Nishimura & Asahi successfully represented a client in an international post-M&A arbitration
Nishimura & Asahi successfully defended a Japanese company in the TMT industry in a post-M&A dispute regarding alleged breaches of representations and warranties. The case arose from the sale of a foreign subsidiary to a non-Japanese company. In the final award, the claimant’s claims were fully dismissed and our client was awarded compensation of a significant portion of its costs.
Nishimura & Asahi’s team which represented the client was led by partners Akihiro Hironaka and Lars Markert, working together with Natalie Yap, Anne-Marie Doernenburg, Takahiro Ishii and Mihiro Koeda. Under their supervision, Michael Martinez also assisted with the case.
Akihiro’s experience covers product liability, contractual claims, mass tort claims, and tax disputes, in various industries, in particular in the pharmaceutical and automotive industries. He has also handled disputes arising from M&A transactions, disputes involving construction sites in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, and disputes arising from the termination of distribution agreements. He has achieved significant results in international arbitrations, including emergency arbitration proceedings under the rules of the ICC, SIAC, AAA-ICDR, and JCAA. He also advised clients in connection with US civil actions, including class actions, and Japanese judicial assistance for foreign court proceedings.
In one notable case, he successfully defended a Japanese trading company against six large vicarious liability lawsuits, involving claims totaling JPY 48.3 billion, filed by claimants including an affiliate of a US-headquartered investment bank and a US hedge fund. He also recovered JPY 13.3 billion for Shionogi & Co. in an action challenging a tax assessment relating to an in-kind contribution of a partnership interest in a cross-border reorganization for the development of a drug for AIDS. He is currently representing a pharmaceutical company in one of the largest product liability lawsuits in Japan.
He is a graduate of The University of Tokyo (LL.B., 1993) and Harvard Law School (LL.M., 2003), and is licensed to practice law in Japan and New York. He served as a Japanese district court judge from 1998 until 2000, and worked at Arnold & Porter (Washington, D.C.) from 2003 until 2004. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
He is the author of various books and articles in the areas of litigation and international arbitration, including Yasuhei Taniguchi et al. eds., Civil Procedure in Japan (contributor, Juris Publishing). He was awarded the "Dispute Resolution Lawyer of the Year" at the ALB Japan Law Awards in 2022.
Lars’ practice is focused on commercial and investment arbitration. He has particular expertise in contentious proceedings involving post-M&A, commercial, manufacturing, construction, and distribution matters, in areas such as life sciences, automotive, and energy. Lars also deals with cases involving governments, and has advised foreign investors and sovereign states on issues of foreign direct investment and public international law, including related negotiations and investor-state disputes. He has been involved in more than 50 international arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator under the arbitration rules of institutions such as the ICC, DIS, SAC, NAI, ICDR, KCAB, JCAA, SIAC, and ICSID, as well as under the UNCITRAL Rules.
Prior to joining Nishimura & Asahi in 2017, Natalie worked in London and in Singapore and has acted as counsel in more than 50 arbitration, mediation, and adjudication matters extending across a large range of industries, including shipping, engineering, onshore and offshore construction, aviation, oil and gas, international trade, asset finance, telecommunications, motor racing and automotive distribution. Aside from acting in contentious proceedings, Natalie regularly advises on dispute prevention and risk management. In 2015, Natalie was named Asia Women in Business Law’s “Rising Star for Litigation”. She is ranked in the 2021,2022 and 2023 editions of Who’s Who Legal (Arbitration).She is also ranked in the 2021 and 2022 editions of the Legal 500 (for Real Estate and Construction). Natalie is a contributing author to Singapore International Arbitration: Law and Practice (2nd ed., 2018 , edited by David Joseph, QC and David Foxton, QC).