John Stephens


John has been a Partner since 2002 and heads the Commercial department at Meredith Connell. 

John provides pragmatic and commercial advice to New Zealand and overseas clients on a wide range of legal issues, specialising in corporate structuring, asset acquisition and disposal, joint ventures and commercial agreements, shareholder arrangements, property finance and construction.

John is a trusted adviser to his clients, acting on behalf of private equity funds, government departments, public bodies, listed and closely held companies, as well as individuals.

  • Advising an international private equity fund on its global operations and acting as its lead counsel in USA, the UK and New Zealand in relation to asset acquisitions, capital raising, debt financing, group restructuring and contractual arrangements for resort management, including two separate joint ventures with Time Warner and the Rockefeller family.
  • Advising Auckland Council on the $4.2b City Rail Link project undertaken via a joint venture with Crown.
  • Advising the New Zealand government on its multi-billion dollar programme for the construction of schools nation wide, including procurement and contracting arrangements and the negotiation of settlements arising out of defect claims including a multi-million dollar product liability claim against cladding manufacturers.
  • Advising one of New Zealand’s best-known retailers on its $200m retail and residential development in Tauranga.
  • Currently advising Sir George Fistonich in a claim against the receivers at Villa Maria.

CPE/LSFE, Guildford College of Law;

BA(Hons), University of Exeter