John Hobson

Founder and Partner

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John has extensive financial markets experience in Australia, Asia and New York, gained across senior investment banking, corporate and funds management roles. He was a top ranking bank analyst with Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse in Asia and also worked with and consulted to Macquarie Group.

He has worked on numerous transactions including capital raisings, mergers and acquisitions, and initial public offerings. Recent transactions include equity raisings totalling over $2.1 billion, restructuring $2.7 billion of debt for Loy Yang A power station, a $600 million A$ Medium Term Note issue and a $650 million subordinate note issue.  His expertise extends across the entire spectrum of the capital structure.

He also has broad stakeholder engagement experience from his time as General Manager, Capital Markets at AGL Energy Limited and as Head of Investor Relations at Brambles Limited, where he worked on a number of challenging issues, including coal seam gas, CO2 emissions, executive remuneration, asset impairment and shareholder resolutions.

John has broad industry experience covering energy and utilities, logistics, transport, banking and financials. Drawing on his international business background John now advises companies and boards on stakeholder engagement, investor relations, transaction-specific communications, continuous disclosure and corporate governance and assists in transaction execution.

His publications include Will Capital be the next Battleground? (AICD’s Company Director magazine), Corporate Governance of Financial Institutions (Corporate Governance International), and Return on Equity in a Low Inflationary Environment (Economics Society of Australia Journal).

He was Chairman of the Australasian Investor Relations Association from 2009 to 2011 and became a Fellow of the association in 2015.

John holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Macquarie University’s Graduate School of Management and a Bachelor of Science (Hons) from the University of Melbourne. He has also completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors course.


Luise Elsing

Partner

Luise has over 25 years’ experience in unlisted and listed company regulation and compliance. Her areas of expertise include continuous disclosure, corporate governance, ASX Listing Rule compliance and company secretarial duties.

Her career started as a solicitor at Freehills, Sydney in taxation, litigation and commercial law. She advised management and Boards on legal and compliance obligations, contracts and governance. She then worked as General Counsel / Company Secretary in the mining sector specialising in capital raisings, takeovers, disclosure, board and organisational governance and listing requirements. 

Having prepared numerous prospectuses, and conducted many due diligence investigations Luise is familiar with advising, managing and monitoring compliance. She is an experienced and clear communicator, her strength is identifying and articulating regulatory issues and then implementing satisfactory resolutions.

Luise was at ASX for over 13 years initially in the role of NSW State Manager, Listings and then National Manager, Listings. Her most recent position was as Executive General Manager (Listings and Brokers) with national responsibility for continuous disclosure, corporate governance policy and compliance, listing function and listing rule and operating rule compliance.

Luise is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, NSW Law Society and the Governance Institute of Australia. She was a member of the ASX Corporate Governance Council providing support on policy and drafting the ASX Corporate Governance Guidelines. She was an adviser and advocate before the ASX Disciplinary Tribunal and was on the Takeover Panel from 2000 to 2003.

Luise is currently a Councillor on Woollahra Municipal Council having been elected in 2012 and is a Director on not-for-profit organisations including Holdsworth Community Centre, which provides services including support to adults and children with intellectual disabilities. She is also currently undertaking her masters in law and is very slowly learning Spanish.


David Humphreys

Partner

David has broad international business, government and corporate regulatory experience. He was an Australian diplomat with several postings to Asia covering economics and politics, with his last diplomatic position as Consul (Political/Economic) in Hong Kong during the handover to China.

Most recently, David was a senior analyst and lawyer at ASIC for 11 years advising Treasury and the responsible government Minister on equity and derivative markets’ listings and market rule changes, including rules for market makers in the ASX options market.

He helped design the rules for a broader array of products to be quoted on the ASX, known as the AQUA market. After commencement of its operation, David supervised AQUA product issuers and examined all AQUA-quoted complex products (Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) & structured products) prior to their quotation.

Reviewing AQUA complex products, he routinely dealt with the Reserve Bank to determine swaps and unsecured bank promises suitable for structured product construction, and with issuers of novel ETFs to ensure Product Disclosure Statements accurately described tracking error, contango and other risks. When supervising the AQUA market, he prepared submissions to the ASIC Commissioners regarding complex products such as inverse synthetic ETFs and structured products based on funded swaps.

David is also the Company Secretary of a not-for-profit company, The Australian Rhino Project, whose aim is to help South Africa save its black and white rhinos from extinction through relocating a herd of 80 animals to Australia.

David graduated with distinction from the University of Hong Kong’s Master of Laws restitutionary remedies and China trade law degree programs. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons)/Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sydney. As a legacy of his time as a diplomat David speaks Mandarin and Thai.


Susan Humphreys

Partner

Susan has over 20 years experience in senior legal, compliance and financial markets regulation as a result of her previous roles at ASIC, the ASX and Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE). Prior to this she was a litigation solicitor with several leading law firms including Baker & McKenzie, Blake Dawson Waldron and Henry Davis York.

Her areas of expertise are the statutory obligations of financial services licensees, market operators and market participants under the financial services laws, administrative law, natural justice, managing conflicts of interest, corporate governance, culture, professionalism and directors’ duties.

As a Senior Manager in the Compliance Unit of the HKSE, Susan conducted action against listed companies and their directors for alleged breaches of the Listing Rules before the exchange’s then internal Disciplinary Committee, and also sat on the Listing Committee of the exchange.

She was then with ASX for five years as Senior Manager and Company Secretary of ASX Supervisory Review Pty Limited (ASXSR), whose role was to assess if the ASX Group was adequately complying with its licence obligations as a market operator and clearing house operator, including management of its conflicts of interest. The ASXSR board reported annually directly to the ASX Board, ASIC Chairman and the Federal Treasurer.

Most recently, Susan was part of the ASIC Chief Legal Office team, seconded as Senior Manager and Counsel to the ASIC Markets Disciplinary Panel (MDP). The MDP is an independent, peer review body tasked with making decisions on behalf of ASIC in relation to alleged breaches of the ASIC Market Integrity Rules, being largely principle-based rules. Susan was in charge of the MDP Secretariat team for six years, supporting the work of the Panel and advising the Panel on ASIC policy and aspects of administrative law to ensure consistent application of the rules and relevant law. She was also involved in preparing ASIC Regulatory Guide 225, more than 50 confidential decisions of the Panel and publishing the MDP infringement notices.