Stephenson Harwood raids DLA Piper in preparation for Seoul office launch

Stephenson Harwood has raided DLA Piper for its Seoul office head Michael Kim with the aim of launching a base in the jurisdiction.

The shipping and finance partner will initially be based in London as the firm applies for a licence to open in Seoul. The plan is for Kim to become managing partner of the new office.

Marine and international trade practice head Mike Phillips said: “There are significant synergies between Michael’s work and that of the marine and international trade and finance practices of Stephenson Harwood both in London and in Asia.

“We both work for most of the biggest names in Korean shipping, ship building, finance and trade sectors and Michael’s arrival here will take the firm’s leading reputation to the next level.”

Kim’s clients include major ship yards, shipping companies, P&I clubs, insurers and banks.

The firm follows Linklaters and Baker & McKenzie in launching in Seoul (2 May 2013).

The magic circle firm moved a quartet of partners from Hong Kong to Seoul after gaining regulatory approval for the office opening (28 May 2013).

DLA Piper gained regulatory approval for its Seoul launch last January (7 January 2013).