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Morrison & Foerster adds new partner in Tokyo

Law firm Morrison & Foerster has appointed Jesse Gillespie as a partner in the corporate practice in the firm’s Tokyo office.

Gillespie comes to Morrison & Foerster from Sullivan & Cromwell with expertise in cross-border capital markets transactions. 
Gillespie’s expertise further strengthens Morrison & Foerster’s capital markets practice – the only capital markets practice in Tokyo that covers both Japanese and US laws, and provides advice with respect to primary and secondary market transactions. His arrival also enhances the firm’s cross-border M&A transactions offering in relation to securities law issues.
“Jesse’s pan-Asian credentials are impressive,” says Eric Piesner, Firmwide Managing Partner for Asia. “He gained significant exposure to global foreign private issuers while working in Hong Kong, making him a strong addition to our market-leading Tokyo team and Asian corporate practice more widely.”
Gillespie’s corporate practice focuses on capital markets transactions involving Japanese and Asian issuers. He has extensive experience representing issuers and underwriters in connection with registered and unregistered offerings of debt securities, including both high-yield and investment-grade offerings. He also represents banks and issuers in connection with complex liability management exercises, including integrated consent solicitations, tender offers and exchange offers.
“Jesse is already highly regarded in capital markets circles in Tokyo, with deep relationships at financial institutions,” says Ken Siegel, Managing Partner of Morrison & Foerster’s Tokyo office. “He will play a key role in further building out our Tokyo capital markets offering. We look forward to leveraging his strong track record in the debt capital markets space in particular.”
In Japan, Gillespie has represented issuers and underwriters in noteworthy debt capital markets offerings for Japanese issuers, including the first global high-yield offering by a Japanese company and the largest international bond offering ever by a Japanese issuer. In China, he has advised on a wide range of landmark transactions, including debt offerings for central state-owned enterprises, as well as innovative offerings for leading technology firms and high-yield issuers in property and other sectors. Gillespie has also worked on capital markets transactions for a variety of issuers in South and Southeast Asia.
Gillespie has also represented issuers and underwriters in a broad range of equity offerings, ranging from common stock offerings to convertible bond offerings and other complex equity-linked transactions, including the second-largest equity-linked transaction in U.S. history and Asia’s largest convertible security offering.
“I am delighted to join Morrison & Foerster and help diversify the firm’s capital markets and corporate offerings,” says Gillespie. “The firm has an outstanding reputation in Japan and throughout Asia, and I look forward to contributing to its continued success.”
Gillespie earned his JD from Columbia Law School, his BA from Claremont McKenna College and also holds an MFA in music from the Tokyo University of the Arts. He is a New York- and California-qualified attorney and is admitted to practice in Japan as a Gaikokuho Jimu Bengoshi. A native English speaker, Gillespie has near-native spoken fluency in Japanese and is also proficient in Japanese business and legal writing.

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