Chair of the Firm: Larren M Nashelsky
Number of partners worldwide: 326 (US partners: 240)
Number of other lawyers worldwide: 765 (US other lawyers: 539)
With more than 1,000 lawyers across 17 offices, Morrison & Foerster is a preeminent global law firm dedicated to delivering business-oriented results to clients across Asia, the United States and Europe. Dynamic technology and life science companies, large financial institutions, leading consumer product companies and other market leaders come to MoFo for knowledge, innovation and business aptitude. MoFo handles some of the world’s largest cross-border transactions and resolves major disputes across multiple jurisdictions. The firm has a long-standing commitment to pro bono work and social justice. MoFo is one of the preeminent law firms in Asia, providing integrated US and local law advice. With offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, the firm has handled major matters in China for over 35 years. The Tokyo office is now the largest Japan office of any global firm and one of the largest law firms in Japan, domestic or international. The Singapore office, which opened in 2013, features lawyers with many years of experience in South and Southeast Asia.
Main Areas of Practice:
MoFo’s market leading practice in Asia regularly represents issuers and underwriters in debt and equity financings, as well as in domestic venture capital and private equity investments. It is one of the largest and most active capital markets practices of any international law firm in the region, advising clients on a broad range of corporate financing matters involving Hong Kong, Japan, US, and English law.
MoFo’s Asia finance practice advises clients throughout the region on a comprehensive range of multi-jurisdictional financing transactions. These include project finance, acquisition and leveraged finance, real estate finance, takeovers, debt structuring and restructuring, syndicated lending and subscription line financing. The Tokyo office has one of the largest finance practices of any international law firm in Japan, with substantial experience handling a wide array of domestic and international financial and financial restructuring transactions.
MoFo has the largest IP team in Asia and leads the region in outsourcing, licensing and technology transactions. Only a select number of international firms focus on IP matters in Tokyo, and MoFo has the largest and most comprehensive IP team, with over 30 lawyers practicing in the Tokyo office. In China, MoFo has extensive experience in representing Chinese companies in their IP disputes in the US and in the development of their global IP portfolios. MoFo has also been advising its global clients who seek to proactively protect their IP from infringement and misappropriation in China and implement enforcement actions in China.
Investigations & Regulatory Compliance:
MoFo has one of the world’s leading compliance, investigations and anti-corruption practices. The Asia team features lawyers with significant experience in all types of investigations and regulatory compliance issues faced by companies in the region and globally, and includes in its ranks accomplished trial lawyers, former prosecutors and experienced former in-house counsel. The team works seamlessly with the global team which boasts former US government officials specialising in national security, sanctions and international trade, as well as privacy and in-house forensic accounting experts.
MoFo’s full-service Asia dispute resolution practice is a fully integrated regional practice, working seamlessly across its five offices in Asia, to handle all aspects of complex commercial litigation, international arbitration and pre-dispute counselling matters, including IP litigation. The firm has full-service Japanese domestic litigation capabilities, and represents client on high-profile proceedings before the Tokyo District Court, the IP High Court, the Japan Patent Office, and the Japan Customs Office. MoFo also represents clients before the Hong Kong courts and regulatory bodies in Hong Kong.
Mergers & Acquisitions:
MoFo advises clients on mergers and acquisitions worldwide. MoFo has the most active M&A practice of any international law firm in Tokyo, which represents Japanese and non Japanese companies both in Japan and around the world. In China, MoFo’s M&A practice combines senior PRC regulatory expertise with international deal execution capability. The firm’s lawyers in Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong have significant PRC-related cross-border M&A experience. In South and Southeast Asia, the firm’s lawyers have many years of experience in managing complex cross-border transactions across the diverse jurisdictions in the region.
MoFo’s Asia private funds practice represents fund sponsors and investors in the formation and operation of investment funds of all strategies, including buyout, venture capital and other private equity funds, fund-of-funds, distressed company funds, real estate, infrastructure and hedge funds. With funds lawyers based in key financial centers across the globe, the group handles complex and specialised cross-border fund raising, fund formations and investments.
The Asia real estate practice group represents investors in the financing, acquisition, joint venture and development of real estate investments in Asia and internationally. The group has a robust and fast-growing practice representing real estate private equity firms, investment managers, sovereign wealth funds, development companies and REITs that invest in real estate assets and companies in this sector. It is also one of the few groups that have been active in the formation and offering of interests in J-REITs.
MoFo has assisted leading media and IT companies, global banks and financial institutions, biotech companies and private equity funds in navigating legal, structuring and commercial challenges arising from handling technology projects in Asia’s rapidly evolving business and regulatory environment.