A&O lures top securitisation partner in Singapore

Allen & Overy (A&O) is raiding US rival Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe in Singapore and taking on its first securitisation partner in that country.

Kenneth Aboud will also be the office’s first US-qualified partner when he joins the firm’s 12-partner securitisation team, which operates out of Frankfurt, Hong Kong, London, New York, Tokyo and now Singapore. He is regarded as one of the leading securitisation lawyers in the region, having acted on groundbreaking deals that included the first residential mortgage securitisation in Japan and one of the first Korean securitisations.

He also acted as lead counsel on two of Indonesia’s biggest securitisations, including the PT Putra Surya Multidana Indonesia motorcycle loan securitisation, which was the first of its kind in the region.

Chris Rushton, A&O’s South Asia managing partner and head of Singapore, says: “Securitisations in Asia are generally a growing area of business for us – the Tokyo office has been pretty active in the area. Also, the fact that [Kenneth] is a US practitioner strengthens our general commercial practice.”

London securitisation partner David Krischer adds: “[Kenneth] will enable us to build a strong presence in the non-Japanese Asian securitisation market and will bolster our US presence in the region.”

Aboud has also advised governmental organisations in Thailand and Indonesia on the development of legal, regulatory and tax infrastructures that are necessary for securitisations.

His appointment comes just as the firm pulls off a landmark Japanese securitisation, acting for the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce’s arm CIBC World Markets on the AAA securitisation for Eiwa Corporation, a Japanese consumer finance company.

The deal is believed to be the first securitisation for a Japanese consumer finance company that has achieved top rating, and is one of only a few Japanese consumer loan securitisation transactions that has been funded in US dollars.