Asia Pacific Legal 500 (2013 Edition)
All in all, Rajah & Tann have 5 practices in tier 1 and 8 practices in tier 2. Unlike previous years, no practice was ranked in tier 3.
It is also noteworthy that the responsiveness of lawyers is a recurring theme in the editorials (based on client feedback) on ranked practices highlighted below. This is the 3rd publication in the last 3 months (after Asian Counsel & IFLR) that has highlighted the Firm's responsive service.
The editorial is highlighted below:
Restructuring and insolvency: Local firms (Tier 1)
With ten specialist partners, Rajah & Tann LLP houses one of the largest dedicated restructuring and insolvency practices in Singapore. Andre Yeap SC acted for the liquidators of MF Global Singapore in its high-profile insolvency. Group head Kwan Kiat Sim advised one of the major lenders and a number of unsecured creditors in the PT Berlian Laju Tanker Group matter, and Eng Beng Lee SC successfully represented TT International in the Court of Appeal. The team continues to assist the liquidators of various Lehman Brothers entities across Asia.
Shipping: Local firms (Tier 1)
‘A cut above the rest’, the 26-lawyer shipping group at Rajah & Tann LLP, headed by Kian Sing Toh SC, is considered to be ‘thorough, responsive and reliable’. Kah Wah Leong and Ian Teo represented Equatorial Marine Fuel in the Bunga Melati 5 case, in which the High Court dismissed a claim in excess of $24m. With a dominant position in cross-border insolvency matters, the team acted for the bank lenders in the $2bn global debt restructuring of Danish shipping group Torm. Leading litigator Jainil Bhandari and financing specialist Winston Kwek are key players.
International arbitration (Tier 1)
‘A top firm in Singapore’, Rajah & Tann LLP is rated for its ‘professionalism, responsiveness and client orientation’. Its large network offers clients an integrated service across jurisdictions to the ‘highest standard’. The firm is acting for a group of companies in a financial dispute relating to a steel plant in the Philippines with claims up to $1bn. It is also representing an international property developer in a dispute over a Singaporean law contract for the sale and purchase of a complex in Vietnam, valued at $140m. Its 14-partner team includes the ‘very hardworking and responsive’ Sim Chee Siong.
Projects and energy: Local firms (Tier 1)
Rajah & Tann LLP advises independent power producers (IPPs) in relation to the development, financing, construction and operation of plants across the region. It also acts in significant project-related arbitration cases, and represented a crude oil and petroleum trading company in a $100m dispute with a Malaysian government-linked port operator after a fire at its storage facility. Yee Leong Chong and Lip San Soh co-head the department, which recently gained Wei Yaw Lam from Pinsent Masons MPillay.
TMT: Local firms (Tier 1)
Led by Rajesh Sreenivasan, the ‘very responsive and knowledgeable’ team at Rajah & Tann LLP has strong transactional and regulatory experience locally and overseas. The highly recommended Steve Tan advised the Authority for Info-Communications Technology Industry of Brunei Darussalam (AITI). The group also handles matters involving outsourcing and the development and implementation of software, and clients include Singapore Post and Singapore Technologies Electronics.
Banking and finance: Local firms (Tier 2)
Choo Hock Soon’s practice at Rajah & Tann LLP provides ‘first-rate’ service, and acts for clients including Citibank, HSBC and Standard Chartered. Angela Lim advised Mapletree Investment in respect of a HK$18.8bn bridging facility to finance the Festival Walk retail mall. Shu Fern Tan joined from Barclays Capital.
Capital markets: Local firms (Tier 2)
Rajah & Tann LLP advised Civmec on its S$40.4m IPO and listing, and acted for Malaysia Smelting Corporation, the first Malaysian company to be dual listed on the Bursa Malaysia and the SGX. Mapletree Investment is a prominent client of the team, which is led by Kim Huat Chia.
Corporate and M&A: Local firms (Tier 2)
At Rajah & Tann LLP, Kim Huat Chia’s team counts CapitaMalls Asia, AXA and CitySpring Infrastructure Trust among its clients. Serene Yeo and Evelyn Wee are recommended, along with Cynthia Goh and Abdul Jabbar Bin Karam Din, who provides ‘consistently sound advice’.
Dispute resolution: Local firms (Tier 2)
With a ‘responsive’ and ‘pragmatic’ team, Rajah & Tann LLP is billed as ‘second to none’ for insolvency and dispute advisory work. Andre Yeap SC acted for the provisional liquidators of MF Global in a sanction by the High Court for the interim distribution of $350m of customers’ funds. Leading figure Eng Beng Lee SC has experience in judicial reviews. Francis Xavier SC heads the team, and Wei Na Sim was recently promoted to partner.
Employment: Local firms (Tier 2)
The cross-disciplinary practice at Rajah & Tann LLP acted for Commerzbank in a claim for S$9.5m by ten former employees in lieu of allegedly promised bonuses. Francis Xavier SC, K. Muralidharan Pillai and Yew Fei Lai have notable experience. Kala Anandarajah is ‘responsive, helpful and commercial’.
Intellectual property: Local firms (Tier 2)
At Rajah & Tann LLP, Kok Keng Lau heads the IP, sports and gaming practice, and has acted for MediaCorp News, Malayan Banking Berhad and Sony Computer Entertainment Hong Kong. Lionel Tan handles matters relating to trade mark and copyright infringements.
Real estate and construction: Local firms (Tier 2)
Rajah & Tann LLP’s strong practice is led by Yee Leong Chong, and was boosted by the hire of Wei Yaw Lam from Pinsent Masons MPillay. It specialises in international construction arbitration, and is involved in large-scale local developments, including a data centre park and a chilled water plant.
Tax: Local firms (Tier 2)
Rajah & Tann LLP’s Ronald Choo is ‘very approachable and professional, with peerless knowledge’. He works closely with the firm’s M&A department to advise big-name trusts and financial institutions on cross-border stamp duty, income tax and withholding tax matters.