Hiroshi Watanabe

Hiroshi Watanabe has led clients to victory in many disputes concerning corporate control, including, among others, defending against the hostile takeover attempt of Hokuetsu Paper by Oji Paper. He has been engaged in a lot of well-known corporate lawsuits including derivative suits. He has been engaged in well-known securities litigation matters; especially, he led a ground-breaking case against Intelligence, Ltd., where, for the first time ever in Japan, regression analysis was used to adjust the stock price in a securities action. He is also very experienced in litigation relating to business acquisitions and labour disputes. Finally, he has very deep experience working on cases dealing with different kinds of economic crimes. These include cases about the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act of Japan (regarding insider trading and correcting past accounts), the Anti-Monopoly Act of Japan involving international cartels, the Act against Unjustifiable Premiums and Misleading Representations, the Unfair Competition Prevention Act and tax evasion.

Firm Overview:

Ushijima & Partners is a full-service law firm representing domestic and international clients in Japan and providing overseas legal services to Japanese clients both directly and through its international alliances, such as Multilaw, ELA and LAW. The firm was founded in 1985 by Shin Ushijima and currently numbers 52 attorneys.

The firm represents clients across a broad range of industries, including financial institutions, trading companies, manufacturers, system integration vendors, IT service providers, construction companies, real estate companies, broadcasters, telecommunications, entertainment, distributors, professional associations and public or quasi-public agencies. The firm also represents high-net-worth individuals in the areas of family business planning and trusts and estates.

The founding partner is a leading practitioner in general corporate matters, including compliance and corporate governance, and is often interviewed on TV and in the media. The firm has significant experience in M&A, representing corporations in both international and domestic M&A for either acquirers or targets and in the hostile takeover defence area. In fact, the firm was awarded ‘Corporate M&A Law Firm of the Year – Japan’ by DealMakers Global Awards 2015 and ‘Best International Transactions Law – Japan’ by Acquisition International in its 2015 M&A Awards. The firm has long experience representing major domestic insurers and its founding and managing partner is an outside director of a major domestic insurer. The firm has an elite reputation for its deep knowledge and high level of practice in real estate and securitisation. The senior real estate partner is well known as a major pioneer and eminent practitioner in the securitisation of real property with wide knowledge of the relevant laws. The firm has expertise in intellectual property and technology including major disputes involving system development and integration. The firm has expertise in labour matters and has won precedent-setting victories in corporate restructuring for a major well known multinational company, and in injunctive relief to prevent the former president of a major well known multinational company from competing. The firm also has significant victories in soil contamination and construction litigation.

Some of the firm’s attorneys have served as high level prosecutors in the Ministry of Justice and the Public Security Intelligence Agency, as well as in-house general counsel, in international organisations, and as chairmen or advisors of numerous committees relating to REIT and real estate investment, including MLIT and the Ministry of Construction and the Japan Real Estate and Japan Economic Research Institute. Associate attorneys are regularly seconded to government agencies.

All of the firm’s Japanese attorneys are bilingual in Japanese and English, and its clients comprise roughly 50% domestic and 50% international. The firm has native English-speaking, US-admitted attorneys assisting in presentation and communication to clients.

Although a very large part of the firm’s practice is corporate, the firm has a strong reputation as top litigators in litigation and dispute resolution, including acting for major multinational companies with subsidiaries in Japan, and is often sought by clients aware of its reputation by word of mouth as the go-to litigation counsel in Japan.

Masato Suzuki

Masato Suzuki is a Partner at Inaba and Partners.

Inaba and Partners was established with the aim of providing high-quality legal services tailored to client needs through the flexible handling of professional lawyers. In order to achieve such goal, our firm, while taking advantage of our expertise, strives not to be arbitrary, but to provide the legal services required in a timely manner based on the needs of clients. Lawyers who belong to our firm work together to achieve this by sharing the same philosophy.

Anne K.T. Hung

Anne K.T. Hung leads the Major Projects: Energy, Mining & Infrastructure Group of Baker McKenzie’s Tokyo office. She regularly advises well-known Japanese utilities, banks, mining, construction and trading companies in power, natural resources and other major project matters. Ms. Hung was named Best Practitioner for Energy and Resources at the Euromoney Women in Business Law Awards 2013. Prior to relocating to Japan in 1991, Ms. Hung practiced in the Firm’s Sydney office from 1989.

Practice Focus:

Anne Hung leads the Major Projects: Energy, Mining & Infrastructure Group of Baker McKenzie’s Tokyo office. She regularly advises well-known Japanese utilities, banks, mining, construction and trading companies in power, natural resources and other major project matters. Ms. Hung’s practice focuses on oil and gas, natural resources, infrastructure, and power project development matters.

Representative Legal Matters:

– Acted for various Japanese utilities on numerous long-term LNG sale and purchase agreements from Sakhalin, Australia, Indonesia, Middle East and North America.
– Acted for various Japanese utilities on numerous master LNG sale and purchase agreements from companies such as Gazprom, Chevron, Shell, ExxonMobil, BG, Anglo, Qalhat, Mitsui,Mitsubishi, Statoil and Brunei, etc.
– Acted for the project company on a JBIC financed oil rig project in Egypt.
– Acted for the project company and sponsors in a JBIC financed nickel project in the Philippines.
– Acted for Japanese investors in the following coal mine acquisitions in Australia: Maules Creek, Wandoan, Ashton, NCA, Stratford, Foxleigh, Rolleston, Oaky Creek, Ensham, Blair Athol, Clermont, and Gloucester.
– Acted for a Japanese investor in a rare earth mining project in Argentina.
– Advised a Japanese company on its proposed acquisition of an interest in a 110 MW solar power project in the United States and a 50 MW solar power project in Spain.
– Advised a Japanese company on its acquisition of an interest in a 100 MW IPP thermal power project in the Philippines.
– Acted for a Japanese company in various JCAA arbitrations in Japan in relation to its investment in Mongolia.
– Acted for a Japanese consortium in a mineral joint venture in Western Australia. Work included advising on law, formulating strategies and briefing counsel.

Professional Honors:

– Best Practitioner, Energy and Resources, Euromoney Women in Business Law Awards 2013
– Leading lawyer for Projects & Energy, Chambers Asia Pacific 2009-2013
– Leading lawyer for Projects, Asia Pacific Legal 500 2008-2013
– Leading lawyer for Projects, Euro Money Legal Group Guide – Energy and Natural Resources Lawyers
– Leading lawyer for Projects, IFLR1000

Professional Associations & Memberships:

– Australia & New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan
– Law Society of Hong Kong
– International Bar Association
– Law Society of England & Wales
– Law Society of New South Wales

Admissions:

– Japan (Attorney at Foreign Law)~Japan (1998)
– Hong Kong (1995)
– England & Wales~United Kingdom (1993)
– New South Wales~Australia (1989)

Education:

– University of New South Wales (Bachelor of Commerce) (1988)
– University of New South Wales (LL.B.) (1988)

Law Firm:

Volatility and uncertainty are the new norm. With events like Brexit in the UK and the new administration in the US just two examples of recent geopolitical upheaval, we need to be able to help our clients navigate a constantly changing and challenging market. And it requires a new type of thinking and a different mindset.

It requires lawyers who collaborate unusually well across borders, markets and industries around the globe. Lawyers who embrace new ideas and emerging technologies to give businesses confidence in these uncertain times.

We are The New Lawyers.

We are Baker McKenzie.

Mitsuhiro Kamiya

Mitsuhiro Kamiya is the leader of Skadden’s Tokyo office. He represents Japanese and multinational clients in a broad range of corporate matters with special focus on cross-border mergers and acquisitions and joint venture transactions.

Mr. Kamiya’s practice covers all major aspects of corporate transactions, such as advice on complex legal structuring of acquisitions and major legal issues including corporate, intellectual property, antitrust and labor laws. Mr. Kamiya was selected for inclusion by Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Chambers Asia-Pacific and The Asia Pacific Legal 500.

Education:

– LL.M., Columbia University School of Law, 1994 (Stone Scholar; Associate Editor, Columbia Journal of Transnational Law)
– LL.M., University of Cambridge, 1993
– LL.B., University of Tokyo, 1986

Associations:

– Member, International Fiscal Association
– Member, Japanese Group of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property
– Member, International Affairs Committee of Dai-ichi Tokyo Bar Association

Admissions:

– Japan (Bengoshi)
– New York

Firm History:

Founded by Marshall Skadden, Les Arps and John Slate on April Fools’ Day in 1948, Skadden began as a scrappy upstart among a sea of established “white shoe” law firms in New York. Joe Flom was hired as the firm’s first associate later that year, and litigator Bill Meagher, the fifth partner to lend his name to the firm’s letterhead as it appears today, joined in 1959.

Our first two decades were marked by slow and steady growth of our client base as we set out to establish ourselves as the go-to firm for our clients’ most complex legal problems. Our willingness to handle proxy fights in the 1950s and early 1960s — matters deemed “ungentlemanly” by white shoe firms — positioned us to ultimately become the firm of choice for the hostile takeovers that dominated the M&A landscape beginning in the 1970s.

Recognizing the value of providing full-service advice to clients, from day one we sought to develop a range of complementary practices, like litigation, tax and antitrust. Client needs led us to open offices in other cities beginning in 1973, and the volume of work we were handling fueled exponential growth in the number of attorneys at the firm in the 1980s. That growth included a significant expansion of the practices we offered to clients, including restructuring, finance, real estate, mass torts and securities litigation, as well as the opening of offices in Europe and Asia.

In the nearly three decades since, we’ve built on that platform to provide advice to clients around the world on their most important matters. Our core values reflect the ideals of our history, and we remain committed to providing excellent lawyering and unrivaled client service in all our work.

Takao Higuchi

Takao Higuchi is a partner at Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu. Mr. Higuchi graduated with an LL.B. from the University of Tokyo in 1987 and with an LL.M. from Columbia Law School in 1995. He was admitted to practice law in Japan in 1989. He worked at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP in New York (1995-1996) and Linklaters & Paines in London (1996-1997) as a visiting attorney.

He specializes in banking, energy, infrastructure and other projects (including PFIs and PPPs) and project finance

Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu:

Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu is widely known as a leading law firm and the foremost provider of international and commercial legal services in Japan.

We represent domestic and foreign companies and organizations involved in every major industry sector and in every legal service area in Japan.

Kenji Oka

A&A Partners hold “Be of Good Use” as our guiding precept and we are expected to remember the precept whenever we decide something. We provide two main services, assurance services and advisory services, which are reflected in the name of our firm. Assurance services include audits for listed companies and audits under the Companies Act. Advisory services include such services as assisting in an initial public offering (IPO) and corporate valuation services, support for adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).

In assurance services, we recognize it is very important to understand clients. If we do not understand clients, we could not meet the requirement as the professional. We recognize quality as a matter of the highest priority. If our quality level were low, we would not be able to embody our guiding precept, “Be of Good Use,” and would cause great trouble for our clients.

We require our staff members to be highly skilled professionals. We hold or attend training course any time if necessary and acquire sufficient knowledge and skill required as professionals aiming to be of good use.

We use an electronic work-paper system developed in-house to secure the expected assurance level and improve the efficiency of our work. This enables us to provide high-quality audit services efficiently.

We establish the system which provides high-quality audit services at a reasonable cost by continuous investment in human resources and improvement of quality.

In regard to advisory services, we also recognize it is important to understand clients. We need to provide suitable services to our clients based on sufficient understanding of clients. We provide such wide-ranging services as M&A services, financial due diligence services, supporting IPOs, assisting IFRS adoption, and facilitating business restructuring.

Recently, the number of companies going public has been increasing. Therefore, we are actively expanding the services headed by our experienced partners in IPO services, more than 50 companies of success in the past.

With regard to IFRS, we recognize it is very important to understand clients. We provide suitable services to clients. To prepare for IFRS, usually companies are required to conduct large-scale of reforms in business process such as modification of IT systems. Piecemeal reforms might bring companies risk of wastefulness. We have established a structure in our firm to assist clients in making a smooth changeover to IFRS.

We believe that audit firms will become differentiated in the future respectively according to its field of expertise responding to clients’ such characters as industries, scale, globalization. In assurance services, we provide high-quality and efficient audit services mainly to small and medium-sized companies. In advisory services, we pledge to support the client’s business with tender attention and enough experience.

More and more companies might expand their business outside of Japan in the future. Regarding this circumstances, we joined Morison International, the global association of independent accounting and consulting firms extending over 60 countries. Furthermore, we made the alliance with Plante & Moran, the middle-sized accounting firm based in the United States. Morison International features the advantage of networks in Southeast Asian countries that Japanese companies recognize as significant market recently. We have also close relationships with tax accounting firms, law offices and other professionals. Under these relationships, we provide multipronged services to clients.

A&A partners is a group of Certified Public Accountants always keeping it in mind. “Be of Good Use”.

Practice:

A&A Partners was established in July 1990. Currently, we have a offices in Tokyo with 11 partners and 31 full-time staff. In last fiscal year, our revenue was ranked 14th in accounting firms in Japan. Two “A”s of A&A Partners express “assurance” services and “advisory” services. In accordance with the CPA Act in Japan, audit corporations including us are prohibited from providing tax services. We have superior know-how based on our experiences that our major partners and staff were members of a major audit firm. As we aim at a middle sized accounting firm basically, we are able to provide wide and flexible services to variety of clients regardless to formalities. And also, as all partners and staff provide services directly to our clients by themselves, we are able to provide high quality services which measure up favorably to major audit firms with reasonable fee.