New York LAWFUEL – The Law Firm Newswire – Leading global law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges announced today its plans to open an office in Hong Kong in October 2007.
The Hong Kong office will provide firm clients with transactional counseling throughout Asia, broadening Weil Gotshal’s presence in Asia from its substantial office in Shanghai.
The firm is also in the process of applying for a license to open an office in Beijing in the near future.
Weil Gotshal also announced its initial strategy to staff the new Hong Kong operation with deeply experienced transactional attorneys from both the firm’s New York headquarters and from Shanghai.
Akiko Mikumo, a senior corporate partner from the New York office and a member of the firm’s Management Committee, will become Managing Partner for Asia and the head of the Hong Kong office.
Ms. Mikumo has a diverse corporate and securities law practice, with a focus on mergers & acquisitions for corporate and private equity clients.
She has been repeatedly recognized as a leading practitioner in her field and was named “Dealmaker of the Year” by The American Lawyer in 2004. Ms. Mikumo previously headed the US practice in the firm’s London office from 1998 to 2002.
In addition to Ms. Mikumo, two additional partners will be relocating to the Hong Kong office: Peter Feist, a corporate partner from the New York office who focuses on private equity and mergers & acquisitions, and David Meredith, a corporate partner from the Shanghai office, specializing in capital markets. Several of the firm’s highly qualified associates, initially Lindsay Germano and Roy Wiesner, will also relocate to the Hong Kong office.
About the announcement, Weil Gotshal Chairman Stephen J. Dannhauser said, “We are delighted to announce the opening of our Hong Kong office. There are considerable business opportunities in Asia and these opportunities continue to create a need for the client-driven, commercially-minded attorneys that are the hallmark of our firm. Coupled with our established presence in Shanghai, our new Hong Kong office evidences our continued commitment to the region. In line with that commitment, we are sending some of our best partners and associates to lead this effort.” Continued Dannhauser, “Hong Kong will provide the platform for Weil Gotshal’s expansion into other Asian markets, including India and Japan, and with our offices strategically located in Asia, we will have an exceptional platform to deliver the incisive, best-in-class legal advice and service clients are asking for throughout the region.”
Ms. Mikumo stated: “I am delighted to have the opportunity to lead the firm’s expansion in Asia. We will have an extremely talented team in Hong Kong made up of lawyers who are excited about our opportunities in Asia, are determined to expand our
presence there and will bring sophisticated, commercially-oriented transactional skills that will serve our clients well throughout Asia.
“We are confident that the office will be a tremendous success. Under the leadership of Steve Xiang, we already have a hugely successful office in Shanghai, and we believe that Weil Gotshal will rapidly expand from that base to become one of the premier firms in the region.”
Steve Xiang, head of the firm’s Shanghai office, said: “Akiko is an outstanding attorney and wonderful leader, and she is bringing with her a superb team.