Russell McVeagh > Auckland, New Zealand > Firm Profile

Russell McVeagh
VERO CENTRE
48 SHORTLAND STREET
AUCKLAND 1010
New Zealand

New Zealand > Corporate and M&A Tier 1

Financial services, private equity, infrastructure and government and public sector are some of Russell McVeagh‘s key areas of activity for corporate acquisitions, joint ventures and ECM transactions. David Hoare chairs the national practice from Auckland where he draws on over 20 years’ experience, he advises a cross section of high profile clients, among them Pacific Equity Partners and Fonterra, on all aspects corporate and commercial transactions. Joe Windmeyer‘s practice focuses on M&A and securities work, which is complemented by Ben Paterson ’s, David Raudkivi’s and Dan Jones’ experience in private equity and public M&A. Cath Shirley-Brown is another top partner for public and private M&A, joint ventures, shareholder arrangements and acting for central and local government entities. All lawyers are based in Auckland. Mei Fern Johnson in Wellington is recognised for her expertise in investment in (and procurement of) infrastructure, technology, transport and energy projects.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Experienced NZ firm, had worked with our business previously so brought good industry knowledge to the transaction.’

‘David Raudkivi was engaging and knew market practice on M&A, worked well with his competition law colleagues (as the deal was difficult from that perspective).’

‘They are commercial and work to understand what we are trying to achieve. This characteristic in particular makes them a pleasure to work with.’

‘Cath Shirley-Brown is hard working, commercially focused and great to deal with.’

Key clients

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited

Pacific Equity Partners

Auckland International Airport

Trustpower

KiwiRail

T&G Global

ANZ

Work highlights

  • Sell-side adviser to ANZ Bank New Zealand Limited on the sale of its asset finance business, UDC Finance Limited, to Japan’s Shinsei Bank for $762m.
  • Acted as lead deal counsel for Fonterra Co-operative Group on the sale to Inner Mongolia Natural Dairy Co., Ltd, a subsidiary of China Youran Dairy Group Limited (Youran), of Fonterra’s two farming-hubs in Ying and Yutian for NZ$552m (RMB 2.54 billion).
  • Assisted Tilt Renewables, a leading developer, owner and manager of renewable generation assets in Australasia, in relation to a scheme of arrangement (subject to Court approval) facilitating a 100% takeover and sale of its New Zealand assets valued at an enterprise value of NZ$3.24bn.

New Zealand > Data protection Tier 1

Russell McVeagh‘s ‘unparalleled‘ practice is co-led by Joe Edwards and Liz Blythe (based in Auckland), and is enhanced by its Wellington team comprising Mei Fern Johnson, Chris Curran and Mark Campbell, who apply their data protection expertise across the telecoms, media, IP and litigation spheres. Nationally recognised litigator Edwards is representing Television New Zealand on its appeal to the High Court following a finding that it had breached an interviewee’s privacy during a news item. This case will set precedent for all domestic broadcasters, including how they engage in jigsaw identification and protecting the identity of sources and interviewees.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Their strength really lies in the ability to provide quick, pragmatic advice in challenging data protection breach situations. The team is highly responsive and is always available at short notice.’

‘Russell McVeagh are unparalleled in providing the right style of advice for the right situation. Whether we need a full opinion, a quick call or to collaborate directly with our business, every piece of advice is high-quality and tailored to what we need.’

‘Joe Edwards understands our business (and our internal and external challenges) better than any other external legal advisor. This insight, combined with excellent technical ability and a comprehensive understanding of international and domestic market trends, means he is the first person we call for our novel privacy issues and cutting-edge data initiatives.’

‘Joe Edwards is our go to for data protection advice. He provides particularly valuable advice around our mandatory breach obligations. It’s an evolving area with a lot of judgment calls around what breaches are notifiable and Joe has been great in providing practical advice, often in very short timeframes. He also keeps us up to date with industry practice relating to new requirements under the Privacy Act (overseas data transfer etc) which is very helpful.’

Key clients

Lion – Beer, Spirits and Wine (NZ) Limited

McDonald’s

Ford

Spark New Zealand Trading Limited

Fonterra

Television New Zealand Limited

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Fidelity Life Assurance Company Limited

Auckland International Airport Limited

New Zealand Police

Work highlights

  • Acting for New Zealand’s largest property and tenancy company, Tenancy.co.nz, in relation to an Office of the Privacy Commissioner inquiry.

New Zealand > Real estate and construction

Russell McVeagh’s practice covers the full spectrum of construction and real estate work. On the construction side, it is best known for expertise in highly sensitive disputes, project development, procurement and leasing arrangements. In terms of real estate work, the team specialises in high-value capital markets transactions, acquisitions and sales. Ed Crook leads the firm’s front-end construction offering, which is focused primarily on advising institutional property owners relating to major developments across Australia. Polly Pope leads the firm’s contentious mandates, acting for principals, financiers, contractors and consultants in a diverse range of disputes and significant projects. David Butler stands out for his strong track record when advising on complex capital markets transactions and development schemes. Anna Crosbie and Michael Taylor are also recommended. All named lawyers are based in Auckland.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Strong real estate team with great industry experience. Well respected. Provides quality work. The people are great and understand our business well and work to ensure they are able to deliver what we need in the timeframes we require.’

‘Availability, friendliness, ease of advice. Trustworthy and very skilful.’

‘The team is the top real estate team in New Zealand and comparable to any we have dealt with across the globe. They provide high quality work and manage client goals well.’

‘Ed Crook and Dave Butler are excellent leaders and commercially focused lawyers. They are a pleasure to deal with.’

‘When dealing with Russell McVeagh, you have confidence that they will be able to use their significant resources to meet any difficult deadlines and use all of the experience within their firm to give a comprehensive answer. There is also a level of confidence in the legal advice given in that you feel that you can rely upon it to be robust and well considered. This all started when we initially worked with Anna, then transitioned more to David, Natalie and Jeremy.’

‘The team at Russell McVeagh are the best in the market. They are commercial, not pedantic, and don’t draft for the sake of being clever. Focused totally on client’s commercial goals. Ed Crook has laser-sharp intelligence. He cuts to the heart of the issue immediately, is  good humoured and tireless. What makes him different? He can say the right thing with less words. Focuses on being commercial not point-scoring.’

‘Anna Crosbie makes everything look easy; nothing is a problem and she has excellent commercial focus with immense knowledge of the law, being genuine and supremely talented. Natalie Steur has a talented commercial brain alongside excellent client skills. Natalie Sundstrom also has excellent technical and client skills.’

‘A strong team with a number of excellent partners meaning they are the top choice for large or complex jobs. Ed Crook is the best operator in the market and is recognised as such by his peers which can aid negotiations.’

Key clients

Goodman Property Trust

Oyster Property Group

JP Morgan

Kiwi Property Group

Precinct Properties

Enviro Waste Services Limited

Auckland International Airport

AustralianSuper

NZ PropCo Limited

Woolworths

PSP

Charter Hall

Templeton Group

Cavalier Bremworth

Work highlights

  • Advised JP Morgan Asset Management on the establishment of a joint venture fund, known as Industre Property, to hold the industrial properties currently in Stride Property Group’s portfolio.
  • Advised Logos and a global investor on the acquisition and partial lease back of an approximately 17 hectare industrial site in South Auckland from Toll Networks (NZ) Limited, with an estimated value of the logistic estate being NZ$250m.
  • Advised Charter Hall on the acquisition of a 49% interest in a unit trust which owns BP New Zealand’s portfolio retail sites in New Zealand for an approximate value of NZ$262m.

New Zealand > Restructuring and insolvency Tier 1

Russell McVeagh continues to be involved in many of the country’s high profile insolvencies, such as the cross-border liquidation of Halifax, as well as significant domestic instructions, such as the receivership of FE Investments, and on recent property development collapses, Sanctuary No 8 and Lighthouse. The team is increasingly taking instructions on corporate distress and insolvencies in the construction, forestry and retail sectors. Practice head Matthew Kersey acts predominantly for secured creditors and insolvency professionals, alongside Polly Pope who handles contentious mandates, and John Powell who assists both banks and corporates on restructuring issues. Nathaniel Walker and senior associate Jeremy Upson are recommended for insolvency litigation. All individuals are based in Auckland.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

Matt Kersey (Partner) – Respected and knowledgeable in the insolvency industry. Polly Pope (Partner) – Excellent lawyer, thoughtful legal analysis of issues.’

‘Russell McVeagh has a very strong team with good breadth and depth of personnel and expertise.’

‘Polly Pope is a strong analytic thinker. She gives clear and realistic advice.’

‘Matt Kersey – Matt gives strong, well thought advice that standards the rigour of legal challenge. Polly Pope – Polly is a highly respective across the industry.’

‘Personalised communication (for a full service firm) and application of right sized resource for the workstreams. The Russell McVeagh R&I team display a high level of EQ as well as commercial nouse as value add to their technical R&I legal gravitas.’

‘Partner Matt Kersey is an outstanding practitioner and a clear leader in the New Zealand restructuring and insolvency market. He is a pleasure to work with and his approach to contentious matters is consistently pragmatic and constructive. His advice is always clear, accurate and well considered.’

Key clients

KPMG

PWC

General Motors

Calibre Partners

McGrath Nicol

Meltzer Mason

Bath Street Capital

ANZ Bank New Zealand Limited

Westpac

Work highlights

  • Acting for liquidators, KPMG, on a cross-border, highly complex matter involving the liquidation of a trans-Tasman brokerage with $250m in funds claimed by over 11,000 investors.
  • Advising OCP Asia Pacific as secured creditor to Tamarind Taranaki Limited (in receivership and liquidation) and acted for PwC as the receivers of that company on this high-profile upstream oil and gas insolvency.
  • Acting for Calibre Partners, the receivers of FE Investments Limited which traded as a non-bank deposit-taking finance company providing commercial loans and finance leases, in receivership and liquidation.

New Zealand > TMT Tier 1

Russell McVeagh has ‘expertise across all practice areas and with very experienced and capable lawyers‘, including in the growing areas of privacy and data protection and cyber security. Specific sector expertise includes the public sector, financial services, media and emerging technology. Mei Fern Johnson and Liz Blythe co-head the group from Wellington and Auckland, respectively, where they advise on a broad mix of development, procurement, outsourcing and commercialisation issues. Joe Edwards focuses on data protection, commercial litigation, IT disputes and defamation cases, and special counsel Louise Taylor specialises in technology contracts and projects.

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Russell McVeagh is a top tier full-service NZ law firm with expertise across all practice areas and with very experienced and capable lawyers. The Technology team has expertise across the broad range of areas that we have sought their advice on, including cloud services, intellectual property rights, software implementation, privacy, and cyber security. Their fees are very reasonable considering their depth of knowledge, the quality of their advice and their focus on minimising risk to their client while still getting the deal done in a commercial and pragmatic manner. ‘

‘Liz Blythe has expertise across the technology practice area. She is a confident and effective negotiator and can clearly and persuasively articulate her client’s requirements. Liz demonstrates an excellent understanding of the technology and how it operates, she knows the commercial drivers and the risks that need to be mitigated. She is always able to draw on her experience to offer reasonable and practical solutions to resolve outstanding points during contract negotiations.

‘This team is extremely experienced and have supported key TMT clients for many years. They are relied upon very heavily by one of NZ’s largest TMT businesses, and play a key role in its success.’

Key clients

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited

Westpac New Zealand Limited

Kiwibank Limited

Trustpower Limited

Fidelity Life Assurance Company Limited

Auckland International Airport Limited

Spark New Zealand Limited

Earthquake Commission

New Zealand Police

Work highlights

  • Advised on all aspects of Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd’s IT infrastructure outsourcing to HCL across more than 27 countries globally.
  • Assisting the New Zealand Government with the establishment and roll-out of satellite technology that will be able to pinpoint a location on Earth to within 10 cm.
  • Advised National Australia Bank on all IT aspects in connection with its sale of Bank of New Zealand’s life insurance business to Partners Life for $290m.

New Zealand > Transport (rail, road, air and sea) Tier 1

Russell McVeagh offers significant breadth and depth in the transportation sector. The firm advises on a range of matters in the aviation sector, including planning, regulatory control provisions of the Commerce Act, and on process and methodologies for establishing airport landing charges. On the shipping side, the team has specialist maritime law expertise and its expertise includes advice on chartering and drydocking arrangements and ports and berths access. Key partners in Auckland include Daniel Minhinnick, the national chair of the environment, planning and natural resources group, and Allison Arthur-Young, who specialises in development and large-scale infrastructure projects, along with district and regional planning policy. Simon Pilkinton advises infrastructure providers and major urban developers on all aspects of resource management and environmental law, with expertise in the water, municipal waste, and ports sectors. On the commercial side, Mei Fern Johnson advises on M&A and investment in (and procurement of) infrastructure, transport and energy (including oil and gas) projects, and collaborative contracting.

Key clients

Auckland International Airport Limited

Panuku Development Auckland Limited

Infratil Limited

KiwiRail Holdings Limited

New Zealand Airports Association

Ports of Auckland Limited

Fullers Limited

Bus and Coach Association

Mana Coach Services

Work highlights

  • Advising KiwiRail on the environmental approvals required for the project, Intermodal Freight Hub.
  • Advised NZ Infra on the consenting strategy, legislative reform and property acquisition aspects of NZ Infra’s provision of light rail from the City Centre to Mangere in Auckland.
  • Advising Auckland Airport on the suite of planning approvals required to enable the development of a longer second runway at Auckland Airport.

New Zealand > Banking and finance Tier 2

Unrivalled by its breadth of knowledge, availability and ability to solve complex finance issuesRussell McVeagh‘s corporate and acquisition financing practice demonstrates strong capability on bond issuances, securitisation, refinancings and debt restructuring. National practice group chair Guy Lethbridge is widely recognised for his expertise in debt capital markets and the regulation of banks, insurers and other financial institutions. ‘Highly competentDeemple Budhia is likewise a key figure in this field; she recently acted for ANZ on the sale of UDC Finance and established UDC’s $2bn securitisation programme. John Powell is ‘completely on top of all areas of banking and securities law’, and similarly, up-and-coming partner Tom Hunt is ‘very knowledgeable and fully understanding of his clients’ needs’, and is also active in corporate financing. David Weavers is another figure for corporate finance and alternative credit segment, and is active on funds formation mandates for new private credit platforms.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘The team’s commercial knowledge of the sector is second to none. They are quick to respond on complicated matters with a detailed analysis and a pragmatic solution.’

‘Their breadth of knowledge, availability and ability to solve complex finance issues is unrivalled.’

‘Tom Hunt is very knowledgeable and fully understanding of his clients needs.’

‘Strong technical skills and outstanding relationship management. Very good at taking legal concepts and explaining the need/construct of the issue for non-legal people.’

‘John Powell – completely on top of all areas of banking and securities law. Deemple Bhudia – has completed three green bonds now with us and is highly competent and a great communicator at DD meetings.’

Key clients

New Zealand Local Government Funding Agency Limited (LGFA)

Argosy Property Limited

Heartland Bank Limited

ASB Bank Limited

ANZ Bank New Zealand Limited

Bank of New Zealand

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

 

Work highlights

  • Advised ANZ on the sale of its asset finance business, UDC, to Japan’s Shinsei Bank. In addition to advising on the share sale, we also advised UDC on the establishment of its landmark $2bn AAA rated auto and equipment finance-backed syndicated securitisation programme. The securitisation is the largest non-bank securitisation in New Zealand.
  • Acted for the MLABs and the Agent on behalf of a syndicate lenders in connection with the refinance of Kathmandu’s existing senior secured facilities agreement, including the addition of a A$100m sustainability-linked tranche (the largest syndicated sustainability-linked loan in the New Zealand market to date, and the first in the Apparel sector).
  • Advised the New Zealand Bankers’ Association and the 10 participating banks on the establishment of the NZ$6.25bn Business Finance Guarantee Scheme. This scheme was put into place jointly by the NZ Government and NZ’s banks to provide liquidity and cashflow to businesses that were adversely affected by COVID-19.

New Zealand > Competition law Tier 2

Russell McVeagh‘s competition practice is made up of specialists in commercial advisory, investigations and disputes with the Commerce Commission, merger filings and law reform to provide ‘clear, quick, pragmatic and good value‘ counsel on the full scope of competition and regulatory law. Troy Pilkington‘s ‘deep understanding of the market dynamics and strong commercial acumen make him invaluable as an advisor.’ He has developed a strong reputation across all areas of competition and commercial law, particularly in merger clearances, consumer law investigations and cartel cases, and is often sought after by clients operating in the banking, electronic trading platforms and consumer goods sectors. Senior associate Bradley Aburn is also recommended for competitor collaborations, merger control approvals, and competition investigations. Sarah Keene left to join the New Zealand Bar.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘We found the competition team at Russell McVeagh to show excellent local legal knowledge while providing practical and pragmatic advice. They have a solution oriented approach and are very responsive.’

‘Russell McVeagh has a well respected and very capable competition law team with what appears to be a strong client base helped by the strength of its M&A team/offering. The team are easy to deal with and have a great knowledge and understanding of our business and our industry which means their advice is rich and on point.’

‘The Russell McVeagh competition law team is best in class. Their advice is always clear, quick, pragmatic and good value. Troy and the team are happy to go above and beyond to help their clients and to take a position in what can often be a murky area of law. Most importantly though, they have a deep understanding of the state of the law in NZ and the regulator behaviour which allows them to give deeper strategic advice than your run of the mill competition lawyer.’

‘Troy Pilkington (Partner) is extremely service-orientated and his advice is always clear and accessible and practical.’

‘Our experience with Bradley Aburn has been fantastic, and he gets full marks in every important category: (i) legal knowledge; (ii) practical and pragmatic advice; (iii) solution-oriented approach; and (iv) responsiveness. He has provided a steady hand on what has been a very unsteady and challenging project.’

‘Troy Pilkington is hands down the best competition lawyer I have ever worked with. His deep understanding of the market dynamics and strong commercial acumen make him invaluable as an advisor.’

Key clients

Turners & Growers Global Limited

Nine Entertainment Co Holdings Limited

Cengage Learning Holdings II, Inc.

Datix and RL Solutions

Smartpay Holdings Limited

Woolworths New Zealand Limited

Willis Towers Watson plc

Pact Group

The Data Economy Collective

Meridian Energy Limited

Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd

 

Work highlights

  • External competition law advisers to one of New Zealand’s leading supermarket retailers, Woolworths New Zealand Limited, in relation to the NZCC’s high profile 2020/21 market study into New Zealand’s grocery industry.
  • Acting for both the purchaser and the vendor in relation to the New Zealand antitrust aspects of Datix’s acquisition of RL Solutions. Datix and RL Solutions are global suppliers of patient safety and risk management software (PSRMS).
  • Advising Willis Towers Watson on its New Zealand clearance application in relation to the global acquisition by Aon. The acquisition involves combining two of the four major parties in this industry across New Zealand and global markets.

New Zealand > Dispute resolution Tier 2

Russell McVeagh is a full-service litigation practice that demonstrates strong capability in class actions, insolvency proceedings, construction disputes and ADR mandates. Group chair Marika Eastwick-Field is a top advocate for M&A disputes, banking and financial services, capital markets, property and insurance. Commercial litigators Malcolm Crotty, Kirsten Massey; insolvency partner Matthew Kersey and class action specialist Polly Pope, are the other central figures in Auckland. The Wellington litigation team comprises Chris Curran, whose work spans complex commercial disputes, public law, judicial reviews and IT projects, and Emmeline Rushbrook, who acts for financial markets participants in regulatory enforcement action involving the Financial Markets Authority, Commerce Commission and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

Russell McVeagh does an exemplary job in assimilating our overall strategy to the unique contours of the New Zealand venue and providing the invaluable “local” advice and recommendations. Russell McVeagh has the contacts/resources to satisfy the client’s needs with respect to any public or government affairs aspects of our matters.’

‘Good experience on litigious matters for competition law issues, have a partner who is ex-UK so brings international experience to the matter’

‘The team of litigators I worked with were great. They are a diverse group of people male, female and young Maori. They have a great rapport and you can tell that they are very supportive of each other which translated into very effective legal support. The team were very engaged, always returned calls straight away and were very efficient. I couldn’t fault their team work which was excellent.’

‘The Russell McVeagh team, led by Tim Clarke and Chris Curran, are first-class in their responsiveness to the client’s needs and their substantive advice and work product on the New Zealand aspect of our set of international controversies. They are excellent teachers in our ongoing comparative law course. They are also proactive in suggesting strategy for the matter.’

Key clients

Omni Bridgeway (funder for representative action)

Fonterra

Bath Street Capital Limited

Earthquake Commission

Credit Suisse

Mānuka Health New Zealand Limited

Ballance Agri-Nutrients Limited

Milk New Zealand (Shanghai) Co Limited

New Zealand Guardian Trust Limited

Lendlease Capital Services Pty Ltd

Nine Entertainment Co. Holdings Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for two Credit Suisse (CS) entities, which were the issuer and promoter in the initial public offering of shares in Feltex Limited in 2004, in a landmark proceeding. The Credit Suisse entities have now successfully resisted claims for over NZ$200 million brought as a class action on behalf of approximately 3,600 shareholders
  • The team, with the support of the global litigation funder Omni Bridgeway, have commenced a class action on behalf of persons and entities with proprietary interests in buildings in New Zealand, on which there is installed certain types of aluminium composite panel cladding with a combustible core comprised wholly or substantially of polyethylene (“PE”). The proceedings have been filed in the High Court in Auckland.
  • Advised Ballance Agri-Nutrients Ltd in bringing a successful injunction proceedings in the Auckland High Court against Quin Environmentals (NZ) Limited in relation to claims and the use of marks and labels in New Zealand. It set precedent in relation to novel issues relating to passing off and helped determine whether New Zealand’s fertiliser industry needs Government intervention by way of statute.

New Zealand > Insurance Tier 2

Russell McVeagh‘s fields a multi-disciplinary team that combines the strengths of litigation, regulatory and corporate experts to act for insurers, corporates and other industry players on complex insurance disputes and transactions. The firm enjoys a strong relationship with Earthquake Commission (EQC), and continues to advise on EQC’s statutory obligations and a range of other commercial and regulatory matters including an innovative natural disaster insurance claims model. Marika Eastwick-Field in Auckland co-heads the team alongside Wellington-based Nathaniel Walker, who handles significant insurance coverage disputes.

Testimonials

‘Marika Eastwick-Field ran our insurance dispute. She did great work and also worked well with our team and our QC.’

‘In a disputed insurance claim, Russell McVeagh seconded a lawyer for several months to help take the load off their general counsel and to absorb a very complex set of facts.’

Key clients

Earthquake Commission

National Australia Bank (NAB)

New Zealand Bankers Association (NZBA)

Willis Towers Watson

Work highlights

  • Represented EQC in The Tower v EQC litigation concerns a more-than-$80m claim by Tower for reimbursement of amounts it says it “spent fixing earthquake-damaged homes in Canterbury”. The proceedings were filed in March 2020. The proceedings relate to the parties’ settlement of a significant number of insurance claims, and give rise to complex legal issues, difficult factual questions, and unique case-management challenges.
  • Advised National Australia Bank Limited on the sale of its New Zealand life insurance business to Partners Life Limited.
  • Advising Willis Towers Watson on its New Zealand clearance application in relation to the global acquisition by Aon. The acquisition involves combining two of the four major parties in this industry across New Zealand and global markets.

New Zealand > Intellectual property Tier 2

Russell McVeagh primarily specialises in litigation and the commercial exploitation of all types of IP, notably trade marks and  designs and advises on joint ventures, licensing and IP collaborations. Practice head Joe Edwards is noted for  ‘a unique ability to distil complex legal issues into succinct commercial advice’; he specialises in brand protection and disputes involving trade marks, technology, regulatory investigations and prosecutions. Liz Blythe’s practice is angled towards the commercial side of IP; assisting with TMT-related transactions and in emerging areas of AI, big data analytics and machine learning  and blockchain.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Very thorough and commercial. A go-to practice when there is a key dispute involving data, IP and consumer law issues, but also for day-to-day matters.’

‘The team is led by Joe Edwards. Joe has a unique ability to distil complex legal issues into succinct commercial advice, coupled with excellent client service ethos.’

‘I work with litigation partner Joe Edwards. He is a very practical and no-nonsense lawyer who gets on with the job and is very easy to work with.’

‘Joe Edwards is the IP partner and is very good at quick and commercial IP advice.’

 

Key clients

Complectus Limited

Ballance Agri-Nutrients Limited

General Motors (GM)

Counties Power Limited and ECL Group Limited

Fidelity Life Assurance Co Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for Balance Agri-Nutrients, a major manufacturer and distributor of nutrients for the agricultural sector, in High Court litigation relating to passing off, Fair Trading Act issues and the use of certain intellectual property. The case set a precedent in the fertiliser industry.
  • Acted for Complectus (New Zealand’s largest trust company) in its dispute with Perpetual Limited (Australia’s largest trust company) in relation to the “Perpetual” brand.
  • Advised on the New Zealand aspects of the decision made by General Motors to withdraw its iconic Holden brand from the New Zealand and Australia markets. Advised on use of IP and complex licensing agreements with dealers.

New Zealand > Investment funds Tier 2

Russell McVeagh works alongside fund managers, trustees, supervisors, financial advisers, custodians and investors on the establishment, operation, restructure and wind up of funds and investment. Dan Jones and special counsel Sarah McQueen are considered ‘go-to advisers who understand the need for flexible, commercial advice’.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Dan Jones (partner) and team are friendly, experts in their fields, supportive, and good to work with. They are perfect “go-to” advisers, and understand the need for flexible, commercial advice that does not simply “quote the law”.’

Key clients

BNZ

Citibank N.A.

Guardians of NZ Superannuation

JP Morgan

Mint Asset Management

NZ Funds Management

Oyster Management Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Oyster Management Limited on the establishment and offering of a number of property funds with a number of different structures and features.
  • Represented Tiger Brokers in proceedings brought in the New Zealand Markets Disciplinary Tribunal by the New Zealand stock exchange, NZX Ltd.
  • Advised New Zealand Funds Management Limited (NZ Funds) on the establishment of a new investment fund called Income Generator.

New Zealand > Labour and employment Tier 2

Kylie Dunn leads the Auckland-based employment practice at Russell McVeagh where she advises employers on a wide range of industrial issues, restraints of trade, redundancies, personal grievances and professional misconduct. She also advises on health and safety liability, working alongside Malcolm Crotty, who is a go-to defence counsel for employers in health and safety prosecutions. Senior associate Emma Peterson is recommended for personal grievance claims and other litigation, as well as restructuring work and the drafting of employment agreements. Special counsel Mark Campbell in Wellington is also noted for his broad employment practice.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Kylie Dunn – understands our business and industry extremely well. She is always available to provide advice for our 365 day 24/7 operation and this means we talk in some unusual situations and circumstances at times and she always supports with great care and consideration.’

‘All members of this team are strategic, commercially astute and pragmatic. Their understanding of what makes a business tick sets them apart, they are able to provide excellent and practically applicable advice.’

‘I have worked with Kylie Dunn and Emma Petersen for several years, in my capacity as HRD in two organisations. They are both exceptional legal professionals – knowledgeable and commercially astute, they understand people and organisational dynamics, and efficient in terms of assigning appropriate resource to various matters. They build relationships with their clients, and I couldn’t recommend their services highly enough.’

‘Kylie Dunn – She understands the people we deal with, and can manage the right legal solutions for the best result. She has a wonderful depth of legal knowledge that she conveys so simply. She has a high level of trust in the business and will always go the extra mile with a smile. She is also strong in listening, making hard decisions and supporting our culture.’

Key clients

Auckland International Airport Limited

Norske Skog Tasman Limited

Sanford Limited

SKYCITY Entertainment Group

Skyline Management Ltd

StraitNZ Ltd

Tasman Cargo Airlines Pty Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising Visionstream New Zealand on the 300+ subcontractors engaged by it to provide ultra-fast broadband services to Chorus New Zealand.
  • Advising SkyCity Entertainment Group on Covid-19 related employment law issues, which includes application for the government wage subsidy, two large scale redundancy processes (affecting a third of the workforce) and subsequent personal grievances.
  • Representing Post Primary Teachers’ Association in relation to a pay equity claim lodged by part time teachers regarding non- contact time.

New Zealand > Projects and resources management (including environment) Tier 2

Russell McVeagh’s resource management and environment heads Daniel Minhinnick, who provides ‘tailored, responsive commercial advice’, and Allison Arthur-Young advise transport entities on planning approvals for high-value projects such as in the rail, airport, ports and water resources areas. Newly promoted partner Simon Pilkinton represents clients creating mixed-use developments in negotiations with councils and gaining plan changes. Corporate advisory specialists Mei Fern Johnson in Wellington and Joe Windmeyer in Auckland advise on transactions in the energy sector, such as for electricity distribution companies, with Johnson additionally advising  on contracts and alliances for infrastructure projects.

Testimonials

‘The team are very commercially focused and understand our business needs and risks in terms of achieving statutory consents. The team are very proactive, industry leading I believe, in understanding, advising on and preparing responses to the ever-changing environmental legislation within NZ. The team is also very personable, very good humoured and a pleasure to work with.’

‘Daniel Minhinnick – an industry leader with an excellent track record on delivering often controversial, nationally significant projects. Very good at communicating complex issues and providing tailored, responsive commercial advice.’

‘Provides high-quality, accurate and pragmatic legal advice and legal documents in a timely, efficient and friendly manner.’

‘Daniel Minhinnick is a trusted adviser that partners with our business to consent projects. His advice and advocacy is strategic, commercial and pragmatic. A real “go to” to overcome hurdles and challenges in the consenting process.’

Key clients

Meridian Energy Limited

Genesis Energy Limited

Trustpower

Tilt Renewables

Mobil Oil

Watercare

Wellington Water

Origin Energy

Vector Limited

WEL Networks

Unison

Kiwirail

The Lines Company

Auckland International Airport

Waste Management

Scentre Group

Woolworths New Zealand Ltd

Panuku Development Auckland Limited

Ports of Auckland Limited

Octopus Energy

Templeton Group

Summerset Group Holdings Ltd

NZ Infra

Work highlights

  • Advising Waste Management (WMNZ) on its resource consent and private plan change applications for the Auckland Regional Landfill, which is intended to provide a solid waste disposal facility to service the Auckland region for the next 50+ years.
  • Advising KiwiRail on the environmental approvals required for the development of a new intermodal freight hub near Palmerston North, necessary to support the movement of freight through the lower North Island of New Zealand in an efficient and sustainable way. The freight hub is intended to be a high-capacity, technologically advanced facility that efficiently connects the rail network with road freight.
  • Advising Stevenson Group (through its subsidiary Drury South Ltd) on a comprehensive industrial and mixed-use development in Drury South. Represented Stevenson Group throughout the plan change process to enable the industrial development and the incorporation of those provisions into the Auckland Unitary Plan, as well as the creation of the Residential Precinct through streamlined special legislation.

New Zealand > Tax Tier 2

Russell McVeagh has a strong record in transactional tax and is also well placed to advise on transfer pricing, customs and excise duty matters, employee share schemes as well as policy development and law reform. In a landmark cross-border transaction, practice co-head Fred Ward advised ANZ Bank of New Zealand on tax aspects of the sale of its NZ$762m asset finance business, UDC, to Japan’s Shinsei Bank. Also leading the Auckland-based team, Greg Neill handles general corporate tax transactions.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Commercial, trustworthy and solution focused. Can articulate complex solutions in a simple, easy to understand manner.’

Key clients

ANZ Bank New Zealand

Bank of New Zealand

ASB Bank Limited/Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Westpac New Zealand Limited

Kiwibank Limited

Heartland Bank Limited

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Bank of New Zealand as the lenders on the financial settlement in relation to the $1.25bn Transmission Gully project.
  • Advised Smartpay Holdings Limited and its subsidiary entities on the sale of its New Zealand EFTPOS terminal business to Verifone, Inc.
  • Advised Fonterra on the tax aspects of the sale of its 50% interest in DFE Pharma to CVC.

Russell McVeagh is a premier law firm in New Zealand, committed to operating on the cutting edge of legal practice. Characterised by a dynamic network of specialists who are champions for their clients’ strategic goals, this full-service firm provides exceptional service in many practice areas.

Through a comprehensive range of practice areas, outstanding client relations and teamwork, Russell McVeagh is a premiere law firm both nationally and internationally. The firm’s practice groups are respected as leaders in the market – assisting clients with their most complex, challenging and high-profile matters. Russell McVeagh continues to work on almost every major transaction in the country.

Russell McVeagh boasts award-winning lawyers who possess exceptional thought-leadership, depth of experience, and ability to translate complex legal issues into client success stories. The firm’s practice areas and leading lawyers collaborate to provide clear, pragmatic and innovative advice both nationally and internationally. The firm acts for New Zealand’s major corporates, including numerous energy and utilities companies, all of New Zealand’s retail banks, and New Zealand’s largest company and largest listed company.

DepartmentNameEmailTelephone
Environment and Resource Management Allison Arthur-Youngallison.arthur-young@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8224
Property and Construction Anna Crosbieanna.crosbie@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8140
Corporate and Commercial Ben Patersonben.paterson@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8334
Corporate Advisory Cath Shirley-Browncath.shirley-brown@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7354
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Chris Curranchris.curran@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7507
Competition, Regulatory and Antitrust; Public Law Craig Shrivecraig.shrive@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8855
Corporate and Commercial Dan Jonesdan.jones@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8410
Environment and Resource Management Daniel Minhinnickdaniel.minhinnick@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8714
Property and Construction David Butlerdavid.butler@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8390
Corporate and Commercial David Hoaredavid.hoare@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8343
Corporate and Commercial David Raudkividavid.raudkivi@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8344
Banking and Finance David Weaversdavid.weavers@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8165
Banking and Finance Deemple Budhiadeemple.budhia@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8335
Property and Construction Ed Crooked.crook@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8452
Litigation and Dispute Resolution; Competition, Regulatory and Antitrust Emmeline Rushbrookemmeline.rushbrook@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7864
Tax Fred Wardfred.ward@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8313
Tax Greg Neillgreg.neill@russellmcveagh.com
Banking and Finance Guy Lethbridgeguy.lethbridge@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7538
Corporate and Commercial Ian Beaumontian.beaumont@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8302
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Joe Edwardsjoe.edwards@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8172
Corporate and Commercial Joe Windmeyerjoe.windmeyer@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8237
Banking and Finance John Powelljohn.powell@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8303
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Kirsten Masseykirsten.massey@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8893
Employment; Health and Safety Kylie Dunnkylie.dunn@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8136
Corporate and Commercial; Technology and Telecommunications Liz Blytheliz.blythe@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8145
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Malcolm Crottymalcolm.crotty@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8350
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Marika Eastwick-Fieldmarika.eastwick-field@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8838
Restructuring and Insolvency Matthew Kerseymatt.kersey@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8124
Corporate and Commercial Mei Fern Johnsonmeifern.johnson@russellmcveagh.com+64 27 671 2344
Litigation and Construction Michael Taylormichael.taylor@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8819
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Nathaniel Walkernathaniel.walker@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7858
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Polly Popepolly.pope@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8844
Competition, Regulatory and Antitrust; Public Law Tim Clarketim.clarke@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7532
Banking and Finance Tom Hunttom.hunt@russellmcveagh.com+64 4 819 7519
Competition, Regulatory and Antitrust Troy Pilkingtontroy.pilkington@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8108
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Will Irvingwill.irving@russellmcveagh.com+64 9 367 8252
Number of lawyers : 200+
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