Pinsent Masons was ranked in 6th place for the second consecutive year, and came 4th in the "Business of Law" section.
The five Pinsent Masons innovations recognised by the report included:
- Asia's Got Talent – Highly Commended
Advising Asia’s Got Talent semi-finalists on option contracts for client Sony Music, the firm leveraged collaboration platform HighQ to improve efficiency and reduce fees. A user-friendly interface allows contestants to book video advisory sessions, review and sign contracts, watch instructional videos subtitled in their native language and check the status of their contracts.
- Infrastructure finance credit risk transfers – Highly Commended
Assisted ANZ Bank to develop a creative tripartite agreement transferring credit risk from operators to state governments in Australia. The procurement of assets at a lower price for governments retains long-term tax benefits, and is replicable across jurisdictions with institutional banks.
- Oil refinery construction dispute – Commended
Assisted South Korean South Korean headquartered clients in resolving a complex dispute with the government of an oil-producing state relating to the construction of a big oil refinery project. In a challenging political and legal environment, the firm advised on negotiations to amend the completion date, holding off compensation claims while devising a new funding package and bond protection strategy. Commended: Vincent Connor
- Australia-China graduate programme – Commended
Launched a new Australia-China graduate programme to address demand in China for high-quality junior lawyers with international legal experience. The programme recruits Chinese nationals who have completed a law degree in Australia.
- Singapore construction disputes platform – Commended
Expanded the functionality of its matter management platform to digitise the adjudication process for Singaporean construction disputes. The new approach increased efficiency, eliminated mistakes and speeded up turnaround for clients.
The firm was also cited in the write-up for client HSBC's standout commendation in the Managing and Developing Talent category. HSBC was commended for the creation of a portal where lawyers can apply for digital specialisms as well as a digital degree, created in partnership with Pinsent Masons to address legal risks of crowdfunding, cryptocurrencies, digital payments and AI.
Ian Laing, Head of Asia, Pinsent Masons commented:
"Pinsent Masons prides itself on delivering real innovation that delivers results for client's businesses, enabling them to achieve their objectives. Across the Asia-Pacific region, we have seen a groundswell of great ideas from our lawyers, that have made a significant impact."
Matt Croagh, Head of Australia, Pinsent Masons commented:
"The teams across Australia, and Asia-Pacific as a whole have had a busy year working on a number of ground-breaking projects. Seeing that hard work recognised by the Financial Times is a testament to the innovative and creative approach that Pinsent Masons has consistently pursued"
FT Innovative Lawyers Asia-Pacific 2019 is a rankings report and awards for lawyers based in the Asia Pacific region. The Financial Times and its research partner RSG Consulting judged the submitted innovations based on research, and interviews with more than 400 with clients, senior lawyers, executives and other experts. A total of 537 submissions were received from 81 law firms and legal services providers, and 40 in-house legal teams, with research conducted between January and March 2019. Each entry was scored out of 10 points for originality, leadership and impact with a maximum overall score of 30. They are then benchmarked against each other to arrive at the final rankings.