Latham & Watkins “has a good understanding of the cultural background and business practice in Japan.” — Chambers Asia Pacific 2014


Latham & Watkins' Tokyo office* advises Japanese companies, international enterprises and financial institutions on their domestic and international legal needs.

Tokyo Office Photo

The lawyers in Latham’s Tokyo office understand the needs and challenges that clients face. Through a combination of the firm’s intimate knowledge of the Japanese marketplace and its vast geographic reach globally, the firm is perfectly placed to serve the cross-border business needs of clients.

Latham’s Tokyo-based lawyers are qualified to advise on Japanese, US, Hong Kong and English law matters, and the office includes lawyers who are fluent in Japanese, English, French, Greek and Korean.

Robust Expertise

Leading independent directories and journals such as Chambers and Partners, The Legal 500 and the International Financial Law Review (IFLR) regularly recognize Latham as a leader in major practice areas. The Tokyo office has a particularly strong reputation for its expertise in:      

In addition, Latham’s Tokyo office advises clients on:

Awards & Rankings

Latham’s Tokyo office has been recognized by Chambers Asia Pacific 2015 as a leading team for two of its practice areas:

  • Corporate/M&A: International Firms – "Significant visibility working on high-value cross-border M&A. Enjoys solid working relationships with a variety of international and Japanese clients. Noted in particular for its expertise of the computer hardware and semiconductor industries."
  • Projects & Energy: International Firms – "Excels at advising on blue-chip project finance deals, not only acting for Japanese clients but also for international businesses on projects across the globe. Also noted for its expert handling of renewable energy projects on behalf of multiple international clients."

Latham also received the highest level of commendation for Projects, Infrastructure and Energy work in the Philippines, with the guide commenting: “Provides formidable expertise in project development and financing, particularly in the infrastructure and power sectors. Frequently advises lenders and sponsors on complex financing structures, including hybrid bonds.”

Other recognitions include:

  • “Global Law Firm of the Year” by Project Finance International 2014  in acknowledgement that “The practice has been involved in projects vital to the global economy, energy production and environmental protection - ranging from the world’s largest LNG and mining projects to innovative renewable energy projects.”
  • "International Deal Firm of the Year" by Asian Legal Business at the 2014 South East Asia Law Awards, which recognize the excellence and outstanding achievements of leading law firms in the region
  • Ranked #1 by number of winning deals at the Asian-MENA Counsel 2013 “Deals of the Year” awards. The firm advised on multiple award-winning deals, as well as six transactions that received honorable mentions, including the Ichthys LNG Project Financing, described as: "In one of the world’s largest ever project financings, this deal was ground-breaking for a number of reasons. The landmark project won plaudits because of its behemoth size, complexity, and the various social and economic benefits which it brought about in Australia."
  • Recognized among the leading innovative law firms in the inaugural Financial Times Asia-Pacific Innovative Lawyers report, which is published in conjunction with research partner RSG Consulting. Latham was commended in the Corporate, Finance and International Strategy categories in the report, which ranks “law firms that have brought original thinking and practices to business issues.” Latham received recognition for its work in serving as counsel to the lenders on the precedent-setting Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy Hydroelectric Power Plant Project, a US$1 billion development project between Laos and Thailand which has significant implications across the region

Latham's Tokyo office recently advised:

  • Starbucks Corporation in its acquisition, by way of a two-step tender process, of the remaining 60.5% share of Starbucks Coffee Japan, Ltd. that the company did not previously own
  • The lenders in the US$20 billion project financing of the US$34 billion offshore Ichthys LNG Project in Western Australia
  • The underwriters in a US$3.3 billion bond offering by Softbank Corporation
  • Spansion Inc. in the US$175 million acquisition of the microcontroller and analog business of Fujitsu Semiconductor
  • The lenders in the US$1.17 billion project financing of the Sarulla Geothermal Power Project, a 330-MW power plant in North Sumatra, Indonesia — the largest geothermal power project in the country to date
  • The project sponsors in the financing for the development of the Pagbilao 3 power project expansion in Quezon, Philippines
  • Japan Bank for International Cooperation, Nippon Export and Investment Insurance and a group of 29 commercial banks on the US$7.4 billion debt financing for the Cameron LNG liquefaction-export project

* Latham & Watkins Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise

Latham's Tokyo-based lawyers have assisted in:

  • filing an asylum application on behalf of a victim of female circumcision from Uganda, and
  • advised the anti-human trafficking organization Not For Sale in structuring and incorporating its operations in Japan.

Lawyers in our Tokyo office also also helped efforts to relocate at-risk survivors of the March 2011 earthquakes and tsunami, and provided legal advice regarding children’s rights through the firm's partnership with the Daini Tokyo Bar Association.

Survey of Pro Bono Practices and Opportunities

A multi-office team of nearly 100 Latham & Watkins lawyers and professional staff from across the firm’s offices globally conducted extensive research to prepare the 2012 edition of the “Survey of Pro Bono Practices and Opportunities” report. Conducted in conjunction with the Pro Bono Institute (PBI), the unique report is an essential resource for local practitioners, in-house teams and non-profits on pro bono practices around the world.