Hong Kong: JSM Wins IFLR Hong Kong Law Firm Award for the Fourth Year Running
Last Updated: 15 March 2004

Johnson Stokes & Master is delighted to announce that for the fourth year in a row, the firm has been voted "Hong Kong Law Firm of the Year by the International Financial Law Review magazine (IFLR) at the IFLR Asian Awards ceremony held on 11 March 2004. In the same award presentation, the Bank of China's divestment of non-performing loans transaction, in which JSM acted as counsel for Bank of China, also won the "IFLR Distressed Asset Deal of the Year" award.

The selection of the IFLR awards winners is based on the nominations by law firms, as well as the views of in-house lawyers and other market players across Asia. The awards are to recognise the best-performing firms that demonstrate a consistent level of quality and innovative legal advice.

Simon Ip, Senior Partner of Johnson Stokes & Master said, "We are delighted to be again voted "Hong Kong Law Firm of the Year". This is the fourth consecutive year we have received this award and it reflects both our leading position in the marketplace and our strength across many different practice areas."

Ian Chapman, Partner and Head of JSM's Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency Group added, "JSM has a very strong restructuring and insolvency practice. Winning the "Distressed Asset Deal of the Year" award is a recognition of our outstanding expertise in this area and our high levels of service to clients. We are proud to have our efforts recognised in this way by clients and peers."

At the same award presentation, JSM was also named as a finalist for the "M&A Deal of the Year" and "Project Finance Deal of the Year" awards respectively for our handling of Tsingtao Brewery's strategic alliance with Anheuser-Busch and Guangdong LNG vessel financing transactions.

In September last year, JSM was again voted "Hong Kong Law Firm of the Year" and "Insolvency Law Firm of the Year" by the Asian Legal Business magazine.

Johnson Stokes & Master is the largest law firm in Hong Kong and one of the leading commercial law practices in Asia. With offices in Hong Kong, Mainland China (Beijing and Shanghai), Thailand (Bangkok) and Vietnam (Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City), JSM has a multi-national team of over 750 staff, including more than 230 lawyers who are qualified in local and international jurisdictions.

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Johnson Stokes & Master acted for Bank of China in its divestment of a US$1.8 billion portfolio of predominately Hong Kong Dollar denominated non-performing loans. It was by far the single largest divestment of non performing loans in Hong Kong (and one of the largest single divestments in the Asia region). The transaction involved a significant due diligence exercise, preparation of information memoranda, investor review files, confidentiality agreements, tender documentation and the production of complex sale and purchase documentation for potential investors. This transaction also required JSM to devise the mechanics for transfer of loans and security held in trust structures.

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