Stephenson Harwood > Hong Kong, Hong Kong > Firm Profile

Stephenson Harwood
Hong Kong

Hong Kong > Asset finance (including aviation and shipping finance)

Active in both shipping and aviation finance, Stephenson Harwood’s practice acts for financiers and borrowers across Asia, with a strong presence in Greater China. Notwithstanding challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the team has remained busy with the financing of commercial aircraft and corporate jets. On the shipping side, the firm continues to use innovative financing structures for large and major finance leasing companies in China and Europe. The practice is jointly led by Simon Wong, Hongkai Zhou and Elton Chan. Wong is the key name for aviation matters and often handles cross-border leasing transactions. Zhou and Chan are key names for shipping finance. Zhou acts for banks, leasing companies and ship owners, while Chan handling leasing and structured finance matters.

Other key lawyers:


‘A strong team who we have had a good history of working together with.’

‘Elton Chan is a strong lawyer and understands (and tries to understand) the issues from all sides which is important in finding solutions to difficult negotiations/issues.’

‘Elton Chan and his team are a pleasure to work with.’

‘Long-term and good cooperation.’

‘Stephenson Harwood provides stable and high-quality legal services.’

‘It not only provides high-quality professional advice from a legal perspective, but also creatively assists clients in solving the problems in transaction advancement from a commercial level.’

‘An in-depth understanding of legal issues and business needs.’

‘The team’s response efficiency and work quality are always excellent.’

Key clients

ICBC Aviation Leasing

The Export-Import Bank of China

CIBL Leasing

China Development Bank

JIC Leasing

CMB Financial Leasing Co., Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Acting for ICBC Aviation Leasing on a sale and lease back transaction with Asiana Airlines involving five Airbus A350-900 aircraft and five Airbus A321 neo aircraft.
  • Advised CMB Financial Leasing to strike a leasing deal for five 15,000 TEU containerships that the French carrier CMA CGM is ordering in China from China State Shipbuilding Corporation.

Hong Kong > Private Client (tax, trusts, wealth management and contentious probate) Tier 1

Stephenson Harwood is ‘one of the pre-eminent private client practices in Hong Kong’, according to a client. It maintains a leading reputation, notwithstanding the departures of Ian Devereux and Silvia On to Charles Russell Speechlys LLP in April 2021. Much of the practice’s success is attributable to team head Kevin Lee, whose ‘pragmatic, practical and empathetic’ approach and ability to ‘take a 360 degree view of matters’ is appreciated by private clients across a range of tax and trusts issues. Dual-qualified in Hong Kong and Canada, Lee is particularly appreciated for his strength in handling cross-border issues. Associate Tze-wei Ng is also a key member of the team and has ‘deep subject matter expertise in the field of tax, trusts, wealth management and contentious probate’. Ng also has niche expertise advising on philanthropy and charity law, and is an ardent advocate of promoting environmental, social and governance (ESG). The team strengthened its international estate and asset protection planning, and the development of family governance structures with the hire of Wei Kang who joined from DLA Piper in November 2021.

Practice head(s):


One of the pre-eminent private client practices in Hong Kong.’

The team is very professional and has a good reputation in the industry.’

The team provides very good, clear, practical advice for reasonable and commercial levels of fees. They have the full range of required language capabilities for a full-service global private client offering.’

The team’s partners seem to work alongside their associates to deliver team solutions, drawing from the best ideas rather than being limited by hierarchy.’

Kevin Lee is very professional and friendly to work with.’

‘Kevin Lee is a well-respected trust advisor. He takes a 360 degree view of matters which is important when dealing with private clients.’

Kevin Lee – highly experienced, pragmatic, practical and empathetic. Adept at handling clients in tricky or trying circumstances.’

The efficient, responsive and thorough Tze-Wei Ng has deep subject matter expertise in the field of tax, trusts, wealth management and contentious probate. She has an ability to translate complex concepts into simple understandable ones.’

Work highlights

  • Advised eight shareholders on the setting up of eight trust structures to hold their pre-IPO interests in a PRC-based biotech company which filed for listing in the US recently.
  • Advising a Hong Kong entrepreneur on issues relating to control of a family business in light of alleged mental capacity and undue influence issues.
  • Advising a UK client on the structuring of a Singapore trust to acquire a Monaco company which holds a real property in France.

Hong Kong > Restructuring and insolvency Tier 2

Stephenson Harwood is well regarded for complex cross-border restructuring and insolvency work. In May 2020, head of practice Jamie Stranger was promoted to office managing partner for Greater China, and Alexander Tang and Eloise Matsui were both promoted to partner. Stranger acts for liquidators, receivers and bankruptcy trustees in formal insolvency proceedings. The team also acts for creditors, debtors and shareholders on corporate restructuring, debt restructuring and work-out arrangements. Tang and Matsui are both litigation partners, who focuses on insolvency and restructuring, and commercial litigation.

Practice head(s):


‘Very practical and commercial advice’.

‘Really efficient and smart team with wealth of knowledge in insolvency and restructuring matters’.

‘Alex Tang has a very practical and commercial approach, is very solid with the law, and  great with Chinese (including Mandarin) speaking clients’.

‘Eloise Matsui is very practical and pleasant to deal with’.

‘Focused, efficient, knowledgeable, practical and streamlined firm’.

‘Jamie Stranger, Eloise Matsui and Alex Tang are all excellent and represent the best qualities you could ask for in shrewd litigators’.

Key clients

PwC – CECEP PwC – Shanghai Huaxin Soc Gen – Project Sparrow Rabobank – Coastal FTI- Chen Te-Ming FTI –Liquidations of Coastal FTI – Bankruptcy of Yeung Safe Castle Xio Cayman FTI – Liquidators of Days group of companies GT – Imperial Entertainment Less Longmen (Less) Duff & Phelps – La Halle Finance & Risk Services Limited (Bermuda) – Liquidator of Noble Group Limited Grant Thornton – U A Cinema Circuit Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for the joint and several provisional liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials Group Ltd (in provisional liquidation) on various aspects, including but not limited to debt restructuring including re-listing on the HKEX, and general advisory work.
  • Acted for the liquidators of Shanghai Huaxin Group (Hong Kong) Limited and assisting in the sale of assets owned by the company and its subsidiaries.
  • Acted for Société Générale, who had provided banking facilities to a Singapore based marine bunkering business, which collapsed last year, in relation to a trade credit fraud.

Hong Kong > Shipping Tier 2

Andrew Rigden Green and Elizabeth Sloane co-head Stephenson Harwood‘s team, which excels in handling local and pan-Asian shipping and international trade disputes; it demonstrates ‘strong knowledge of shipping law and a practical approach to the resolution of disputes’. Particular areas of strength include cross-border enforcement matters, such as injunctions and forum challenges, and shipbuilding. In April 2021, of counsel Jason Toms joined from Reed Smith Richards Butler.

Other key lawyers:


‘Stephenson Harwood Hong Kong has a very capable team, with strong shipping law knowledge and a practical approach to the resolution of disputes.’

‘Personal approach to the client and attentiveness to client’s needs. Always professional in their communications and conduct. High-quality work product.’

‘The team has exceptional maritime industry knowledge and experience at partner level and substantial knowledge at associate level. This makes the team a go-to resource.’

‘Andrew Rigden Green has considerable experience and is a pleasure to work with.’

‘Andrew Rigden Green is detail-oriented, but very much capable of seeing the “big picture”, always willing to discuss an alternative approach to issues to ensure the most effective and practical solution is found.’

Elizabeth Sloane takes a commercial approach, while also having in depth knowledge of shipping law.’

‘Andrew Rigden Green and Elizabeth Sloane are highly experienced and knowledgeable. They are easy to work with, accessible and very responsive which is highly valued for me as an in-house general counsel.’

Key clients

Compnia Sud Americana de Vapores (“CSAV”)

Everbright Fortune International Leasing

Guodian Shipping (Hong Kong) Co. Ltd

Michharry and Company Nigeria Limited (“MCN”).

The People’s Insurance Co of China (Hong Kong) Ltd

Pantainer (H.K.) Limited

Panalpina World Transport (Japan) Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acting for Damco Hong Kong Limited prosecuting and defending numerous claims in the Hong Kong Courts that have been commenced following a fire that broke out in a warehouse at the Tuen Mun River Trade Terminal in Hong Kong.
  • Acting for a client in relation to an application to the Hong Kong High Court to set aside an award of costs made by an LMAA tribunal in respect of a Hong Kong seated arbitration.
  • Advising clients on the claims/disputes arising out of an incident involving more than 1,800 containers overboard when the vessel reportedly sailed into a severe storm and suffered parametric rolling.

Hong Kong > Dispute resolution: litigation Tier 3

Stephenson Harwood specialises in shareholder and trade disputes, being particularly active in the banking sector. Practice head Ivan Ng ‘gives very practical and commercial advice‘ across the commercial litigation space, while Greater China managing partner Jamie Stranger is ‘a clever all-rounder with great legal skills‘, known for corporate insolvency, fraud and professional liability work. The team has recently seen a whole host of promotions to partner, with Alexander Tang, Elizabeth Sloane and Eloise Matsui making the jump throughout 2020. Senior associate Emily Li is a further key contact.

Practice head(s):


‘Very practical and commercial advice, but also willing to drill into the law when necessary. Clients really appreciate their service.’

‘Jamie Stranger is a clever all-rounder with great legal skills and client care techniques. Ivan Ng gives very practical and commercial advice, with prompt turnaround and service.’

Ivan’s team evaluated and judged all of our submissions based on law, facts, logic and evidence, and actively guided us to think from the correct legal perspective.’

Key clients

Purple Surgical UK Limited

Employees of China Shanshui InvestmentLimited

Dan Form International Limited (a BVI company) and its owner (a high-net-worth PRC individual)

Société Générale

HWH Holdings Limited (a BVI company)

Phillips Fine Watches Limited

The joint and several liquidators of Shanghai Huaxin (Hong Kong) Limited



OCBC Wing Hang Bank Limited

Hongkong Chaung Yue Co. Limited and its owner (a high-net-worth PRC individual) Incomlend Pte. Ltd.

FundPark Limited

Raiffeisen Bank International AG


China Tailong Green Power Group Limited

Agricultural Bank of China

SinoPac Securities (Asia) Limited

FTI Consulting (Hong Kong) Limited

Hiro Bharwani

Deepak Pagarani

Work highlights

  • Acting in a dispute relating to China Shanshui Cement Group Company Limited (a company listedin the Main Board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, ‘CSCG’) and is centred in the shares in CSI, one of the major shareholders in CSCG.
  • Acting for the debtor company and the provisional liquidators (JPLs) from PwC, having obtained foreign recognition of Cayman Islands appointed provisional liquidators, alongside advising the Company and JPLs in respect of a debt restructuring including re-listing on the HKEX, general advisory work in relation to the JPLs’ position and duties, advising on their investigations and potential claims (including against the former auditors), and we are primarily responsible for drafting the scheme documentation.
  • Acting for plaintiff Purple Surgical UK which, in May 2020, entered into a sale and purchase agreement to purchase five million 3M surgical masks from the defendants with a purchase price of $27m.

Hong Kong > Labour and employment Tier 3

Stephenson Harwood, which acts for corporates and individuals clients, has recently advised on a number of issues arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, such as returning to work, remote working, company restructurings and lay-offs. Yeeling Wan departed for MB Kemp LLP in September 2020 and Jezamine Fewins joined Lewis Silkin in January 2022.

Other key lawyers:


‘Responsive, practical and experienced.’


Key clients

Jet Aviation Business Jets (Hong Kong) Limited

Phillips Fine Watches Limited

Mango (Hong Kong Limited)

Formia Airline Supplies Limited

FlightSafety International Limited

Numerous hedge fund employees

FFP (BVI) Limited

BVI Financial Services Commission (HK) Limited

Utmost Worldwide Limited

Assicurazioni Generali SpA

Pacific Hawk Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising various hedge fund employees on a team move to a competing hedge fund, how to deal with their departures and also advising them on the amendment of their employment contracts with the new employer.
  • Advised numerous employers in respect of the proposed redundancy of their staff due to either the business unit closing down in Hong Kong and being relocated out of Hong Kong or the company ceasing operations.
  • Advising Hong Kong news corporations on the impact of the National Security Law and advising them on steps which they could take to limit any impact and reputational damage suffered by them in the event once of their employees was charged with breaching the law and carrying out activities during their work time or using office equipment.

Hong Kong > Regulatory Tier 3

Stephenson Harwood counts both contentious and non-contentious regulatory work among its key strengths. Non-contentious group lead Mark Reed has extensive experience of advising financial institutions. Ian Childs leads the contentious group and is a key contact for regulatory investigations and disciplinary actions. Katherine Liu is regularly retained by fintech companies for general corporate and compliance advice. Associate Conrad Lam is also adept at handling compliance and licensing issues.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:


Katherine Liu is knowledgeable, succinct on issues while providing practical advice and considerate to developments of the economy & respective market trends. Always easy to work with‘.

Conrad Lam is sizing up to be a valuable future external legal resource, with a deep understanding of the financial industry issues and key trends‘.

Key clients

Airstar Bank Limited

PrimeCredit Limited

Futu Securities International (Hong Kong) Limited

Futu Lending Limited

Twopresents Limited

OnePlatform Asset Management Limited

Svenska Handelsbanken AB (publ), Hong Kong branch

Airwallex (Hong Kong) Limited

HKT Flexi Limited

China Construction Bank (Asia) Corporation Limited

Work highlights

  • Assisted Airstar, one of the first entities to secure a virtual banking licence from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, in preparing its client documentation, including terms and conditions of virtual banking services (for individual clients), personal loan documentation, mobile application terms of use and privacy policy.
  • Advised TwoPresents, a Hong Kong-incorporated online charitable fundraising not-for-profit platform, on whether it needs any financial regulatory licence for its charitable fund-raising and money-processing activities; what it should do to comply with the anti-money laundering legislation; whether it would hold money on trust and the consequences of that; and the content of its online terms of operation.

Hong Kong > Banking and finance Tier 4

Stephenson Harwood has notable experience in the trade finance arena and often advises clients on supply chain finance arrangements and the development of standard factoring and security documents. Practice head Mark Reed is recommended for secured and unsecured lending, general banking matters and regulatory work. King Tak Fung has a niche expertise in anti-money laundering. Roy Chan left for an in-house role at LegalMapp Limited.

Practice head(s):


‘The firm is reputable in the fields of asset finance and project finance, and in particular, various kinds of shipping finances’.

‘We normally make a first contact with Mark Reed who is excellent in terms of quality and speed in his legal services rendered to us’.

Key clients

Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited

China Construction Bank Corporation

China Construction Bank (Asia) Corporation Limited

Fund Park Limited

Metro Holdings Limited

TNG (Asia) Limited

China Merchants Bank Co., Ltd.

Unitas Group Company Limited

PrimeCredit Limited

HKT Flexi Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for China Merchants Bank Co., Ltd. on PRC on-shore guarantee and on-shore loans.
  • Advised Unitas (through its 50/50 joint venture with a KaiLong Group investment vehicle (representing two of the KaiLong funds) on the secured term loan facilities arranged by two major commercial banks for the purpose of financing the acquisition and redevelopment costs of an industrial building in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong > Intellectual property Tier 4

Stephenson Harwood handles cross-border litigation and transactional work for international brands in the IP space. The practice works closely with its counterparts in the PRC and further afield internationally to provide wide geographical coverage across Asia. Jezamine Fewins left the team in January 2022 to join Lewis Silkin.

Other key lawyers:


‘The company’s patent attorneys are very experienced.’

‘Work quality and efficiency are high, consultations are responded to quickly, and they can give effective advice in a timely manner.’

‘The firm has in-depth research on the relevant laws and regulations of Hong Kong’s intellectual property protection, which can help clients better protect their rights and interests in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.’


Key clients


Asia Standard Hotel Group Limited

Korn Ferry

Utmost Worldwide Limited

Bell Textron Inc.

Biocoat Incorporated



BigHit Entertainment Co. Ltd.

Azores Life Science, LDA

Work highlights

  • Representing GSK, the British multinational pharmaceutical company in respect of an application to revoke three registered designs of a mainland pharmaceutical company, Chia Tai Tainqing Pharmaceutical Holdings Company Limited on the grounds that their inhaler designs are not novel and are substantially similar to that of GSK and existing prior art at the date of the application.
  • Assisting Asia Standard Hotel Group Limited with registering its trade marks in the United States and Canada where in both jurisdictions applications have been vigorously opposed by entities which are offering hotel and temporary accommodation.
  • Assisted Korn Ferry in managing and restructuring its trade mark portfolio in Hong Kong following a list of complex transactions and group restructuring.

Hong Kong > Corporate (including M&A) Tier 6

A long-standing player in the market, Stephenson Harwood has been advising Hong Kong Stock Exchange-listed companies for over 30 years and covers the full array of corporate and M&A deals including public, private, cross-border and joint venture transactions in addition to IPOs and general commercial work. The firm is well-positioned to serve as a one-stop-destination for English, Hong Kong and PRC law, owing to its association with China-based Wei Tu Law Firm. M&A and corporate finance specialist Jane Ng oversees the practice.

Practice head(s):

Key clients

China Development Bank Financial Leasing Co., Ltd.

SOCAM Development Limited

The joint provisional liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials Group Limited


Prosperity International Holdings (H.K.) Limited

Work highlights

  • Serving as Hong Kong legal adviser to the joint provisional liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials Group Limited on a proposed acquisition of a real estate portfolio from sellers connected with Mr. Anson Chan and his family.
  • acted for Prosperity International Holdings (H.K.) Limited on the disposal of the entire issued share capital of Greater Sino Investments Limited by Prosperity Real Estate Holdings Limited, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of PIHL.
  • Advised UK shipbroker Affinity (Shipping) LLP on its acquisition of Grieg Shipbrokers Asia.

Hong Kong > Real estate

Hong Kong > Investment funds

Since the 'knowledgeable and well-informed' Penelope Shen 's arrival in June 2020 from Kwok Yih & Chan, Stephenson Harwood is increasingly well-placed to advise asset managers in Greater China and Singapore across the spectrum of private funds, including private equity and hedge funds.

China > Fintech: foreign firms Tier 2

Stephenson Harwood‘s ‘very innovative‘ Hong Kong-based practice is widely respected for its financial regulatory, fintech, licensing and compliance expertise. The team has extensive experience in advising financial institutions on the application of new technologies to finance, such as the digitalisation of money lending, P2P lending as well as the creation of financial technology ecosystems that combine payment, personal finance and remittance capabilities. Mark Reed specialises in general banking, finance, insolvency, employment and financial services regulatory compliance advice; and Katherine Liu is highly focused on the financial services sector. Further support is provided by Penelope Shen, who advises on the establishment and structuring of private investment funds, and international trade finance and commercial banking specialist Anna Kwong. At associate level, Teresa Tsoi, Conrad Lam, James Wong, Anthony Wong and Phoebe Cheng are all experienced team members.

Practice head(s):

Katherine Liu; Mark Reed


‘The team is very innovative and always delivers work of a high standard, even if it is something new to the market.’

‘Associate Anthony Wong is very attentive and knowledgeable in this area of practice.’

Key clients

Airstar Bank

Airwallex (Hong Kong)

Ant Group Co

China Construction Bank (Asia) Corporation

Futu Securities International (Hong Kong)

Futu Lending




ZA Bank

Work highlights

  • Advised Twopresents, a Hong Kong-incorporated online charitable fundraising not-for-profit platform, on whether it needs a financial regulatory licence for its charitable fundraising and money-processing activities.

China > Restructuring and insolvency: foreign firms Tier 3

Stephenson Harwood‘s Hong Kong group routinely leverages the firm's specialisms in shipping, aviation, banking, corporate and employment. Practice head Jamie Stranger represents liquidators, provisional liquidators, receivers and bankruptcy trustees in insolvency proceedings; and assists creditors, debtors and shareholders with corporate and debt restructuring, schemes, buy-outs, and other work-out arrangements.

Practice head(s):

Jamie Stranger

Other key lawyers:

Alexander Tang; Eloise Matsui; Ivan Ng; Emily Li


‘Knowledgable, great with clients and efficient.’

Key clients

Madison Pacific Trust

PwC as Liquidators of Shanghai Huaxin Group (Hong Kong)

PwC as the Joint Provisional Liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials Group

FTI Consulting as the Liquidators of Days Impex and Days International

Société Générale

Joshua James Taylor and Yit Chee Wah (both of FTI Consulting) as Liquidators of Coastal Oil Pte

Hei Yu (Vincent) Fok and Nicholas Gronow (both of FTI Consulting) as  Liquidators of Coastal Holdings (Coastal Holdings) and Coastal Oil (HK)

Vincent Fok and John Batchelor of FTI Consulting as Bankruptcy Trustees of the Estate of Yeung Wing Sing (former director of various companies in the Coastal group)

Safe Castle

Georgia Chow and David Bennet (both of Grant Thornton) as Liquidators of Imperial Entertainment Investments

John McKenna, the Liquidator of Noble Group

The Joint and several Provisional Liquidators of U A Cinema Circuit

Aiful Corporation

John McKenna, the Provisional Liquidator of Global Brands Group Holding

Work highlights

  • Advised Madison Pacific Trust (as security trustee) on the enforcement sale of shares.
  • Advising the liquidators of Shanghai Huaxin Group (Hong Kong) on the sale of assets owned by the company and its subsidiaries.
  • Assisting the liquidators of Days Impex and Days International, in relation to fraudulent trading and misfeasance claims against the former officers of the companies.

China > Banking and finance: foreign firms Tier 4

Stephenson Harwood is well versed in secured and unsecured borrowings and syndicated loan transactions. Apart from its routine work, the firm has recently seen an increase in open account and supply chain finance matters. Hong Kong-based practice head Katherine Liu  is supported by Mark Reed who handles financial services regulatory, financing and insolvency matters. Anna Kwong who was promoted to the partnership in May 2021, is regarded for trade finance products and disputes.

Practice head(s):


‘The team provides efficient and responsive services.’

Key clients

Bank of China

China Construction Bank Corporation, Hong Kong branch

China Construction Bank (Asia) Corporation Limited


Metro Holdings


China Merchants Bank

Unitas Group Company Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for China Merchants Bank in on-shore guarantee and on-shore loans, with over 18 similar transactions with total loan amount of over ¥4bn.
  • Advised Unitas on the secured term loan facilities arranged by two major commercial banks for the purpose of financing the acquisition and redevelopment costs of an industrial building in Hong Kong.
  • Assisted an international bank with establishing and operating a programme for on-boarding Hong Kong suppliers to supply chain facilities provided by it and driven by the credit strength of major US retailers.

China > Dispute resolution: Litigation: foreign firms Tier 4

With a team based in Hong Kong, Stephenson Harwood has a strong focus on international trade finance disputes, and can also be found acting in corporate, insolvency and restructuring-related proceedings. The practice is further distinguished by its PRC knowledge, which stems primarily from its association with Guangzhou-based Wei Tu Law Firm, providing major clients with a multi-faceted service in terms of jurisdictional advice. Hong Kong-based partner Ivan Ng leads the practice, bolstering the firm’s litigation offering in shareholder disputes, contractual disputes and insolvency matters. Emily Li, who was promoted to the partnership in May of 2022, is another key contact in this regard, acting for PRC and international clients on shareholder and trade finance disputes. Managing partner Jamie Stranger is also noted for his expertise in corporate insolvency, commercial litigation, fraud and professional liability.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Purple Surgical

Employees of China Shanshui Investment

United Overseas Bank

Dan Form International

Société Générale

HWH Holdings

Phillips Fine Watches

The joint and several liquidators of Shanghai Huaxin (Hong Kong)

OCBC Wing Hang



Raiffeisen Bank International


Bank of East Asia

FTI Consulting (Hong Kong)

Work highlights

  • Acting for 2,000 employees and minority shareholders of China Shanshui Investment in a long-running shareholder dispute worth over HK$5bn.
  • Acting for the joint provisional liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials in respect of a debt restructuring.
  • Acted for Purple Surgical in a cross-border fraud dispute involving a sale and purchase agreement for five million 3M surgical masks.

South Korea > Shipping: foreign firms

Noted for its ‘vast experience and expertise’ in the shipping industry, Stephenson Harwood has a preeminent marine and international trade practice. The team has a large geographical footprint and is comprised of lawyers across Asia, the Middle East and the UK. In Seoul, managing partner Michael Kim has a diverse practice, handling both contentious and non-contentious issues. Kim is supported by associate Hannah Lee and Stuart Burrell, whose clients include major shipowners, shipbuilders, construction and EPC contractors, oil companies and insurers. Alex Davis takes the lead in London, working with Stuart Beadnall, who has extensive experience in advising on shipping contracts. Andrew Rigden Green is Hong Kong’s practice head and is a specialist in the installation and operation of offshore structures. Based in the Singapore office, Virtus Law LLP – Stephenson Harwood (Singapore) Alliance partner Daryll Ng is supported by head of shipping and offshore finance, Gregg Johnston.


‘Expertise and professionalism. No other law firm in Korea is more experienced than SH in the shipping sector.’

‘Michael Kim. An excellent lawyer and a reliable partner who has extensive knowledge, provides timely and precise advice, and is tailored to the need of the clients.’

‘Stephenson Harwood LLP Foreign Legal Consultant Office has vast experiences and expertise in the shipping market. They are very committed to their clients, Korean as well as international.’

‘I believe among the foreign international law firms who have offices in Korea, Stephenson Harwood LLP Foreign Legal Consultant Office has the best reputation in the shipping industry, by far.’

Key clients

Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Ltd

Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering

Korea Line Corporation

Hanwha General Insurance Co Ltd

The Import-Export Bank of Korea

KB Insurance Co., Ltd

Chevron International Pte Ltd

The Standard Club

Hanjin Heavy Industries

Hyundai Merchant Marine

Pan Ocean Co., Ltd

Sungdong Shipbuilding

Daehan Shipbuilding Co., Ltd

Sinokor Merchant Marine Co.,Ltd

Japan P&I Club

SPP Shipbuilding Co., Ltd

Eukor Car Carriers. Inc

Macon Charter B.V.

SK Shipping Co., Ltd.

H-Line Shipping Co.,Ltd.

DB Insurance Co., Ltd

Feen Marine Scrubbers Inc.


Hyundai Marine & Fire Insurance Co., Ltd

KfW IPEX-Bank GmbH

Samsung Heavy Industries Co., Ltd.

SC Engineering Co., Ltd.

Seil Textile Co., Ltd.

You Chang Trading Corp






LG Chem Ltd.

Philippines > Foreign firms

Stephenson Harwood LLP‘s Philippines practice spans a wide variety of sectors including power, infrastructure, energy and resources, manufacturing, facilities management, mining, aviation and shipping. With Kevin Lee as a private wealth specialist, the firm also provides a plethora of traditional and non-traditional private wealth management capabilities. Saugata Mukherjee is an expert in asset finance and has worked on some of the most complex financing structures and aircraft orders in Asia. The firm’s TMT capabilities are equally strong, having advised the iflix group, a high-profile pan-Asian video-streaming service on its sale of assets to Chinese conglomerate Tencent Holdings.



Key clients


Stella International Holdings


BNP Paribas

ASEAN Industrial Growth Fund

Cebu Pacific

Work highlights

  • Advising the iflix group on its sale of its assets to Chinese conglomerate, Tencent Holdings.
  • Advising Koru Partners on its Series A investment in Uploan.
  • Advising Stella International Holdings on the establishment of two new manufacturing facilities in two separate special economic zones in the Philippines.

China > Investment funds: foreign firms

Headed by Penelope Shen in Hong Kong, the team at Stephenson Harwood showcases particular experience advising clients in the structuring, establishment and regulation of hedge, private equity and real estate funds.

The firm: Stephenson Harwood is a law firm with over 1,100 people worldwide, including more than 180 partners. Our people are committed to achieving the goals of our clients – listed and private companies, institutions and individuals.

The firm offers multilingual and multidisciplinary services from two offices in Greater China. Its lawyers based in Hong Kong and Shanghai have been providing quality English and Hong Kong law advice to clients within and outside Greater China since 1979. The firm’s lawyers also advise on selected aspects of laws of other jurisdictions.

Established in 1979, the Hong Kong office was the first of Stephenson Harwoods’ Greater China offices. However, the firm has a long history of acting as a gateway between East and West, starting in 1867 when one of the firm’s founders William Harwood opened an office in Shanghai. The firm was one of the first UK firms to open in Hong Kong and then mainland China (PRC). We are celebrating our 40 years anniversary in 2019.

Stephenson Harwood’s Greater China offices offer a comprehensive spectrum of its global services including finance, corporate, dispute resolution and private wealth. Working hand-in-hand with our regional offices and associations in Guangzhou, Jakarta, Seoul, Singapore and other parts of Asia, the firm is able to provide a comprehensive Asian law service to clients operating within Asia.

In 2016, Stephenson Harwood entered into a CEPA association under the name ‘Stephenson Harwood – Wei Tu (China) Association’ with independent PRC law firm Wei Tu. CEPA (Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement) is a free-trade agreement concluded between PRC and Hong Kong. Under CEPA, Hong Kong-law firms are permitted to operate in association with PRC law firms to provide comprehensive legal services in PRC governed by PRC and non-PRC laws. The association allows Stephenson Harwood to offer a ‘one-stop service’ for Hong Kong, English and PRC law advice, with Wei Tu providing the PRC advice.

The Shanghai office has a particular focus on ship finance, marine and international trade. It is one of the few international law firms with a base in mainland China and a truly international shipping practice. The team is able to advise on cross-border shipping matters, drawing closely on the expertise of colleagues based in Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul, Dubai, Paris, Piraeus and the United Kingdom. Our dedicated lawyers represent Chinese corporates, international banks, insurance companies, shipping, shipbuilding and trading companies.

The depth and importance of the firms relationships with our clients and our common sense approach to achieving results allow Stephenson Harwood to become your trusted advisor.

Asset finance: aviation Simon Wong
Asset finance: shipping Hongkai Zhou
Banking and finance Elton Chan
Banking and finance Mark Reed
Employment Ian Childs
Insurance Andrew Rigden Green
Capital markets Jane Ng
Marine and international trade Andrew Rigden Green
Real estate Janice Yau Garton
Dispute resolution Ian Childs
Dispute resolution Ivan Ng
Regulatory (contentious) Ian Childs
Regulatory (non-contentious) Mark Reed
Restructuring and insolvency Jamie Stranger
Trade finance King Tak Fung
Private wealth Kevin Lee
Marine and international trade Evangeline Quek
Regulatory (non-contentious) Katherine Liu
Restructuring and insolvency Eloise Matsui
Restructuring and insolvency Alexander Tang
Trusts Kevin Lee
Funds Penelope Shen
Number of lawyers : 500+
Greater China : 70+
Chinese (Mandarin)
Contacts : Jamie Stranger (Office managing partner Greater China)
Contacts : Tinny Ip (Head of business development - Greater China)

We have employee networks, which are for and run by our people to contribute to fostering our inclusive and healthy culture. They create a sense of belonging by celebrating diversity, connecting people across the business and increasing awareness across the business. Our Hong Kong network focuses on gender equality, LGBTQ+, Mental health and disability and social mobility. We partner with a range of organisations who help us create the diverse and inclusive workplace that we strive to be. Two of our key partnerships are with Project WeCan and the Women’s Foundation Male Allies initiative.

Social Mobility – Project WeCan

We focus on creating opportunities for people with different socio-economic backgrounds and from minority groups. We partner with Project WeCan by Wharf Holdings in Hong Kong to offer summer internships for disadvantaged secondary school students.

  • We are proud to be the first law firm to join Wharf’s Project WeCan programme in 2018, with the aim to provide disadvantaged secondary school students with resources and support to empower them to pursue higher studies and promising careers.
  • Over the past three years, our CSR and D&I representatives have worked closely with the Project WeCan team and our partnering school to organise a wide variety of activities, such as Fun Day in our office, mock interviews, presentation workshops, and a café opening in the school. Most recently we started the English
    Buddy workshop which we hosted virtually for the students.
  • On 27 September 2019, we hosted the Project WeCan partners sharing session in our Hong Kong office. Over 80 representatives from 48 Project WeCan partners organisations came together to share ideas and experience on working with their partner schools. In 2021, we were once again invited by Project WeCan to be one of the presenters for the virtual partners sharing session.
  • We have provided speakers for a number of Project WeCan events. Our partner KT Fung, who is an experienced public speaker spoke to over 200 students on the “Project WeCan – Career Exploration Online Platform” during COVID-19. The presentation, entitled “Equip Yourself for the Future” aimed to inspire students and support them to better prepare for their future. KT Fung has also run a business skills workshop for students who had participated in the Young Innovators Bazaar.

Gender Equality – The Women’s Foundation Male Allies Initiative

We are focused on creating an inclusive working environment, developing programmes to assist equal opportunities for advancement of women and men within the firm. We are participating in the 2019-2020 iteration of the Male Allies initiative run by The Women’s Foundation (TWF), a non-profit organisation dedicated to improving the lives of women and girls in Hong Kong. Male Allies are business leaders who leverage their collective influence and personal engagement to advance gender equality within their organisations and, more broadly, across the Hong Kong business community. The aim is to improve our culture around gender equality and encourage discussion, self-reflection and analysis within the office, and to benefit from best practice sharing across participating organisations in Hong Kong.

We also aim to share people stories to inspire and promote conversation. For example, we hosted a Q&A session with our former CEO Sharon White, who shared her experiences and perspectives. Sharon talked about her own career path and, leadership roles, women that have inspired her and the importance of support as careers progress.