associate general counsel
Julian Benefield is a high-performing, innovative, commercial- and values-driven legal professional with 15 years legal, risk, and leadership experience – five years of which have been spent with Foodstuffs, one of NZ’s largest organisations and the supermarket cooperative behind PAK’nSAVE and New World.
Benefield’s significant contributions to Foodstuffs and its legal function include the following achievements over the past 12 months:
- has taken a major legal and crisis management role in helping Foodstuffs navigate COVD-19 – from dealing with unions, working with government on rapidly changing COVID-19 regulatory issues, and advising on the innovative “virtual queue” tech created during lockdown
- has led on Foodstuffs’ $75 million acquisition of Leigh Fisheries, as well as on deal integration and the subsequent sale of US and domestic JV interests
- has made use of technology to increase productivity of Foodstuffs’ legal operations, automating hundreds of contracts which resulted in significant time savings
- successfully implemented other process improvements, including streamlining legal and contracting processes and internal ways of working
- extensively promoted Foodstuffs’ charitable trust through various speeches and guided the trust on sound legal and governance structures
- led major commercial contracts including ZURU, Mainfreight, and Dunnhumby
Benefield has been consistently recognised for outstanding achievement and contribution, including being named in NZ Lawyer’s 2019 In-house Leaders List, a top-10 finalist for 2019 In-house Lawyer of the Year at the NZ Law Awards, and finalist for 2020 NZ In-House Lawyer of the Year.