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25 February 2020

KPMG launches legal services business in Thailand as Asia expansion continues

Move by Big Four accountant follows similar openings in Hong Kong and Shanghai last year

By Ben Edwards

KPMG’s Thailand office has opened a legal services unit

Bangkok: KPMG's legal unit has kicked off with 50 legal staff Shutterstock

KPMG’s Thailand office has opened a legal services unit to bolster its audit, tax and advisory business in the country.

The new KPMG Legal unit employs more than 50 legal staff in Thailand, 25 of whom are licensed lawyers. The launch aims to provide a full stack of business law services, including commercial and corporate law, mergers and acquisitions, employment law, compliance and investigation, and privacy law. 

The Thailand opening is the latest addition to KPMG’s global legal services network in Asia, following launches in Hong Kong and Shanghai last year.

Charoen Phosamritlert, chief executive officer of KPMG in Thailand, Myanmar and Laos, said: “With KPMG Legal and our strong background in various business industries, we will be able to provide our customers with a holistic legal counsel service backed by a team of business-savvy legal advisors.”

He added: “No matter the industry sector our clients operate in, they can count on our network of legal services professionals to bring deep insight and experience that are in play in those industries.”

KPMG says there is an increasing need for Thai companies to implement business transformation programmes with an integrated legal and commercial approach, rather than focusing on pure legal advice. KPMG adds that its legal advisors are embedded into the firm’s wider industry practices, giving them greater business insights into emerging industry trends and sector-specific issues. 

Stuart Fuller, global head of legal services and ASPAC regional leader for legal services at KPMG International, said: “The launch of KPMG Legal in Thailand reflects KPMG’s global strategy to grow its legal services network and capability.”

KPMG’s Asia growth plan comes as a number of firms look to increase their presence in the region.

Earlier this month Crowell & Moring’s international trade consultancy arm C&M International opened an office in Singapore to focus on digital transformation and its impact on policy in Asia.

US firm Cooley also opened a Singapore office in January having opened in Hong Kong last year.

Last November Japanese law firm Nishimura & Asahi merged with Thailand’s sixth largest law firm SCL Law Group to form SCL Nishimura, creating one of the largest international business law practices in Southeast Asia.

Internatinal law firms with a presence in Thailand include Allen & Overy, Baker McKenzie, Linklaters and DLA Piper. 

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