White & Case has hired a new M&A partner in Hong Kong in yet another move for the firm this year, which adds to its expansionary aims in Asia.
Kyungseok Kim joins the firm from Linklaters where he had previously been counsel advising on Korean private equity and M&A work.
John Reiss, head of White & Case's global M&A practice said: "These are exciting times for our private equity practice, globally. We've made significant investments in key jurisdictions, including the UK and Germany to further develop our private equity practice in Europe, and KS [Kyungseok Kim] will help build our capabilities in Asia, another important market. He will be part of a global team that implements innovative transactions with precision and care and is capable of advising private equity firms and other parties at every stage in the cycle – formation, investment, management and exit."
New York-qualified Kim’s previous highlights include advising Affinity Equity Partners - in January 2014 - on its $5.8 billion divestment of Oriental Brewery to Anheuser-Busch InBev, and advising Samsung Electronics - in May 2013 - on its divestment of its display business unit to Amazon.com for an undisclosed sum.
White & Case has a strategic aim to build a pan-Asian private equity practice not unlike its US competitor Weil Gotshal & Manges, who focus on high-end transactional work from Hong Kong. The move also strengthens its relationships with Korean clients - including JYP Entertainment, Woongjin Coway and the Export-Import Bank of Korea (KEXIM) - in order to build its brand in the Korean market.
In January 2015 the firm hired another Linklaters US-qualified private equity partner in Hong Kong, Peggy Wang. This month it also relocated New York senior partner Eric Berg to Hong Kong as Asia practice head in an effort to grow the firm's business in the region.