Firm / Organisation

Gulapa Law Office

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Managing Partner: Charmaine Rose Haw-Lim
Number of partners: 4 Number of lawyers: 18
Languages: Chinese (Hokkien), Chinese (Mandarin), English, Filipino, Spanish

Firm Overview:
Gulapa Law was established by Aris L Gulapa in September 2015. Before setting up Gulapa Law, Aris was a partner at Gatmaytan Yap Patacsil Gutierrez & Protacio (C&G Law) from October 2011 to September 2015. Prior to joining C&G Law, Aris worked as research assistant to Harry First, the former chief of the Antitrust Bureau of the Office of the Attorney-General of the State of New York, and as an associate at Anderson Mori & Tomotsune (Tokyo office, July 2008 to June 2010), Kelvin Chia Partnership (Singapore and Vietnam offices, July 2006 to June 2008), and SyCip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan (December 2003 to June 2006). Aris specializes in cross-border mergers and acquisitions, having advised clients in the course of his M&A practice in Manila, Singapore, Vietnam, and Tokyo.

In February 2017, Gulapa Law became the first Philippine firm to open an office in New York through its affiliate, Gulapa & Baclay LLP. The New York office, in cooperation with the Manila office, is intended to cater to Filipinos based in the US who need counsel for their Philippine-based matters as well as US-based investors intending to expand into the Philippines or the ASEAN region.

In 2018, Aris with his team in Gulapa Law opened a representative office in San Francisco. This is Gulapa Law’s second presence outside the Philippines — as well as the second office in the US — after New York City.

Since 2016, Gulapa Law admitted three partners: Charmaine Rose K Haw-Lim in 2016, Melissa E Chavez-Dee in 2018, and Jose Maria Angel P Machuca in January 2019.

Main Areas Of Practice:
Construction/Real Estate
Data Privacy and Protection
Dispute Resolution
Government Contracts
Labor and Human Resources
Technology, Media & Telecommunications

Infrastructure/Government Contracts:
4 Partners; 12 fee earners based in the Philippines
Infrastructure is the firm’s main specialisation. Although recently established, the firm is already actively representing either private bidders or the Philippine Republic in almost every major flagship infrastructure project — from air to land to water. The firm is advising a consortium comprised of different conglomerates in the proposed rehabilitation of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, advised the International Finance Corporation on the Clark International Airport Development PPP Project and the Asian Development Bank on the proposed LNG Terminal Hub Project of the Philippine National Oil Company, and represented one of the prospective bidders in the selection process for the New Major Player in the telecommunications market.
Partners: Aris L Gulapa, Charmaine Rose Haw-Lim, Melissa Ester E Chavez-Dee, Jose Maria Angel P Machuca
Key Clients: Asian Development Bank, International Finance Corporation, Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc., AC Infrastructure Holdings Corporation, Alliance Global Group, Inc., Asia’s Emerging Dragon Corporation, Filinvest Development Corporation, JG Summit Holdings, Inc., and Metro Pacific Investments Corporation
Contact Names: Aris L Gulapa, Charmaine Rose K Haw-Lim
Tel: +63 2 7960 2845
Email: [email protected]; [email protected]

Construction/Real Estate:
4 Partners; 12 fee earners based in the Philippines
Gulapa Law remains strong in construction. The firm currently advises the SM Group on the Pasay Reclamation Project, a FIDIC-based project, and previously assisted the SM Group on its lease negotiations with IKEA. Partners: Aris L Gulapa, Charmaine Rose Haw-Lim, Melissa Ester E Chavez-Dee, Jose Maria Angel P Machuca Key Clients: SM Prime Holdings, Inc., Infracorp Development Inc., and Dataland, Inc.
Contact Name: Aris L Gulapa, Jose Maria Angel P Machuca
Tel: +63 2 7960 2845
Email: [email protected]; [email protected]

4 Partners; 12 fee earners based in the Philippines; 2 fee earners based in the US
Gulapa Law’s lawyers are trained to provide not only legal advice to clients but also commercial guidance. Gulapa Law has advised foreign clients in the acquisition of shares in and assets of Philippine companies in different industries. The firm advised Omni-Plus on its acquisition of all the shares in ITOCHU Singapore Pte Ltd. in I-FTZ Trade Philippines, Inc., and Densan System Co., Ltd. on its acquisition of a minority stake in CIS Bayad Center, Inc., one of the largest remittance transfer companies in the Philippines.
Partners: Aris L Gulapa, Charmaine Rose Haw-Lim, Melissa Ester E Chavez-Dee, Jose Maria Angel P Machuca
Contact Name: Aris L Gulapa, Melissa Ester E Chavez-Dee
Tel: +63 2 7960-2845
Email: [email protected]; [email protected]

Gulapa Law advised the Ayala Group on doing business in the State of New York. The firm also assisted the MFT Group in setting up its subsidiaries in New York, Singapore, and Hong Kong, and in reviewing their various commercial transactions in Vietnam.

Articles, Highlights and Press Releases

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Philippine-based Law Firm Opens New York Office


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