Profile of Wendy Rae

Wendy Rae

Partner, BEc, LLB

About Wendy Rae

Wendy is a leading M&A specialist with expertise advising global and domestic funds on their participation in government asset sales, competitive bid processes and public M&A transactions. Her experience spans multiple sectors with infrastructure and energy being a particular focus.

Wendy also has extensive experience advising global pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and other foreign investors in relation to their investments in Australia. Her substantial experience navigating Australia's complex foreign investment laws, and her position as Chair of the Foreign Investment Committee of the Business Section of the Law Council of Australia, make her an integral part of any deal team.

Wendy's transactional and FIRB experience in relation to critical infrastructure assets, data, critical minerals, agribusinesses and other sensitive sectors provides Wendy with unique insights into national interest sensitivities in respect of those transactions (including the approach of Defence and other national security agencies) and the suite of conditions that FIRB ordinarily seeks to impose to address these concerns.

Clients value her for what one calls her 'phenomenal depth of understanding of the legislation and of the FIRB administration, its approach, drivers and current sensitivities'.

Highlights of Wendy's experience include:

  • Mirvac – advising Mirvac on the establishment of its $1.8 billion build-to-rent (BTR) fund, including an investment from the Federal Government's Clean Energy Finance Corporation (Australia's largest ever build-to-rent transaction.
  • Brookfield and MidOcean – Advising a consortium consisting of Brookfield Asset Management (Brookfield) (together with its partners and investors, GIC and Temasek) and MidOcean Energy (MidOcean on the proposed A$18.7 billion acquisition of Origin) by way of scheme of arrangement. This landmark transaction, one of the largest public M&A transactions of 2023, will accelerate the decarbonisation of Australia’s energy grid and help the country progress towards net zero.
  • AusNet – advising AusNet in relation to the $10.2 billion cash acquisition by a Brookfield-led consortium of 100% of AusNet shares via a scheme of arrangement.
  • AustralianSuper – acting for AustralianSuper on the acquisition of a 70% stake in the Optus towers network for AU$1.9 billion.
  • John Laing – advising John Laing on all aspects of its proposed divestment of its portfolio of eight Australian renewable energy assets with a total capacity of 847MW and the sale of its portfolio of wind farm assets to FSI.
  • Acciona – advising Acciona Energy on its joint venture with Korea Zinc in relation to the 923MW MacIntyre Wind Farm development project in Queensland and the related FIRB approvals and exemption certificates for the development.
  • Greystar – establishment of Greystar's flagship Australian Build-to-Rent investment vehicle including advice on all necessary FIRB approvals in respect of the investment itself and obtaining a comprehensive FIRB exemption certificate relating to the broader acquisitions of land and proposed residential development.
  • CKI – advising a consortium led by CKI Infrastructure (CKI) on its proposed A$13 billion acquisition of listed Australian energy infrastructure business, APA.
  • Keppel Infrastructure Trust – advising Keppel Infrastructure Trust (KIT) on its acquisition of leading chemicals business Ixom for an enterprise value of A$1.1 billion.
  • Consortium of bidders for Asciano Limited – (Global Infrastructure Partners, CPP Investments, CIC Capital Corporation, GIC and British Columbia Investment Management Corporation) on the acquisition of Asciano Limited for $9.06 billion by scheme of arrangement.
  • CCCC International Holdings Limited – acquisition of one of Australia's leading engineering and contracting services providers, John Holland, from Leighton Holdings.
  • State Grid International Development Limited – acquisition of a 19.9 per cent interest in AusNet, and a 60 per cent interest in Jemena, from Singapore Power International. AusNet and Jemena are two of Australia's largest utilities, with total assets of approximately A$10 billion and A$8.9 billion respectively.
  • QIC Global Infrastructure, CPP Investments and AIMCo – their bid for Port Botany and Port Kembla, which was acquired by the IFM-led consortium for $5.07 billion.
  • CPP Investments – multiple transactions including the $3.47 billion acquisition of Intoll Group by way of inter-conditional Australian trust schemes and a Bermudan scheme of arrangement and $7.5 billion acquisition of Macquarie Communications Infrastructure Group by way of inter-conditional Australian and Bermudan schemes of arrangement and a trust scheme and concurrent agreements with Macquarie Group to acquire the manager of the trust.
  • Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan – proposed A$7 billion acquisition of Transurban by CPP Investments and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan.
  • Macquarie Group – multiple transactions, including a €1 billion competitive auction, and its proposed A$8 billion takeover of Alinta.
  • Temasek and CitySpring Infrastructure Trust – A$1.18 billion acquisition of Basslink from National Grid International Ltd., by way of a competitive bid process.

Wendy was the Melbourne Deputy Chair of the Corporations Committee of the Business Section of the Law Council of Australia for 3 years and continues to be a member.