News in Brief

news brief

Nishimura in Germany

Nishimura & Asahi has announced the opening of two offices in Frankfurt and Düsseldorf, which are co-led by partners Noriya Ishikawa and Dominik Kruse. The expansion is aimed at European and multinational clients looking to access Japanese and other Asian advisers for services related to doing business in Asia. The firm currently has 18 offices around the world.

New Oriental’s HK listing

Skadden advised New Oriental, a China provider of private educational services, on its secondary listing on the main board of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong. New Oriental offered 8.51 million shares at HK$1,190 per share (US$153), for a total offer value of HK$10.12 billion. The team was led by Hong Kong partners Julie Gao, Christopher Betts and Paloma Wang, and Shanghai partner Li Haiping, with Hong Kong-based associates Zhang Shimeng and Nicole Yuen, registered foreign lawyer Sophie Zhao and Beijing-based Frank Xu.

KWM assists bank opening

Sichuan Bank, a municipal lender in China, opened on 7 November in the form of a merger between Panzhihua City Commercial Bank and Liangshan Prefectural Commercial Bank. With a registered capital of RMB30 billion (US$4.63 billion), the bank ranks first in size of registered capital among provincial-level commercial banks in China. King & Wood Mallesons served as legal adviser in the establishment of the bank. The team was led by partners Liu Rong and Lu Yong in Chengdu, and Gao Yimin and Wang Ning in Beijing.

Korea’s cloud amendments

A proposed amendment to the Electronic Financial Transactions Act was submitted to the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea on 17 November, which includes new regulations concerning cloud computing services. Under the amendment, Kim & Chang reported that cloud service providers may be subject to the direct supervision and regulation of financial regulators, which would take measures to protect consumers and maintain market order.

Singapore EDB backs vaccine

WongPartnership is acting for the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) in its loan investment of US$45 million to US-based biotech firm Arcturus Therapeutics for the manufacture of a covid-19 vaccine, and EDB’s right to purchase up to US$175 million of the vaccine, which is reportedly on track for delivery in 2021. The law firm’s team was led by partners Alvin Chia, Ong Sin Wei and Kyle Lee.

Malaysia’s equity guide

The Securities Commission of Malaysia (SC) issued its revised equity guidelines on 11 November, to take effect on 1 January 2021. The amendments facilitate the enhanced initial public offerings framework announced by the SC on 21 July, and provide guidance to existing requirements, ZICO Law reported. The formal applications will have a validity period of six months from the date of submission, after which the applicant must submit a new application, as well as the prescribed fees, if it intends to proceed with the proposal.

Philippine loan grace period

The Central Bank of the Philippines has issued memorandum No. M-2020-074 to implement section 4(uu) of the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act, which grants debtors a one-off 60-day grace period for loan payments that are due on or before 31 December. The memorandum took effect on 1 October. SyCip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan reported that all financial institutions supervised by the central bank with lending operations will implement the non-extendible grace period on payments of all loans that are existing, current and outstanding beginning 15 September, including payments of principal and interest.

Pre-listing board on YSX

The Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX) announced it will launch a pre-listing board (PLB) for unlisted public companies, although no launch date has yet been decided. The YSX in October published a business operation manual and securities registration business regulations for the proposed board, suggesting that an opening is imminent. Myanmar Legal MHM reported that a list of criteria was established for unlisted public companies to participate in the board.

Juris Corp pay rises

Juris Corp announced across-the-board salary increments for the 2020-2021 financial year, and annual bonus payouts for 2019-2020 financial year, despite the impact of the pandemic. “In the wake of a global pandemic outbreak, Juris Corp has managed to weather the blow, ensuring full payments to all the lawyers and staff all through the year,” the firm said. In April this year, the firm elevated salaried partners Arunabh Choudhary, Avikshit Moral, Nand Gopal Anand, Pratish Kumar and Shubhabrata Chakraborti into equity partnership.

S&R assists in Nepra funding

S&R Associates represented Nepra Resource Management, a waste management solutions provider, in investments of ₹1.3 billion (US$17.7 million) by Circulate Capital and Aavishkaar Bharat Fund, including a sale of shares by Aavishkaar India II Company and Aavishkaar Venture Management Services to Circulate Capital, as part of a series C financing round. The S&R team was led by partner Viral Mehta and included associates Kanika Khanna, Kinnari Sanghvi and Shuchita Goel.

Ashurst in bond issue

Ashurst advised Merrill Lynch Asia-Pacific as the sole global co-ordinator, bookrunner and lead manager in relation to HK$775 million (US$100 million) in guaranteed convertible bonds issued by Dreambeyond Holdings, a subsidiary of iDreamSky Technology. The Hong Kong team was led by partner Jini Lee with the support of partners Frank Bi, Priscilla Chen and Ben Hammond, counsel Li Jiang, senior associate Phoebe Chen, and associates Lynn Liu and Victoria Yeh.

Baker in solar plant deal

Baker McKenzie’s Bangkok office acted as Thai law counsel to B. Grimm Power Public Company, as major sponsor, and Truong Thanh Viet Nam Group Joint Stock Company, as local sponsor, in relation to the financing of a 257MW solar power plant in Vietnam’s Phu Yen province. The power plant is the largest single operating solar power plant in Vietnam and one of the largest in Southeast Asia. The Baker McKenzie team was led by Bangkok-based partner Vit Vatanayothin, with the support of senior associate Napas Na Pombejra and Sujade Simthamnimit, and associates Sawaporn Sophanodora and Tatcha Thumpramoth.

Indonesia e-commerce

Indonesia’s Minister of Trade Regulation No. 50 of 2020 on e-commerce took effect on 19 November, Roosdiono & Partners reported. The regulation requires a foreign e-commerce provider that has concluded more than 1,000 transactions, and/or delivered more than 1,000 packages within a year, to appoint or establish a trade representative office in Indonesia.