LawFuel.com – International Law Firm News – International law firm Reed Smith has further enhanced its position as one of the largest law firms in the Asian legal market with the opening of a new office in Singapore, effective immediately. Singapore marks the firm’s fourth location in Asia, having already established offices in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai.
“Singapore is emerging as one of the most important business centers in the world.” said Gregory B. Jordan, Reed Smith’s Global Managing Partner. “It is a natural place for Reed Smith, as one of the top firms for commodity trading and shipping.”
Reed Smith’s Singapore office will be led by Gautam Bhattacharyya, who will relocate from London, and will also comprise new partners Barry Stimpson, Simon Sloane and Philip Antcliffe. An additional lawyer from the firm’s London office has also relocated and the firm is in the process of adding several associates from the local market. All personnel will join upon satisfaction of regulatory and notice provisions.
Partners Barry Stimpson and Simon Sloane will join the firm from Holman Fenwick Willan. Mr. Stimpson’s practice focuses on shipping and international trade. He has been based in the Far East for almost 14 years and has more than 18 years’ experience handling commercial, shipping and offshore matters. Mr. Sloane practices in the area of international arbitration and commercial dispute resolution, with a concentration in the energy and natural resources sector.
One of the major drivers for Reed Smith’s expansion is the burgeoning business activities of its major institutional clients in the energy and natural resources sector, in Singapore.
“The migration of major players over recent years toward Asia and Singapore in particular has prompted the firm to follow its clients,” said Kyri Evagora, Co-chair of Reed Smith’s Global Energy & Natural Resources Group. “Several lawyers from our market-leading commodities team, based in London, will be deployed as part of our immediate plans for the office to service and support our clients.”
Mr. Antcliffe rejoins Reed Smith as a partner, following his move to Citigroup in 2011. Prior to his move, he was an associate in the Energy & Natural Resources Group of Reed Smith’s London office.
Mr. Antcliffe advises clients on contracts which facilitate their commodity trading business. He typically counsels on the structure of sale, storage, transportation and financing arrangements; advises traders in relation to execution problems arising under those contracts; and litigates disputes that arise with counterparties. He does both contentious and non-contentious work.
“We’re excited to follow the lead of our clients in the region and continue our strategic drive into key sectors including energy, natural resources, commodities and international trade, shipping and logistics,” said Roger Parker, Reed Smith’s Managing Partner for Europe, the Middle East and Asia. “Simon, Barry and Philip each bring a deep understanding of the market and the industries in which they work. They will partner closely with teams across our global network to provide seamless service to clients.”
“The Singapore International Arbitration Centre is regarded by global corporates as one of the most important dispute resolution forums and is important for our work across our contentious practices,” said Mr. Bhattacharyya, Reed Smith’s Singapore Office Managing Partner. “Singapore has become a gateway for commerce with India, one of the world’s largest economies, and will greatly assist us in our current and future engagement with clients in that very important market.”
The firm has leased temporary office space in Singapore and will move into permanent space in Ocean Financial Centre in early 2013.