Mayer Brown JSM launches Singapore base

Mayer Brown is expanding its Asian footprint with the launch of a Singapore office via its Asian business Mayer Brown JSM.

Mayer Brown JSM construction and engineering head Kevin Owen will relocate from Hong Kong to lead the new office, which will initially focus on asset finance, project finance, energy and international arbitration.

Hong Kong banking and finance partner Alastair MacAulay will also spend a significant amount of time in Singapore to establish the practice, along with a team of associates.

Mayer Brown chairman Herbert Krueger said in a statement: “Adding our new Singapore office to Mayer Brown JSM’s offices in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Ho Chi Min City, Hanoi and Bangkok will further enhance our ability to serve client needs in one of the world’s key financial centres.

“We anticipate that the office will be in full operation by the fourth quarter of this year.”

Elaine Lo, chair of the firm’s Asia board and senior partner of Mayer Brown JSM, said the new Singapore base would allow the firm to serve clients in a market that is well placed to capitalise on South-East Asia’s economic growth over the next 20 years.

“Many of our largest global clients have their regional headquarters in Singapore and others also have significant operations there,” she said.

“Mayer Brown JSM’s capabilities are ideally suited to the needs of clients in Singapore, which has become one of the most important financial, insurance, shipping, oil and gas and legal centres in Asia.”

Mayer Brown JSM was created by the January 2008 merger of Mayer Brown and Hong Kong- based Johnson Stokes & Master. The deal was designed to transform Mayer Brown into a credible global player with presences in Hong Kong, mainland China, Vietnam and Thailand, while for JSM the attractiveness of being able to service clients outside the geographic confines of Asia was the main driver (7 January 2008).