Leigh advises clients on commercial and financing aspects of projects, specialising in large infrastructure projects. She often acts for government clients, including government departments, crown entities and statutory entities on targeted funding arrangements and commercial arrangements. Leigh has specific expertise advising on procurement and associated probity issues.

Leigh also advises both borrowers and lenders on property finance and general lending arrangements

Before Chapman Tripp, Leigh worked for another major New Zealand law firm for 10 years. She also worked for "magic circle" firm Slaughter and May from 2008 to 2012, advising clients on restructurings and financing arrangements. Leigh was ranked as a Rising Star Partner by IFLR1000 2023.

Recent highlights

Has advised:

  • Tauranga City Council in relation to funding 14 different roading projects under the Infrastructure Funding and Financing Act (IFF). This was a pathfinder project.
  • Ministry of Business Innovation & Employment on:
    • The procurement and contracting arrangements for hotels, security and transport providers for the Government’s managed isolation and quarantine programme, working closely with the MBIE procurement and legal teams on these processes; and
    • Funding and delivery arrangements for major events including 36th America’s Cup (and negotiations for 37th America’s Cup).
  • Z Energy Limited on its arrangements at Marsden Point with Refining NZ transitioning from a refinery to an import terminal.
  • The New Zealand Government on the business case, procurement, evaluation and contracting for all PPPs.
  • A variety of investors acting in ongoing roles on the PPP projects, and leading all of the secondary sales in the New Zealand market to date.
  • Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority on funding arrangements, including certain shovel ready funding and the Government Investment in Decarbonising Fund.
  • Kāinga Ora in relation to funding arrangements for the Infrastructure Acceleration Fund.
  • Various Government departments and agencies on funding initiatives as a result of COVID 19, including Department of Internal Affairs on its funding arrangements to Racing Industry and Ministry of Business Innovation & Employment in relation to funding to the tourism sector.
  • Crown Infrastructure Partners on a peer review of the structure and documents for the Milldale transaction. The encumbrance model for the Milldale transaction was a precursor for the IFF Act.

Leigh's insights

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sunshine in wellington

Wellington City Council finalises significant deal under the Infrastructure Funding and Financing Act

We are delighted to have advised Wellington City Council on its significant deal under the Infrastructure Funding and Financing Act. The deal, which includes an innovative funding model which will fund the construction of a new sludge minimisation facility at Moa Point.

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people walking through office

Generating social and environmental benefits alongside financial return

We are proud to have advised NZGIF on its investment to help Wellington’s port decarbonise – the first to benefit from NZGIF’s $100m in investment capital.

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sienna spiral

Advising InfraRed Capital Partners on sale of stake in Auckland South Corrections Facility PPP

We advised InfraRed Capital Partners on sale of stake in Auckland South Corrections Facility PPP. The transaction is the first secondary PPP transaction in New Zealand.

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auckland harbour bridge

Dealing to the infrastructure deficit

New Zealand’s sagging infrastructure is inhibiting the economy and our quality of life, in the form of gridlock, lost production, unaffordable housing, environmental degradation, and more...

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