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Part Of New Zealand History Celebrates 125 Years

Part Of New Zealand History Celebrates 125 Years In Business

One of New Zealand’s oldest and most respected law firms is celebrating its 125th anniversary in Wellington this week.

Chapman Tripp has worked in partnership with leading New Zealand businesses since 1875, and is celebrating its involvement in key commercial and legal milestones in New Zealand’s history.

Rupert Wilson, National Managing Partner of Chapman Tripp, today expressed his pride in the firm that has grown from a small Wellington office in 1875 to a national firm of over 500 people with offices in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, and an international clientele.

“This week we’re celebrating 125 years of pioneering legal practice in New Zealand. Like any longstanding business, our legacy is largely due to our ability to adapt to change, and continuing to provide effective solutions for our clients.”

“We’ve worked alongside our clients through two world wars, a depression, controversial government legislation and many of the key projects that have shaped the landscape of New Zealand business today. There’s a lot to look back on.”

Mr Wilson says recent market research reveals the firm has a reputation for being one of the most innovative and results-driven of the top law firms in New Zealand. He puts it down to a “team of top lawyers working alongside some of New Zealand’s most progressive businesses”.

“Chapman Tripp has won the services of a significant number of loyal clients over the past 125 years. Through them we have been able to participate in key events in New Zealand business, from the arrival of Ford cars and the Taranaki oil exploration, to the development of major projects like the Roxburgh Dam, the Think Big projects, and the sale of Telecom and Air New Zealand.”

“Our 125th anniversary is about celebrating our clients more than anything.”

The firm celebrates tonight with a black tie function at Wellington’s Town Hall. Chapman Tripp partners will join with their clients for an evening of reflection and looking forward.

Whilst the law may conjure up images of leather-bound tomes and ink wells, it’s actually one of the professions where forward thinking is most crucial. “As our clients have grasped the opportunities presented by technology, so have we. We were the first New Zealand law firm to install a computer, now we’re developing web-based initiatives to service our clients”, Mr Wilson said.

The firm has been seen as a training ground for the law profession and to some extent the judiciary.

Mr Wilson said that Chapman Tripp has attracted some of the brightest and best of New Zealand’s legal talent over the past 125 years.

“Some of them have moved on to the highest legal positions, such as recently retired Chief Justice, Sir Thomas Eichelbaum, the Lord Cooke of Thorndon, now a member of the House of Lords, and the newly appointed Solicitor General Terence Arnold. Others have become judges and Members of Parliament. With that sort of history, we’re certainly looking forward to the next 125 years.”


For further information, please contact:

Rupert Wilson
National Managing Partner
Ph: (04) 498 4902


 Photographs of the event on Tuesday 17 October

 Disk or CD copies of historical photographs

 Details about the programme of events in Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch

Please contact Elizabeth McKnight at Chapman Tripp on (04) 498 6361
Chris Major at Network Communications on (025) 443 220

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