TMT in Philippines
Focusing on the technology sector, the lawyers at Disini & Disini Law Office are 'leaders when it comes to data privacy, fintech, and policies involving innovation'. The firm advises fintech clients on the full spectrum of contractual and regulatory matters involving platforms for blockchain and cryptocurrency, from the establishment of innovative new ventures through to mergers and takeovers. As regards data privacy, the group handles compliance, risk assessment, process mapping and data breach issues. JJ Disini is a go-to name in the technology sector, and was asked to co-draft the rules on electronic evidence as part of the e-commerce sub-committee. Senior associate Aiken Serzo assists clients with registering electronic payment systems.
‘Having worked with D&D since 2017, I’ve seen how progressive the firm is especially when it comes to technology. Ever since the start of our engagement with the firm, they’ve seen the potential of start-ups and innovation and that’s why they partnered with us to engage with our founders. They’re also the leaders when it comes to data privacy, fintech, and policies involving innovation.‘
Banana Fintech Services Corp
QBO Innovation Hub
Trusting Social AI Philippines
- Advised QBO on its internal matters and its various partnerships, and also provided support for QBO’s community of start-ups.
- Assisted Kumu in ensuring that its mobile app is compliant with data privacy act legislation in the Philippines.
- Assisted Banana Fintech in the procurement of an EMI licence.
One of the largest full-service firms in the Philippines, Quisumbing Torres' TMT industry focus group advises the biggest names in the sector on commercial, disputes and regulatory issues. The group also focuses on digital media, advising on content delivery, broadcasting regulatory requirements and reputation management. Employment specialist Gil Roberto Zerrudo jointly heads the practice, regularly advising technology companies on the labour and employment implications of commercial endeavours. Co-head Divina Ilas-Panganiban is experienced in data privacy matters, assisting numerous major multinational companies with data privacy requirements. Bienvenido Marquez III, promoted to international partner in 2019, leads the firm's intellectual property practice and advises on investigations into counterfeit software products.
Other key lawyers:
China Communications Services International Limited
Alphabet / Google Inc.
Business Software Alliance
- Advised on the establishment of the Philippine corporate vehicle of China Communications Services International Limited, which will provide key services to the “third telco”, a joint venture that was awarded the franchise as the third telecoms service provider in the Philippines.
SyCip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan's TMT group is instructed by multinational and major domestic companies active in the sector to advise on a full range of issues. Regulatory compliance is a core strength; the practice routinely advises clients undertaking business ventures in the telematics, cloud services, streaming, e-commerce and gaming sectors on the risks posed by legislation. Fintech is also an area of activity; John Paul de Leon in particular provides investment and licensing advice to companies active in the e-payment systems, blockchain and cryptocurrency fields. Rose Marie King-Dominguez handles M&A in the technology and telecoms sectors, and advises a wide variety of clients on data privacy and protection issues.
Metro Pacific Group
Dentsu Aegis Network
San Miguel Corporation
- Advised a tower company based in Asia with a presence in various jurisdictions on a joint venture for the operation of a tower company business.
- Advised a leading technology company providing various internet-based services such as search engines, cloud storage and advertising on the legal evaluation of its products.
- Advised a subsidiary of a conglomerate in Malaysia engaged in electronic money issuance on the registration its local subsidiary and in the licensing of its electronic money product which will be launched in the Philippines.
Established in 2015, Gorriceta Africa Cauton & Saavedra has 'specific expertise of dealing with tech companies and navigating the regulatory environment'; the group has expertise in fintech, blockchain, smart contracts, e-commerce, artificial intelligence and cybercrime. Data privacy is another area of focus, and the team provides comprehensive compliance advice to clients including Medifi Medtech Solutions (Philippines). It has recently gained several large banks as new clients. Managing partner Mark Gorriceta and Anthony Edsel Tupaz lead the corporate and special project teams respectively.
Other key lawyers:
UnionBank of the Philippines
Radius Telecoms (a Meralco subsidiary)
Apppps Partners, Inc.
Multisys Technologies Corporation
S&P Global, Philippines Inc.
- Assisted UnionBank of the Philippines with respect to many of its flagship fintech and blockchain-based initiatives.
- Assisted UBX Philippines Corporation, the principal financial technology arm and subsidiary of UnionBank of the Philippines, with general advice concerning various products and pillar initiatives which UBX aims to launch.
- Assisted Radius Telecoms Inc., a fully-owned subsidiary of the Manila Electric Company, in procuring the necessary approvals to operate in various local government units and regions.
Villaraza & Angangco (V&A Law) acts as local counsel for large international telecoms companies and advises on the corporate, regulatory and financial elements of transactions involving entry into the Philippine market. The group also assists domestic clients with issues such as the creation of new companies, joint ventures and anti-money laundering legislation. Sylvette Tankiang operates a broad practice that includes advising technology companies on tax and corporate issues. Kristin Charisse Siao advises on M&A transactions in the telecom sector.
Other key lawyers:
Lalamove Philippines, Inc.
Ninja Express Tech Philippines, Inc.
Tata Consultancy Services Philippines, Inc.
China Telecommunications Corporation
ISOC Infrastructure, Inc.
Innove Communications, Inc.
- Acted as legal counsel of China Telecommunications Corporation in connection with its participation and investment in Mindanao Islamic Telephone Company, Inc., a consortium comprised of Udenna Corporation, Chelsea Holdings, and China Telecom.
- Advising ISOC Infrastructure, Inc on its joint venture with EGSB for the creation of a telecoms tower company in the Philippines,
- Advised Stripe Inc. on its planned entry as an online merchant acquirer in the Philippines, particularly with respect to Philippine laws on money laundering and terrorism financing.
Belo Gozon Elma Parel Asuncion & Lucila
Belo Gozon Elma Parel Asuncion & Lucila focuses on advising broadcasters and print media companies on issues including the setting up of overseas interests, licensing, competition and disputes. Felipe Gozon and Roberto Parel are the key practitioners.
Gatmaytan Yap Patacsil Gutierrez & Protacio (C&G Law) advises domestic and multinational clients on regulatory issues related to the use of telecoms equipment, online advertisements and cybersecurity. The firm also has a strong data privacy practice, providing training, audit assistance, document drafting and notification services. Mary Thel Mundin advises technology companies on a full range of commercial matters, including banking, investments and M&A. Deborah Sobrepeña-Lacson, who was promoted to partner in 2020, is another name to note.
Much of Gulapa & Quicho (Gulapa Law)'s work involves advising clients active in developing web platforms and mobile apps on various corporate matters including commercial agreements and technology transfer agreements. The group also advises technology companies on their bids for government projects, and are particularly active assisting operators of public-private partnerships with compliance with information technology regulations. Practice head Aris Gulapa operates a broad practice spanning various commercial issues.
Other key lawyers:
Asian Development Bank
Quipper United Kingdom
APO-UGEC Security Printing Joint Venture
Seabiscuit Technologies, Inc.
AC Infrastructure Holdings Corporation
Foremost Cagayan Development Leisure Corporation
- Advised ADB and Bases Conversion and Development Authority on a proposed information, communications and technology infrastructure project for New Clark City under a potential public-private partnership.
- Advised APO Production Unit, Inc. and United Graphicv Expression Corporation on the implementation of their joint venture agreement to upgrade APO’s printing facility to enable APO to print the Philippine ePassport.
- Advised Quipper United Kingdom on its intended restructuring in the Philippines.
Insights Philippines Legal Advisors (IPLA), Member Firm of ZICO Law Network
Established in 2017, Insights Philippines Legal Advisors (IPLA), Member Firm of ZICO Law Network has quickly developed a reputation in the technology space. The group is especially active advising new market entrants and start-ups from the the cryptocurrency and AI sectors on a variety of commercial and regulatory matters. Felix Sy leads the team and advises IT companies on commercial and M&A transactions. Associates Reeneth Santos and Mary Aubbrey Leigh Lim provide additional support.
- Advised the sellers on the sale and purchase of a shareholding in an information technology company providing technology services to a government agency.
- Advised a venture capital group on due diligence and the acquisition of a Philippine healthcare data analysis software company
- Advised a leading global financial services firm listed on the New York Stock Exchange on various legal and regulatory requirements surrounding the client’s use of electronic signatures and electronic documents in its transactions.
Poblador Bautista & Reyes
Poblador Bautista & Reyes advises clients from the technology and media sectors on a range of contentious and non-contentious issues. On the transactional side, the group assists companies with regulatory and compliance matters, in addition to providing data privacy advice. Disputes specialist Mario Bautista defended ABS-CBN Corporation a petition for quo warranto to revoke the legislative franchises for supposed violations of its franchises and the Philippines Constitution. Nick Villaluz's broad practice also takes in TMT work.
ABS-CBN Convergence, Inc.
Sky Cable Corporation
Lazada e-Services Philippines, Inc
- Represented ABS-CBN Corporation, a major Philippine broadcasting company, and its telecoms affiliate, ABS-CBN Convergence, Inc., in defending against a petition for quo warranto filed by the Office of the Solicitor General with the Supreme Court, to revoke the legislative franchises of the two companies for supposed violations of their franchises and the Constitution.
- Advised Sky Cable Corporation on corporate and regulatory matters
- Represented Lazada e-Services Philippines, Inc., an e-commerce company, in a wide range of legal matters, including administrative proceedings, intellectual property matters and regulatory compliance.
Quiason Makalintal Barot Torres Ibarra Sison & Damaso
Focusing on the telecoms and media sectors, Quiason Makalintal Barot Torres Ibarra Sison & Damaso advises on all legal aspects of securing and maintaining franchises to operate telecoms and mass media companies. The team counts television and radio broadcasting networks, telecoms companies and internet service providers in its client list.
Romulo Mabanta Buenaventura Sayoc & De Los Angeles focuses on providing regulatory advice to clients from the telecoms, gaming and mass media sectors. Victor Espiritu, Herminio Ozaeta and Marie Quiogue are the key practitioners.
Siguion Reyna, Montecillo & Ongsiako advises start-ups, technology consultants and technology venture capitalists on the corporate and tax law implications of technology-related ventures. The group also assists with the drafting of technology transfer agreements.