John Leonida BA, LLB, MA, PGDip LP

PhD Researcher

Until his retirement from the law, John specialised  in international marine transactional work and for several years headed Clyde & Co’s superyacht group.  His practice ranged from advising the owners and builders of some of the world's most luxurious superyachts, to being counsel to operators in the oil support industry  and selling bulk carriers. In 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Chambers HNW Guide to The World's Leading High Net Worth Advisers ranked John in the top band of global Superyacht lawyers. As one of the top four lawyers in the industry he was  described by peers and clients  as a "very good negotiator" and "very precise and thorough in his work". One industry insider described him as having an "encyclopaedic knowledge of the sector. I would speak to him regarding anything in the practice area. He knows it all" "An old style gentleman, he is very calm and highly educated". In the 2020 edition John was described “... as extremely savvy, he is highly regarded, highly competent and is very, very smart." Other interviewees say he is "wonderful" and "a very able guy."

He formerly advised on regulatory issues relating to the ownership of ships and has extensive experience in negotiating shipbuilding and ship financing documents.  His clients were either shipping entrepreneurs or, in the case of John's superyacht work, high net- worth individuals. superyacht builders, designers and banks. John continues to serve on the HR & Finance Committee of the Royal Society of Literature.

John was  a partner of Clyde & Co from May 2003 until  early September 2020 when he joined LP Squared  to provide board level advice to owners, builders, family offices and indeed any superyacht stakeholders on the more commercial and strategic aspects of the superyacht industry.

John is also a former development economist with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office's Overseas Development Administration and has an economics degree from the University of Sussex and a masters in political economics from Middlesex University.  He also holds a law degree from the University of Westminster. In January 2019 John started his PhD in maritime history. John is a regular contributor to superyacht symposia. He occasionally writes for Boat International and The Superyacht Report. He served for three award cycles  as  a Judge for the Boat International Design and Innovation Awards.

Research / Scholarly interests

The cultural history of yachts and superyachts.