwealth Bank in connection with various exposures including in respect of mining services, retailing, trade finance and farming (2012 – 2015).

    Acted for Bankwest in connection with various exposures including in respect of property development, retailing, hospitality, pubs, agriculture, pharmacies, real estate, wineries (2010 – 2015).
  • Banking & finance litigation Acted in Federal Court proceedings concerning the redemption of convertible notes issued by HIH NZ: Re HIH Insurance Ltd (In Liq); McGrath v Perpetual Trustee Co Ltd (2008) 66 ACSR 210.

    Acting for major Australian trading bank in NSW Supreme Court litigation involving allegations of breach of mandate, including claims by customer that bank allowed bank account to be operated other than by authorised signatories (2014-2015).

    Advised Westpac in relation to exposure on margin lending facilities (2009-2010).
  • Franchising, distributor disputes & restraint of trade Acted for BP Australia in Federal Court of Australia proceedings involving the termination by BP of a franchise agreement in Goodlen Pty Ltd v BP Australia Pty Ltd (2004) 141 FCR 325.

    Acted for Fuji Xerox Australia in NSW Supreme Court proceedings with CSG Limited in a dispute arising from the termination by Fuji Xerox of its dealer agreements with CSG: Fuji Xerox Australia v CSG Ltd [2010] NSWSC 1258.

    Acting for Mr Rental Australia in NSW Supreme Court dispute against various franchisees.
  • Conversion Acted for the deed administrators of a rare notes and coin business in their application to the NSW Supreme Court for judicial advice and orders under s 444F of the Corporations Act limiting their personal liability for potential conversion claims: Re John Pettit Pty Limited (subject to a Deed of Company Arrangement) [2014] NSWSC 728.
  • Property disputes Acted for BP in the High Court in Ringrow v BP (2005) 224 CLR 656.

    Acted for Suncorp in multiple NSW Supreme Court proceedings against CB Richard Ellis involving claims up to $40m arising out of valuations of development sites prepared for these financial institutions.

    Acted for various partners of PPB Advisory and Ferrier Hogson in defence of various NSW Supreme Court proceedings involving claims for breach of receivers’ duties, including claims concerning s 420A of the Corporations Act.
  • White collar crime Acting for a former listed company in NSW Supreme Court in an employee fraud claim to recover nearly $2m of company funds: Alesco Corp Ltd v Te Maari [2015] NSWSC 469.

What others say

  • “Best Lawyer - Alternative Dispute Resolution and Litigation” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2017
  • “Best Lawyer - Insolvency & Reorganisation” Best Lawyers Peer Review, 2015-2017
  • “Recommended for dispute resolution” APL Legal 500, 2014
  • “A very responsive solicitor” APL Legal 500, 2014

Sam's Leadership

  • Insolvency Practitioners Association Member
  • Law Society of New South Wales Member