asialaw Analysis

General business law

Established in 1994, DFDL provides legal services in M&A, employment, infrastructure and tax matters. The firm has a deep local knowledge and understanding of the legal and tax regulations and policies. The firm’s key contacts include Kristy Newby, Audray Souche and Vinay Ahuja.

Client feedback 

Well-prepared, available to their clients, effective negotiation, commercially minded.” Energy 

DFDL Thailand demonstrated a very thorough understanding of all legal issues, took a highly pragmatic approach, expertly led very difficult and complex negotiations, were highly responsive to challenging timelines, were exceedingly hard-working, always brought a very commercial approach, and showed a strong understanding of financing issues.” Infrastructure 

Very thorough with lots of suggestions.” Labour and employment 

Kristy Newby 

Responsive and able to direct our query to the right person in the organisation.” 

Audray Souche 

Very commercially minded. Able to negotiate to conclusion rather than getting bogged down in tangential issues. Meets client needs.” 

Work highlights 

Advised InsuResilience Investment Fund in acquiring a minority share in insurance firm Forte Insurance. 

Advised Mekong Timber Plantations on a $12 million financing transaction for a processing facility in Laos. 

Advising Sinohydro Holding on a concession agreement and corporate matters.

Tilleke & Gibbins

Tilleke & Gibbins has been based in Laos for 25 years and continues to provide an extensive range of legal services. The Vientiane office is particularly noted for its work in energy, TMT, intellectual property and regulatory. Dino Santaniello heads the firm’s office and is valued for his ability to connect the business community with the Lao government authorities. 

Work highlights 

Assisting a client with the shareholder restructuring for its entity in Laos. 

Assisted Siam Kubota Corporation in obtaining the first-ever trademark cancellation decision from the Lao Department of Intellectual Property. 


The Vientiane office of VDB Loi provides a high standard of legal and tax solutions for transactions and investment in Laos. In particular, the firm performs well in energy and infrastructure, banking and finance, and corporate and regulatory. The main contact is Daodeuane Duangdara, who leads the firm’s tax team and advises clients in the banking, hydropower and mining sectors. 

Work highlights 

Advising a leading Chinese independent power producer in the renewable energy sector on a 500MW solar power project in Laos. 

ZICO Law (Laos)

In business since 2009, ZICO Law operates its Vientiane office with a team of experienced foreign and Laotian lawyers. The firm has seen solid growth in the areas of sustainable energy, transportation, fintech, aviation and telecommunications. Managing partner Aristotle David specialises in banking and finance, corporate commercial, IP and real estate. 

Work highlights 

Advised one of the largest sustainable tree plantation investments in Laos regarding its business expansion. 

Advised a mining and exploration company in Laos on the investment acquisition of mining exploration projects in Laos.