Big Four accounting firm EY has added Singapore law firm Atlas Asia Law Corporation, set up by former Dentons Rodyk & Davidson senior partner Evelyn Ang, as a member firm of its global network.
The news comes barely weeks after accounting rival PwC hired former WongPartnership managing partner Rachel Eng to its legal arm in Singapore. Eng, who had spent more than two decades with the Singapore Big Four law firm, departs as deputy chairman.
The addition of Atlas Asia to the EY stable is just the latest in a list of inroads that the accounting firm has attempted to make into Singapore’s legal sector. In 2014, EY added law firm PK Wong and Associates to its global network, an arrangement that exists to this day.
In 2015, EY launched DA Partners, led by former Herbert Smith Freehills Singapore managing partner John Dick and former EY equity partner and Asia general counsel Evangelos Apostolou. Within the year of the firm receiving a license to practice international law in the city-state, it shut down. Dick, who was also a former ASEAN Law leader at EY, moved to Dentons Rodyk shortly after DA closed.
Also in 2015, EY hired Barbara Voskamp, who ran her own firm VoskampLawyers for six years in Singapore and Malaysia, as a partner on its tax desk. Voskamp left EY in 2017 and joined the Singapore office of Benelux firm Loyens & Loeff later that year.
Still, the addition of Atlas Asia, headed by an ex-Dentons Rodyk senior partner, shows that EY is keen to include Singapore in its broader regional strategy of expanding in the legal space. In Greater China, it operates as EY Law Firm on the mainland, EY Attorneys-at-Law in Taiwan and LC Lawyers (Lin & Associates) in Hong Kong, where it recently added a team of lawyers from U.S. firm Troutman Sanders. These included Rossana Chu, who joined as co-managing partner in Hong Kong.
PwC is the other Big Four outfit expanding rapidly in Asia. In addition to Eng, PwC has made a number of high-profile hires in Hong Kong this year.
Ang has about 20 years of experience as a corporate lawyer, advising on corporate commercial mergers and acquisitions in Singapore and in the ASEAN region as well as corporate finance transactions. She is expected to work closely with EY’s assurance, tax, transactions and advisory teams.
EY currently has 2,100 legal professionals in 80 countries around the world.
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