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Japan > Antitrust and competition law > Independent local firms > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Antitrust and competition law: independent local firms
  2. Leading individuals: bengoshi
  3. Leading individuals: foreign lawyers (within independent local firms)
  4. Next generation lawyers: bengoshi

Leading individuals: foreign lawyers (within independent local firms)

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Next generation lawyers: bengoshi

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Mori Hamada & Matsumoto has ‘one of the best antitrust teams in Japan’, which advised JX Holdings and Showa Shell Sekiyu on widely publicised acquisitions in the Japanese oil industry; the former acquired TonenGeneral Sekiyu, and Idemitsu Kosan acquired 31.3% of the shares of the latter. Hideki Utsunomiya and counsel Tsuyoshi Ikeda are ‘excellent antitrust lawyers’, as is Kenji Ito, who has ‘cool-headed pragmatism’ and acted for Mitsubishi Motors during Nissan’s acquisition of 34% of its shares. Hitachi and FamilyMart are other clients.

The team at Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu, headed by Eriko Watanabe, is ‘extremely knowledgeable’ and ‘extraordinarily responsive, providing strong substantive and practical advice’. Antitrust work undertaken by the firm covers sectors such as energy, financial services, telecoms, manufacturing and pharmaceuticals. Kaoru Hattori is a ‘real star’, the ‘fantastic’ Yusuke Kaeriyama was promoted to partner, and Ryohei Tanaka is an associate to note.

Nishimura & Asahi is ‘the very top in the field, particularly for antitrust merger investigations’. Kozo Kawai heads the sizeable practice and led the advice to Nippon Paper during its acquisition of Weyerhaeuser NR Company’s Liquid Packaging Board business in the US; he also handled a large merger deal between Western Digital and Sandisk. Other clients include Nippon Steel Sumitomo Metal Corporation, Furukawa Electric, Google Japan and Amazon Japan.

Anderson Mori & Tomotsune’s workload includes international cartel investigations and merger control matters. The practice represents clients before the major antitrust authorities, including the Japanese Fair Trade Commission (JFTC), the US Department of Justice (DoJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the European Commission, China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) and National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). Atsushi Yamada is representing Qualcomm and Bunka Shutter in two separate JFTC administrative hearings. Yusuke Nakano is strong in merger control filings, particularly involving foreign jurisdictions; he and Vassili Moussis assisted A.P. Moller – Maersk A/S and MSC Mediterranean Shipping with file amendments to their notifications under the Maritime Transportation Act of Japan. Other clients include Marriott International and Samsung Electronics. Takeshi Suzuki has been promoted to partner and Yoshiharu Usuki is a key associate.

The team at Atsumi & Sakai has ‘extensive knowledge and experience’ with regards to domestic and cross-border antitrust matters for clients across a range of sectors, including manufacturing, energy and transport. Practice head Setsuko Yufuunderstands European business culture very well’ and is ‘a star in the field’ with ‘a hands-on approach and a strategic mind’. Saori Hanada and Tatsuo Yamashima are also recommended as ‘very bright, highly responsive and easy to work with’.

TMI Associates is strong in matters related to monopolisation, merger control and abuse of dominance. Practice head Yusuke Kashiwagi advised UNY Group Holdings on its merger with Family Mart, while Hidehiro Utsumi worked on a number of cross-border matters across the EU, the UK and the US, advising clients such as Sumitomo Rubber Industries and DENSO. Koichiro Hanamoto was promoted to partner.

Antitrust boutique Hibiya Sogo Law Offices is particularly focused on competition and cartel investigations. Toshiaki Tada is recommended.

Iwata Godo assists corporate clients, financial institutions and their boards of directors with complex antitrust matters both at the domestic and cross-border level, including merger control matters and dominance abuse-related litigation. Yoshihiro Toji, who mostly handles contentious work, Shinya Tago, Atsushi Izumi and Manabu Eiguchi are key contacts.

Momo-o, Matsuo & Namba specialises in contentious work and cartel investigations. For example, Nobuaki Mukai handles antitrust cases in the construction, manufacturing, retail and transportation sectors.

Oh-Ebashi LPC & Partners handles domestic and international cartel work. Abuse of dominance is another key area for the team. Tetsuya Nagasawa is an ‘authority in this field’.

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