Legal Services Thailand – Investing Into Myanmar

Choosing a Thai and International Team

The global nature of investment and the services industry allows clients better choices as to how they procure assistance. As a Thai national but with plenty of business interests overseas, I needed for the biggest investment I ever made, an experienced Thai team with an International law savvy leadership.

I was recommended to use Hughes Krupica for legal services in Thailand by a good friend and therefore there was an element of pre-existing trust. However, this trust was verified and deepened during the working relationship to the extent that I would recommend any of my friends involved in similar hotel business to Hughes Krupica.

Sensitive HMA Negotiations

First, I needed to efficiently dispense with hotel negotiations with a luxury branded hotel operator. This process was important to me commercially as the brand was an extremely good fit for the subject building to be transformed into the hotel. Further, the management team of the hotel group were good to work with and I knew they would not adopt a hit and run approach to the transaction given the value of the asset not only to me, but to the operator in terms of iconic status and prestige.

That said, I needed to ensure that it was clear that I would negotiate the contracts and not just accept them ‘as they were’, whilst maintaining the integrity of the relationship.

Hughes Krupica delivered the correct style of negotiation – firm on the important points, concessions on the minor points, and explanations to support any sticking points so as to avoid unnecessary confrontation.

With the signed set of hotel agreements, I was then able to approach the lenders to secure credit facility terms based on a ‘real deal’.

Finance Negotiations With Thai Banks / Thai ‘Global’ Law Firm / In-House Counsel / Commercial Team

I used one of Hughes Krupica’s foreign lawyers for my negotiations with the Thai bank. This is due to the fact the facility was to be structured between Singapore, Thailand and Myanmar with in-house lawyers involved on behalf of the banks, and a ‘global’ law firm’s Bangkok team producing the security and finance documents.

As the assets to be securitized were a mix of the joint venture property in Myanmar and my family assets, I needed counsel who would challenge the bank and also refer to international practices, avoiding the commercial trap of bank assertions that this is how things ‘have to be done’. I knew that certain documents could be changed to be more balanced and less one sided to the bank and this was particularly true as the deal as a whole was a prestigious pioneer deal for the bank and an entry point for them into a new market too.

Hughes Krupica and I worked together with a host of advisers; commercial representatives and third parties on the ‘other side’ of the deal. We maintained our calm, control and demeanour throughout, but knew when to apply heat and pressure when faced with unreasonable demands.

We successfully completed the credit finance deal in approximately 2 months, and given the complexity of the arrangements and necessity for the usual ‘bank committee’ consultations and approvals, this was an excellent timeframe.

Hughes Krupica is a small medieum enterprise style law firm, and well suited to work amongst the giant bureaucratic firms and organisations – by cutting through some of the smoke and mist applied to transactions, and making demands on my behalf, and in my interests.