Nicholas specialises in property and general corporate finance, the financing of resources, oil and gas and infrastructure projects, telecommunications finance, corporate treasury activities, public / private partnerships and complex, cross-border financings. He has particular expertise and experience acting for Asian (particularly PRC) financiers funding projects in Australia, South East Asia and Africa. He has specialist expertise in trade finance, having taught trade finance at postgraduate level.
Nicholas has more than 25 years' banking and finance experience acting for both lenders (domestic and international) and borrowers (both majors and mid-caps).
Nicholas’ experience includes significant and cross border insolvency and restructurings, as well as volume insolvencies.
In the late 1990s, Nicholas worked on secondment in the Banking and Capital Markets Group in the London office of an international law firm. He has also worked in other financial centres such as Melbourne, Sydney and Hong Kong.
He is consistently highly ranked in Chambers Guides and other authoritative guides to the legal profession. He is Best Lawyers' 2017 Perth Lawyer of the Year for Project Finance and Development Practice. Doyles Guide 2016 ranks him as one of two Preeminent Banking & Finance practitioners in Perth.
Nicholas's experience includes:
- Citic Pacific’s Sino Iron Project – advising on financing aspects of this project in Western Australia.
- China Development Bank – US$2.115 billion financing of China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group’s acquisition of UK-listed Kalahari Minerals Plc and Australian-listed Extract Resources Limited and on the US$1.742 billion project financing of the Swakop uranium project in Namibia.
- China Development Bank (CDB) and Bank of China Dugald River Project – Australian counsel for CDB and Bank of China Limited, Sydney branch on the $1 billion financing of the development and construction of MMG’s Dugald River lead, zinc and silver project located in north-west Queensland, Australia (winner of Asian-Counsel's Deal of the Year 2010 and the Australian Legal Business Project Finance Deal of the Year 2011).
- Karara Iron Ore Project – acting for CDB, Bank of China and a syndicate of Chinese banks on the initial US$1.2 billion syndicated project finance facility, the upsizing of the facility to US$1.8 billion and subsequent bilateral financings for Bank of China and CDB, to Karara Mining Limited to fund the development of the Karara iron ore mine and associated infrastructure, as well as several debt and trade finance facilities involving interest withholding tax structuring and intercreditor arrangements (winner of Asian-Counsel's Deals of the Year 2010 and the Australian Legal Business Project Finance Deal of the Year 2011). Most recently acting for CDB and Bank of China on the complete refinancing of the US$1.4 billion main syndicated financing.
- Westpac Banking Corporation – $25 million corporate financing for Doray Minerals Limited and its Andy Well project and the structuring of its combined $82 million Andy Well and Deflector financing.
Real Estate financing
- Multiple financiers to WA property icons: for Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited, National Australia Bank Limited, Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Bankwest:
- Peet Limited – multiple syndicated financings and individual development financings
- Satterley Group – WA and Victorian property developments
- Cedar Woods – en globo land; multi stage subdivision and development project financings; retail precinct development financings in WA, Victoria and Queensland
- Primewest – syndicated retail and commercial development project financings.
- Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and Westpac Banking Corporation – A$104 million financing for acquisition of The Forrest Centre, St Georges Terrace Perth.
- Bank of China – numerous corporate financings, including an A$124 million syndicated facility to Angang Group Investment (Australia) Pty Ltd; takeover financing for Kresta Blinds.
- Woodside Limited – US$1 billion syndicated financing; financing due diligences; and financing aspects of sale of an FPSO.
- Cash Converters Personal Finance – $100 million senior receivables financing facility from FCCD (Australia) Pty Ltd.
- National Australia Bank Limited – term debt and invoice facility for a WA based poultry and pork producer.
- Commonwealth Bank of Australia – security and tripartite arrangements for facilities to Heilongjiang Feng for agricultural land in WA, NSW and Victoria.
- Elders Rural Bank – numerous farm financings.
Areas of Expertise