The U.K. firm RPC is set to see another exodus—this one in Singapore—after losing 16 lawyers in Hong Kong over the past 12 months.
An eight-lawyer team, led by partner and Singapore disputes head Siraj Omar, is leaving RPC’s Singapore joint law venture, RPC Premier Law, to join Singapore firm Drew & Napier on July 1. The departing team also includes RPC director See Chern Yang.
Omar specializes in banking and finance disputes, corporate and commercial litigation and insolvency and restructuring-related matters. He was appointed senior counsel in January—a prestigious title given to experienced lawyers.
In 2008, Omar co-founded Premier Law with Yang and formed a joint law venture with RPC in 2016, allowing the U.K. firm to gain access to a Singapore law practice. Previously, Omar was a partner at local firm Tan Kok Quan Partnership for 2 and a half years and an associate at DLA Piper. Omar started practicing law at Drew & Napier in 1998 and stayed until 2002.
The eight-lawyer team departure will leave RPC with seven lawyers in Singapore. The remaining lawyers include insurance partners Mark Errington and Iain Anderson; Errington launched RPC’s Singapore office in 2011.
A London-based spokesperson for RPC said in a statement that the firm has already taken steps in Singapore prior to Omar’s resignation and that a commercial disputes and insurance partner will join the Singapore joint law venture with his team next month.
“We are continuing our efforts to recruit in the local market and are in advanced discussions with a number of potential hires to further strengthen our offering,” the spokesperson added.
RPC recently named Hong Kong-based Antony Sassi Asia managing partner; David Smyth, who has been office head and senior partner in Hong Kong, retired from the partnership last week.
Drew & Napier also recently experienced leadership changes. Former executive chairman Davinder Singh, SC, left Drew & Napier after almost four decades with the firm to launch his own practice with directors Jaikanth Shankar and Pardeep Singh Khosa. Singh also served as chief executive officer from 1997 to 2017 before being succeeded by Cavinder Bull, SC.