Search

FEATURE
PROFESSIONAL SERVICES/LEGAL | Staff Reporter, Singapore
Published: 06 Dec 12
45452 views


Singapore's 25 largest law firms 2012

Five local law firms have topped Singapore Business Review’s inaugural top 25 law firm rankings for 2012 despite the government awarding licenses to 6 foreign law firms this year.

Allen & Gledhill ranked first followed by Rajah & Tann, WongPartnership, Drew & Napier, and Rodyk & Davidson.

Local firms on the rise
Local law firms have dominated the list with only 11 foreign firms making it to the top 25. Together the top 25 law firms employed 3,798 people in Singapore, according to figures compiled by Singapore Business Review. The average number of employees in the top 25 firms was 42.

Allen & Gledhill employed a total of 357 law professionals. The firm, which ended merger talks with Allen & Overy last March, was the legal counsel for CapitaLand in a $5bn Euro medium term note programme and DBS Bank in a $1bn fixed rate subordinated notes due 2023.

The legal market in Singapore continued to grow during 2011 thanks to the influx of foreign law firms in the city.

According to Rikvin, a Singapore company registration specialist, Singapore’s legal industry has seen an annual growth rate of 10% for the past five years. Data from Bloomberg shows that the number of foreign lawyers in Singapore has doubled over the last four years - from 633 in 2007 to 1,200 at the end of 2011.

Rikvin sees these trends continuing with the results of the second round of applications for the Qualifying Foreign Law Practice (QFLP) license set to be revealed over the next three to six months. The QFLP licensing program, which commenced in 2008, has approved six international law firms including Allen & Overy, Herbert Smith and Norton Rose to practice and render services in approved areas such as commercial and corporate law during the first round of applications.

New players
According to Taylor Root, a legal and compliance recruitment agency, a number of international firms opened offices in Singapore in 2012, including Olswang, LG, Collas Crill, Mayer Brown JSM, Squire Sanders, Withers and Reynolds Porter Chamberlain. Rumours of other new entrants continue but Taylor Roots notes that whilst these latest developments point to a very vibrant legal scene, it is worth remembering that the market is still small in comparison to other major markets such as London and Hong Kong.

A big red flag, it says, was the proposed merger between Allen & Overy and local firm Allen & Gledhill, which ultimately did not happen. “This could have been the catalyst to a more open legal market in Singapore and further developments of this nature are anticipated. Litigation can still only be practised in local law firms, although Singapore continues to expand as a centre of international arbitration,” it says.

“Growth over the last 18 months has been cautious and firms generally only have less than a handful of specific requirements at any one time. The bar continues to be high and only very strong foreign lawyers are able to secure roles here,” it adds.

High profile disputes on the rise
WongPartnership, which ranked third on the top 25 rankings with 270 law professionals, saw a healthy growth in international and cross-border transactions and an upswing in international arbitration and domestic litigation matters, including high profile disputes.

Among the firm’s major deals include ThaiBev’s stake acquisition of Fraser and Neave, named as the largest M&A transaction in Singapore in 2012. The law firm also took part in DBS Group Holdings’ proposed $9.1 billion acquisition of PT Bank Danamon.

Drew & Napier, fourth in the top 25 Law Rankings with 233 professionals, also takes pride in its major litigation and arbitration deals abroad. Drew & Napier’s Davinder Singh is named as the first Singapore Senior Counsel to represent a foreign government in a court case abroad.

Singh was admitted ad hoc into the Brunei Bar in which he successfully defended the former deputy Defense Minister, Commander of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces and Commander of the Royal Brunei Air Forces in a claim filed against them by a former officer of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces in the Court of Appeal of Brunei. 

Download the "Top 25 Law Firms" here >>



Sign up for our newsletter

 

Do you know more about this story? Contact us anonymously through this link.

Click here to learn about advertising, content sponsorship, events & rountables, custom media solutions, whitepaper writing, sales leads or eDM opportunities with us.

To get a media kit and information on advertising or sponsoring click here.

Tags: singapore top law firms, Allen & Glendhill, Rajah & Tann, WongPartnership, Drew & Napier, and Rodyk & Davidson

LATEST PROFESSIONAL SERVICES/LEGAL JOBS »
PRINT ISSUE »

Subscribe Now
What factors are keeping expats rooted in Singapore?

989 views

What factors are keeping expats rooted in Singapore?

576 views

Can Asian private equity outgrow the west?

245 views

MOST READ EXCLUSIVES

16 items that are a tad cheaper in Singapore than in Hong Kong

16 items that are a tad cheaper in Singapore than in Hong Kong

Coffee lovers need not go farther for a cheaper cup of cappuccino.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
20 Mar 2015 | 99147 views
 

The 10 richest Singaporeans

The 10 richest Singaporeans

Altogether, their total amount of wealth dropped by 20% to US$32.5 billion.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
13 Apr 2015 | 96396 views

Singapore’s 8 hottest 40 and under hotel chefs

Singapore’s 8 hottest 40 and under hotel chefs

Check out and be inspired from their humble beginnings before rising the ranks.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
27 Mar 2015 | 13398 views
 

Chow Tai Fook opens second store in Singapore

Chow Tai Fook opens second store in Singapore

It's a 1,000-square feet new jewellery shop on Orchard Road.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
26 Feb 2015 | 12238 views

This is a woman’s world: CRIB launches Singapore’s first business and lifestyle incubator for women

This is a woman’s world: CRIB launches Singapore’s first business and lifestyle incubator for women

Find out what the three key platforms of CRIB are.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
10 Mar 2015 | 8160 views
 

The New Black hits Singapore with rarest green coffee

The New Black hits Singapore with rarest green coffee

It also boasts of its Impossible Collection curated by the ‘world’s rockstar roasters'.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
5 Mar 2015 | 4771 views

Too many business cards? Why don’t you try Sansan’s business card management service?

Too many business cards? Why don’t you try Sansan’s business card management service?

After Singapore, this contract management company plans to expand in the APAC region.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
12 Feb 2015 | 4383 views
 

Check out this integrated office cum lab of Friesland Campina in Singapore

Check out this integrated office cum lab of Friesland Campina in Singapore

A curved glass wall resulted in a 90% open-plan office.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
17 Feb 2015 | 4369 views

Spencer Ogden gets funky with its newest trademark space in Singapore

Spencer Ogden gets funky with its newest trademark space in Singapore

The company invested over $1M to make this signature office possible.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
5 Feb 2015 | 3497 views
 

Want to be hands-on with your ideal home setting?

Want to be hands-on with your ideal home setting?

Commune is opening an Experience Centre for meticulous homeowners.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
23 Mar 2015 | 2904 views

Office in the sky: How’s having a meeting in the clouds?

Office in the sky: How’s having a meeting in the clouds?

Check out ACL Asia Pacific’s Cumulonimbus, Altostratus and Cirrus rooms.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
1 Apr 2015 | 2773 views
 

Lazada Singapore CEO Martell Hardenberg talks about his “Happy Customer” philosophy

Lazada Singapore CEO Martell Hardenberg talks about his “Happy Customer” philosophy

Find out what other goals the 27-year-old has for the company.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
27 Mar 2015 | 2374 views

LawCanvas saves the day: Easy legal documents in under a minute

LawCanvas saves the day: Easy legal documents in under a minute

The founders revolutionized the legal industry despite having different backgrounds.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
2 Mar 2015 | 2310 views
 

Take a look inside INSEAD’s $55m leadership development centre in Singapore

Take a look inside INSEAD’s $55m leadership development centre in Singapore

It marks the fulfillment of a vision too ambitious to achieve 15 years ago.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
1 Apr 2015 | 2304 views

PocketMath makes buying mobile ad impressions easier

PocketMath makes buying mobile ad impressions easier

It integrates over 20 ad exchanges and offers over 20B impressions a day.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
9 Feb 2015 | 1770 views
 

#OnTheContrary campaign reveals the ‘real struggles’ of entrepreneurs

#OnTheContrary campaign reveals the ‘real struggles’ of entrepreneurs

Rags to riches stories are fabulous, but here’s the real deal.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
27 Mar 2015 | 1017 views

Find out what it’s like going into business with your in-law

Find out what it’s like going into business with your in-law

A young entrepreneur teamed up with his father-in-law to redefine home entertainment needs.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
27 Mar 2015 | 775 views
 

What is the future of the sports business in Singapore?

What is the future of the sports business in Singapore?

Can a new billion-dollar stadium give Singapore the edge it needs to compete for world-class sporting events?

by STAFF REPORTER
20 Mar 2015 | 691 views

Fragrance Du Bois to launch a new scent this year

Fragrance Du Bois to launch a new scent this year

Also, check out its pop-up boutique at TANGS Orchard open until April 26.

by KRISANA GALLEZO
17 Apr 2015 | 414 views
 
close Don't Show Again

STAY INFORMED! Get our free weekly newsletter