Kinney Recruiting

Posts by Kinney Recruiting

Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email:

Our advice to any Mandarin speaking 2L summer associate who is interested in a future transfer or lateral US associate move to Hong Kong / China: It’s not just about corporate and other transactional practices any more. If you are more interested in litigation than transactional, don’t hesitate to choose litigation or a litigation-related practice area. There is a sharply growing need at top US firms in Hong Kong / China for laterals and transfers in US litigation (mostly FCPA / White Collar work), Anti-Trust, and Disputes / Arbitration. This is not just a trend, it’s a permanent change on the landscape. We find it exciting that Mandarin speaking JDs now have more options to choose from in positioning themselves for a future Hong Kong / China move. Feel free to contact us at if you are a summer associate interested in Asia and have any questions about choosing a practice. It can be one of the biggest decisions you make in your career and yet one usually made without much analysis. Also, feel free to contact us if you are an associate interested in joining an FCPA / White Collar practice or Disputes practice in Asia. We have made numerous such placements in the past few years and a number of our candidates are interviewing for FCPA / White Collar positions at present in Asia.

Check out this relevant recent Legal Week article by Elizabeth Broomhall, where Kinney Recruiting’s Evan Jowers is quoted several times: Courting Eastern promise – the drive by international firms to recruit more disputes lawyers in Asia.

Please note that Chinese Business Lawyers Association is having a seminar on public to private deals on Novmeber 29 at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Hong Kong. As we mentioned in a recent Asia Chronicles post, there is a big pipeline of these type of deals currently at some US firms in HK / China and thus we are seeing a significant increase in the need by our US firm clients in HK / China for lateral hires with such deal experience. Private Equity practices, in particular, are having a lot of this type of of deal flow.

Kinney Recruiting and the Asia Chronicles have always been a big supporter of the Chinese Business Lawyers Association. We are institutional members of the CBLA and over the years have advised, represented and placed in Asia a large number of attorney members of the organization, including former board members. We support the CBLA because it is a great source of information on the Asia biglaw markets for US associates based in the US who are considering or seeking a lateral move or transfer to Asia. The CBLA also has a presence in Hong Kong and conducts informative seminars and other events there for its members, many of whom are former NYC based associates who joined CBLA while in NYC.

Going Private and Going Dark: Considerations for U.S. Publicly Traded Chinese Companies

Dorsey & Whitney LLP and the Chinese Business Lawyers Association cordially invite you to a seminar on key issues that face U.S. publicly traded Chinese companies that are considering going private or going dark. In light of the challenges many U.S. publicly traded Chinese companies face under the current regulatory and market conditions, an increasing number of Chinese companies are considering leaving the U.S. reporting system by going private or going dark. Going private and going dark are complex processes that involve many business, legal and accounting issues. Restructuring those companies after the completion of a going private transaction also involves tax and corporate issues that require careful planning. An expert panel consisting of senior investment bankers, lawyers and accountants with real case experience will discuss the topic with the audience. Please see the details below and register by November 26, 2012 if you would like to attend.

Thursday, November 29
3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. | Registration and Refreshments
3:30 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. | Panel Discussion
5:15 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. | Reception

Ted Farris, Partner – Dorsey & Whitney LLP
Catherine X. Pan-Giordano, Partner – Dorsey & Whitney LLP
Weimin Chen, Managing Director/Daniel O’Donnell, Senior Vice President – Houlihan Lokey
James O’Neill, Managing Director of Jin Niu Investment Management Co., Ltd

Kenny Kwok, Partner – Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Mandarin Oriental
5 Connaught Road
Central, Hong Kong SAR

thank you post it note.JPGA quick word of thanks to this week’s advertisers on Above the Law:

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  • small phone.jpg

    * A “court” upheld the government’s authority to tap international phone calls and emails without a warrant. [The Washington Post]

    * Would-be Attorney General Eric Holder’s confirmation hearing went well yesterday, and he will go for more today. [The Associated Press]

    * Marc Dreier, the lawyer who sold hedge funds phony investments, wants to be released on bail. [Reuters]

    * The Senate released the second portion of the bailout fund yesterday, giving Obama a tidy $350 billion to get the economy back on track. [The New York Times]

    * In an effort to rally lending, President-elect Obama’s advisors are considering drastic proposals that would take toxic assets of bank balance sheets. [Bloomberg]

    Craigslist.jpgApparently, many ATL readers are conducting their job searches via Craigslist, because this posting has appeared in our inbox more frequently than lobster references in the comments.

    We’ve already mentioned it in Non-Sequiturs, but we’re returning to it to beg you to stop sending it to us, and to give you the story behind it. For those not in the know, here’s the legal job listing that many a job searcher has stumbled across:

    Associate Attorney (Midtown West)

    Reply to: [?]

    Date: 2009-01-13, 5:41PM EST

    Fast-paced 20-attorney law firm looking for an eager associate to join our growing practice. We understand that you may be a newly-admitted attorney looking for their first job. We also know that the economy is harsh right now. However, we are willing to give you a chance. Here are the details of this spectacular opportunity:

    * Your salary will be $30,000 per year. We understand that this may be on the low end (since you probably are six figures in debt), but we will be able to give you unlimited opportunities for experience and you’ll be making six-figures soon enough. On the other hand, we will bill our clients $300 for every hour of your work; at least you will know your work is valued by us in several ways.

    * There is no health insurance, but we have an on-site 2nd year medical student who will abide by the upmost professional standards take care of any illnesses or injuries that occur, both on-site and off-site.

    * You will be expected to work 12 hour days, six (6) days of week. You will be afforded 1 week of vacation time, and three (3) sick days. Your vacation time is limited to the months of January and February, as we will need you to be in the office while the partners are taking their time off in the summer. The good news is that you will earn vacation and sick pay as soon as you start. The only holidays that the Firm observes are Christmas and Thanksgiving, but you must work a half-day, as we are a busy and important firm who adheres to our clients’ needs.

    * Your bonus, if earned (by billing 2100 hours per year), will consist of a one-year membership to a “food-of-the-mouth” club of your choice. In 2008, every associate took advantage of this valuable program and has benefited greatly for their hard work and dedication.

    Please email resume, cover letter, salary history, law school and college transcripts to the address above. We will also need you to take a drug test. All resumes and credentials will be held in strictest confidence

    Ridiculous and hilarious, right? Obviously a joke? Well, we talked to the guy behind the ad — a contract attorney who’s looking for a permanent firm job himself — and he says he has received over 100 e-mails, including two from recruiting agencies, in response to his satirical listing.

    Find out which recruiting agencies, and the story behind the posting, after the jump.

    double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Funny Craigslist job listing makes us sad”

    If you thought the Kirkland & Ellis holiday party reminder was out of step with these sober times, here’s an invitation you might find more appropriate:

    holiday party invitation invite law firm.jpg
    Quips our tipster: “Nothing says ‘holiday cheer’ like preemptive admonitions against bringing anyone to the party you might actually WANT to talk to, driving home Toonces the Cat-style, or groping your peers.”

    P.S. In fairness, the “no spouses / guests” policy is par for the course at firm holiday parties. Most firms aren’t as nice as Kaye Scholer on this score.

    Earlier: Kirkland & Ellis Sends Holiday Party Reminder

    Dean Elena Kagan strikes again. From an HLS press release:

    Lawrence Lessig law professor Larry Lessig.jpgRenowned legal scholar Lawrence Lessig has been appointed to the faculty of Harvard Law School, and as the faculty director of Harvard University’s Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics. The announcement was made jointly today (Dec. 12) by Harvard University Provost Steven E. Hyman and Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan.

    Lessig — a widely acclaimed expert in constitutional law, cyberlaw, and intellectual property — comes to Harvard from the faculty of Stanford Law School. Prior to joining the Stanford faculty in 2000, he was on the faculty of the University of Chicago Law School and Harvard Law School.

    Dean Kagan and HLS have been on a tremendous hiring spree. One source sums it up: “Can we get a list of who’s left — not counting federal judges like Posner, Easterbrook and Calabresi — that Kagan hasn’t scooped up in the last few years? Dworkin? Ackerman? Epstein?”

    Says a second: “Dean Kagan is a juggernaut. In spite of losing about 25 percent of its endowment, Harvard is apparently not in a hiring freeze.”

    More discussion, including words from Professor Lessig, after the jump.

    double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Musical Chairs: Larry Lessig to Harvard Law School”

    Hong Kong Island.jpg
    [Disclosure: This post is authored by Evan Jowers and Robert Kinney of Kinney Recruiting -- sponsor of the Asia Chronicles, and an ATL advertiser. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates and partners in Asia than any other firm in the past two years. You can reach them by email at asia at kinneyrecruiting dot com.]
    In an earlier article the Asia Corporate Lawyers (the prior authors of this column) discussed what life is like when you are an associate in Asia from their own perspectives. This week we are going to discuss what partners at U.S. or U.K. firms’ Asia offices seek when they are considering U.S. associate candidates. These topics are related in that the partners who interview candidates typically are looking to identify the people who will be most happy not only with the work that is presented by the Asia practice, but also with the style of practice and with their lives outside the office.
    Interviewing for an overseas position at any busy U.S. law firm or with the U.S. practice group of a UK firm is a bit different from interviewing for a spot in a domestic market for the same firm. As with any interview process, the gating factors at top U.S. practices in Asia are academics and law firm experience. Without impressive grades and top firm experience, you generally won’t be considered. But overseas partners are also looking for the right personality fit much more so than in a large domestic office. A major reason for this is because the offices are much smaller overseas, making it harder to hide a misfit (even a junior associate can be the face of the firm), but there are other reasons as well.
    At a basic level, the factors that are especially important to demonstrate in an interview overseas are these:

    • you have an entrepreneurial nature;
    • you have a high level of maturity for your experience level;
    • you have an outgoing personality (not overly “academic” in nature);
    • you are able to fit in with different cultures;
    • your personal presentation is generally positive; and
    • you are a team player (no prima donnas need apply)

    These are obviously all factors that are relevant in any interview at least as “plus factors”, but what follows is a discussion of why these particular factors are especially important in this environment. In our next article, we will discuss ways in which you can demonstrate (or fail to demonstrate) that you qualify based on your resume and interview performance. Some of our experience in this regard has been amusing as well as frustrating.
    Read more, after the jump.

    double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The Asia Chronicles: Interview Tips”

    Singapore skyline.jpg[Disclosure: This post is authored not by the Asia Corporate Lawyers, but by Evan Jowers and Robert Kinney of Kinney Recruiting -- sponsor of the Asia Chronicles, and an ATL advertiser. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates and partners in Asia than any other firm in the past two years. You can reach them by email at asia at kinneyrecruiting dot com.]
    On Monday we discussed some positive trends in M&A in Asia, notwithstanding the turmoil in credit markets and overall economic downturn globally. Today, we discuss very briefly some of the lateral hiring trends we have been seeing in Asia recently and in ’08 in general.
    We have not seen an overall reduction in hiring of U.S. associates in Asia, but firms have been much more selective than in ’07. This is for a variety of reasons. Some notable U.S. and British firms in Asia are hiring at a significantly slower clip than in ’07, but this unfortunate trend is being balanced out by other peer firms hiring significantly more than in ’07. There are a number of firms in heavy expansion mode, with several top U.S. firms in Hong Kong / China, for example, that will easily double the size of their offices in ’08. Some U.S. firms in Asia have very aggressive medium-term (5-6 year) expansion plans to have 100+ attorney offices. Interestingly, and perhaps surprisingly to readers, some of the most urgent needs still happen to be for mid-level to senior U.S. securities associates, despite the slower pace of capital-markets deal flow coming in.
    It is important to note that in ’08, there are as much as three to four times as many U.S. associate candidates on the market for Asia positions, compared to ’07. Firms can afford to be a lot more selective and also can take their time with hiring decisions, much more than was the case in the frenzied hiring environment in Asia in ’07. While we are seeing the same pace of hiring in the Asia markets in ’08 that we saw in ’07, it has become a more difficult market to break into for some U.S. associates than was the case in ’07.
    Read more, after the jump.

    double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The Asia Chronicles: A Look at Current Hiring Trends”

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