DLA Piper to build on legacy left by deceased Japan chief

DLA Piper to build on legacy left by deceased Japan chief” />DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary was mourning the tragic death of its Tokyo managing partner Douglas Miller last week, but vowed to build on the foundations that Miller laid in the Japanese capital.

Miller, 46, launched DLA Piper’s Japanese operation just six months ago after joining the firm following the collapse of Coudert Brothers.

“Doug was a great partner and a great guy,” DLA Piper’s Asia managing partner Nick Seddon said. “In a few brief months he showed what a successful Japan practice might look like.”

Japanese-speaking Sing-apore managing partner Lance Miller has offered to run the Tokyo office while the firm looks to appoint a new managing partner.

“In the interim, Lance will carry on the legacy Doug left,” Seddon explained. “The Tokyo office will continue on. It will be a change in personnel, not strategy.”

Seddon said the firm was planning to grow its Tokyo office. He aims to bolster the team with foreign lawyers, but not bengoshi.

Seddon said: “We’re still looking to relocate the Tokyo office because we had already built the team up to five lawyers and the existing office was too small.

“We’re also talking to one or two other people for our Tokyo office.”

Last year DLA Piper swooped on Coudert lawyers in China, Singapore and Tokyo, securing 20 in China, 20 in Singapore and three in Tokyo.

Seddon said the firm remains committed to growing its other Asian offices. During the past year, the number of lawyers at the Hong Kong office has increased from 130 to almost 200.

Likewise, the firm’s Singapore office more than doubled in size, from 19 lawyers to 36.