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Growth, lawyers, and the Middle East

Posted by: Laurence Simons 26/09/12

Your starter for ten: how can in-house lawyers fuel their company's growth? Well, lots of ways, obviously. But one of the more unappreciated manners in which a companies' in-house legal team can aid growth is by blazing a trail when it comes to acquisition negotiations, such as over young start-up companies. Let's just look at SingTel, south-east Asia's largest telecoms company. Just look at SingTel. SingTel is huge.

And it wants to get huger. This week, company chief Allen Lew said the company plans to expand into multimedia and IT services (so putting the 'MT' in 'TMT') by acquiring tech and media start-ups across both south-east Asia and Israel. And the company has a venture capital war-chest of $162.7 million to get on and do that with. 

"Israel is an important part of our golden plans for the digital space," Lew said. "In developing markets, the mobile device is the only device they use to access the internet and get information. We will be making strategic acquisitions and we will be partnering with companies here."

A Singaporean telecoms company which happens to be the second-largest mobile provider in China and is looking to expand into Israel? Pretty exotic stuff. Which means the in-house lawyers spearheading any negotiations will need to have plenty of batteries for their currency calculator as well as being rigorously clued up on their regional business practices. But it's those skills that can help leverage a company to the next level as they look to expand. So, if you're looking to grow? Brush up on some Hebrew.

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