Mori Hamada & Matsumoto




Mori Hamada & Matsumoto is highly regarded in the market for its expertise in most practice areas and sectors. It maintains an excellent reputation for undertaking sophisticated domestic and cross-border transactions as well as contentious matters. As one of the largest full-service Japanese law firms, with more than 550 lawyers, the firm is counsel of choice for some of the major Japanese corporations and foreign multinationals, assisting clients from a broad range of sectors including financial services, energy, manufacturing and real estate. Key figures include banking and finance practitioner Masanori Sato, capital markets-focused Katsumasa Suzuki, M&A and private equity expert Gaku Ishiwata, investment funds lawyer Ken Miura, and restructuring and insolvency specialist Soichiro Fujiwara. Restructuring and insolvency partner Daisuke Asai departed to Anderson Mori and Tomotsune. 

Client feedback 

Responds quickly and flexibly.” – Banking and finance 

“The firm demonstrated a high level of expertise.” – Banking and finance 

They have deep knowledge and rich experience about syndicated loans. – Banking and finance 

“Timely and proper support on legal issues and documentation.” – Energy  

Hiroki Aoyama 

"He has a lot of experience in syndicated loan arrangements. Therefore, his knowledge and experience are helpful for us." 

“He provides fast and accurate answers.” 

Yuki Matsuda 

"He is knowledgeable in the field of finance and is able to explain complex financial concepts in an easy-to-understand manner." 

Masahito Saeki 

"His quick responses and deep insights are valuable in our work." 

Private equity

Work highlights 

Advised KKR Japan and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts on a ¥700 billion acquisition of Hitachi Transport System. This transaction adopted a cutting-edge scheme that combined a tender offer and buy-back of target shares from a major shareholder. It was one of the largest transactions announced in 2022 and had a significant impact on the market in this regard. 

Key clients 

Apollo Global Management, Integral Corporation, Lone Star Funds. 

Labour and employment

Work highlights 

Represented Japan Post, one of Japan’s largest employers, in defence of claims brought under the Labour Contract Act by a high number of fixed-term employees over differences between the terms and conditions of their employment contracts and those of employees employed permanently. This case is being widely covered by the media because of the similarity of the plaintiffs’ arguments to the new policy of ‘equal pay for equal work’ that the Japanese government has introduced. Many Japanese companies are thus carefully watching these cases and the development of the new legislation because these could significantly increase human resource costs. 

Key clients 

Bayer Holding, Rohto Pharmaceutical, Shiseido.  

Intellectual property

Work highlights 

Advised Shiseido on its worldwide trademark prosecutions including filings, office actions, oppositions, trials and licences. In 2022, the firm handled over 1,000 new trademark applications and over 1,000 applications for renewal in more than 100 countries, including all relevant office actions, oppositions and administrative procedures for the client.  

Key clients 

Kowa Company, Pan Pacific International Holdings Corporation. 

Dispute resolution

Work highlights 

Represented Toshiba in the defence of claims brought by former or current shareholders in tort alleging improper disclosure of financial information in past years. 

Key clients 


Investment funds

Work highlights 

Advised Citigroup First Investment Management, a Hong Kong investment management subsidiary of Citigroup, on the establishment and distribution of its units to Japanese retail investors through SMBC Trust Bank 

Advised IQ EQ Fund Management (Ireland) on the public offering of an underlying fund where a Cayman feeder unit trust invests in a US private credit fund. This is the first retail investment fund in Japan which invests in a reputable private credit fund.  

Key clients 

AllianceBernstein, Carpe Vinum. 

Restructuring and insolvency

Work highlights 

Represented Marelli Holdings, one of the world's leading suppliers to the automotive industry, in its turnaround alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in order to drastically improve and restructure Marelli’s financial structure with the support of banks. Upon the failure of the turnaround ADR, the firm’s client immediately switched to simplified rehabilitation proceedings (SRP), a quick version of civil rehabilitation proceedings that could effectively cram down the opposing banks by using SRP. In Japanese turnaround history, Marelli's successful use of cramdown functions and its unprecedentedly short duration of 25 days for restructuring plan approval made it the largest case ever in the Japanese manufacturing industry. 

Key clients 

Nichi-Iko Pharmaceutical.

Corporate and M&A

Work highlights 

Advised KKR Japan on its acquisition of Hitachi Transport System 

Advised UBS Asset Management on the acquisition of Mitsubishi Corp.-UBS Realty, one of the largest real estate asset managers in Japan, by KKR from Mitsubishi and UBS Asset Management. The transaction involved KKR acquiring 100% of shares in the target company from Mitsubishi Corporation and UBS Asset Management in an all-cash transaction valued at ¥230 billion.  

Key clients 

Baring Private Equity Asia, Mizuho Financial Group, Toppan. 

Capital markets

Work highlights 

Advised Japan Post Holdings and Ministry of Finance, Japan on its global offering of shares. This deal is the fifth largest secondary offering of shares of a Japanese issuer in Japan. 

Advised SBI Sumishin Net Bank and the selling shareholders on its ¥57 billion ($389 million) IPO of shares. The Issuer is a leading digital bank in Japan and a joint venture company owned by SBI Holdings and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank. This is the first deal in which a purely digital bank in Japan has received approval to list its shares on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. 

Key clients 

Enex Infrastructure Investment Corporation, Linkers Corporation, Nippon Prologis REIT. 

Banking and finance

Work highlights 

Acted as the lead legal counsel to Mizuho Securities (MHSC) in respect to the financing for JTOWER based on the economic value and cash flow realised from telecommunications towers acquired from DOCOMO through a whole-business securitization scheme arranged by MHSC. The project promotes infra-sharing and accelerates the early development of 5G, which is a high priority for the Japanese government. 

Advised a consortium consisting of METAWATER, Veolia Jenets KK, ORIX Corporation, Nihon Suido Consultants, Hitachi, Tokyu Construction and local partners on the Miyagi water and wastewater concession project. This project is the first case of the concession type PPP for water supply which was realised by the amendment of the Water Supply Act of Japan in 2018. This project is also the first case of a PPP project for the combination of water supply, industrial waterworks, and sewerage service in Japan. 

Key clients 

Mizuho Financial Group. 


Work highlights 

Advised Kawasaki Heavy Industries, one of the largest Japanese companies in heavy industry, on its potential data falsification in the inspection and other processes related to absorption chillers produced and sold by its subsidiary Kawasaki Thermal Engineering for air-conditioning systems. 

Assisted Japan Display in one of the biggest corporate accounting fraud cases in Japan in the past decade. This accounting fraud case was unprecedented in terms of its scale, length and complexity of the fraudulent tactics. 

Assisted Kansai Electric Power in respect to a widely publicised political corruption scandal involving its executives and employees and a former politician.  

Key clients 

EduLab, KYB Corporation, Muto Seiko. 


Work highlights 

Represented utility company Chubu Electric Power in its development and project financing for a large-scale onshore wind power project. This is a large-scale onshore wind power project located in Hokkaido prefecture developed by the consortium of Chubu Electric Power and startup electric retailer Looop. This is one of the largest onshore wind projects in the region in terms of scale and value. 

Key clients 

Osaka Gas, Tokyo Gas. 

Real estate

Work highlights 

Advised Hulic on its acquisition of Otemachi Place East Tower. The transaction amounted to more than ¥436 billion, making it the largest real estate transaction ever in Japan. This sale of national property located in the prime area of downtown Tokyo was significant. 

Key clients 

Nippon Prologis REIT, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Tosei Asset Advisors.