Mr Mahesh Rai > Drew & Napier LLC > Singapore, Singapore > Lawyer Profile

Drew & Napier LLC

Work Department

Dispute Resolution


Director, Dispute Resolution


Mahesh acts for clients in a broad spectrum of litigation and international arbitration matters.

He has handled disputes spanning many sectors including information technology, telecommunications, oil and gas, shipping, construction and commodities. He is adept at handling complex disputes involving multi-disciplinary technical issues. He has also acted in shareholder and joint venture disputes, employment disputes and fraud claims.

Mahesh graduated from the National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2008 as a Shaw Foundation Scholar.

In 2009, he earned an LL.M. in International Arbitration & Litigation from University College London (UCL). He was an oralist in the UCL team that was the runner-up in the prestigious Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition in 2009. Mahesh was part of the Drew & Napier team that won the inaugural Essex Court Chambers-Singapore Academy of Law Moot Competition 2012 for Singapore lawyers.

In 2012, Mahesh was also awarded an Excellence in Advocacy Award by the Singapore International Arbitration Academy.

In 2014, the Supreme Court of Singapore appointed Mahesh as Young Amicus Curiae and he assisted the High Court on novel points of law in an appeal involving money laundering. Mahesh was also awarded the Singapore Academy of Law scholarship which enabled him to work at Fountain Court Chambers with eminent Queen’s Counsel.

In 2017, the ICC appointed Mahesh as one of the regional representatives for the Young Arbitrators Forum.

Mahesh regularly acts as pro bono defence counsel under the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme (CLAS) for impecunious accused persons. He also represents victims who appear as civil parties before the hybrid Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

Mahesh also teaches advocacy to aspiring lawyers as part of the bar course.

Practice Areas:

  • Arbitration
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Construction & Engineering
  • Corporate Litigation
  • Crime
  • Defamation
  • Energy, Transport & Infrastructure
  • Information Technology
  • International Arbitration
  • International Trade
  • Investigations
  • Shipping
  • Telecommunications, Media & Technology




  • Arbitrator, KLRCA Panel
  • Arbitrator, SIAC Reserve Panel
  • Panel of Arbitrators, Thailand Arbitration Centre (THAC)
  • Regional Representative, ICC Young Arbitrators Forum
  • Member, Inter-Pacific Bar Association
  • Member, International Bar Association
  • Member, Law Society of Singapore
  • Committee Member, International Relations Committee of Law Society of Singapore
  • Committee Member, Criminal Legal Aid Scheme
  • Member, Singapore Academy of Law
  • Member, Young International Arbitration Group
  • Member, Young International Council for Commercial Arbitration
  • Lead Counsel, Legal Assistance Scheme for Capital Offences


  • LL.B. (Hons), National University of Singapore (2008), Shaw Foundation Scholar
  • LL.M. International Arbitration & Litigation, University College London (2009)
  • B.Sc. (1st Class Hons) Politics & International Relations, London School of Economics, External (2006)
  • Advocate & Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Singapore (2011)
  • Attorney-at-law of the state of New York (2011)
  • Solicitor of England & Wales (2013)
  • International Lawyer, Bar Association of the Kingdom of Cambodia (2013)
  • Member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

Lawyer Rankings

Singapore > Dispute resolution: local firms

Within: Next Generation Partners -

Mahesh Rai

Drew & Napier LLC

Drew & Napier LLC remains a dispute resolution powerhouse, despite the headline departure of the iconic Davinder Singh SC, Jaikanth Shankar and Pardeep Khosa to launch Davinder Singh Chambers. The remaining team continues to be highly rated thanks to the presence of big names such as chief executive Cavinder Bull SC, Jimmy Yim SC and the recently appointed senior counsel Siraj Omar SC who joined from RPC Premier Law with a team of eight in July 2019; he provides additional firepower in banking and insolvency disputes. Moreover, the firm bolstered its standing in tax disputes with the hire of Ong Sim Ho from his own eponymous firm. The team is routinely engaged in big-ticket and bet-the-company type disputes and has a tremendous record in arbitration-related court proceedings. Mahesh Rai is highly regarded for construction and engineering disputes, while Wendell WongRandolph Khoo, Gary LowBenedict Teo and Blossom Hing are also important names. Adam Maniam is an emerging talent and Bryan Wong is an outstanding senior associate.

Singapore > International arbitration

Within: Next Generation Partners -

Mahesh Rai

Drew & Napier LLC

Drew & Napier LLC has gained considerable traction in the arbitration market in recent years, thanks in part to the commitment, dedication and profile of key figures such as Cavinder Bull SC. The firm has made an impact in commercial and investor-state arbitrations, acting for a wide variety of regional and international clients, including governments. Jimmy Yim SC, Randolph Khoo and Yuet Min Foo are also highly rated, as is emerging figure Mahesh Rai.

Singapore > Projects and energy: local firms

Drew & Napier LLC has an impressive mix of non-contentious and contentious work with a strong focus on national oil companies (NOCs) along with Japanese and Korean contractors. The firm is active in telecoms infrastructure matters in Myanmar and Malaysia, and is making an impact in petrochemical and conventional power plant projects across the region. Jimmy Yim SC leads the practice, which includes top disputes lawyer Mahesh Rai and newly recruited director Ong Sim Ho, who is a regular tax adviser to NOCs. Julian Kwek is noted for energy transactions.