TMT: International firms and joint ventures in Japan

Herbert Smith Freehills

Herbert Smith Freehills' TMT practice has a strong international focus and is especially active in cross-border regulatory, corporate, licensing, infrastructure, and outsourcing matters. Under the joint leadership of Graeme Preston and Christopher Hunt, the practice recently advised NTT Communication on its investment in Transatel, and acted for Sumitomo in its acquisition of Q-Park's business in Scandinavia.

Practice head(s):

Graeme Preston; Christopher Hunt


‘Herbert Smith Freehills is closely connected to the trends and developments of TMT globally and communicates solutions and trends better than other firms in Japan.’

‘Graeme Preston is the top TMT lawyer in Tokyo, who has hands-on experience in TMT issues and solutions and understands the views and approaches that prevail in Japan as well. Clients can count on him for timely, appropriately priced advice and solutions.’

Key clients

ITOCHU Corporation

Mitsui & Co. Ltd

Sumitomo Corporation

NTT Communications


Hitachi Construction Machinery Co., Ltd

Work highlights

  • The team was appointed to advise NTT Communications on its acquisition of a majority stake in French mobile virtual network enabler Transatel in June 2018 after a competitive pitching process. The transaction will allow NTT Comm to drastically extend its Global IoT solution offerings.
  • Sumitomo Corporation advised on its acquisition of European parking operator Q-Park’s businesses in Sweden, Norway and Finland from Q-Park Operations Holdings, managed by KKR.
  • Advised Mitsui on all aspects of its investment in Campana, including the initial funding as well as the ongoing relationship with Campana and its shareholders, and potential exit options.
  • Advised a subsidiary of Hitachi on the development, supply and maintenance of a fleet of autonomous vehicles to be supplied to Australia’s largest independent coal miner, Whitehaven Coal Limited.
  • Advised Fujitsu General Limited on its acquisition of Australia-based heating, ventilating and air conditioning services company Precise Air Group.

Morrison & Foerster LLP

The dedicated technology transactions team at Morrison & Foerster LLP is led by Masato Hayakawa and specialises in technology, content, branding and other intellectual property development, licensing and partnering transactions. The firm's stellar client roster spans both long-established corporates and startups operating in a vast array of sectors, including healthcare, pharmaceuticals, semiconductor technology and financial services. Seth Graham is one to watch. Stuart Beraha recently departed to Latham & Watkins Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise.

Practice head(s):

Masato Hayakawa

Other key lawyers:

Yukihiro Terazawa; Ken Siegel; Seth Graham

Key clients


Yahoo Japan

Hitachi, Ltd.

Toshiba Corporation

SoftBank Group Corp.

Renesas Electronics Corp.

TDK Corporation

Otsuka Holdings

Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Lead counsel to Sprint and SoftBank, the controlling shareholder of Sprint, on the landmark merger of Sprint and T-Mobile US Inc. announced on April 29, 2018.
  • Represented Renesas Electronics Corp. in its US$6.7bn acquisition of Integrated Device Technology.
  • Advised Alibaba Group Holding Limited in its acquisition of a 33% equity interest in Ant Financial, China’s leading financial services company.
  • Represented Nissan Motor in the sale of its electric battery operations and production facilities to Envision Group, a Chinese renewable energy firm.
  • Represented Genesis Healthcare Co., a Japan-based medical device company, in a sponsorship arrangement with Rakuten, Inc. pursuant to which Genesis Healthcare appointed footballer Andrés Iniesta Luján (currently playing for Rakuten Vissel Kobe) as its brand ambassador and engaged Rakuten and Iniesta to sponsor and promote Genesis Healthcare’s direct-to-consumer DNA testing kit, which enables individuals to identify hereditary health risks and facilitate healthier life habits.

Baker McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise)

Baker McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise) assists its varied and enviable client roster on complex legal disputes, major transactions and regulatory issues. The full-service offering is jointly led by IP and IT expert Kensaku Takase and corporate partner Yutaka Kimura and has a particular focus in the rapidly-evolving fintech space. Gavin Raftery regularly advises both financial institution and technology clients in Japan and throughout Asia Pacific on AI, machine learning, crypto-currency and cybersecurity issues.

Practice head(s):

Kensaku Takase; Yutaka Kimura

Other key lawyers:

Gavin Raftery; Masato Honma

Key clients

Origami Inc.

Amadeus Code


Work highlights

  • Assisted Origami Inc. in securing $66.6m in its series C investment round.
  • Advised SUNCORPORATION on its Israeli subsidiary’s issuance of $110m preferred shares to Israel-based venture capital for a strategic partnership.