John is a partner in Gilbert + Tobin’s Corporate Advisory group and has been with the firm since 1995.
John has advised on transactions which, at the time, were Australia’s largest IPO (Qantas), merger (Westpac and St. George) and private equity deal (KKR’s Brambles deal). He has been recognised as a leading lawyer in mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, corporate governance and private equity in a range of industry guides. He regularly advises on corporate governance issues.
John has recently advised Australia’s largest listed renewable energy company on its defence in the contested $1.2 billion takeover, United Malt Limited on its capital raising, GrainCorp limited on its demerger, Cardno Limited on its demerger, Australia’s largest listed agricultural company on its successful defence from the hostile $3.3 billion takeover approach by LTAP, Coca-Cola Amatil on the joint acquisition (with The Coca-Cola Company) of a 45% equity stake in Made Group and Crescent Capital on the acquisition of CSR’s national Viridian glass business.
John's publications include The Float Guide, The Company Directors Checklist, The Company Secretary Checklist (for both Listed and Proprietary Companies), The Corporate Governance Implementation Plan, The Institute of Company Directors module on Board Performance and the Australian chapter of LBR’s books - "The Corporate Governance Review" and "The Private Equity Review". He is also Joint Editor of the International Bar Association's Global M+A Guide and Float Guide.
John is past-Chair of the Corporate and M+A Committee of the International Bar Association (the world’s leading organisation of international lawyers) and a member of the investment committee of the private equity fund, Crescent Capital Partners.
John is ranked by Chambers Asia Pacific Equity Capital Markets and Private Equity and by IFLR 1000 as a leading lawyer in the area of mergers and acquisitions. Best Lawyers 2019 names John as Sydney Lawyer of the Year for Sydney Financial Institutions. John is also recognised by Best Lawyers as a leading lawyer in Corporate Law, Mergers and Acquisitions Law, Corporate/Governance Practice, Equity Capital Markets Law, Private Equity Law, Leveraged Buyouts and Venture Capital Law.
John’s experience includes:
Advising on transactions which were, at the time:
- Australia’s largest merger - the $47 billion merger of Westpac and St. George Bank.
- Australia’s largest private equity deal - KKR’s acquisition of Brambles Australia.
- Australia’s largest float - the IPO of Qantas.
John regularly advises on mergers and acquisition transactions, private equity deals and capital markets issues. He also regularly advises on corporate governance issues. Recent transactions John has advised on include:
- Infigen Energy on the hostile takeover approach from UAC and the friendly approach from Iberdrola SA, giving Infigen an enterprise value of $1.3 billion.
- Coca-Cola Amatil on the joint acquisition by Coca-Cola Amatil and its major shareholder, US-based The Coca-Cola Company of a 45% equity stake in Made Group, an independent Australian beverage manufacturer.
- GrainCorp on the $3.3 billion (enterprise value) approach by Long Term Asset Partners.
- Crescent Capital Partners on its acquisition of the Viridian Glass group from CSR Limited.
- LifeHealthcare Group Limited on the acquisition by Pacific Health Supplies BidCo Pty Limited (an entity wholly-owned by funds managed or advised by Pacific Equity Partners) by way of a scheme of arrangement.
- Pacific Equity Partners Pty on its $455 million acquisition of the entire share capital of Allied Mills Pty Ltd from its joint shareholders GrainCorp Ltd and Cargill Australia Ltd.
- Cover-More on its $740 million acquisition by Zurich.
- Crescent Capital Partners on its sale of the GroundProbe business for $205 million to Orica Limited.
- Crescent Capital Partners on its acquisition of Nucleus Network Limited, a clinical research subsidiary of Baker Heart and Diabetes.
John has advised on a wide range of takeovers and negotiated acquisitions of all sizes. His practice also extends to capital markets work. He has acted on over 30 IPOs and capital raisings for companies and managed funds with a value of over $5 billion.
Awards and Recognition
John is ranked for Private Equity.
John is recognised in the Capital Markets and Corporate/M&A categories.
John is ranked ‘Highly Regarded’ in M&A, Private Equity and Capital Markets.
John was named the Venture Capital Law 'Lawyer of the Year'.
John is listed for his work since 2008 in Corporate Law, Corporate/Governance Practice, Equity Capital Markets, Financial Institutions, Leveraged Buyouts, Mergers and Acquisitions Law, Private Equity and Venture Capital Law.
John was recognised in the Capital Markets: Equity category.