James has over 30 years experience in corporate restructuring and strategic consulting assignments



James has practised in the field of corporate restructuring and strategic consulting for over 30 years.  James has been Ferrier Hodgson’s retail practice leader since 1999 and has worked with many businesses over his career providing strategy advice, performance enhancement solutions and corporate restructuring services.

James has developed a reputation as one of Australia’s leading retail corporate doctors.  His deep knowledge of the retail sector is unique in his field.  James is highly regarded as a key advisor on retail by lenders and financiers to the industry and is a frequent public speaker and commentator on changes in consumer behaviour and the impact on retail models, having travelled extensively overseas with Westfield studying international retail business models and global trends.

James is also the executive leader of our management consulting and real estate advisory business, Azurium.

Recent major projects

While the majority of James’ retail assignments are confidential and involve supported turnaround and restructure strategies, he has dealt with some of Australia’s biggest retail restructures representing over AUD4.5 billion of retail sales in Australia and New Zealand.  Some of James’ more notable assignments include:

  • Receiver and Manager to Dick Smith, one of Australia and New Zealand's largest consumer electronics retailers with an exposure to the banking syndicated of AUD130 million. 
  • Debt / equity restructure of the Colorado Group, specialty apparel and footwear business with an annual turnover of AUD430 million.
  • Restructure and going concern sale of Australian Discount Retail, a discount variety business with a turnover of AUD930 million.
  • Restructure and sale of department store, Harris Scarfe with an annual turnover of AUD400 million.
  • Voluntary administrator of Borders, a book retailer with an annual turnover of AUD177 million.


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