Miami-based Greenberg Traurig has launched a Seoul office after receiving approval from Korea’s Ministry of Justice to act as a foreign legal consultant in the country.
The office is the firm’s 36th location worldwide and its second in Asia. Greenberg Traurig has been in Shanghai since 2008.
A statement from the firm did not say which partner would lead the new Seoul operation or how many lawyers would work in the office, and U.S.-based spokespeople were not immediately available for comment. The statement noted only that New York finance partner and Korea practice head Chang Joo Kim was in charge of the firm’s expansion into the country.
"Unlike the many firms who quickly sent large numbers of foreign lawyers to work on the ground, Greenberg Traurig’s focus is on adding extraordinary value through strategic and deep relationships with the people, companies and governing bodies of Korea with both legal and cultural understanding of how they operate," said Chief Executive Officer Richard A. Rosenbaum.
Kim was born and educated in Korea before earning an LL.M. and J.D. at the University of Iowa. He heads an eight-person U.S.-based Korea practice, which includes New York shareholders Hyun Chung and Richard Edlin and Washington, D.C., shareholder Rose Jeong.
Greenberg Traurig, which employs about 1,750 worldwide, is the latest of about 20 international firms to launch in Korea or state their intention of doing so since free-trade agreements with the United States and European Union went into effect last year.