Penny Rinta-Suksi Partner
“Penny Rinta-Suksi has notable expertise in the leisure sector.”
“What I particularly valued was Penny’s deep knowledge of all matters contractual and the speed with which Penny and her team were able to respond to our questions.”
Penny is a commercial lawyer and an OxLEP non executive director. She leads Blake Morgan's Local Government England team with over 18 years’ experience in advising private sector clients, funders, public sector and third sector on major projects and commercial contracts.
Main areas of practice
Penny's experience ranges from structuring and implementing complex major procurement projects to commercial contracts, warranties, guarantee and performance arrangements. Penny has a specialty in helping clients to achieve effective corporate and contractual ‘partnering’, finding the right solution to achieve the commercial objective. Penny works with her team to implement the solution, dealing with all commercial issues including finance, security, IP and IT, construction, procurement, employment, pensions and property. Penny has an overview of the entire transaction at any one time and coordinates the team to input efficiently, at the right times and within the available budget.
She has strong experience in the leisure, culture and housing sectors and sound working knowledge of education, health, financial, manufacturing, waste and energy markets. Penny leads on combined housing, leisure and civic infrastructure projects, working on innovative regeneration models to include joint venture vehicles and private sector partnering and contracting.
Leisure and Culture
- Recently appointed critical friend to a District Council prior to award of contract to its preferred bidder.
- Advising a City Council on competitive dialogue procurement for a leisure operator on a new Passivhaus leisure centre – first in the country.
- Advising a Borough Council on its leisure design build operate and maintain (DBOM) project being procured using Competitive Dialogue – at ISFT stage.
- Advising a London Borough Council on a contract variation to lock in £1m service savings. Recently reappointed to secure build of new leisure centre and vary the existing operational contract for the incumbent operator to run such centre.
- Lead advisor to a University on its new build halls projects with private company using institutional investment.
- Lead advisor to a University on sports campus joint venture with local authority.
Housing and Regeneration
- Private sector housing trust - lead advisor on a £billion housing zone project, advising on the negotiating and drafting of the grant agreement, funding agreement and council infrastructure agreement (and related heads of terms).
- Major housing company – supporting on a defence and counterclaim of a housing PFI contract running through a Special Purpose Vehicle contracting with a major London Borough.
Private Sector Partnering and Contracting
Penny has significant experience in the negotiation and drafting of complex partnering and contracting arrangements, for example:
- Joint venture agreement with major local contractor in relation to a contract the parties won (tendering jointly) to a large water company.
- Refinancing of 5 solar energy sites, worth £20 million – acted for the Lenders, a significant international bank.
- Heads of Terms and Conditional Consent Agreement between a significant Oxford operator and a wind turbine company.
- Terms of Business for serviced apartments for a business with both a consumer and a corporate target audience.
- Complex framework agreement for a small cloud solutions IT company on a contractual framework which referenced the 'build up' of a service solution with additional services being called off as that service solution was formulated.
- Trademark licence review and re-draft, acting for the licensee, ensuring license had licensee-friendly terms and plenty of allowances and flexibility for our client.
- Review of a sponsorship agreement between our client and a major racing team for 2016 Championship sponsorship with particular advice on: exclusivity; marketing rights; concerns re IP and sub-licensing of the sponsor's marks; and liability.
“She has strong experience in the leisure, housing, education and health sectors.”
“We worked with Penny on our leisure design, build, operate and maintain project and Penny was our trusted advisor, supporting us on this competitive dialogue project, from the outset all the way through to preferred bidder selection and project completion. ”
“I have worked with Penny over a number of years on various matters requiring specialist support that often involve a mixed team of different legal disciplines. Penny is great at focussing the team on providing me a solution and easily picks up and demystifies complex issues. Penny works really well with my other technical and financial advisors to give me a straightforward seamless service.”
Articles by Penny
Blake Morgan's Local Authority Matters newsletter for March 2019.
Blake Morgan's Local Authority Matters newsletter for December 2018.
In response to the increasing demand for pragmatism and innovation in the local government market, Blake Morgan's specialist sector team has launched a publication to share good advice and their latest thinking with others in this space.
Related Knowledge & Resources
The Court of Appeal clarified the legal position under legislation from a very different era but whose terms remain relevant and are still being felt today, and local authorities will need to take note with their educational buildings.
This year there have been some interesting cases looking at the conduct of local authorities and creditors when commencing bankruptcy proceedings or serving court documents on debtors.
Local authorities will be pleased to note that the Court of Appeal accepts that they only have to consider planning issues when presented with a planning application.
This is a summary for legal advisors outside the UK of commercial agency law in the UK. The effect of the Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 ("the Regulations") in the UK can be quite different from countries in the EU.
Commercial Law Briefing: Getting the Boilerplate Right - An A to Z of Commercial Contract "Boilerplate" clauses and some lessons from recent cases.
Blake Morgan provides a helpful guide for Marinas and Boat Yards on recovering outstanding berthing fees.