TMT (including Fintech) in Malaysia

Christopher & Lee Ong

Christopher & Lee Ong’s TMT practice works closely with large multinational companies across the banking, financial services, technology, telecoms, energy and insurance industries. The group is also seeing growth in the fintech, e-health and application development, as well as work for traditional businesses seeking to digitalise, particularly spurred by the pandemic. In the fintech and finreg space, the department advises on the establishment of cryptocurrencies and the setting up of e-money platforms. A recent key area of expertise is in advising Malaysian telcos on acquiring companies with cloud-based and voice cloud solutions. Deepak Pillai is an expert in data protection and digital signatures; he jointly heads the department with Intan HaryatiYau Yee Ming and telecoms specialist Kuok Yew Chen. Early career partner Anissa Maria Anis has previous in-house experience with a leading content and digital media company, while senior associate Yong Shih Han focuses on information security and data protection.

Other key lawyers:

Anissa Maria Anis; Yong Shih Han

Testimonials

The team will go the extra mile to fulfil the client’s request, collaborating with multiple stakeholders (including Regulator) in a project from different companies which can be challenging. Approaching every challenging situation with facts and an open mind to ensure the main objectives of the project is achievable‘.

The individuals are good listeners and open-minded. They bring the right experiences and knowledge to the discussion table‘.

Work highlights

  • Advised a Malaysian subsidiary of a global mining group of companies on the possible use of electronic bills of lading in Malaysia.
  • Acted for a Malaysian universal bank on ensuring the adoption of electronic signatures under the Electronic Commerce Act 2006 and digital signatures under the Digital Signature Act 1997.

Skrine

Led by Charmayne Ong, the telecoms practice at Skrine is highly recommended for regulatory advice on issues including 5G, OTT service offerings, data centres for cloud computing services and the leasing of sub-sea and terrestrial fibres. Clients encompass established technology and telecoms providers, up-and-coming market disruptors, as well as government agencies and social media platforms. Other key areas of work in the technology field include negotiating agreements such as software license, software and hardware maintenance and service levels as well as website terms of use, privacy policies and end-user licence agreements.

Practice head(s):

Charmayne Ong

Other key lawyers:

Jilian Chia; Natalie Lim Yen Kuan 

Testimonials

Skrine provides very responsive and provides good advice. They are always meeting our clients’ demanding needs and will try to give practical advice‘.

Charmaine Ong is excellent and her team of IP and life sciences and technology associates are very impressive‘.

Jillian Chia is very responsive and we really appreciate the quick feedback and effort to address our client’s needs‘.

Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill

Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill has a strong track record handling technology disputes and arbitration proceedings for major IT and telecoms clients. The practice also advises on telecoms compliance and IT regulation, with a particular strength on access offers and access agreements between operators and state-based infrastructure providers. Data protection is another core area of experience, drafting agreements, conducting compliance exercises and advising on data breaches. Team Lead G. Vijay Kumar handles high-value disputes concerning software development, network service provision and infrastructure, hardware agreements and outsourcing.

Practice head(s):

G. Vijay Kumar 

Other key lawyers:

Wai Sum Teo; Eleena Abd Wahab

Testimonials

The TMT team is highly accountable. They respond to our queries in a timely manner. The team is very attentive, highly knowledgeable and have a great sense of negotiation skills and exceptional drafting skills. The fees are reasonable. They are simply exceptional‘.

Very experienced partner and associates, and able to provide a detailed explanation and suggest solutions in a holistic manner. They are equipped with the latest updates, on top of their game, with good network locally and abroad‘.

Mr. G Vijay Kumar is articulate and calm. He provides excellent advice and strategy, available at all times (available to attend calls during weekends and late evening, via whatsapp, call or official email). Fast turn around, and able to accommodate our management and board meeting schedule‘.

The team has deep strength in all matters relating to data protection. Despite the departure of Adlin Abdul Majib, the team has continued to demonstrate this, with Eleena Abd Wahab being a real star. Teo Wai Sum has also been a great addition to the team. They work collaboratively on international matters to deliver an overall solution to Malaysian clients‘.

It’s proven that the team not only is well-versed with the Federal law with regard to the Royalty on Telecommunication Exclusivity but also with the State Law (specifically the State of Kedah)‘.

Their quick response to queries and in preparing a quality legal opinion report are extremely good. Regardless of the medium of communication, they will come back to us in a quick manner‘.

Teo Wai sum is a great lawyer and is very facilitating and understands the commercials of a transaction‘.

Eleena Abd Wahab is a real star, a clear communicator with excellent technical understanding. She is a joy to work with‘.

Key clients

Telekom Malaysia Berhad

Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission

Webe Digital Sdn Bhd

Sapura Research Sdn Bhd

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation in collaboration with Bank Negara Malaysia

Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd

Orange Business Services (Network) Sdn Bhd

Work highlights

  • Assisted the Government of Malaysia, through the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, with the conduct of a comprehensive study to establish a National Digital Identity framework for Malaysia.
  • Representing Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd in a claim filed by Stealth Solutions Sdn Bhd alleging the breach of a principal agreement between Stealth and Digi pertaining to the construction and licensing arrangements of telecommunication structures and tortious interference with the contractual relationship between Digi and the Perak State Government.
  • Advised Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation on its Fintech booster programme, which was launched by the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation in collaboration with Bank Negara Malaysia.

Raja, Darryl & Loh

The TMT team at Raja, Darryl & Loh is singled out for its ‘in-depth knowledge of regulator’s policy and requirement‘ and its ability to ‘contribute ideas that solve client’s problems in a pragmatic manner‘. It has seen a huge growth in technology work since the start of the pandemic, particularly as concerns electronic transactions and communications. This has included advisory on digital banking, cross-border payment solutions, electronic signatures and AI-enabled health applications and related data protection issues. Digital banking, assets and derivatives are other notable areas of strength. Tong Lai Ling heads the group and advises on cyber and data protection compliance; her clients include both technology and TMT companies and other Malaysian and international companies.

Practice head(s):

Tong Lai Ling

Other key lawyers:

Mei Mei Chong

Testimonials

Good partners and knowledge. Understands business and client considerations‘.

Tong Lai Ling is an outstanding lawyer with excellent client service standards‘.

Key clients

Sime Darby Berhad

Silverlake Group

MAA Group Berhad

CapSphere Sdn Bhd

Work highlights

  • Advised a licensed Microsoft reseller on the master services agreement with the Government.
  • Advised a public-listed pharmaceutical company on its medical applications for the development, hosting and maintenance of medical mobile applications for diabetic and cancer cases.
  • Acting for a financial services company that is entering into a joint venture with the Malaysian subsidiary of a US financial technology company with the objective of making a joint application to the Central Bank for a digital banking licence.

Shin Associates

Shin Associates, led by Jessie Tan, houses a notably strong entertainment and media law group, advising creative and performing arts industries clients including television and film production companies, filmmakers, gaming studios and theatre and dance companies. Tan regularly advises on the Creative Industry fund and acts as production attorney to international film and television productions. Associate Joel Prashant’s practice encompasses data protection, TMT regulations and merchandising, licensing and financing within the arts industry.

Practice head(s):

Jessie Tan

Other key lawyers:

Joel Prashant

Testimonials

The team are very helpful, knowledgeable and always go the distance in providing legal advice even on matters that we may overlook. We appreciate they are on the lookout for our company especially on IP protection‘.

The team seem like they are on call whenever we request their assistance‘.

Shin Associates are incredibly professional, insightful and very, very prompt. I appreciate how diligent they are about responding to our requests and how they have adapted technology to help us stay abreast with our documents, issues, and filings‘.

I appreciate the fact that they have adapted their roles to include being abreast of key information on digital changes, policies and grants. This has been especially helpful during the pandemic‘.

They pay attention to detail in their work and complete it within the time frame given‘.

Shin Associates are always on the ball for us with their strength being in the entertainment industry. The staff are always willing to take on issues we raise even at weekends. They are always contactable‘.

Jessie Tan and Joel Prashant are always giving us top advice and quick replies on contracts and other legal issues‘.

Both Jessie Tan and Joel Prashant are very patient, understanding and effective in their work. They also have a sense of urgency and provide you with the best legal services in record time‘.

Jessie Tan is an exceptional legal counsel. She understands our needs and is able to provide useful advice and clarifications clearly. She is very knowledgeable and efficient in responding to our requests. She ensures that all cases are followed up and documents are clean and in order‘.

Key clients

Enfiniti (M) Sdn. Bhd.

Lil Critter Workshop Sdn. Bhd.

Lemon Sky Animation Sdn. Bhd.

Collaborative Research in Engineering, Science and Technology Center

Barking Cow Media Group Sdn. Bhd.

Universal Music Sdn. Bhd.

BlackFlag Sdn. Bhd.

Act 2 Pictures Sdn. Bhd.

The Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre

PropertyGuru (International) Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.

Poptron Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.

IDB Visioncare Sdn. Bhd.

UDrive Media Sdn. Bhd.

Elmwood Group Pte. Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Advising Poptron Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. on the preparation for the Poptron app, and the protection of Poptron’s intellectual property which includes the registration of its trademark.
  • Assisted Lemon Sky Animation Sdn. Bhd. with its international licensing and distribution agreement of its original animated television series Astrology with China Lotta and Spain’s Imira Entertainment as well as YouTube via WildBrain and Yoboho New Media.
  • Successful represented Universal Music Sdn, Bhd.  against superfluous and damaging claims made by a local Malaysian business (“Plaintiff”) regarding the endorsement of a pharmaceutical product by an artist managed by the company.

Wong & Partners

Wong & Partners is an excellent choice for tech companies that specialasing in internet-related services, online banking and financial services, online music platforms and on-demand cloud platforms. The practice provides regulatory advice on cutting-edge and innovative tech, including AI, e-commerce, fintech, cybersecurity and data protection. Digital transformation is a niche area of advisory, with the group advising clients on digitalisation and commercialisation initiatives. Kherk Ying Chew brings extensive experience in IT and internet regulatory. She jointly heads the IP and technology group with Sonia Ong, who focuses on technology agreements and transactions, outsourcing and digital content.

Practice head(s):

Kherk Ying Chew; Sonia Ong

Testimonials

The team is quick, agile, innovative and provides excellent feedback in commercial contracting. They understand the business needs of their clients and are innovative in dealing with difficult contracting parties‘.

Sonia Ong and Ong Ee Fen are dedicated to their clients’ needs, going above and beyond in providing legal advice, and assurance when it comes to legal contracting. Their response time is quick and timely‘.

Sonia Ong is very responsive to all questions we may have while evaluating the investment in Malaysia. She recommended appropriate resources and understood client’s business concerns as a multinational company‘.

Key clients

UEM Edgenta

Wiwynn Corporation

Juris Technologies

Motion Picture Association (MPAA)

Touch N’ Go Sdn Bhd

StashAway Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.

Vivo

LAW Partnership

LAW Partnership is highly recommended for TMT-sector investigations and for regulatory compliance issues across the Asia-Pacific region. The team has notable expertise in the media and entertainment sector. Team lead Suaran Singh Sidhu is highly active in IT and fintech, regularly advising on compliance issues, cybersecurity, online transaction security and data protection. Raphael Tay joined from Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill, bringing considerable knowledge of IT law and IP.

Practice head(s):

Suaran Singh Sidhu

Other key lawyers:

Raphael Tay; Brian Law

Key clients

Mega Fortris Group

Sony Music Publishing Sdn Bhd

Mohamed Ridza & Co

The TMT practice at Mohamed Ridza & Co advises a range of telecoms, IT and financial services sector clients, drawing on its corporate, commercial, regulatory and data protection expertise. Mohamed Ridza is a key name for fintech matters, a big growth area for the department. He heads the team with Mohamad Nazran Basirun, whose practice covers IT contracting and media and communication regulation.

Rahmat Lim & Partners

The TMT practice at Rahmat Lim & Partners stands out for its fintech work, advising a range of venture capitalists, traditional fund managers, global banks, start-ups and technology service providers. The group also negotiates commercial agreements relating to telecoms provision and licensing, outsourcing, research and development. Wan Kai Chee, who also heads the firm’s financial services department, is a key name here. Azman bin Othman Luk heads the firm’s regulatory and compliance department, and Pauline Khor leads the IP and technology team. Karen Foong focuses on advising financial institutions and corporations on licensing, regulatory and compliance matters.

Other key lawyers:

Karen Foong

Shearn Delamore & Co

Shearn Delamore & Co’s TMT group has broad expertise across the sector, with key areas of work including software development and licensing agreements, cloud-based agreements, fintech, AI, technology transactions and regulatory compliance. The practice also advises on e-commerce and online marketing, data privacy issues, digital signatures and encryption, electronic patent systems, digital content and new media. Team lead Timothy Siaw has considerable experience in IP and technology. Other notable practitioners include Karen Abraham who handles IP litigation, regulatory and compliance matters; Janet Toh who advises on IP, technology and data protection matters; and Christina Kow who has notable expertise in the fintech and regtech space.

Practice head(s):

Timothy Siaw 

Testimonials

It’s strength is its breadth & depth of expertise given the diversified practice areas and the experience and credentials of its legal practitioners‘.

Key clients

Spacegen Sdn Bhd

GrowthOps

Yara Asia Pte Ltd

NTT Cloud Communications

Trendcell Sdn Bhd

ResMed

Richard Wee Chambers

The TMT practice at Richard Wee Chambers is known for regulatory advice pertaining to cryptocurrency, fintech and the digital economy more generally. E-sports, sports law and sports technology transactions are distinguishing specialisms, which managing partner Richard Wee has extensive experience in. Marlysa Binti Abdul Razak counts fintech start-ups as her key clients.

Key clients

Malaysia Digital Economic Corporation

Moby Fintech Sdn Bhd

Genysis Entertainment (M) Sdn Bhd

Institut Sukan Negara & Genomas

Institut Sukan Negara & Sports Data Malaysia Sdn Bhd

Institut Sukan Negara & Totalsim Ltd.

Institut Sukan Negara & Data Sukan Sdn Bhd

VSure Tech Sdn Bhd

Work highlights

  • Appointed by Malaysia Digital Economic Corporation to assist fintech startups on regulatory matters.
  • Advised ISN on sports law, technology, patent, data protection and regulation technology for genome.
  • Advising Vsure Tech Sdn Bhd on a range of regulatory, corporate and commercial, and insurance regulation matters.

Tay & Partners

Lee Lin Li heads the TMT group at Tay & Partners, which advises clients from a broad range of industries on licensing and regulatory approvals. Sector strengths encompass financial services, IT, electronics and telecoms. Recent mandates included advising technology companies on the provision of cloud, and AI-related goods and services, and representing a media and entertainment client on an alleged patent infringement matter.

Practice head(s):

Lee Lin Li

Other key lawyers:

Low Kok Jin

Key clients

Lazada South East Asia Pte Ltd e-Cart Services Sdn Bhd (Lazada, Malaysia)

Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.

Express in Music Pte Ltd

Alcatel Lucent Enterprise

HBO NoCisco Systems, Inc

DocuSign YesAudi AG

Tencent

Volvo

UC Mobile Limited

Lagardere Sports and Entertainment NoAmazon

SAP SE

Disney

Activision Publishing, Inc.

Epidemic Sound

Logitech

Beijing DIDI Infinity Technology Development Co., Ltd.

Guangdong OPPO Mobile Telecommunications Corp., Ltd.

Zain & Co

Saleah Abdul Shukor heads the TMT practice at Zain & Co which focuses on fintech and e-commerce issues, as well as software and hardware licensing and outsourcing arrangements. Other areas of work include cyber and IT security, film and media licensing and distribution, and data protection issues.

Practice head(s):

Salwah Abdul Shukor

Other key lawyers:

Pauline Ngiam

Testimonials

Zain & Co’s uniqueness lies in its deep knowledge of the local market and unrivalled network of contacts gained over 50 years of practicing in Malaysia. Although it is now part of Dentons global network, it still feels like a very local operation because of how the partners are able to translate the specifics of the local environment to a global client’s needs‘.

What I value most is their willingness to listen, attention to detail, the openness of mind and human touch‘.

Key clients

Jewel Digital Ventures Sdn. Bhd

Zul Rafique & Partners

Zul Rafique & Partners’ communications and multimedia practice group advises on a range of fixed and mobile communications, information and technology matters, e-commerce, data protection and privacy. Team lead Darren Kor Yit Meng advises on regulatory issues including licensing and universal service obligations, network roll-outs and procurement.

Practice head(s):

Darren Kor Yit Meng 

Testimonials

A very commercial approach/mindset on top of solid legal advisory; Very responsive with a quick turn-around of documents and agreements‘.

Very experienced partner and associates, and able to provide a detailed explanation and suggest a solution in a holistic manner. They are equipped with the latest updates, and are on top of their game with a good network locally and abroad‘.

Darren Kor Yit Meng is a regulatory expert. He provides excellent advice and strategy, and is able to accommodate our schedule‘.

Key clients

Telekom Malaysia Berhad

Maxis Broadband Sdn Bhd

Axiata Group Berhad

EdgePoint Infrastructure Sdn Bhd

Perak Intergrated Networks Services Sdn Bhd

Persatuan Syarikat-Syarikat Konsesi Lebuhraya Malaysia

Work highlights

  • Advising Telekom Malaysia Berhad on negotiating and drafting its access agreement in compliance with instruments issued under the Communications and Multimedia Act.