Skadden Arps in Tokyo hires rival partners

US firm Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom is taking on two partners from rivals to boost its Tokyo practice.

Corporate partner Nobuhisa Ishizuka is joining from Morgan Lewis & Bockius and real estate partner Mark Bronson is moving in from Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker. The pair will be joined by four lawyers from the US.

Asian practice head Jonathan Pedersen says: “We have been in Tokyo for a long time but the economy has been slow for many years and it has taken a while for things to get to a situation where our clients need a significant presence there.”

Pedersen says that clients are now demanding the beefing up of the corporate and real estate practice, so Ishizuka and Bronson are moving to the region.

He says the firm is in the process of forming a joint venture with bengoshi – lawyers who are licensed to practise Japanese law and appear in Japanese courts.