Asialaw Profiles (2017 Edition)

Outstanding:
Dispute Resolution & Litigation
Energy & Natural Resources
IT, Telco & Media
Labour & Employment
Private Equity
Project & Infrastructure
Restructuring & Insolvency
Shipping, Maritime & Aviation

Highly Recommended:
Banking & Finance
Capital Markets
Competition & Antitrust
Construction & Real Estate
Corporate/M&A
Financial Services Regulatory
Intellectual Property
Investment Funds
Taxation
Insurance 

Leading Lawyers
Kala Anandarajah, PBM - Competition & Antitrust, Corporate/M&A (Market-leading lawyer)
Patrick Ang - Restructuring & Insolvency (Market-leading lawyer)
Chia Kim Huat - Capital Markets 
Terence Choo - Banking & Finance 
Goh Kian Kwee - Capital Markets, Corporate/M&A (Market-leading lawyer)
Lau Kok Keng - Intellectual Property 
Lee Eng Beng, SC, PBM - Dispute Resolution & Litigation, Restructuring & Insolvency (Market-leading lawyer)
Angela Lim - Banking & Finance 
Larry Lim - Financial Services Regulatory (Market-leading lawyer)
K. Muralidharan Pillai - Dispute Resolution & Litigation (Market-leading lawyer)
Rajesh Sreenivasan - IT, Telco & Media 
Toh Kian Sing, SC - Dispute Resolution & Litigation (Market-leading lawyer)
Francis Xavier, SC, PBM - Dispute Resolution & Litigation 
Andre Yeap, SC - Dispute Resolution & Litigation (Market-leading lawyer)
Serene Yeo - Capital Markets, Corporate/M&A

Banking & Finance
Rajah & Tann is well-known for its involvement in high-end cross-border deals in Southeast Asia. The firm has regularly advised leading banks on syndicated financings and loan facilities during the past year. Angela Lim represented Bank of China, HSBC, Standard Chartered and DBS in S$1.8 billion of facilities granted to UT Singapore Services.

Capital Markets
Rajah & Tann is the go-to firm for many S-chips [Chinese companies listed on the Singapore Exchange] listed on the main board of the Singapore Exchange. “The firm is very professional and consistent in the quality of work delivered, commercial and helpful,” says one client. Evelyn Wee represented BNP Paribas, DBS and Credit Suisse in the S$239 million renounceable underwritten rights issue of OUE Hospitality Trust.

Competition & Antitrust
International law firms regularly consult Rajah & Tann for advice on Singapore competition law, particularly on merger control issues. The firm is also widely recognised for its integrated team across ASEAN markets. Kala Anandarajah has extensive experience in advising on the potential risks of the CCS finding an infringement of the Competition Act, as well as the potential penalties and leniency regime in Singapore.

Construction & Real Estate
Margaret Chin, Elsa Chai and Soh Lip San lead the construction and real estate practice at Rajah & Tann. The firm is known for its risk analysis and mitigation on a variety of construction projects, and its geographical reach includes affiliate firms in China, Lao, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia and Cambodia. The firm successfully represented a property company in the tendering process for a commercial building in Singapore and subsequently helped close the sale.

Corporate/M&A
Rajah & Tann offers prompt response, great commitment, and great network,” says a client. The firm specialises in cross-border transactions Southeast Asia. Danny Lim and Chia Lee Fong advised China Merchants Property Development on its merger with China Merchants Shekou Industrial Zone Holdings, its controlling shareholder, and delisting from the Singapore Exchange.

Dispute Resolution & Litigation
Rajah & Tann has a strong reputation in dispute resolution because of its abilities spanning ASEAN markets and beyond. The firm has acted in headline cases and represented global banks such as HSBC, Citibank and Standard Chartered. Francis Xavier and Patrick Ang defended Samwoh Group’s majority shareholders in a dispute where the minority shareholders alleged they were excluded from information and were deprived of their minority interest.

Energy & Natural Resources
Led by Soh Lip San, the energy and natural resources team at Rajah & Tann has an excellent reputation for its extensive experience of oil and gas, minerals and power projects. The firm has acted for many leading international energy and resources companies in all aspects of projects across Southeast Asia. The firm helped issue a joint venture tender for a project involving a downstream petroleum business.

Financial Services Regulatory
Rajah & Tann has solid experience in advising on the market’s largest, most complex and innovative banking and finance transactions. Regina Liew heads the transactional banking practice team. The firm covers the complete range of financial regulatory matters including traditional banking deals, Islamic banking, syndicated lending, acquisition, green-field project finance and real estate finance. “The firm has good technical knowledge and is very responsive. It is able to give clear advice, not just sitting on the fence,” says a client.

Intellectual Property
Rajah & Tann is commercially minded, sharp, prompt and does not beat around the bush. Its advice is practical, and it has excellent client management,” says a client. Lau Kok Keng successfully represented Fuji Transport Systems, Taiyo Seiki Iron Works, Moby Dick Supplies and ISS Equipment in a patent infringement action commenced by a German ship equipment company. Lau also advised Philip Morris, a leading tobacco company, on Singapore’s proposed plain packaging laws and their impact on IP rights.

Investment Funds
Rajah & Tann is strong in advising on licensing and regulation of fund managers and formation of private investment funds. The firm’s niche investment funds practice counsels private funds managed by leading spin-off portfolio managers in Singapore. Arnold Tan, head of the firm’s funds and investment management team, is one of the leading figures in the market.

IT, Telco & Media
Apart from traditional TMT fields, Rajah & Tann is able to provide a high quality of service in emerging issues including data security and cyber breach, e-commerce, over-the-top services and fintech. Lionel Tan is advising IDA on the regulatory structure and agreements required for the provision of a national two-factor authentication service. The case marks an important milestone in the Singapore government’s intention to make its services and information more accessible online.

Labour & Employment
Rajah & Tann sits atop the rankings this year for its excellent performance on the contentious and non-contentious fronts. K Muralidharan Pillai and Luo Qinghui successfully defended AXA Life Insurance Singapore against a claim brought by an ex-financial services director for alleged defamation, malicious falsehood and breach of duty of care in his employment.

Private Equity
Arnold Tan heads the funds and investment management practice at Rajah & Tann. The team retains its top position, with another strong year advising general and limited partners. Tan and Philip Yeo advised UOB Venture Management in the establishment of UVM 3 Venture Investments, a private equity fund with a S$150 million target. The fund was established as a Singapore limited partnership, and an approved fund under the Global Investor Programme, a programme that encourages investors to set up business or invest in Singapore by offering them Singapore permanent residence status.

Project & Infrastructure
Rajah & Tann can advise on every stage of large or small construction projects. Shemane Chan is advising 1MDB Real Estate (1MDB) on the $10.3 billion Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) development project , which aims to be a world-class financial district integrating residential, retail and leisure spaces in Kuala Lumpur. The firm is advising 1MDB on concessions to provide energy and waste water treatment to TRX, the procurement structure, drafting of the construction contract and negotiations of the common estate services agreement with each plot developer within TRX.

Restructuring & Insolvency
Rajah & Tann is highly regarded by its peers, with a rival partner commenting: “It has a core restructuring team that is very strong.” The firm has solid experience advising on complex and headline cross-border restructuring and insolvency cases. Danny Ong is acting for the liquidators of Dynamic Oil Trading (Singapore). Patrick Ang and Low Poh Ling represented Punj Lloyd and Sembawang Engineers and Constructors in their applications to the High Court for leave to propose schemes of arrangement, compromising more than S$300 million in claimed debts owed to almost 500 creditors.

Shipping, Maritime & Aviation
Rajah & Tann has one of the largest and strongest shipping practices in Southeast Asia and is highly regarded for its role in complex and large cross-border transactions and disputes. Leong Kah Wah and Vellayapan Bala successfully defended Transocean Oil against a claim for unpaid bunkers and setting aside the warrant of arrest against STX Mumbai. Toh Kian Sing and Nathanael Lin successfully defended China Shipping Container Lines (CSCL) against a claim for unpaid bunkers, the Singapore High Court awarding CSCL damages for wrongful arrest.

Taxation
The tax practice at Rajah & Tann, led by Liu Hern Kuan and Vikna Rajah, is highly regarded for its role in complex cross-border transactions with challenging tax issues. The team also leads the negotiation of tax warranties and indemnities and files applications for stamp duty relief and remission.