Head of Insurance Sector, Australia
International Board Member
Samantha O'Brien is a trusted advisor to many of Australia's largest financial institutions and financial services businesses as well as some of the most innovative Fintechs entering the market.
Clients engage Samantha for her expertise in the regulation of financial services product providers and advisers, her track record in financial product design and distribution and her experience in the sale, acquisition and transfer of insurance and financial services businesses and portfolios.
She is known for the strategic lens that she applies to her advice and the commerciality and practicality or her approach. Samantha’s clients include insurers, underwriting agencies, mutuals and insurance and credit intermediaries, banks, payment product providers, credit providers and Fintechs. Her expertise spans the development and distribution of their products, prudential regulation, AFSL and ACL licensing, compliance and breach management, and the development and implementation of customer remediation programs.
Samantha has assisted a number of financial services organisations to navigate their way through high impact regulatory changes and developments as well as the significant transformation and market consolidation in the sector. Importantly, she continues to assist numerous institutions with the implementation of the significant slate of reforms and regulator initiatives that have arisen out of the Financial Services Royal Commission.
- Assisted FM Global with the successful portfolio transfer of the insurance book of FM Insurance Company Limited to Factory Mutual Insurance Company.
- Advising Worldline AG on the financial regulatory and credit card scheme matters related to Worldline’s expansion to Australia.
- Advising Square Inc in connection with its launch in Australia of two new products; including advice about the application of the regulatory regime, ways to minimise regulatory impact, AML/CTF compliance and drafting standard product terms and conditions.
- Advising numerous life and general insurers on their regulatory reform projects to implement the high-impact reforms arising from the Financial Services Royal Commission.
- Advising numerous Fintechs in relation to the application of financial services regime to their products and services including: Marqueta, Deferit, Prezzee, Sendfx and Nuim.
- Advising IAG in relation to:
- its AFS licence consolidation project; and
- the development and implementation of the Swann add-on insurance remediation program.
- Advising PSC Insurance Group Limited on:
- 17 broker roll-up acquisitions as part of their IPO process; and
- post IPO acquisitions of 24 insurance broking businesses and interests in a 22 member broker network.
- Advising AirPlus on the regulation of its payment products in Australia.
- Advising Suncorp in the sale of its insurance broking business Resilium by way of management buy-out.
- Acting for Steadfast in its acquisitions of a number of insurance brokers including BAC Insurance Brokers, IC Frith Insurance Brokers, National Credit Insurance Brokers, PI Direct and Austcover.
Awards and recognition
- Recognition: Listed in 'Best Lawyers' in Corporate Law, financial institutions and insurance law in Australia, 2023
- Recognition: Recommended Practitioner for Fintech and Financial Services Regulatory, Legal 500 Asia-Pacific 2023
- Recognition: Recommended Practitioner for Insurance, Legal 500 Asia-Pacific 2023
Memberships And Affiliations
- Australian Institute of Company Directors