23 October 2020 - Article
International law firm Withers has boosted its real estate capabilities in Tokyo with the hire of real estate investment partner Toshi Tsuchiya and his team. This expansion is key to the firm’s strategy of building a leading Tokyo-based real estate team. With Toshi and his team’s arrival, Withers now has one of the largest real estate practices amongst foreign law firms in Tokyo.
Recognised as one of the best real estate lawyers in Japan, Toshi advises on real estate acquisitions and development projects, and acts on bank finance transactions. He also represents many global real estate investment funds and institutional investors. Toshi is dual-qualified in both Japan and New York and is able to provide substantial international expertise to his clients.
Toshi joins Withers from Orrick together with Yoko Okamura, who will work as paralegal. In addition, Toshikazu Sakai has also recently joined the Tokyo team as special counsel and will work closely with Toshi.
The firm’s Tokyo office expanded in 2018 with the arrival of real estate partners Gerald Fujii, Naoki Ueyama, Steven Wheeler and their teams, as well as an investment funds regulatory team led by partners Koji Yamamoto and Yoshiyuki Omori. The teams work closely with the firm’s prominent Asia Pacific investments funds tax practice, led by Tokyo office head Eric Roose. Withers is the only firm to offer this combination of investment funds, legal, regulatory and tax advisory services to foreign funds and investors in the Japanese real estate market. The integrated team quickly established itself in the market and has been working at full capacity, creating demand for further growth in Tokyo.
Jeremy Wakeham, Global CEO of Withers’ Business Division, comments: “Toshi and his team are a fantastic addition to our Tokyo and Asia Pacific real estate practice, bringing skills, experience and a great reputation with clients. Major international investment funds are seeking commercial and residential real estate assets in economically and politically stable locations. Japan remains a very attractive market for them, offering valuable acquisitions, including opportunities to pick up distressed assets at attractive rates.”
Toshi Tsuchiya adds: “Withers has really succeeded in creating a leading real estate team in Japan, and I am very pleased to be joining the firm. I have worked with Naoki and Gerald many times over the years and have a close relationship with this team. Working as a united team, we will be able to create an even more impressive offering for clients.”