Ms Cynthia M. Pornavalai > Tilleke & Gibbins > Bangkok, Thailand > Lawyer Profile

Tilleke & Gibbins
Cynthia M. Pornavalai photo

Work Department

Corporate & Commercial Department.


Partner. Practice Areas: Banking and Finance; Insolvency, Bankruptcy, and Restructuring; International Trade; Japanese Client Services; Property and Construction; M&A.


Cynthia M. Pornavalai is a partner in Tilleke & Gibbins’ corporate and commercial department and a champion of business rights in Thailand. From advising foreign investors on mergers, acquisitions, banking and finance, and investing in Thailand, to counseling major players in the Thai property market, to helping lenders or debtors through debt restructuring and business reorganization matters, Cynthia’s practice is as varied as the business goals of her successful clients. Chambers Asia-Pacific 2018  recognizes Cynthia as a leading lawyer in Thailand in the areas of Corporate/M&A and Real Estate.

Cynthia is fluent in English, Japanese, Filipino, and Thai. Cynthia received in-depth legal training at Kyoto University, completing her LLB, LLM, and Doctor of Laws course. Drawing on her strong Japanese language and legal skills, she has developed a niche practice helping Japanese businesses invest and succeed in Thailand.

Also a prolific author and an in-demand speaker, Cynthia has penned numerous authoritative texts and has spoke in various conference in Thailand and abroad. She is a Founding Member of the International Insolvency Institute and a member of the Japanese Securities Brokers Association.


English, Japanese, Filipino, and Thai.


Doctor of Laws course, Kyoto University; LLM, Kyoto University; LLB, Kyoto University; BA, University of the Philippines.

Lawyer Rankings

Thailand > Corporate and M&A

Tilleke & Gibbins is known for its handling of corporate formations, reorganisations and restructuring. The firm has several notable partners including Charunun Sathitsuksomboon and Cynthia M. Pornavalai, who co- lead the team. Sathitsuksomboon works on the complete process of M&A while Pornavalai is notable in the firm’s commercial and corporate group for assisting foreign investors on various matters such as portfolio management and business restructuring. Kasma Visitkitjakarn is active on manufacturing and insurance-related corporate and M&A work.


Thailand > Banking and finance

Tilleke & Gibbins has a client base made up of local and foreign banks, investment firms and financial institutions. The team is known for advising on the various use of financial instruments such as loans and property funds. Kobkit Thienpreecha is one of the co-leads of the practice group and acts for domestic and international clients on a range of banking and finance matters. Santhapat Periera also co-leads the team and moves between the firm’s Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam offices. Cynthia M. Pornavalai is also noted for advice to clients regarding the effects of COVID-19 in the banking and finance sector.

Thailand > Projects and energy

Tilleke & Gibbins assists its domestic and global clients  on their operations in the Thai and Southeast Asia wider markets. Advice includes financing, licensing and investment hmatters. Joseph Tomkiewicz is co-leading the team and is recognised for his expertise in transactional and litigation matters relating to the energy industry. Supasit Boonsanong is noted for his advice to Thai government authorities on legislative amendments to the country’s petroleum laws while Cynthia M. Pornavalai is recommended for her work on commercial transactions in the energy industry.

Thailand > Real estate and construction

Tilleke & Gibbins assists domestic and multinational real estate developers, contractors and sub-contractors. The firm acts for clients across the region on a cross-border basis.  Cynthia M. Pornavalai leads the team and advises foreign clients investing into Thailand while Chaiwat Keratisuthisathorn is an expert in all facets of property law ranging from property acquisitions and lease agreements.



Thailand > Restructuring and insolvency

Tilleke & Gibbins acts for creditors, debtors, and other stakeholders on matters such as submitting debt repayment during business rehabilitation and bankruptcy processes and working on business renewal through reorganisation. Cynthia M. Pornavalai co-leads the team and is noted for her insolvency work while Thawat Damsa-ard is the firm’s primary litigator working on bankruptcy matters. Prisna Sungwanna acts for major US companies in the automotive sector.