News > Leading Japanese Legal Team Joins Davis LLP's Tokyo Office

Leading Japanese Legal Team Joins Davis LLP's Tokyo Office

posted on 3:35 PM, January 31, 2011
The Canada-Japan Society of British Columbia congratulates corporate member Davis LLP on its continuing efforts building bridges between Canada and Japan.

Tokyo, Japan - Davis LLP is pleased to announce that seven leading Japanese lawyers have joined the firm. The group is led by Hiroaki Takahashi, one of Japan's top commercial and finance practitioners. Mr. Takahashi is ranked in The Legal 500, Best Lawyers and Guide to the World's Leading Lawyers at the highest level in Japan for banking and finance, projects and energy. He is joined by the team of Kazumoto Kitamura, Koji Kawamura, Hiroaki Shinomiya, Sayaka Mori, Ken Kato and Mika Haga, who will focus their practice in the domestic and international finance and commercial fields. Davis established its Tokyo office 14 years ago and is the only Canadian law firm with an office in Japan.


"This is an important day in Davis' almost 70-year relationship with Japan," says National Managing Partner, Robert Seidel, Q.C. "The addition of the Takahashi group, and the ability to give leading-edge advice on Japanese domestic law matters, will dramatically enhance our effectiveness in advising not just our Canadian or Japanese clients, but any corporation around the world wishing to do business in and with Japan." Mr. Seidel goes on to say, "This is a central piece of Davis' triumvirate Asia strategy -- Canada-Japan, Canada-China/Asia and Japan-China/Asia. Where we differentiate from others is through our goal to build a real presence and actually do legal work within Asia for our clients -- particularly in the areas where we are comparatively strong, such as infrastructure development, natural-resource development and project finance. This initiative in Tokyo is a step on this path."

When asked why he chose a Canadian firm instead of a London- or New York-based firm, Mr. Takahashi responded, "I didn't really choose a 'Canadian firm,' rather I chose 'Davis.' The short answer is 'fit,' for both my clients and for me. I have had a long relationship with Davis lawyers and have great respect for them and their expertise. What people have to understand is that Davis has as deep and as strong a client list and a connection to Japan as any foreign law firm in the world."

According to Donald W. Campbell, Davis' Senior Strategy Advisor and former Deputy Foreign Minister and Canadian Ambassador to Japan, "With the recent focus on China and India, Japan seems to have slipped off many people's radar screen. We must remember Japan is still the world's third-largest economy, it is the third-largest market for Canadian exports and is Canada's fourth-largest source of imported goods. Japan is also a large source of direct investment into Canada." Mr. Campbell further observes, "But what is also intriguing for Davis are the Japan-China and Japan-Asia relationships. China and Japan are the world's second- and third-largest economies and China has now replaced the U.S. as Japan's largest trading partner. We view Asia from a Japan platform as a serious advantage for us and for our clients."

Mr. Takahashi, a Tokyo University and Harvard graduate, had been with his previous firm for 18 years, except for stints at Skadden Arps and Orrick in New York. He played a major role in elevating the firm to the top of the Japanese legal world, including it being named Japan's 2010 "Firm of the Year" in banking and finance by Asian-Counsel Magazine.


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