LawFuel – Powering Lawyers – Leading law firm Russell McVeagh has been recognised as the top law firm in the country. The firm was awarded the ‘National Law Firm of the Year: New Zealand’ title at the prestigious IFLR Asia-Pacific Awards 2022 at last night’s online awards ceremony.
Russell McVeagh CEO Jo Avenell said, “We’re extremely proud of this recognition which reflects the dedication of our immensely talented team who work on some of the most complex and challenging projects in Aotearoa alongside our clients to help them achieve their goals.
“We would like to thank our clients for the opportunity to work on some world-firsts, including our team’s work with KiwiRail, led by partners John Powell and Mei Fern Johnson, which achieved the first ship financing to be CBI certified, and was included as a finalist in the Project Finance Deal of the Year category for the Asia-Pacific region.”
The firm’s track-record on the most innovative transactions across M&A, Debt and Project Financing, as well as key advisory roles on ground-breaking projects in the New Zealand market was highlighted, with some of these in the last year including:
- KiwiRail’s world-first ship financing with CBI certification (led by Banking and Finance partner John Powell and Corporate partner Mei Fern Johnson). This deal was also named a finalist in the Project Finance Deal of the Year category.
- Tilt Renewables’ $3.24 billion sale by way of a scheme of arrangement (led by Corporate partner Joe Windmeyer).
- Summerset’s c.$700 million sustainability linked loan – one of the largest in New Zealand in 2021 (led by Banking and Finance partners John Powell and Tom Hunt).
- Fonterra Co-operative Group’s $552 million sale of its China Dairy Farms (led by Corporate partner Ben Paterson).
- Kathmandu Holdings’ A$300m debt facility refinancing, which included the establishment of a syndicated A$100 million sustainability linked loan (SLL) facility, the largest and first syndicated SLL in the NZ market at the time (led by John Powell).
- SG Fleet Group’s acquisition of LeasePlan New Zealand – combined value A$387 million (led by Banking and Finance partner Deemple Budhia).
- Genesis Energy’s establishment of its sustainable finance framework and $250 million of sustainability linked loans with Westpac, BNZ and MUFG which are also aligned with the Climate Transition Finance Handbook (led by Banking and Finance partner Jesse Fairley).
The IFLR Asia Pacific Awards recognise firms who have demonstrated legal innovation on cross-border deals, new legal structures, have overcome new regulatory hurdles and regional firsts that adapt existing technology to local regulation.