January 17, 2019
By Sam Skolnik
Professional services giant KPMG announced Jan. 17 it has expanded its legal offerings into Hong Kong, and soon will extend its reach into Shanghai.
The move is further evidence that along with the other members of the Big Four, PricewaterhouseCoopers, EY, and Deloitte, KPMG is intent on growing its legal reach in Asia.
KPMG’s new Hong Kong-based law firm, SF Lawyers, over the next few months will begin operations with four “senior hire” attorneys and two senior associates, with plans to grow to around 20 lawyers in its first year, according to a Jan. 17 press release.
The four senior hires are Shirley Fu, Rodney Chen, Leo Tian, and David Murray.
Tian spent 13 years with several prominent law firms in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing , including Shearman & Sterling, Faegre Baker Daniels, and Paul Hastings, according to KPMG. He’s still listed on Shearman’s website as an associate in the mergers and acquisitions and litigation practices of the firm’s Hong Kong and Shanghai offices.
KPMG’s new Shanghai legal office is slated to open later this year.
“With increased global connectivity and the digitalisation of many business functions, SF Lawyers will be uniquely positioned to deliver on the needs of both domestic clients (including going outbound) and multinational clients entering or transacting in the Chinese market,” Honson To, chairman of KPMG Asia Pacific and China, said in a statement.
The KPMG announcement comes in the wake of several other Big Four legal expansions into Hong Kong in the last year.
In May, EY announced it had poached six attorneys from Troutman Sanders offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing.