Asian Lawyer

Asian Firms

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.

Supermarket Wellcome’s owner Dairy Farm International Holdings is the main rival of Li Ka-shing’s A.S. Watsons Co. Ltd. The two have a combined 62.5 percent market share in Hong Kong’s supermarket sector.

Hong Kong
New Law Takes Aim at Hong Kong’s Oligopolies

By Anna Zhang |

But the question is whether or not the so-called Competition Ordinance will succeed. Lawyers say it may not introduce significantly more competition into the local economy. In fact, the real winners may be the lawyers themselves.

China
Canadian Firm Borden Ladner Gervais Heads to China

By Wenxiong Zhang |

The firm is looking to capitalize on the growing economic ties between Ottawa and Beijing.

Hong Kong
Protests Prompt Hong Kong Lawyers to Consider Beijing's Mandates

By Tom Brennan |

Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets in recent weeks to call for electoral reform, but so far the Chinese government has yet to budge. So what recourse, if any, does the city's legal community have in its own potential disagreements with Beijing?

Australia, United Kingdom
Bird & Bird to Merge With Australia’s Truman Hoyle

By Tom Brennan |

The U.K. firm is establishing a presence Down Under by acquiring the 33-lawyer technology boutique.

Randall Arthur, Kobre & Kim Hong Kong partner

Hong Kong
Do Foreign Firms Need a Hong Kong Law Practice?

By Anna Zhang |

The city’s once-booming capital markets had prompted a big push into local law, but the slowdown that followed has forced at least one firm—Milbank—to reconsider. Still, others see value in the practice, though for different reasons. Here’s why.

China
China's Anjie Opens in Shanghai

By Anna Zhang |

The 100-lawyer antitrust and insurance firm launches its second office with three lateral hires.

Hong Kong
Former Mallesons, Milbank Partners Launch New Hong Kong Firm

By Anna Zhang |

Corporate lawyers Dieter Yih, Larry Kwok and Conrad Chan have joined forced to start a new boutique firm focusing on mergers and acquisitions and capital market deals.

Kazakhstan
Two Am Law 100 Firms Double Down on Overseas Investments

By Nathalie Pierrepont |

Baker & McKenzie and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius are setting their sights on some far-flung horizons, setting up new outposts in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and Astana, Kazakhstan, respectively.

Hong Kong
Kobre & Kim Adds Hong Kong Law Practice

By Anna Zhang |

The New York-based firm has hired partner Randall Arthur from local litigation boutique Gall.

Brunei, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore
Finalists Announced for The Asian Lawyer's Emerging Markets Awards

By Tom Brennan |

We've chosen a short list in 17 different categories for our inaugural awards recognizing the top matters and lawyers in Southeast Asia and India.

Singapore
Ernst & Young Enters Singapore Legal Market

By Anna Zhang |

The accounting firm has established a legal practice in the city-state through an alliance with local firm PK Wong & Associates.

Vietnam
ZICOlaw Launches in Hanoi

By Tom Brennan |

The Kuala Lumpur-based firm has opened its second Vietnamese office by recruiting former Mayer Brown JSM partner Phuong Nguyen.

China, Hong Kong
Law Firms React to Mass Protests in Hong Kong

By Tom Brennan |

Street demonstrations by tens of thousands of pro-democracy advocates have made commutes difficult and disrupted some office operations.

Hong Kong
Debevoise & Plimpton to Add Hong Kong Law Capability

By Tom Brennan |

After 20 years of advising clients on the New York and English law aspects of their business in Asia, the firm is setting up a local law practice in Hong Kong as well.

The Global Legal Market: By the Numbers

By Drew Combs |

A look at how the Am Law 200's head count in top markets around the world has changed between 1998 and today.

A Year of Slow But Solid Growth for Global 100 Firms

By Chris Johnson |

A surge in dealmaking boosted the top and bottom lines for the world's top-grossing firms, which experienced steady if unspectacular growth in 2013.

China
Broad & Bright Hires in Shanghai, Plans Tokyo, L.A. Launch

By Anna Zhang |

Peter Neumann, former Shanghai managing partner for Miami's Greenberg Traurig, will join the Chinese firm next week.

The Churn

Hong Kong, Australia, Germany, United Kingdom, Mexico
Akin Loses Two, But Again Raids Bingham, Plus More Lateral Moves

By Brian Baxter |

Bingham McCutchen lost four more partners to Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld this week in Hong Kong and London, as the former continues to pursue a potential merger with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. McCarter & English adds eight partners of its own through a merger, Jones Day hires another Latin American dealmaker and more notable moves from throughout The Am Law 200.

Australia
Five Firms on $3.2 Billion Sydney Rapid Transit Deal

By Anna Zhang |

Ashurst advised a consortium consisting of Leighton Group, MTR and UGL Rail on a winning contract to build Australia's first fully automated train system.

Japan
TMI Wants to Make Japan's Big Four a Big Five

By Tom Brennan |

The gap between the country's top firms and the rest of Japan’s legal market has always been seen as unbridgeable. But TMI Associates is determined to challenge that status quo.

China
Stephenson Harwood Shutters Guangzhou Office

By Anna Zhang |

The U.K. firm has also lost its sole resident lawyer in Beijing, and is currently looking for new lawyers to work from the Chinese capital.

business men in London

Hong Kong
Akin Gets Two Hong Kong Partners in Bingham Raid

By Julie Triedman and Brian Baxter |

Corporate partner Charles Rogers and restructuring partner Naomi Moore are moving over as part of Akin's en masse recruitment of most of Bingham's London and Frankfurt offices.

Singapore Law Minister K. Shanmugam spoke of an oversupply of law graduates at the Criminal Justice Conference organized by the National University of Singapore and the Singapore Management University on Aug. 21.

Singapore
Singapore Law Students to Face Tough Job Market

By Anna Zhang |

The city-state has gone from an undersupply of law graduates to an oversupply. Students are advised to consider other career options, as Law Minister K. Shanmugam warns that there may not be enough training contracts to allow all graduates to qualify.

Sri Lanka
Duane Morris Forms Alliance to Enter Sri Lankan Market

By Gina Passarella |

Duane Morris appears to be the first U.S. law firm to enter the Sri Lankan legal market in some capacity.

Global Legal Awards: Global Citizenship Awards of the Year

In this category, The American Lawyer Global Citizenship Awards honor global matters dedicated to the spirit of pro bono and social responsibility.

India
Amarchand Opens Eighth Office

By Anna Zhang |

The Indian firm launches in Gurgaon with four partners relocating from its New Delhi base.

Brad Butwin.

Singapore
O'Melveny Sees Wave of Departures in Singapore

By Tom Brennan |

Over the past nine months, the Los Angeles-based firm has lost 14 lawyers in its city-state office. Why have so many left, and what does O'Melveny plan to do next?

The Asian Lawyer’s Ready for Relaunch

By Asian Lawyer Staff |

On Monday, Aug. 25, the site will become part of a broader collection of global legal coverage by parent publication The American Lawyer. In the run-up to that launch, The Asian Lawyer site will be on standby.

Dechert

Singapore
Dechert Gets License to Practice in Singapore

By Gina Passarella |

Dechert has officially been granted a license to practice law in Singapore, eight months after the firm applied for permission to practice in the country.

Myanmar
Myanmar's Moment?

By Tom Brennan |

With its rich natural resources and recent political and economic reforms, Myanmar has become one of Asia's "it" destinations for law firms. But will the widely anticipated boom in foreign investment actually follow?

A visitor walks past a design promoting the recently opened China (Shanghai) Pilot Free-Trade Zone in Shanghai.

China
A Long Way From Liberalization

By Anna Zhang |

Despite the hype, law firms are seeing limited upside so far from the new Shanghai Free Trade Zone.

Trading Places

By Tom Brennan |

Some Anglo-American firms have started touting Old Glory over the Union Jack in Asia.

China
Appleby Gets Shanghai Practice License

By Tom Brennan |

The offshore firm opened an office in Shanghai in 2012 but previously only offered fiduciary services.

Australia
HWL Ebsworth Acquires Adelaide Firm

By Tom Brennan |

HWL Ebsworth said the addition of 44-lawyer Kelly & Co would allow it to better serve clients with a presence in South Australia.

China
Alibaba Asks Firms to Pick Sides

By Anna Zhang |

The Chinese e-commerce giant, which is expected to have the world's largest IPO since Facebook Inc. later this year, has let it be known that it won't be hiring any firm for transactional work that also advises its major competitors. Though such demands are not uncommon outside of Asia, not least in the U.S. tech sector, lawyers say firms face a more complicated choice in the super-competitive but still-developing China market.

China, Hong Kong, United Kingdom
Anglo-American Firms Face Identity Choice in Asia

By Tom Brennan |

Should firms like DLA Piper or Hogan Lovells pitch themselves as British or American in Asia? At most firms resulting from transatlantic mergers, the British side brought more to the table in Asia and continues to run the show there. But there are also strong incentives to accentuate their American identities.

China
A Merger Wave on the Horizon for Chinese Firms?

By Anna Zhang |

A potential merger between two of China's top law firms—Jun He Law Offices and Zhong Lun Law Firm—has launched a flurry of speculation in the region about what such a combination would mean, both for the two firms involved and the still-developing Chinese legal profession.

South Korea
Skadden Opens in Seoul

By Tom Brennan |

The firm has relocated partner H. Young Shin, head of the its Korea practice, from New York to lead the new office.

China
Zhong Lun, Jun He Discussing Possible Merger

By Anna Zhang |

The two Beijing-based law firms are generally considered to be among China's top three with King & Wood Mallesons. A merger between Zhong Lun Law Firm and Jun He Law Offices would create a combined firm with about 1,300 lawyers.

Australia
Clayton Utz Closes Hong Kong Office

By Tom Brennan |

The Australian firm said it has decided to focus on its home market. Its four-partner Hong Kong affiliate will carry on as a stand-alone firm.

China
China's Light Touch on Insider Trading

By Anna Zhang |

In what's believed to be its first enforcement action against a lawyer for insider trading, the China Securities Regulatory Commission fined Jun He Law Offices partner Mi Xingping just $5,000. A number of lawyers in the country say insider trading is not usually viewed as a serious offense in China, with offenders more often hailed as clever than reviled as criminal.

Myanmar
Berwin Leighton Enters Myanmar Alliance

By Tom Brennan |

The firm is partnering with Yangon-based Legal Network Consultants.

China
Jingtian & Gongcheng Fined Over IPO Due Diligence

By Anna Zhang |

The leading Beijing capital markets law firm says it was fined $50,000 and ordered to disgorge $25,000 in legal fees by China’s securities regulator, which also lifted a four-month ban on IPO applications from the firm.

Singapore
Harneys Opening in Singapore

By Anna Zhang |

The offshore firm's global banking and finance head is relocating from Hong Kong to head the new office.

China, Hong Kong
The Asian Lawyer All-Star Awards

By Anthony Lin |

On March 5, at a gala dinner held at the Conrad Hotel in Hong Kong, The Asian Lawyer presented its inaugural All-Star Awards. We sought to do something different, recognizing excellence in advising key industries rather than simply honoring the biggest, highest-profile deals of the year (though we took those into account too). We also said we would be publishing the reasons for the decisions that we made. And so here we do exactly that, category by category.

Japan
Baker & McKenzie Acting for Mt. Gox on Tokyo Bankruptcy

By Anna Zhang |

Tokyo District Court has accepted the troubled bitcoin exchange’s civil rehabilitation application, in which Mt. Gox will be granted protection from creditors while it seeks a buyer.

China, Hong Kong
Howse Williams Bowers Start of Hong Kong Indie Wave?

By Tom Brennan |

The former Reed Smith Richards Butler partners who launched the firm two years ago see opportunity in independence, while so many others have staked their fortunes on tie-ups with large international players. And they say others may follow in their footsteps.

Australia
K&L Gates Hires Sydney Partner

By Tom Brennan |

Former Henry Davis York partner Elizabeth Gray has joined the firm's investment management practice.

Singapore
Herbert Smith Freehills Drops Singapore QFLP License

By Anthony Lin |

Singapore's Ministry of Law announced Friday that four other foreign firms renewed their licenses, which allow them to practice Singapore law in exchange for meeting certain local hiring and revenue targets, while one firm was given a one-year conditional extension.

China
Curtis Mallet-Prevost Opens in Beijing

By Anna Zhang |

The new office, the first in China for the New York firm, will focus on international trade matters.

Myanmar
Allen & Gledhill Opens in Myanmar

By Tom Brennan |

The Singaporean firm is the latest international law firm to open an office in the newly opened economy.

South Korea
Bird & Bird Enters Korea Alliance

By Anna Zhang |

The U.K. firm has signed a nonexclusive agreement with 95-lawyer Hwang Mok Park.

China, United States
Lawyers in Asia Shocked by U.S. Role in Spying, Not Spying Itself

By Tom Brennan |

Law firms have long taken elaborate precautions, often including leaving the country, to protect against expected surveillance in China. But news that the U.S. National Security Agency, through allies in Australian intelligence, listened in on communications between an American law firm and its client has been met with a mix of surprise and shrugged shoulders.

China, Japan
Japan's Largest Firm Opens in Shanghai

By Tom Brennan |

The new office is the second in China for Nishimura & Asahi, one of Tokyo's Big Four corporate law firms.

Australia
Jones Day to Open in Perth

By Tom Brennan |

The U.S. firm has recruited former Allens partner Stephen McComish to lead the new office, which is expected to open in April.

Afghanistan, Singapore, Vietnam
Singapore Firm Forms Vietnam Joint Venture

By Tom Brennan |

RHTLaw Taylor Wessing has struck a deal with Vietnam's PBC Partners.

Vietnam
Rajah & Tann Merges with Vietnamese Firm

By Tom Brennan |

The Singapore firm is combining with LCT Lawyers, a 25-lawyer firm operating in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Danang.

Myanmar
Baker & McKenzie Launches in Myanmar

By Tom Brennan |

Sydney partner Chris Hughes will lead the new Yangon office, the third opened in the country by a U.S. law firm.

China, United Kingdom
British Firms Not Conceding on U.S. Law Work in Asia

By Anna Zhang |

Slaughter and May's recent recruitment in Hong Kong of its first-ever lateral and first-ever U.S. law partner underscores the importance of U.S. law in Asia capital markets in particular. Though top British firms have notably failed to flourish in New York, they are determined to not let U.S. law become their Achilles heel in Hong Kong, where they face stiff competition from actual American firms.

Malaysia
Barristers' Chambers Opening in Malaysia

By Anna Zhang |

London's 39 Essex Street will open a new office in the Kuala Lumpur Regional Centre for Arbitration later this year.

Australia
American Law Firm's Communications Spied On

By Marcia Coyle |

A February 15 New York Times story suggested that Mayer Brown’s communications with a client, the Indonesian government, had been monitored while the firm was assisting the foreign country in trade disputes with the United States. Those revelations may provide new impetus for the U.S. Supreme Court to revisit a 2013 decision involving the nation's electronic surveillance law.

Australia
Mid-Sized Australian Firms Announce Merger

By Tom Brennan |

Thomsons Lawyers and Herbert Geer are combining to form 310-lawyer Thomson Geer.

South Korea
Stephenson Harwood to Launch Korea Office

By Tom Brennan |

The U.K. firm has recruited DLA Piper partner Michael Kim to lead its planned office in Seoul.

Malaysia
Will Firms Head Into Malaysia?

By Tom Brennan |

Malaysia will soon open its legal market to foreign law firms, in the hopes that they can help turn Kuala Lumpur into the leading global center for Islamic finance. But with established global legal and financial hub Singapore virtually right next door, many lawyers wonder if a Malaysia office is really necessary.

deloitte

China
Deloitte Dabbles in Chinese Legal Practice

By Anna Zhang |

If the Chinese arms of the Big Four accounting firms get suspended from auditing, at least one of them may have something to fall back on. Deloitte quietly opened a Shanghai law firm last year with seven professionals, the most senior of whom are also Deloitte partners.

China
The Asian Lawyer Announces Awards Finalists

By Anthony Lin |

We are pleased to announce the finalists in nine industry categories for The Asian Lawyer All-Star law firm awards.

Myanmar
Singapore Firm Enters Myanmar Alliance

By Anna Zhang |

Colin Ng & Partners has formed an alliance with a Yangon firm led by a former judge of Myanmar's supreme court.

China
Shanghai Firms Merge

By Anna Zhang |

Boss & Young and JoinWay Law Firm have combined to form a firm with around 200 lawyers and seven offices.

Japan
Mori Hamada to Open in Myanmar, Osaka

By Tom Brennan |

The Japanese law firm is following rival Nishimura & Asahi in opening a Yangon office.

Indonesia, United Kingdom
Clifford Chance Enters Into Indonesian Alliance

By Anna Zhang |

The British firm has signed a deal with newly-launched Jakarta firm Linda Widyati & Partners.

Hong Kong
Winston & Strawn to Open in Taipei

By Anna Zhang |

No partners will be resident in the new office, and the firm's Taiwan practice will be run out of Washington, D.C.

China, North Korea, South Korea, Australia
The Asia 50

By Tom Brennan |

The Asian Lawyer presents our second annual survey of the Asia Pacific region's largest law firms, both international and domestic.

China
What Chinese Associates Make

By Anna Zhang |

A buyer's market for legal talent means junior lawyers at leading Chinese firms often make less in a whole year than a New York associate gets as a year-end bonus.

China
Beyond Beijing

By Anna Zhang |

For international firms, China has generally been a tale of two cities: Beijing and Shanghai. But a number of firms are starting to eye second-tier markets like Chongqing, Dalian, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Qingdao.