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DEPARTMENT PROFILE

Baker McKenzie

Corporate/M&A & Private Equity

Band 1Asia-Pacific RegionGlobal 2021 View ranking table

Chambers Review

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What the team is known for

Immense corporate practice with a sizeable bench in most Asian jurisdictions, supporting the provision of substantial, multi-office teams for cross-border transactions. Notable capability in South-East Asia, with a local presence in seven ASEAN countries, most notably Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. Active advising clients in a variety of industries including media, energy, and food and drink. Also maintains noteworthy private equity capabilities, assisting major Asian investment managers and sovereign wealth funds, with strength handling investments across Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam and Singapore.

Strengths

"Their client service is excellent, and Baker is also a one-stop shop we trust. It’s not just the M&A, but they can pull in colleagues in antitrust, capital markets and tax expertise to advise on different aspects of the transaction. This ability to respond very quickly with expert advice really sets them apart," notes a client.

Another source agrees, and appreciates that the team are "able to advise on both listed-company and cross-border transactions across various sectors and geographic locations," adding: "They have sufficient resources and expertise to cover the various aspects of M&A, and they are able to advise on other issues such as HR, taxation, antitrust and insurance, which are equally important in an M&A transaction."

The team is said to "understand the client well and is willing to go the extra mile, in a cost-effective way, to help the client."

One client notes that the team is "very good at advising on investments, deal structuring and drafting complex legal arrangements. They are very aware and cognisant of our commercial needs and interests."

A source says: "They make an effort to understand your business, which helps in getting to the right advice."

One client reports: "Both partners and associates at every level demonstrate transaction experience, proactiveness and pragmatism in every aspect of their mandate."

"They consistently provide a constructive and well-articulated approach to challenging issues, which is extremely valuable," attests a source.

A client appreciates that the team is "very professional, diligent and responsive."

A further interviewee comments that "their service is a one-stop shop, which is helpful because we sometimes need help on various legal aspects."

Another interviewee notes: "I have had a really great experience with them. They consistently exceed expectations and are always my first choice."

Clients say the team possesses "strong legal capability and skill."

"We are always impressed with the service and commercial awareness of our Baker McKenzie advisers. The firm invests a lot of time and care into maintaining our relationship, so we always feel we receive good value for money," enthuses a client.

Another interviewee appreciates that the lawyers are "always, punctual and commercial in their advice."

A client explains that "they provide thorough legal analysis of course, but at the same time they also help provide commercial perspectives."

One client is impressed by the team's "seamless communication with any party involved," while another highlights the team's "dependability in responding quickly to complex matters."

A client reports: "They are our firm of choice for M&A activities - they are proactive and commercial."

Another interviewee states that "Baker's strong international presence and sophisticated practice is one of the primary reasons why we use them."

Work highlights

Acted for Metro AG on the establishment of its strategic partnership with Wumei, following Metro AG's EUR1.9 billion sale of Metro China to Wumei.

Advised Amcorp on its SGD75.5 million acquisition of a 94.42% shareholding in TEE Land.

Advised MUTB in relation to its purchase of the CBA's global asset management division.

Represented Fortis Healthcare in its acquisition of private hospital chain RHT Health Trust's asset portfolio.

Acted as Taiwan counsel to Nuvoton Technology on its acquisition of Panasonic's semiconductor business.

Advised Hitachi Chemical on the divestment of its capacitor business, including its subsidiary Hitachi AIC, to Nantong Jianghai.

Acted for Hyundai Motors and Kia Motors on their EUR90 million Series C investment in Croatian 'hypercar' manufacturer Rimac Automobili.

Advised UOB Venture Management on its USD44 million investment in Dat Viet VAC Group.

Advised Standard Chartered Bank and Astra International on the USD2.14 billion sale of Bank Permata.

Acted for EGCO Group on its THB3 billion acquisition of a 44.6% stake in Thai Pipeline Network, as well as the subsequent joint venture between the two entities.

Notable practitioners

Kuala Lumpur-based Brian Chia is head of the firm's Asia-wide M&A practice group and Kelvin Poa leads the Asia-wide private equity practice from Singapore. Hong Kong-based Tracy Wut leads the firm's China corporate M&A team and Michael Wong is a key contact in Taiwan. Hideo Norikoshi is a key contact in Tokyo and Benjamin McLaughlin is a key contact in Australia. Sorachon Boonsong is a key contact in Thailand.

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