One of Japan’s leading law firms, Nishimura & Asahi, is launching an office in Singapore in the new year.

Partner Kotaro Kubo will lead the Singapore office from January, and will be joined by an associate set to relocate from Tokyo. Kubo is currently on secondment to the Singapore office of Japanese trading company Mitsui & Co. (Asia Pacific) Pte. Ltd. He joined Mitsui in 2010 after a one-year secondment to the Delhi office of Indian law firm Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A. Shroff & Co.

The office will primarily act for Nishimura’s Japanese clients on their deals in Southeast Asia. It also aims to advise non-Japanese companies with assets in Asia on their investments in Japan. Singapore will be the Tokyo-based firm’s fourth overseas location, after Beijing, Ho Chi Minh City, and Hanoi.

Nishimura, which received approval for the new office from Singapore regulators on Dec. 9, will be one of two major Japanese firms to open in the city, after Mori Hamada & Matsumoto announced in October it will also set up an office there next year.

Email: jseah@alm.com