Japanese firms’ outward push continues

A recent uptick in Japanese outbound M&A transactions has fuelled appetite for foreign expansion for the country’s major firms. One of Japan’s ‘big four’ firms, Mori Hamada & Matsumoto, is the latest to make its move into Myanmar with a planned office opening in the spring.

It is the firm’s latest expansion in the South East Asia region. In 2012, it became the first Japanese firm to open in Singapore. A year later it set up a Bangkok desk stationed in the offices of Thai firm Chandler & Thong-ek.

Last year also saw ‘big four’ Japanese firm Nishimura & Asahi open two new offices in Myanmar and Thailand as part of its regional push. Slaughter and May’s best friend in Japan Anderson Mori & Tomotsune also added two new locations, Shanghai and Singapore, to its regional network.

Expanding regional footprints is just the first step. Winning mandates for domestic clients’ outbound transactions remains a key challenge for leading Asian firms.

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