Andrew Knight


PARTNER

 

DDI 09 306 6730
Mobile 021 729 470
Email aknight@mcveaghfleming.co.nz
Location Auckland Office
Expertise Business
LinkedIn
Download vCard
See Andrew' Articles

 

About

I:

  • help clients to set up and structure businesses in the most efficient way, ensuring agreements are clearly worded and designed to anticipate future issues and prevent future problems;
  • provide advice and assistance to directors, boards and managers as well as shareholders and stakeholders in all manner of bodies corporate;
  • help clients to draft and negotiate contracts, and assist to interpret and enforce contracts and resolve contractual disputes. Clients often come to me with unusual contracts – eg there is unusual subject matter, complex interactions between a number of different legal documents, the contracts are in highly technical areas or deal with complex issues or subject matter. By ensuring I understand the business context and my client’s expectations I ensure these contracts meet all their needs and anticipate issues that may occur in the future;
  • help clients to structure, negotiate, document, secure and complete all manner of finance transactions. I provide full advice on structuring finance and capital raising, both publicly and privately, including the issue of debt/equity or other securities, as well as on all aspects of related regulation and securitisation.

If you want to work with a lawyer who's good at seeing the big picture and putting pieces into an integrated whole within your business context and who provides insight and solutions, then I can help.

I’ll listen to you, get you to explain anything I’m unclear about, and get to know your business, so that I can deliver you with best value by identifying and resolving all of your issues as part of your business team. There’s more to law than giving clients a standard document. I’ll provide ideas and work hard to get an outcome you will be happy with.

I have a number of longstanding clients because I get personally involved in and care about their businesses and I often worry more about my client’s problems than my own. I enjoy working out how to put things together and getting results that others think are impossible or haven’t thought about.

Qualifications

BA, University of Auckland 1989

LLB (Hons), University of Auckland 1999


Examples of Transactions

  • Engaged to negotiate/agree a high level hardware/software, support and licensing agreements for a US S&P 500 company with one of NZ’s leading telcos which led to an ongoing relationship providing general commercial law support for this client.
  • Restructured a large private corporate entity whose structure included numerous related partnerships, trusts and diverse stakeholders and provided an agreement for the core stakeholders that provided a mechanism that had anticipated the possibility of (and quickly resolved) a serious future issue the client had not envisaged occurring.
  • Assisted a second tier lender over the course of two years to actually recover their approximately $100M principal in a large central Auckland property development where the main director and guarantor of the borrower had fled the country after engaging in rather dubious corporate practises and been declared bankrupt. This was a very satisfying job which involved providing full commercial law support to a trouble-shooter employed by the client with the mandate to salvage as much as they could from a terrible situation. We achieved what everyone else had considered impossible and salvaged the principal amount of the investment through a minefield of legal issues in multiple areas of commercial law.

Background

I initially studied for a BA in ancient history in an attempt to be Indiana Jones. My dream was derailed by a lack of funds to finance any initial expeditions and I instead obtained employment in the public service.

I worked for the MED (1990-1999) for the Official Assignee/Companies Office and in the Auckland “Enforcement” unit, undertaking a large variety of roles/duties and becoming intimately familiar with corporate law as well as businesses of all types – particularly the reasons for business failure which gives me insight in how to avoid potential pitfalls. The lawyers there encouraged me to study for a law degree.

I worked both full and part-time while studying law. Upon graduating I joined Rudd Watts & Stone (which became Minter Ellison), undertaking specialised corporate structuring and advice work, venture capital matters (eg preparing corporate and contract structures and compliance documentation under the Securities Act 1978), M&A and all related contractual, banking and finance advice and drafting. I moved to Lowndes Associates near the end of 2001 where I continued with the same type of commercial law work as well as undertaking more general commercial law/commercial property work.

I joined McVeagh Fleming in 2003, became an associate in 2004 and partner in 2007.

Outside Interests

I love spending time with my wife and my two sons. I enjoy reading and the written word and getting ideas and interesting concepts across in a clear way. My ambition is to write novels when I retire, but I’d be a publishers’ nightmare because they would all be on totally different subjects!