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John Ridgway

Head of Legal Services

Ph: +61 2 8298 9580

Mob: +61 2 8298 9552

Special Skill: Double round the world with a yoyo.

John is the Head of Legal Services of Pacific Legal Network. He specialises in cross-border and international business transactions. He’s particularly adept at managing and growing relationships in the Pacific, across the USA, and throughout Europe and Asia. When clients need real insight into doing business internationally, they call John.


John’s expertise is in banking and finance, M&A, foreign direct investment activities, Government dealings, insurance, and commercial litigation. His clients range from high net worth individuals to multinational corporations whom he advises on: inbound investment to Australia; outbound Australian investment; and other overseas domiciled businesses investing in the Asia Pacific region.


In November 2000, John created the Pacific Legal Network (PLN) after living and working previously in the Pacific for a large part of the 1990s. From this origin, John was able to grow the firm across Australia and into Asia, and today in-house counsel retain John to lead cross-border transactions. He’s also regularly invited to speak at international conferences.


The Sydney office remains the hub for the Pacific Legal Network, which has offices and affiliates across all parts of the Pacific, and relationships with firms across the USA and throughout Europe and Asia. With this footprint the group is able to provide expert cross border legal advice supplemented by leading local advice in a challenging and unique part of the world.


In the Pacific, John has also been at the forefront in the development of legal services with PLN having a presence in almost every jurisdiction between Hawaii and Singapore. PLN is also a leader in the promotion of good governance and transparency via activities such as the publication of the only directors duties guide for the Pacific and the delivery of corporate governance seminars to inhouse legal and management in businesses across the Pacific. John has been admitted in numerous jurisdictions from time to time in places such as Fiji and Solomon Islands. He speaks English, "rusty" Melanesian Pidgin, and some even more rusty French.


John’s unique geographical expertise and international focus has seen him buy and sell or merge and restructure or finance virtually every type and size of business. Some highlights include: an acquisition of a full service retail bank in six jurisdictions, the de-merger of downstream asset holding subsidiaries of a UK Plc, the takeover of a listed brewery via an on market special crossing, the merger of two international airlines, the acquisition of downstream petroleum businesses in four jurisdictions and the financing of several key infrastructure projects in the region including three submarine fibre optic cable projects.


Beyond his role at Pacific Legal Network, John has held various senior management positions including as national managing partner of an ASX listed law firm, and as Global Chairman of the international law and tax adviser group IAG Global. 

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