Herbert Smith Freehills advised Newcastle Airport Pty Limited, on its recent corporate restructure to open the way for potential private sector investment and to facilitate its transition from a domestic only airport to a viable international airport for regional New South Wales.
The key driver behind the restructure was to overcome the limitations of its existing corporate/ownership structure, in particular the reliance on the shareholder councils, Newcastle City Council and Port Stephens Council, to provide financing for the development of Newcastle Airport.
The Herbert Smith Freehills team was led by projects partner Peter Paradise, assisted by partner Greg Hing and lawyers Sam Cooper and Chloe Costas.
“We are delighted to have been involved with the corporate restructure of the airport from the very beginning and have worked closely with the board and management of Newcastle Airport to bring about a fantastic result for the local community led by the two councils,” said Peter Paradise.
“This is a strategic and important step for Newcastle Airport given the future growth opportunities in the Hunter region and the O’Farrell Government has shown great support for the development of the Hunter region with an $11.1 million grant, via the Hunter Infrastructure & Investment Fund, for the expansion of the current Newcastle Airport passenger terminal. The airport is now well placed to be a major transport hub for business and residents in the Hunter and Central Coast regions. We commend all stakeholders on the way in which the corporate restructure has been delivered to enable the airport to meet the needs of this fast growing, vibrant community.”
Herbert Smith Freehills was part of a NAPL advisory team that also included Ernst & Young, who provided tax and stamp duty advice in respect of the restructure.
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