DEPARTMENT PROFILE

Herbert Smith Freehills

Dispute Resolution: Arbitration (International Firms)

4 ranked lawyersBand 1ChinaAsia-Pacific 2021 View ranking table

Chambers Review

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What the team is known for

Outstanding team acknowledged for its expertise in complex multi-jurisdictional arbitration. Has a respected team in Mainland China as well as Hong Kong, with a strong track record of advising blue-chip clients from sectors including banking, hospitality and TMT. Noted for its tremendous capabilities in advocacy on both commercial agreement and international treaty arbitrations. Leverages broad international energy, construction and infrastructure expertise, with additional strengths acting for private equity clients.

Strengths

A client likes that the team is "very responsive, offers high-quality advice and is capable of handling very complex, high-stakes arbitration proceedings by deploying resources located in different jurisdictions in a seamless manner." The client adds that the team is "driven to achieve a good result for the client."

Another impressed client compares the consistent excellence of the team's advice to the dishes in a world-class sushi restaurant, asserting: "What makes it totally different from others is that whichever chefs make sushi, whether old or young, it is all of the same amazing quality."

Notable practitioners

The firm's chief executive officer, Justin D'Agostino is renowned for his work on high-profile investment treaty arbitrations across the Asia-Pacific region. Of late, he has advised clients in the telecommunications sector.

Kathryn Sanger serves a diverse clientele, with high-profile clients spanning the banking and finance, pharmaceutical and apparel sectors. A client describes her as "very smart and technical," noting that she "really gets into the details of arguments, much more than other people, and has a real instinct for where the issues lie, which is a rare thing." The client adds: "She's really tenacious and doesn't let a point go when she gets hold of it; at times that's proven to be key."

Greater China managing partner May Tai is recognised as being a first port of call for Chinese SOEs and corporates for international arbitrations. Of late, her clients have spanned the telecommunications, natural resources and pharmaceutical sectors.

Simon Chapman QC is praised by one client for being "very strong on legal analysis, persuasive in oral pleadings and a strategic thinker," while another source brands him the "best cross-examiner in the room." He is head of the firm's Greater China arbitration team and is active on global arbitrations for clients in the financial services, private equity and telecommunications spaces.

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Ranked Lawyers

Chambers Research is conducted by 200 Research Analysts, across 200 jurisdictions and provides nearly 6,000 rankings tables. Annually we collect hundreds of thousands of responses from clients, the majority via in-depth interview. Learn more about our methodology.

China

Dispute Resolution: Arbitration (International Firms)


Justin D'Agostino
Eminent Practitioners
Kathryn Sanger
Band 2
May Tai
Band 2
Simon Chapman QC
Band 1