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Russell McVeagh's Rising Stars

Home Insights Russell McVeagh's Rising Stars

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Published on: February 12, 2020


Russell McVeagh Partners Ben Paterson, Ian Beaumont, Liz Blythe, Nathaniel Walker, and Will Irving, have today been named 'Rising Stars' in New Zealand's legal industry.

Recognised for demonstrating leadership and achievement in the legal profession, NZ Lawyer's inaugural Rising Stars list boasts the country's brightest emerging talent in the industry.

"These partners are exceptionally talented in their respective fields and it's wonderful to see them each recognised in this way," said Russell McVeagh CEO Jo Avenell. "We are very fortunate to have so many accomplished lawyers bringing fresh and innovative ideas to the table at our firm, including these five individuals."

Meet our Rising Stars:

M&A specialist Ben Paterson is quickly becoming one the country's most established names in his field. He was recently named a 'Next Generation Partner' in Corporate law in The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific guide and is ranked 'Up and Coming' by Chambers and Partners for Corporate/Commercial law. He has advised on a number of the most high profile deals in New Zealand and abroad, including Pacific Equity Partners' sale of Manuka Health NZ (which won the Mid Cap Investment Award at the 2019 Australian Investment Council Awards) and Fonterra on its sale of DFE Pharma to CVC.

Corporate partner Ian Beaumont was promoted to partner in 2016 and has built up a strong practice in M&A, joint ventures and equity capital markets. He is listed by Best Lawyers for M&A Law in New Zealand and works with some of New Zealand's largest companies and financial institutions. In recent years, Ian has advised on transactions awarded 'New Zealand Deal of the Year', 'M&A Deal of the Year', 'Capital Markets Deal of the Year', and 'Consumer, Media and Tech Deal of the Year' at the New Zealand Law Awards.

Technology specialist Liz Blythe is an established name in her field, having recently won 'Young Private Practice Lawyer of the Year' at the 2019 New Zealand Law Awards and being named a 'Next Generation Partner' by The Legal 500 Asia Pacific guide for Technology, Media and Telecoms. She is passionate about technology and helping her clients to achieve positive change through innovation. Clients extol her for her technical nous, her innovative and creative approach, and her down-to-earth character. She's advised some of country's largest technology deals and she's a regular contributor to technology publications.

Litigator Nathaniel Walker re-joined Russell McVeagh in 2017, having spent time in New York at Cravath, Swaine and Moore LLP, as well as completing his Master of Laws at Columbia. He was promoted to partner in 2018. His practice displays the breadth of a versatile and experienced commercial litigation specialist, with a particular focus on trusts and equitable claims, insurance law and financial services regulation, and disputes with a cross-border dimension. Nathaniel is currently acting on a number of high-value, complex, commercial disputes. One client describes him as "smart as a whip", and he's regularly published, particularly in relation to trusts.  

Litigator Will Irving started at the firm in 2009 as a summer clerk and rose up through the ranks to be promoted to partner in 2019. His practice spans a broad range of commercial litigation and dispute resolution, with a particular focus in disputes and advisory work across the financial services, energy, and infrastructure/property sectors. He's also been a leader in the firm's Diversity and Inclusion initiatives and is a mentor for many of his co-workers.

Congratulations to these incredibly talented individuals.

The full list of New Zealand's Rising Stars can be found here.

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