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Andrew Roberts, a Linklaters partner with years of experience working in Asia, will oversee the management of Linklaters' five offices in the area - Bangkok, Hong Kong, Shangai, Singapore and Tokyo.
Roberts, who will be based in Singapore, will co-ordinate regional marketing and resourcing initiatives to promote Linklaters' corporate and finance practices in the region.
He also takes over from partner Tony Grundy as head of the Singapore office.
Grundy moves to head up the firm's Tokyo office. Roberts says: "This appointment demonstrates Linklaters' firm commitment to Asia. Subject to the renewed growth in the main Asian economies we fully expect the expansion of all our offices in the area to follow rapidly."
The firm already has more than 170 lawyers in the region, including 32 partners. Plans are underway to substantially increase this presence, by at least a further 100 lawyers over the next few years.
The first of these new recruits is Wilde Sapte partner, Nick Syson. A banking lawyer specialising in restructuring, he joins Linklaters' Singapore office as partner on 1 March 2000.
His main areas of practice are workouts, non-contentious insolvency and acquisition finance. His main clients include large multi-national banks and accountancy practices.
He says: "This is an exciting time to be joining Linklaters. Asia is showing every sign of emerging from its recession and Linklaters is clearly demonstrating its commitment to the region. I am thrilled to be a part of the team.