Leading Individuals: Bengoshi

Leading Individuals: Gaiben

Rising Stars: Bengoshi

Fintech - International firms and joint ventures in Japan

Baker McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise)

The fintech working group at Baker McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise) offers domestic and cross-border expertise across the fintech spectrum. Key areas of activity include financial services regulation, data protection, corporate governance and capital raisings. The group leverages its cooperation with other departments in the firm to assist clients with issues such as digital transformations, strategic transactions and workplace redesigns. Gavin Raftery heads up the practice and is well versed in issues extending to artificial intelligence and machine learning. Masoto Honma‘s fintech expertise is frequently called upon by clients ranging from government regulators to fintech start-ups. Daisuke Tatsuno is a key contact for IP and privacy matters, while Edwin Whatley is an authority on international taxation.

Practice head(s):

Gavin Raftery

Other key lawyers:

Masato Honma; Kensaku Takase; Yutaka Kimura; Daisuke Tatsuno; Edwin Whatley


‘We obtained comprehensive and consistent views on several business models in Fintech area.’

Clifford Chance

The ‘expert advice’ provided at Clifford Chance encompasses handling M&A, financial regulation issues and financings. The team is well versed in the technological aspect of fintech and frequently advises on issues such as blockchain, smart contracts and artificial intelligence work. Clients range from international and Japanese financial institutions to hi-growth fintech start-ups. Yusuke Abe steers the practice and is a key contact for matters involving derivatives transactions. Reiko Sakimura has longstanding experience in advising on international debt and equity capital market mandates. Michihiro Nishi is a key driver behind the transactional fintech expertise at the firm, while Eiichi Kanda is well placed to advise on the newly established ICO regulations in Japan. Capital markets expert Chihiro Ashizawa is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Yusuke Abe

Other key lawyers:

Reiko Sakimura; Leng-Long Lai; Natsuko Sugihara; Eiichi Kanda; Chihiro Ashizawa; Hajime Saito; Michihiro Nishi


‘CC is always prompt and clear with its advice. They are pragmatic and good to work with.’

Key clients


Zodia Custody Limited

Mizuho Securities Asia Limited

Sekisui House, Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Advised blockchain-based payment network Partior on its Series A financing and fundraising round.
  • Advising Mizuho Securities Asia Limited on the MTN Programme update in 2022 of SBI Holdings, Inc.
  • Advised on Zodia Custody Limited’s investment in a Japanese joint venture company that will operate a crypto custody business in Japan.

Paul Hastings LLP

Paul Hastings LLP‘s fintech capabilities include advising on transactional matters in the fintech space, financial services regulations and new product development. Adapting with the market, the unit is well placed to assist clients with key developments such as open banking, digital assets and digital transformations that have been catalysed by the pandemic. Practice head Toshiyuki Arai is an authority on payments work, and corporate specialist Yuko Kamo is a key contact for M&A work in the fintech space, while Olga Belosludova further extends the payments expertise at the firm.

Practice head(s):

Toshiyuki Arai

Other key lawyers:

Olga Belosludova; Yuko Kamo

Key clients

Deutsche Bank


Marubeni Corporation


Aozora Bank

Shinsei Bank

Citi Card Japan, Inc

Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Club Co., Ltd

Work highlights

  • Represented Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Club in a series of transactions involving Citi’s global corporate card issuance program in Japan.