Kobre & Kim has established an office in Shanghai, its first in mainland China. Partner Shaun Wu is relocating from Hong Kong to lead the three-lawyer office and said in the first 12 months the firm would provide two specialized offerings through the office.
“First, an on-the-ground team focused on investigations for multinational companies with operations in China, and second, expertise in China-foreign joint venture disputes involving multiple jurisdictions, in particular Hong Kong, BVI, Cayman Islands and other offshore jurisdictions,” Wu told Asia Business Law Journal.
Wu described the international firm’s new office as representing “the first conflict-free disputes and investigations firm in Shanghai”.
“By avoiding repeat client relationships and the conflicts of interest that come with them, we maintain our independence as advocates ready to litigate against virtually any institution,” he said. “Our presence here allows us to seamlessly serve as special conflicts counsel and work closely with local lawyers on cross-border matters with a China nexus.”
Wu said he and fellow China-focused disputes and investigations lawyer Nan Wang will be resident in Kobre & Kim’s Shanghai office. Wu focuses on international JV disputes and government investigations involving China. Wang is a Shanghai native focusing on China-related investigations.
Former US Department of Justice prosecutor Wade Weems also recently joined the firm’s Washington DC office to focus on the firm’s growing number of Asia-related matters. Weems expects to relocate to the Shanghai office upon approval from authorities in China.
Wu described Shanghai as the regional hub for multinational corporations with operations in China and many China-foreign joint ventures, which he said made it a perfect setting for his firm’s specialized offerings. “The demand for our specialized offerings in international disputes and investigations has also been growing substantially in recent years,” he added.