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Vanessa is an experienced financial services, investment funds and superannuation lawyer, with a commercial and practical approach to legal issues.

Her experience covers the full spectrum of participants in the financial services industry, including fund managers, wealth management arms of major banks, superannuation funds, platform operators and financial advice businesses.

She has extensive financial services regulatory experience, with a particular focus on providing strategic advice across a broad range of matters including licensing, director duties, disclosure and distribution issues.

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Expertise

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Banking and Finance

ANZ: Vanessa advised ANZ on aspects of the sale of its Wealth arm to IOOF and Zurich Insurance Group.  The complexity of the sale required an in-depth review of all disclosure documents of ANZ Wealth's products (including its core super and pension, life insurance and investment products). 

PSP Investments: Vanessa acted as Australian legal counsel for PSP Investments in relation to the syndication of its interests in Forth Ports out to co-investors being GLIL Infrastructure, First State Super and Cbus. The syndication followed the initial sale of Arcus European Infrastructure Fund 1 LP's interest in Forth Ports to PSP Investments.

Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (Ontario Teachers): Vanessa acted as Australian legal counsel for Ontario Teachers in relation to the negotiations to sell 30% of its stakes in both Bristol and Birmingham airports to Australia's New South Wales Treasury Corporation (TCorp) as trustee of TCorpIM Direct Investment Fund E and Sunsuper Pty Limited as trustee of Sunsuper Superannuation Fund (Sunsuper). This project involved extensive advice on aspects of Australian financial services laws (including relevant superannuation and managed investment scheme laws) which affects the investment partnership between the entities and, also, extensive negotiations of the Share Purchase Agreement, Shareholders' Agreement and other transaction documents. 

Standard Life PLC: Vanessa acted in relation to its merger with Aberdeen Asset Management PLC (Aberdeen) which involved Australian wholly owned asset managers. This project involved extensive advice on aspects of Australian financial services laws (including advice on financial services licensing issues and various required notifications to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)) which affects the merger between the entities and, also extensive negotiations between Standard and Aberdeen in relation to the proposed operation of the Australian entities.


Financial Services

CBA: Vanessa advised on the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry.  In particular, advised CBA in relation to financial services issues relating to the second and fifth round of hearings on financial advice and superannuation (respectively).

ANZ Wealth: Vanessa acted for ANZ Wealth in the material outsourcing of its platform administration to a third party service provider.

Westpac / BT Panorama: Vanessa advised BT on the establishment of BT Panorama, an integrated SMSF solution, which allows for the establishment of an SMSF and provides ongoing administration services to customers.

OnePath/ANZ Wealth: Vanessa advised OnePath in respect of the establishment of a "white labelled" platform offering, "ANZ Self Managed Super", which enabled ANZ customers to access an integrated digital product for the purposes of establishing and managing their SMSF needs.

AMP Capital: Vanessa advised AMP Capital Investors in connection with the $2B restructure of AMP Capital's joint venture arrangements with the Westfield Group. This included advising AMP Capital in connection with the $864M equity capital raising from two foreign investors, the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board and Abu Dhabi Investment.

TA Associates: Vanessa advised global private equity fund TA Associates on its acquisition of Goldman Sachs Funds Management. 

AMP Limited: Vanessa advised AMP Limited in relation to its A$14.6 billion merger with AXA Asia Pacific Holdings Limited and the separation and sale of its Asian businesses to AXA SA.

Macquarie ‒ Prime: Vanessa advised on all aspects of the establishment of its online trading platform, Prime, including marketing and distribution documentation and the subsequent transition of the platform to Bell Direct and the white label and distribution of that trading platform.

Large wealth management arms of financial institutions: Vanessa regularly advises some of Australia's largest financial institutions including CBA, Westpac and NAB on financial services regulatory matters (including ASIC investigations).

Various foreign financial service providers: Vanessa regularly advises various foreign financial services providers in respect of the Australian financial services licensing regime including in respect of structuring their cross border investments.

See Banking and Finance

Funds Management

AMP Capital: Vanessa advised AMP Capital Investors in connection with the $2B restructure of AMP Capital's joint venture arrangements with the Westfield Group. This included advising AMP Capital in connection with the $864M equity capital raising from two foreign investors, the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board and Abu Dhabi Investment.

ANZ Trustees: Vanessa advised ANZ Trustees in respect of the replacement of ANZ Trustees as the trustee and responsible entity of a number of managed investment schemes, arising from the $150 million acquisition of ANZ Trustees by Equity Trustees Limited.

AMP: Vanessa advised the AMP group in relation to various financial product manufacture and distribution issues, including in relation to its establishment of numerous AMP Capital Investors managed investment schemes.

Centro Retail Limited and Centro Retail Trust: Vanessa advised CER (an ASX-listed and stapled group) in relation to its restructure and recapitalisation process including the $5.4 billion complex reconstruction and merger of Centro Group's Australian interest. This restructure resulted in the creation of a new ASX-listed quadruple stapled entity, Centro Retail Australia, by the aggregation of the assets of CER, Centro Australia Wholesale Fund and Centro DPF Holding Trust (a subsidiary trust of Centro Direct Property Fund).

The Trust Company / Perpetual: Vanessa regularly advises The Trust Company / Perpetual in respect of its role as outsourced trustee / responsible entity for a number of retail and wholesale funds. 

See Funds Management

Superannuation and Pensions

AMP: Vanessa advised AMP Wholesale Office Investments Pty Limited as trustee for the AWOF Wynyard Investment Trust and UniSuper Limited in its capacity as trustee of the complying superannuation fund known as UniSuper in relation to the purchase of half of Brookfield's investment in the Wynyard Place development.  

NT Government Superannuation Scheme: Vanessa advised a Government superannuation scheme in respect of, and negotiated, the outsourcing of its administration and custody services to NAB in respect of its superannuation fund.

NT Government Superannuation Scheme: Vanessa advised the NT Government in respect of the successor fund transfer of accumulation accounts to Statewide Super.

OnePath/ANZ Wealth: Vanessa advised OnePath in respect of the establishment of a "white labelled" platform offering, "ANZ Self Managed Super", which enabled ANZ customers to access an integrated digital product for the purposes of establishing and managing their SMSF needs.

Westpac / BT Panorama: Vanessa advised BT on the establishment of BT Panorama, an integrated SMSF solution, which allows for the establishment of an SMSF and provides ongoing administration services to customers.

Australian Ethical: Vanessa is advising on all superannuation-related matters affecting Australian Ethical, including PDS disclosure matters and strategic and operational implications of compliance with the SIS Act.

Major industry fund: Vanessa advised in respect of the superannuation aspects relating to a member complaint.

Various Universities: Vanessa advised a number of universities in respect of a superannuation remediation project.

Various clients: Vanessa is advising various clients (including foreign clients) in respect of employment related superannuation matters.

Various clients: Vanessa is advising various clients in respect of the superannuation aspects of mergers, acquisitions and corporate restructures, including defined benefit funds.

See Superannuation and Pensions

Structured Products

CBA: Vanessa advised CBA on the issue of its listed instalment warrants.

ASX-listed Warrants: Vanessa has acted for Macquarie Bank, Australia's major issuer of ASX-listed warrants, including in respect of the issue of Macquarie MINIs.

UBS GAF: Vanessa advised UBS in relation to the establishment and ongoing offering of its GAF unit trust, which is a unit trust that invests in derivative financial instruments referred to as deferred purchase agreements (DPAs) to acquire exposure to alternative asset classes.

See Structured Products

Knowledge

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