Asia Business Law Journal: Indonesia Law Firm Awards 2021
Indonesia, like many countries, has had to persevere with the upheavals brought about by the pandemic for an uncertain period of time. Slowly but surely, the country is not only surviving the recession but also seeing landmark deals and projects that have kept the top law firms busy and that bring hope to the recovery.
The gradual reopening, a more favourable global situation, and expansionary fiscal and monetary policies have driven Indonesia to claw back from the brink following a more than 2% contraction of its GDP last year. The economy rose 7% in the second quarter of this year compared to the year previous.
However, surging infections from mid-June until early August have prompted the government to tighten containment measures, and a strained healthcare system coupled with vaccine shortages make for a gloomy outlook for the rest of the year.
Amid lingering concerns over business confidence, a glimmer of hope has come from the country’s tech and capital markets sectors. In May, the two biggest startups, ride-hailing giant Gojek and marketplace Tokopedia, decided to form GoTo Group, valued at USD18 billion, making it the largest merger in the country to date. The new entity is preparing for a dual listing in New York and Jakarta this year.
In August, e-commerce company Bukalapak made its market debut after raising USD1.5 billion in the biggest IPO to date in Indonesia. The listing has fuelled a frenzy among institutional and retail investors to get a piece of the shares, and there are expectations that capital markets can drive the economy forward.
The regulator has not missed its chance. A new revision of the Indonesia Stock Exchange regulations will help foreign money to flow into Indonesian equity holdings in the next few years by allowing dual classes of shares with multiple voting rights. The updated rules could change the sectoral composition of the equity market, making it more attractive for global participation.
The legal market in the country is also catching up, with more law firms focusing on fintech and capital markets, among other growing trends. The competition seems to be a dynamic of firms with decades of experience against new players with a strong desire to innovate, in addition to a blend of international associations and independent firms providing full-service or specialised practices that entice clients with bespoke offerings.
From this perspective, Asia Business Law Journal’s 2021 Indonesia Law Firm Awards presents an interesting mix of traditional independent law firms, big international players and disruptive contenders, a picture reflective of a vibrant legal market.
We have identified four law firms that have proven to be the best in the country, and among them, one firm has risen to the top to be the Law Firm of the Year. In 22 other categories, we have four winners each of equal standing.
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