Asian Firms

Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, with Marina Bay Sands in the background

Singapore
Holman Fenwick Willan Forms Singapore FLA

By Tom Brennan |

The London-based firm has partnered with seven-lawyer AsiaLegal in a formal law alliance.

India
Will India Open the Door to Foreign Lawyers?

By Tom Brennan |

Global law firms are keeping a cautious eye on India as the government moves closer to lifting the protectionist regulations that have barred foreign firms from the country.

China, Australia, Germany
Dentons' Eye Still Wandering as McKenna Long Ties the Knot

By Julie Triedman |

With Dentons' merger with McKenna Long & Aldridge becoming official on Wednesday, we asked the firm's leaders about the impending combination with China's Dacheng—and what other global tie-ups may be in store.

Singapore
Going Local in Singapore

By Anna Zhang |

A handful of international firms have obtained a Qualifying Foreign Law Practice license, which allows them to hire Singapore-qualified lawyers and practice some local law. Others say it's not worth the trouble.

Singapore
Singapore: A Tough Market, But Law Firms Can't Stay Away

By Anna Zhang |

As the gateway to Southeast Asia, Singapore continues to be a hot spot for global law firms. To thrive in such a competitive legal market, firms need to be smart about where they invest their resources.

Signs of Slower Growth for U.S. Firms in Asia

By Zoe Ferguson |

Data from The NLJ 350 shows that lawyer counts at U.S. firms in Asia have soared in the past decade. But is the growth story over?

Scott Gibson, John Weber, Michael Bowen and Marc Wilshaw pose for a photo at the Hardy Bowen offices on June 22, 2015 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images for DLA Piper)

Australia
DLA Piper Brings Aboard Perth's Hardy Bowen

By Tom Brennan |

A 12-lawyer team from the Western Australian corporate boutique will join DLA Piper's current roster of 51 lawyers in Perth on July 1.

Singapore
Singapore’s Cavenagh Law Launches Real Estate Practice

By Anna Zhang |

Clifford Chance's alliance partner in the city-state has hired former WongPartnership partner Carol Anne Tan to lead the new venture.

Vietnam
Anderson Mori Opens in Ho Chi Minh City

By Tom Brennan |

The firm has launched its second office in Southeast Asia, adding to a current base in Singapore.

China, Hong Kong
Lawyers Double Dip as Chinese Clients ‘Go Private’

By Tom Brennan |

The same law firms that rode a wave of U.S. IPOs by mainland companies last decade are cashing in again as those clients pull stakes and head home to China.

Japan
King & Spalding Raids Ashurst to Open in Tokyo

By Tom Brennan |

Four Ashurst partners, including three already in Japan and one in Perth, are expected to join the U.S. firm to launch its second office in Asia.

Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo, Japan

Hong Kong, Japan
Davis Polk Plans Leadership Change in Tokyo

By Tom Brennan |

Linklaters Hong Kong partner Jon Gray will relocate to join the firm in Japan, taking over for soon-to-retire Tokyo managing partner Theodore Paradise.

Japan, Singapore
Withers Launches in Tokyo With MoFo Hires

By Tom Brennan |

The U.K. private wealth boutique has hired former Morrison & Foerster tax specialists Chizuko Tomita and Takeo Mizutani to lead its newest office in Asia, while former Singapore partner Eric Roose will serve as head of international corporate tax in Asia.

China
Making a Go of a New Business in China

By Marlisse Silver Sweeney |

The People's Republic is cracking down tax-wise on foreign companies operating improperly in the country, creating plenty of opportunity.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong, South Korea
Bae, Kim & Lee Launches in Hong Kong

By Anna Zhang |

A month after becoming the first Korean firm to establish a base in the Middle East, Bae, Kim & Lee has landed in the Chinese city to open its fourth overseas office.

From left to right: Winston Gao, partner at Junyan Law Firm; Malcolm Dickinson, managing partner at Michelmores; Steve Ng, partner at Ng & Shum

China, United Kingdom
First Chinese-Owned Law Firm in UK Launches in London

By Anna Zhang |

Owned by Hong Kong lawyer Steve Ng and Shenzhen lawyer Winston Gao, YangTze Law Firm will operate under U.K. regulations that allow for foreign control of domestic firms.

China
Quinn Emanuel to Launch First Mainland China Office

By Anna Zhang |

A Shanghai office is expected to open this fall, and the firm has poached Kirkland & Ellis Asia investigations head Samuel Williamson to lead it.

Dewey's Demise Takes Center Stage

Dewey & LeBoeuf former chair Steven Davis, former executive director Stephen DiCarmine and former chief financial officer Joel Sanders together face more than 100 criminal charges, including grand larceny, scheming to defraud, falsifying business records and conspiracy in the lead-up to the 1,300-lawyer firm's downfall in May 2012. All have pleaded not guilty.

India
The Shroffs Speak

By Tom Brennan |

The approach that brothers Shardul and Cyril have taken in launching their new firms shows they learned very different lessons from the breakup of Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A. Shroff & Co.

China, Hong Kong, India, Japan
Deadlines for Global Legal Awards, Litigation Departments of the Year Submissions

The American Lawyer is seeking nominations for its annual Global Legal Awards and Litigation Departments of the Year.

India, United Kingdom
US vs. UK: Which Firms Have the Best India Practices?

By Tom Brennan |

A new ranking from London-based RSG Consulting shows that U.S. firms continue to take market share in India, challenging the dominant position once held by their U.K. peers.

Singapore

Singapore
Dentons Shuttering Singapore Office on Heels of Dacheng Combination

By Jennifer Henderson |

The global legal giant will close its banking and finance outpost in Singapore as a result of its tie-up with China's Dacheng, a union that creates the world's largest law firm with 6,600 lawyers.

China
Laboring Under China's Labor Laws

By Marlisse Silver Sweeney |

Employment law compliance is always a challenge, one that doesn't get any easier when you have employees in China.

India
Confirmed: Amarchand Mangaldas to Split

By Tom Brennan |

A feud between co-managing partners and brothers, Shardul and Cyril Shroff, has brought the hundred-year history of India's top law firm to an end.

Matthew Harrison, Bentham

Australia
Australia's Bentham Launches in San Francisco

By Patience Haggin |

The litigation funder has hired a Latham & Watkins partner to open its third U.S. office.

Hong Kong
China's Llinks Lands in Hong Kong

By Anna Zhang |

The Shanghai-based firm has launched its first office outside of mainland China in search of capital markets deals and outbound M&A work.

Singapore
Head of Clyde's Singapore Partner Firm Leaving for Nabarro

By Anna Zhang |

Steven Lim will lead the construction-focused firm's city-state office; Clyde & Co says its Singaporean joint law venture is still intact.

Lewis Silkin Hong Kong partner Antonia Grant

Hong Kong
U.K. Firm Lewis Silkin Launches in Hong Kong

By Tom Brennan |

The 160-lawyer employment specialist is relocating London partner Antonia Grant to open its first office outside of the United Kingdom.

Singapore
White & Case Wins Singapore License Renewal

By Anna Zhang |

A year after earning only a temporary extension of its Qualifying Foreign Law Practice license, the New York-based firm has been approved to practice local law for an additional four years.

Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, in Dubai

South Korea
Bae, Kim & Lee First Korean Firm to Open in Middle East

By Anna Zhang |

The new office in Dubai comes after a pledge from the Korean government to fund $4.4 billion worth of construction projects in the region.

China, Italy
China's Han Kun Strikes Italian Alliance

By Anna Zhang |

The firm has teamed up with Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli & Partners as Chinese investments into Italy increase.

The Petronas Towers and KL Tower in Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia, United Kingdom
Trowers & Hamlins Wins First License to Practice in Malaysia

By Tom Brennan |

The U.K. firm has announced it is now a so-called Qualified Foreign Law Firm, allowing it to advise clients on international law from the Southeast Asian country.

From left to right, Baker & McKenzie’s Asia Pacific Regional Chairman Bruce Hambrett, Cao Yang, head of lawyers and notarization governance department of the Ministry of Justice, Wang Xie, deputy director of the Shanghai Justice Bureau, and Yingzhe Wang, Managing Partner of FenXun Partners.

China
Baker & McKenzie First in Shanghai FTZ Joint Venture

By Anna Zhang |

The Chicago-based firm is teaming up with China's FenXun Partners to be the first joint operation between law firms in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone in a program that was introduced last year.

Seoul, South Korea.

South Korea
Finnegan Henderson Joining Competitors in Seoul

By Katelyn Polantz |

Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner will open an office in Seoul. The D.C.-based intellectual property firm follows some 20 U.S. and U.K. firms that have opened in South Korea since 2012.

India
Amarchand Split Delayed but Not Halted

By Tom Brennan |

A breakup of the storied Indian firm appears to be only a matter of time as feuding brothers Shardul and Cyril Shroff make lateral hires, promote new partners and lease office space on each other’s home turf.

Koala on a tree with bush green background

Australia
Hogan Lovells Makes First Move into Australia

By Tom Brennan |

The Anglo-American firm has hired husband and wife team Tim and Nicky Lester from Allens and plans to open new offices in Sydney and Perth this summer.

China, Hong Kong, Singapore
Withers Grows in Asian Divorce Capital Hong Kong

By Tom Brennan |

The U.K. private client boutique has made an unrivaled push into the region to capitalize on a fast-growing population of high-net-worth individuals in China, Singapore and other top jurisdictions.

South Korea
Ernst & Young Launches Korean Law Alliance

By Anna Zhang |

Seoul-based Apex Law is the latest law firm to join the auditor's global legal service network.

Singapore
Law Firms Expanding in Asia Adopt Strategic CSR

By Wendy Stimpson and Natalia Olynec |

Corporate social responsibility programs among the international law firms in Singapore originally involved simply writing checks to support local charities, but contributing authors Wendy Stimpson and Natalia Olynec say that's changing.

South Korea, Russia
Yulchon Opens Moscow Office

By Tom Brennan |

The Korean firm has relocated Russia practice leader Hwajoon Lee to spearhead the new outpost.

Singapore
Does Morgan-Stamford Merger Signal New Model for Singapore?

By Anna Zhang |

Fifteen years after the city-state first allowed foreign law firms to partner with local ones, Singapore’s lawyers are still looking for the best way to internationalize their practice. The Morgan Lewis-Stamford merger is just the latest in a long line of, often times, unsuccessful attempts.

Jones Day Launches Same-Sex Marriage Website

By Jennifer Henderson |

The firm has launched a website that provides information on how same-sex relationships are legally recognized in nearly 300 jurisdictions worldwide.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius chairwoman Jami McKeon (left) and Stamford Law Corp. chairwoman Suet-Fern Lee

Singapore
In Unique Deal, Morgan Lewis Merges With Singapore's Stamford Law

By Brian Baxter and Anna Zhang |

Having just absorbed the bulk of Bingham McCutchen, a first-of-its-kind merger now awaits Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, which will announce a union on Monday with Singapore's Stamford Law Corp. The combination will make Morgan Lewis the largest global firm in the city-state and the only one with the capacity to practice local law across a range of practice areas.

Singapore
RHTLaw Taylor Wessing-Linked Company Seeks Singapore IPO

By Anna Zhang |

RHT Holding Ltd., launched by partners of Singaporean firm, is planning to raise capital to fund growth through mergers and acquisitions in the region.

Singapore
Clifford Chances Names New Southeast Asia Corporate Head

By Tom Brennan |

London partner Kathy Honeywood is relocating in May to take the reins from longtime Asia-based partner Simon Clinton.

Singapore, United Kingdom
Kennedys Launches Singapore Joint Law Venture

By Anna Zhang |

The London-based firm will join forces with shipping boutique Legal Solutions to add a local law practice to its city-state office.

Australia, United Kingdom
Pinsent Masons to Launch Australian Offices

By Anna Zhang |

The British firm will extend its construction practice to Sydney and Melbourne to capture work in the country's surging infrastructure sector.

China, Indonesia, Myanmar, Singapore, South Korea
Winners Announced for Asia Legal Awards 2015

On Tuesday night, The Asian Lawyer held its second annual Asia Legal Awards, celebrating the region's top law firms. As promised, here's the list of lucky winners.

Australia, New Zealand
DLA Phillips Fox Rebrands to DLA Piper New Zealand

By Tom Brennan |

The firm will remain financially independent but has changed its name to better align with its global 'best friend.'

China, Hong Kong, Sweden
Sweden's Magnusson Enters Hong Kong

By Anna Zhang |

The Stockholm-based firm opened its first Asian office by forming an association with local firm Odebjer Fohlin.

Dacheng founder Peng Xuefeng and Dentons global chair Joseph Andrew at the signing ceremony in Beijing.

China
The Inside Story of Dentons' Combination with Dacheng

By Julie Triedman |

In its boldest move yet, the verein is betting big on the Chinese economy.

China
Lifting the Veil on Dacheng

By Anna Zhang |

China's biggest firm by head count, Dacheng is little known in the West.

Malaysia, United Kingdom
Trowers & Hamlins Makes Move to Enter Malaysia

By Tom Brennan |

London-based Trowers is the first to take advantage of changes in the country’s law that had prohibited foreign firms from operating there. But other firms with a much bigger Southeast Asian presence aren’t rushing in behind them.

Singapore
HSF Now 'Best Friends' With Singapore's Prolegis

By Tom Brennan |

After deciding last year not to renew its license to practice local law, Herbert Smith Freehills has partnered with the three-lawyer firm to give clients access to Singapore legal advice.

Australia
Mills Oakley to Launch in Perth

By Tom Brennan |

The mid-tier Australian firm has recruited a 15-lawyer team to establish a base in Western Australia.

Adrian Tembel

Australia
Which Aussie Law Firms Will Be Next to IPO?

By Tom Brennan |

Single-practice firms and their easy-to-follow business models have enticed Australian investors so far, but there are indications that some generalist corporate firms may want in on the action.

Hogan Lovells Introduces Community Service Mandate to All Employees

By Nell Gluckman |

The firm has put in place a new policy that requires each of its more than 5,000 employees in about 25 countries to devote 25 hours per year to community service. The policy is unique because it does not just apply to lawyers, and it will encompass the international offices.

Japan, Singapore
Ashurst Moving Asia MP to Tokyo from Singapore

By Tom Brennan |

Matthew Bubb and fellow Singapore partner Dominic Gregory are relocating to bolster the firm’s projects and finance practice in Japan.

China
In Asia, One Firm Goes Big as Another Goes Home

By Steven J. Harper |

Fried Frank and Dentons have implemented dramatically different China strategies. Maybe they're both correct.

Australia, United Kingdom
Withers to Enter Formal Law Alliance in Singapore

By Tom Brennan |

The London-based private client boutique is partnering with 70-lawyer KhattarWong.

Singapore
King & Wood Mallesons to Open in Singapore

By Anna Zhang |

The firm announced it plans to launch by early spring, after this week receiving a foreign law practice license from city-state regulators.

Dacheng founder Peng Xuefeng and Dentons global chair Joseph Andrew at a signing ceremony in Beijing

China
Chinese Law Firms Aim to Follow Dentons-Dacheng

By Anna Zhang |

Challenges of integration and restrictive rules discourage some, but others say more global mergers may be in the cards.

China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea
The Asian Lawyer Announces Finalists for Asia Legal Awards 2015

By Nick Ferguson |

We reveal the contenders for our annual awards ahead of a gala dinner in Hong Kong on March 3.

Australia
Australia's Lavan Legal Launches Family Law Practice

By Tom Brennan |

The Perth-based firm has tapped former Paterson & Dowding partner Framy Anne Brown to lead the new group.

India
Pondering India Without Amarchand

By Tom Brennan |

If the media reports are true, the country's biggest and most prominent law firm will split in two as of April 1. So what's that mean for the Indian legal market?

Dacheng founder Peng Xuefeng and Dentons global chair Joseph Andrew at a signing ceremony in Beijing

China
Dentons, Dacheng Seal the Deal for a Union

By Julie Triedman |

Five days after The American Lawyer broke news of the impending combination between Dentons and Asia's largest firm, the union is now official. Chinese regulators gave the expected green light to the landmark deal between China-based Dacheng Law Offices and Dentons early on Monday Beijing time, clearing the way for the signing ceremony.

India
India’s Amarchand to Split Into Two New Firms: Reports

By Tom Brennan |

India’s largest and most prominent law firm is on the verge of a breakup, according to reports in Indian media.

China, Taiwan
China's Yingke Opens in Taipei

By Anna Zhang |

Asia's second largest firm by headcount has launched a 12-lawyer office in Taiwan.

David Greenwald

China, Hong Kong
Fried Frank Chair Discusses Asia Exit

By Chris Johnson |

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson chair David Greenwald says the firm's decision to effectively close its Hong Kong and Shanghai offices and pull out of Asia, as revealed by The American Lawyer on Monday, was a "difficult but necessary decision."

China
Dentons, Dacheng Deal Sets Legal Industry Abuzz

By Julie Triedman |

While law firm leaders and legal observers marvel at the scope and scale of the tie-up between Dentons and China's Dacheng to create the world's largest firm, several also wonder how the two sides will pull off such a massive undertaking, and whether it will ultimately be successful.

China
Dentons and China's Dacheng Poised for Historic Merger

By Julie Triedman |

The world will soon have a new largest law firm. Dentons and leading Chinese firm Dacheng are poised to announce a combination creating a 6,600-lawyer legal giant operating under the Swiss verein structure.

Hong Kong
Fried Frank to Pull Out of Asia

By Chris Johnson |

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson is to effectively close its Hong Kong and Shanghai offices and pull out of Asia, The American Lawyer has learned.

Wangheng Partner founders, from left to right: Victor Zhang, Qiu Zou and Karen Zhong.

China
Top Chinese Firms Face Associate Problem

By Anna Zhang |

Senior associates at China’s leading firms complain of an uncertain partnership track and a lack of training that is prompting some to quit and set up their own firms.

Australia
Former Holding Redlich Partner Forms New Firm

By Tom Brennan |

Stephen Pyman has taken his clients and launched a boutique that will focus on construction matters from Brisbane.

Singapore
Stamford, Zico Strike Outsourcing Deal

By Tom Brennan |

The agreement will allow Singapore-based Stamford Law Corp. to cut costs and free up their lawyers to focus on more high-end matters.

Takata airbag components on view before a U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hearing titled “Examining Takata Airbag Defects and the Vehicle Recall Process.” November 20, 2014.

Japan
Squire Patton Boggs to Lobby for Takata Corp.

By Andrew Ramonas |

The embattled air bag manufacturer has enlisted one of the firm's partners, former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Rodney Slater, as a special counsel.

India
J. Sagar Associates Opens in Ahmedabad

By Anna Zhang |

The firm launched in the western Indian city with the hire of partner Bijal Chhatrapati.

China
Kennedys and AnJie Partner Up

By Tom Brennan |

The two insurance-focused firms have agreed to service each other’s clients in their respective markets.

China
China's East Associates and Concord & Partners Merge

By Anna Zhang |

The 210-lawyer East & Concord Partners is the latest example of Chinese legal market consolidation.

Japan
Greenberg Traurig Raids Rivals to Launch in Japan

By Tom Brennan |

The U.S. firm has opened its third Asian office in Tokyo by recruiting partners from DLA Piper and White & Case.

South Korea
A Buyers' Bonanza in Seoul

By Nathalie Pierrepont |

An influx of foreign firms in Korea has led to rock-bottom rates for some legal services.

Juan Martinez

Australia
Australia's Last Big Independent Firms Get Squeezed

By Tom Brennan |

In the wake of the Australian law firm merger frenzy of recent years, the few remaining large independents have faced tough competition from the global giants. Now mid-tier firms want a piece of their business, too.

Japan
Big Four No More?

By Tom Brennan |

Japan's upstart TMI Associates has been on a global growth spree. And it isn't done yet.

China, India, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Australia
The Asia 50: Growth Spurt

By Anna Zhang |

Our annual survey names the biggest law firms in the Asia-Pacific region. This time, we found more law firms embracing ambitious expansion plans.

India
Former AZB & Partners CEO Launches New Firm

By Tom Brennan |

Abhijit Joshi has established Mumbai-based Veritus Legal and fellow former AZB corporate partner Nandish Vyas will join him late next month.

Australia
Withers Arrives in Australia

By Tom Brennan |

The British private wealth firm has formed an alliance with former Baker & McKenzie and Ashurst partners to establish its first-ever presence Down Under.

Singapore
Clifford Chance Transfers Projects Co-Head to Singapore

By Tom Brennan |

Paris partner Nicholas Wong moves to the city-state early next month in response to increasing projects work in the Asia Pacific region.

Morgan Lewis

China, Hong Kong, Japan
Bingham Deal Is Done, But Morgan Lewis' Asia Plans Still Unclear

By Tom Brennan and Anna Zhang |

The Philadelphia-based firm has added lawyers in Beijing and Tokyo and gained a Hong Kong office to boot. The lingering question, however, is what role the region will play in a new firm that’s so heavily focused on U.S. work.

Australia
HWL Ebsworth Acquires Another Adelaide Firm

By Tom Brennan |

After taking over 44-lawyer Kelly & Co. earlier this year, the Melbourne-based firm announces that insurance firm Lawson Smith Lawyers will join its South Australia team next month.

Kenya, India, Australia, United Kingdom, Cayman Islands
From Offshore to Onshore, Law Firm Merger Boom Continues

By Nell Gluckman |

Locke Lord Edwards and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius aren’t the only two firms making merger-type moves. Maine’s Verrill Dana, which became one of the largest 350 firms in the U.S. this summer, is poised to hit the 140-lawyer mark after absorbing Connecticut’s Levett Rockwood. The Am Law Daily examines that deal and others in a globetrotting look at some recent legal tie-ups of note.

Australia
HWL Ebsworth to Enter Northern Territory

By Tom Brennan |

The Melbourne-based firm is taking over 25-lawyer Cridlands MB and adding two new offices in the process.

China
Wangheng Partners Launches in Beijing

By Anna Zhang |

Senior lawyers from elite Chinese law firms Jun He and Fangda strike out on their own.

India
India's TMT Law Acquires Chennai Firm

By Tom Brennan |

The technology boutique firm has bolstered its South Indian presence with the addition of five-lawyer APR Associates.

China, Hong Kong
China's Han Kun Launches in Hong Kong

By Anna Zhang |

The technology and venture capital-focused firm has entered the city through an alliance with local IP specialist Choy, Cheung & Co.

Drew & Napier partner Davinder Singh, who picked up the award for best disputes lawyer in the region

Brunei, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam
The Asian Lawyer Emerging Market Awards

By Nick Ferguson |

Many of Asia's leading legal practitioners gathered at the Fullerton hotel in Singapore on Nov. 19 to join The Asian Lawyer in celebrating the best transactions and recognising the best lawyers in the region as part of our inaugural Emerging Markets Awards. Here's a rundown of the winners and the reasons why they were chosen.

South Korea
Korea's Competitive Legal Market Puts Pressure on Price

By Nathalie Pierrepont |

Since free trade agreements opened the country's legal market to foreign firms in 2012, some 20 U.S. and U.K. firms have planted flags in Seoul, putting pressure on legal fees and ramping up competition between foreign and local firms.

China
Report: CNOOC Severs Baker & McKenzie Ties

By MP McQueen |

The Wall Street Journal reports that CNOOC, China's state-owned oil and gas giant, cut its ties to Baker & McKenzie because of alleged conflicts of interest between an in-house lawyer and her husband, the firm's chief representative in Beijing.

South Korea
Milbank to Launch in Korea

By Tom Brennan |

The U.S. firm has submitted an application to the country’s Ministry of Justice to open its 12th global office in Seoul.

India, United Kingdom
Osborne Clarke Strikes Best-Friend Alliance in India

By Tom Brennan |

The U.K. firm is partnering with a newly created Indian outfit launched by Osborne Clarke's former India practice co-head.

Australia, United Kingdom
Clyde & Co Opens in Brisbane

By Anna Zhang |

The shipping firm launched its fourth Australian office with the hire of three partners from Australia's Sparke Helmore.