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Atsumi & Sakai

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Managing Partner: Hiroo Atsumi
Number of lawyers: 140+
Languages: Chinese, English, German, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Marathi, Russian, Vietnamese

Firm Overview:
Atsumi & Sakai is a multi-award-winning full service Tokyo law firm and the only independent Japanese law firm with a London office. Foreign Partners and lawyers have real experience in leading US and international law firms with leading expertise in finance, structured finance, capital markets, corporate, antitrust/competition, dispute resolution and real estate. The firm is also established in and expanding into cross-border M&A, investments and IT/IP practices. Over half of the firm’s work now includes an international element with foreign lawyers licensed in Japan to advise on the laws of the US States of New York and California, the People’s Republic of China, England and Wales, India, the States of Queensland and Victoria (Australia), US and Australian Federal law, and the laws of the Federal Republic of Germany (in collaboration with Janssen Foreign Law Office). Atsumi & Sakai is committed to promoting diversity; in addition to having both partners and associates who are registered foreign lawyers, the firm is notable for employing women in numerous roles throughout the firm, with more than 30% of all lawyers being women.

Firm Contact:
Contact: Yuri Suzuki
Email: [email protected]  

Sectors:
Mobile Banking
Smart Finance Management
Crowd Funding
Payment Services 
Smartphone based services by securities and insurance companies
Invoice Trading
Lending
Crowdfunding
Information Bank
Automated Investment Advice
Virtual & Digital Currencies
Initial Coin Offerings
InsurTech
Distributed Ledger Technology based transactions
Application Programming Interface provided by banks, securities and insurances

Main Areas of Practice:
With the rapid advance and development of technologies such as IoT, big data, AI, Blockchain, etc. and platform businesses in the sharing economy, legislators frequently have trouble keeping up with the pace of change. Laws which were framed for earlier circumstances may have unintended consequences as a result of these developments, whilst in other cases laws designed to regulate certain industries or business sectors may need to be interpreted and applied in light of the changing face of technology and the new economy. Atsumi & Sakai keeps abreast of these changes, and assists clients with the novel legal issues arising from them through the following practices:

Innovation Practice:
This practice group combines lawyers experienced in the fields of law relevant to this rapidly changing world. There are two teams in the innovation practice group: the Fintech team and the IoT/AI team. The Fintech team head is partner Yuri Suzuki. The IoT/AI team heads are partners Masataka Hayakawa, Hiroyuki Sanbe and Takafumi Ochiai.

The Fintech team assists clients ranging from large companies to start-ups such as financial institutions, telecommunication companies, technology companies, venture capital firms, etc. and together with the IoT/AI team provides legal support for technical innovation in X-Tech industries. Legal services include contracts of affiliation, joint venture, share purchase, etc., regulatory advice (including licensing matters and structuring and creation of new products and solutions), IPO, incorporation of a new company, employment advice, fundraising structure advice, data protection and cybersecurity, and IP matters. The teams also support governmental agencies, academic institutions and industrial groups for research and investigations on laws and regulations in various jurisdictions.

Atsumi & Sakai is a part of the Fintech ecosystem. The firm links clients to potential transaction partners, potential role models, potential investors, government support desks, and support industry-government-academia partnerships. The firm leads the industry and community to grow in an appropriate way by avoiding money laundering and protecting consumers. Team members often speak at international and domestic events and conferences and establish networks in the Fintech community worldwide. 

Recent Highlights & Awards:
■ Atsumi & Sakai's innovation practice group was featured in 'ALB Innovation List 2017' published in Asian Legal Business, March 2017, published by Thomson Reuters.
■ Atsumi & Sakai was selected as one of the final shortlisted firms for the Financial Times’ FT Asia-Pacific Innovative Lawyers Awards 2016 and 2017.
■ Atsumi & Sakai has been constantly recognised as a leading firm in the banking and finance section of Chambers Global/Asia Pacific (2018), The Legal 500, IFLR 1000 and Asialaw Profiles.
■ From 2016 to date, Atsumi & Sakai has been listed as a Tier 1 independent local firm in the TMT section of The Legal 500 Asia Pacific.

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Project Finance 2019 Law and Practice in Japan

Miho Niunoya, Michiaki Hosoi, Naoki Kanehisa, Yoko Nobata

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