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White & Case Advises Naspers on US$1.16 Billion Acquisition

Global law firm White & Case LLP has advised Naspers, a global internet and entertainment group and one of the world’s largest technology investors, on its US$1.16 billion acquisition of an additional 29.1 percent shareholding in Avito, the leading Russian online classifieds site.

The transaction values Avito at an implied enterprise value of US$3.85 billion. Following the acquisition Naspers stake in Avito will increase from 70.4 percent to 99.6 percent (on a fully diluted basis). The remaining shares are held by existing management.

White & Case also advised Naspers on its minority investment in Avito in 2013 and on Naspers’ subsequent US$1.2 billion investment in 2015, when Naspers became the majority owner of Avito.

Avito was established in 2007 by Filip Engelbert and Jonas Nordlander together with founding investors Vostok New Ventures and Kinnevik. It achieved revenue of US$286.5 million and EBITDA of US$127.6 million for its last full financial year to March 2018 and Avito currently has 10.3million unique visitors per day.

The White & Case team which advised on the transaction was led by partners Eric Michailov (London / Moscow) and Johan Steen (Stockholm) with support from counsel Sophie Sahlin (London) and associates Hanna Wingren (London / Stockholm) and Ksenia Tyunik (Moscow).

 

Manila – A City Guide for Lawyers and Legal Professionals

Known as the “pearl of the orient” during Spanish rule, the City of Manila withstood many natural disasters, colonial occupations and war, is now a thriving metropolis.

While it may still be a stopover for most tourists before heading to the islands, Manila has become a destination of choice for expats. It is a center of economic growth with a steady and increasing influx of foreign investment.

It is also a densely populated city of contrasts. This huge city can be chaotic and confusing for first time visitors. Here is a quick guide to help lawyers and legal professionals effectively navigate Manila during their visits.

Getting Around Manila

Getting around Manila is easy. You have the option to rent a car, hire a taxi or take a bus, jeepney, LRT or MRT.  However, for a visitor who’s not acquainted with the city, a taxi is the most convenient way of getting around.

You can also book a cab through the Grab app. Grab booths are available at the airport as well. So if you don’t have access to Wifi or internet on arrival at the airport, you still can easily book a ride with Grab.

UBE Express Bus is another convenient way of getting to the hotel from the airport. It’s an air-conditioned bus service with designated stops along several routes. You can either buy tickets at the airport kiosks or through the UBE Express booking website.

Tip:

Rent a Pocket Wifi Device: You can rent a pocket wifi device for uninterrupted wifi access from Konbini Rentals or  GoLocal. They either deliver the wifi device to your hotel a day before you arrive or offer pickup and drop off at the airport.

Hotels, Restaurants, Shopping, and Entertainment

The City of Makati, which is the country’s financial as well as cultural and entertainment hub, is one of the best areas to stay in Manila. You’ll find here a wide range of accommodations to suit all budgets.

It also offers easy access to shopping malls and markets and plenty of restaurants — all at walking distance or within a short drive.

If you are going to have a short stay, here’s a quick list of places you may want to check out.

  • Intramuros
  • Fort Santiago
  • Casa Manila
  • Poblacion, Makati
  • Juan Luna’s Spoliarium at the National Museum
  • Manila Ocean Park
  • Greenhills Shopping Center

Philippines Legal Resources

Integrated Bar of the Philippines:  IBP is the official organization of lawyers in the Philippines. It was established as an official organization for the legal profession by Republic Act No. 6397. The law confirmed the constitutional power of the Philippine Supreme Court to adopt rules for the integration of the Philippine Bar. Consequently, Presidential Decree 181 constituted the IBP into a corporate body in 1973.

You can find regional & comparative resources, case law & legislation, books & Journals and more legal resources on the Southeast Asian Legal Research Guide.

Top Law Firms in the Philippines

Following are a few of the top law firms in the Philippines:

  • Martinez Vergara Gonzalez & Serrano
  • PunoLaw
  • Fernando Lagman and Avenida Law
  • Agcaoili & Associates
  • Castillo Laman Tan Pantaleon & San Jose Law Firm

Legal Events in the Philippines

Asia Law Portal promotes legal events in the Asia-Pacific Region on our blog and widely followed social media channels. For more information please contact us.

Follow Leaders in Law to get more news and updates on recent and upcoming legal events in the Asia-Pacific legal markets.

Leader’s in Laws “Find a Lawyer”

Clients can find lawyers in the Philippines via Leaders in Law’s “Find a Lawyer” section, which contains listings of law firms practicing in the Asia-Pacific region, including the Philippines.

Multiple wins for A&O at Global Transport Finance Awards

Allen & Overy took home the headline award, Transportation Law Firm of the Year at the recent Global Transport Finance awards which recognises the leaders in aviation, shipping and rail finance and the most innovative and complex deals in the market.

Global Head of Structured & Asset Finance, Mario Jacovides comments: “We are very proud to be the winner of this year’s Transportation Law Firm of the Year award which recognises the market leading, complex and innovative deals that we have worked on throughout the year across the whole of the transportation sector. This accolade is a further testament to the global expertise we have in aviation, shipping and rail, which allows us to meet our clients’ needs.”

The team also picked up six individual deal awards. They included:

Aviation Portfolio Deal of the Year – advising the secured parties on a USD700m facility relating to the financing and refinancing of a portfolio of 19 aircraft for CDB Aviation;

JOLCO Financing Deal of the Year, Latin America – advising UKEF and ING on the JOLCO financing of a Boeing 787 aircraft which was the first UKEF-supported JOLCO financing to a Latin American carrier;

Cruise Ship Deal of the Year – advising SACE and a syndicate of lenders (BNP, Unicredit) on the pre- and post-delivery financing of two new Fincantieri-built LNG powered cruise ships for TUI Cruises GmbH which are the largest ships ever to have been built in Italy;

Shipping Portfolio Sale of the Year – advising Oak Hill and Värde on the acquisition and USD1bn financing of the Project Lioness portfolio of shipping loans from Deutsche Bank;

JOLCO Deal of the Year, Middle East – advising Investec Bank as junior lender and BNP Paribas and DekaBank as senior lenders on the JOLCO financing of one new Boeing 787-9 aircraft for El Al Israel Airlines which was the first JOLCO financing in Israel and for El Al Israel Airlines;

Tax Lease Deal of the Year – advising the AFIC insurer group on the French Tax Lease financing of a Boeing 787-9 and Boeing 737 aircraft for Royal Air Maroc.

For further information, please contact Susanna Robinson, susanna.robinson@allenovery.com​, on +44 (0)20 3088 3918

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Linklaters launches employment platform for tech start-ups

Linklaters has launched an innovative platform aimed at helping tech entrepreneurs turn their small business into a company with the potential to grow. TechLinks, a new online resource, will offer a select number of small and start-up technology businesses access to key employment documents and resources from one of the leading magic circle firms, providing them with vital company guidance on how to legally protect and enhance their business when building a workforce.

TechLinks offers an interactive site where tech businesses can download employment contracts and other resources which are the essential building blocks of a secure and stable company. It will also provide insights and trends on the current market and a glossary of terms to make it accessible to those without a legal background.

David Speakman, Counsel at Linklaters commented:

“We have found that start-ups and small technology businesses have a need to protect the value in their business. Key questions need to be addressed at an early stage of their development, such as what happens if their key employees (often the founders) leave before the business gets to a sale or how to properly protect the business’ unique IP. This is also important when the business seeks investment, as investors will look to see if these protections are in place. We hope that TechLinks will help companies get the basics right from the start.”

Laurie Ollivent, Practice Development Lawyer at Linklaters, has been working alongside small and start-up technology businesses at WeWork. She said:

“By working alongside small tech businesses we have gained a real understanding of the issues these businesses face during the early stages of their development. We are able to bring together this insight with our longstanding experience of working with large, multinational tech companies to provide small and start up tech businesses with the guidance they need in the early stages to enable them to build their teams the right way from the start, attract and retain talent, avoid future disputes and appeal to investors.”

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Irwin Mitchell – Personal Injury TV advert

Our solicitors can help you with a personal injury claim that focuses not just on compensation, but also on helping you with rehabilitation and support. We offer the expert hand with the human touch.

Russia court upholds restriction of foreign ownership of media

The Russian Constitutional Court ruled Thursday that the restriction of foreign ownership of media is legal.

The court upheld a law restricting foreign ownership of media to twenty percent.

The case came to the court “after arbitration courts declared a dual Russian-Dutch citizen’s 49-percent stake in a radio station illegal.” The court stated that the reason for this ownership limit is “to prevent the strategic influence and control of the media” because this influence “may threaten the state’s information security.”

The court also ordered lawmakers to make certain portions of the bill clearer.

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Working at Baker McKenzie

We are different from other law firms in the way we think, work and behave. Global in our outlook from the beginning, for six consecutive years we have been named as the world’s strongest law firm brand by Acritas, underlining our dedication to being the best. We know the value of our talent in sustaining this success and so we’re committed to offering the platform to nurture this talent.

Ashurst celebrates the ‘First 100 Years of Women in Law’

International law firm Ashurst marks the centenary of women in law, in support of the First 100 Years initiative, with a photomosaic portrait of Ada Evans, the first Australian woman to graduate with a Bachelor of Laws.

The First 100 Years is an inspirational history project, supported by the Law Society of NSW and Women Lawyers Association of NSW, charting the journey of women in law since enactment of enabling legislation throughout Australia in the early 1900s.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Women’s Legal Status Act 1918 (NSW) which allowed women to practise as lawyers and to stand for parliament for the first time in NSW. Laws were changing throughout Australia from the early 1900s onwards. Victoria was the first state to allow women to practice law in 1903, with other states following soon after.

Commenting on the project and the launch of the photomosaic, Ashurst partner Sarah Dulhunty said:

“We are delighted to have partnered with the First 100 Years project team on this initiative to recognise and celebrate the contribution women have made to the legal profession. The photomosaic initiative has been a great way to mark this significant centenary and reflects our continued support for progressing gender equality within the profession. Thank you to all our staff, clients and affiliates who participated in this fantastic initiative.”

White Case advises JBIC on loan for acquisition of Shire plc

Global law firm White & Case LLP has advised the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) in relation to its loan agreement with Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (Takeda), amounting up to US$3.7 billion (JBIC’s portion), to finance part of the funds required for acquiring Shire plc (Shire) in Ireland.

The total amount required for acquisition is approximately £46 billion. The loan is co-financed by private financial institutions, bringing the total co-financing amount to US$15.7 billion equivalent. The loan supports the overseas business deployment of Takeda by providing necessary long-term foreign currency funds for M&A by the Japanese company, assisting its overseas expansion of existing business, as well as new business deployment, and contributing to maintaining and strengthening the international competitiveness of Japanese industries.

Through the acquisition of Shire, Takeda aims to strengthen two focus areas – gastroenterology and neuroscience – as well as establishing a leading position in pharmaceuticals for rare diseases and plasma-derived therapies, which can accelerate transformation to a global R&D-driven pharmaceutical company headquartered in Japan. In addition, Shire has a large sales proportion in the US market, which is the largest market in the world and projected to continue to grow at a high rate. The acquisition will therefore drive further growth overseas and is expected to make Takeda one of the top ten pharmaceutical companies in the world based on sales.

The White & Case team which advised on the transaction was led by partners Toshio Dokei and Simon Collins (both Tokyo), and included partners Philip Broke and Jacqueline Evans (both London), supported by associates Keisuke Nishimura (Tokyo) and Christopher Beardmore (London).

TOKYO

Tokyo – A City Guide for Lawyers and Legal Professionals

Tokyo, the capital of Japan is one of the largest, busiest and most populated metropolises in the world. This vibrant city is also called city of cities. You may think of it as several cities interlinked through an excellent public transport system. It also is a major commercial and financial hub of Japan.

Though Tokyo is called the “Most Livable City” in the world by the magazine Monocle and was ranked first in the 2017 Safe Cities Index, this massive city can be confusing for first timers.

So here is a quick guide to help any lawyers or legal professionals more effectively navigate Tokyo when they visit.

Getting Around Tokyo

From ultra speed bullet trains to bicycle on rent, Tokyo offers array of convenient choices for getting around. To save you from getting overwhelmed and confused with the available choices we have shortlisted the easiest way of getting around Tokyo.

Trains & Subway – Tokyo has the world’s best and most sophisticated railway system. It is the best way to get to any part of the city. HyperDia is a website where you can find possible routes to get to your destination, including the cost and the transfers involved.

Taxis – Taxis are excellent but considered expensive in Tokyo. They are however, a good option to avoid transfers while commuting from trains. You can always visit the nearest station to your destination and from there take a taxi.

Buses – Buses are not recommended to tourists but if you plan to travel to lesser known areas or would like to avoid the crowded train stations, Toei transportation will serve as a handy guide.

Prepaid Cards – While there are many prepaid cards available, including unlimited rides for day cards, Suica and Pasmo cards are the best prepaid cards that are valid on trains, subways, as well as buses.

Suica card can also be used at stores, kiosks, taxis and for pickup at the airport.

BicycleRenting a bike is a great way of exploring the city. They are available through membership plans as well.

Data SIM Card – A visitor SIM will help you stay connected with your loved ones. It needs to be ordered in advance and you can arrange for it to be delivered to you at the airport or the hotel.

Hotels, Restaurants, Shopping, and Entertainment

Tokyo is so massive that it’s impossible to explore the entire city in a short trip. Also, it’s easy to get lost so we recommend staying near the JR Yamanote line or any subway station for convenience. We have selected some of the best and attractive places for you to stay in Tokyo, near Yamanote line that offers the best of hotels, restaurants, shops and tourist attractions, all at a convenient walking distance.

Shinjuku

The Tokyo Station Area

Ginza/Hibiya

Shibuya

Roppongi and Akasaka

Other convenient locations include:

Nihombashi, Shinagawa, Hamamatsucho and Shiodome

Ebisu, Daikanyama and Meguro

Tokyo Legal Resources

Japan Bar Associations

Japan Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA), Chiyoda-Ku  – The JFBA, is an organization of mandatory membership and represents all attorneys in Japan.

Bar associations are established in each of the jurisdictions of the district courts, but the Tokyo area has traditionally had three bar associations. Attorneys that have a law firm in Tokyo become members of one of the following three Tokyo Local Bar Associations.

The Tokyo Bar Association

The Dai-Ichi Tokyo Bar Association

The Dai-Ni Tokyo Bar Association

Lawyers qualified as foreign attorneys receive permission from the Minister of Justice and join a bar association as a foreign lawyer registered in Japan.

Inter Pacific Bar Association, Minato-ku, Tokyo – Established in April 1991, IPBA is an international association of business and commercial lawyers who live in, or have a strong interest in, the Asia-Pacific Region.

JCAA – The only permanent commercial arbitral institution in Japan, that contributes to the resolution of disputes arising from international and domestic business transactions

Roppongi Bar Association – Since its establishment in 1982, the RBA has served as a networking organization primarily consisting of foreign legal professionals located in Japan. It is a unique resource for those involved in the international legal community in Japan, or an interest in issues affecting the community.

Top Law Firms in Japan

The domestic market is dominated by the following four major Japanese firms:

  • Anderson Mori & Tomotsune
  • Nishimura & Asahi
  • Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu
  • Mori Hamada & Matsumoto

Aisalaw has an exhaustive list of industry specific top lawyers of Japan.

Leading international firms include:

  • Herbert Smith Freehills
  • Morrison & Foerster
  • White & Case

Tokyo is back on the  global law firm radar with the advent of international law firms like Mayer Brown, Debevoise & Plimpton and King & Spalding, in Japan, with outbound projects and M&A deals.

Japan was due to open an international arbitration body specializing in intellectual property in Tokyo in September, the first one in Asia designed to facilitate resolution of a growing number of patent disputes.

Legal Events in Japan

Follow Leaders in Law to get more news and updates on the latest and upcoming legal events in the Asia-Pacific legal markets.