Duane Morris is launching in Shanghai via its Asian joint law venture, Duane Morris & Selvam.
In 2011 the US firm entered into an enhanced joint venture with Selvam & Partners in Singapore, creating Duane Morris & Selvam (10 September 2013).
It is now awaiting approval from the People’s Republic of China’s Ministry of Justice to open its foreign representative office in Shanghai.
Leon Yee, managing director of Duane Morris & Selvam, will serve as chief representative of the new office. He will be joined by Chong Eng Wee, an associate director in Singapore. The office will open with five lawyers in total.
“Our launch in China builds upon the firm’s substantial growth and successes in Asia during the past several years, as well as our extensive experience handling China-focused matters for numerous multinational companies,” said Duane Morris Chairman and CEO John Soroko. “Shanghai represents the natural next step in our long-term strategy for the region. It is our intent to be a key facilitator of Chinese companies seeking to invest abroad. Additionally, many of our clients have shared with us their intense interest in entering the Chinese market or in actively developing their existing investments there.”
The launch marks the third international opening for Duane Morris since the beginning of 2013. Last March, Duane Morris planted its first flag in the Middle East by sealing an association with the Al Mashaikhi Law Firm, a multi-practice firm in Muscat, Oman (27 March 2013). More recently, in September, it established the first presence of any US-based firm in Myanmar via its relationship with Singapore firm Selvam.
The firm previously expanded its global footprint in Southeast Asia with offices in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.
A year ago Duane Morris also opened in Palo Alto, California with the addition of former K&L Gates IP litigation partner Karineh Khachatourian (3 January 2013).