Duane Morris launches in Singapore, with Vietnam next on list

Philadelphia-headquartered Duane Morris has confirmed its intention to open in Vietnam, becoming only the second US firm there. The firm is to launch offices in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City by March.

It has also formally launched its Singapore office this week, with lateral hires from Baker & McKenzie, DLA Piper, Jones Day, Shearman & Sterling and White & Case.

The Singapore office will be headed by corporate partner Eduardo Ramos-Gomez, who was formerly the Mexican ambassador to Brunei, Myanmar and Singapore.

It is understood that it is Ramos-Gomez’s standing in the region that is driving the firm’s Asian expansion.

The firm’s new Singapore office includes Rudy Lim, a project finance partner from DLA Piper, plus for more partners. The firm said in a statement that it hoped to hire around four more associates in the coming weeks.

The Singapore office will offer expertise particularly in corporate finance, project finance, energy, real estate, technology, media and telecoms and M&A.

A firm spokesman said that the Vietnamese offices will have similar capabilities. Doug Woloshin, Duane Morris’s new global head of project finance, will be instrumental in setting up the teams.

Baker & McKenzie is the only other US-headquartered firm to retain offices in Vietnam, where it has 10 fee-earners across Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.