Capital markets: structured finance, derivatives and securitisation: Foreign firms in Singapore

Ashurst LLP

Ashurst LLP has committed a great deal of resources to its structured finance and derivatives practice in Asia. In Singapore it covers a range of matters from structured products to OTC derivatives and covers both English and Singapore law through its Singapore Formal Law Alliance (FLA); it covers both transactional and advisory matters. The firm is especially active in corporate equity derivatives and loan hedges in the project finance segment. Edwin Yow handles a high volume of structured product and OTC derivative engagements for bulge-bracket banks. Counsel Kai Loon Loh is Singapore and English-qualified and is noted for corporate equity derivatives and loan hedging.

Practice head(s):

Edwin Yow

Key clients

ABN Amro

BNP Paribas

Citibank

CIMB Bank

UOB

Work highlights

  • Advised CIMB Bank on the equity and index-linked product supplement for its structured notes programme.
  • Advised DBS as issuer, arranger and dealer on the establishment of its structured warrants programme.
  • Advised Maybank as issuer on the preparation of a credit supplement for its $3m structured note programme.

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance has a strong presence in OTC and exchange-traded derivatives, and a range of structured products. It covers both transactional and regulatory issues. Paul Landless specialises in structured finance, derivatives and financial markets products,  while financial regulatory specialist Lena Ng is another key name.

Practice head(s):

Paul Landless

Work highlights

  • Advised a global investment management firm, Singapore-based hedge fund and a French corporate and investment bank on the negotiation of bespoke total return swaps for access to underlying securities in emerging markets.
  • Advised international banks, financial institutions and corporates in negotiating ISDA documentation and advising on hedging-related structuring queries relating to asset finance, project finance, debt capital markets and general banking projects.
  • Advised Aabar Investments PJS on its $149m sell-down in RHB Bank.

Linklaters

Linklaters impresses in initial margin implementation and regulatory framework changes. It covers both advisory and transactions. Working closely with ISDA and other regulators, it is also close to the big Singapore banks and a range of insurance companies. Counsel Sonia Lim heads the Singapore derivatives and structured products practice and has a fine regulatory background, having spent a number of years as an in-house practitioner.

Practice head(s):

Sonia Lim

Testimonials

‘They have strong technical knowledge, are able to advise and identify issues and solutions in a succinct manner, and are very responsive.’

‘Sonia Lim has strong technical knowledge and an understanding of the market, so she is able to give practical advice all of the time. She’s very responsive and is able to provide much value-added services to clients.’

Key clients

ISDA

DBS

UOB

OCBC Bank

Deutsche Bank

Standard Chartered

Work highlights

  • Advised the three largest Singapore banks in the implementation of initial margin requirements.
  • Advised Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing on the enforceability of close-out netting and collateral arrangements under Singapore law relating to the HKEX OTC Clear rules for the clearing of OTC derivatives transactions.

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright has an established position in derivatives transactions, including OTC and Islamic structures. The team is also noted for securitisations and other structured products, along with a steady pipeline of licensing and regulatory engagements. It has an outstanding record with a range of banks and financial institutions that operate in these segments. Colin Rice leads the Singapore derivatives and structured products practice.

Practice head(s):

Colin Rice

Testimonials

‘In comparison to other law firms, this one is responsive and very knowledgeable in the respective areas they are engaged for. More often than not, they are willing to go beyond the agreed work scope, if the needs arise, at the original agreed professional fee.’

‘Colin Rice is a very professional lawyer who is able to think from a commercial point of view for a matter on top of rendering pure legal advice. He is also very patient with clients, and always makes sure that his clients understand fully what he is trying to convey.’

Key clients

Bank of Communications

CCB International

Citibank

Commerzbank

HSBC Bank

Maybank

Simmons & Simmons

Simmons & Simmons is noted for buy-side transactions in the structured products and derivatives space. The team is also present in the sell-side segment. Jason Valoti is 'a great guy' and highly reputed, while Jonathan Quie is an emerging talent.