PwC continues legal services push in Asia with appointment of Rachel Eng

24 July 2018

Big Four firm PwC has continued the expansion of its Asia legal practices with the recruit of high-profile corporate lawyer Rachel Eng in Singapore.

In an amicable split, Eng crosses to PwC from more than two decades with law firm WongPartnership, where she most recently served as deputy chairman and held the position of managing partner since 2010 – after initially joining the firm in 1995. In addition to her professional employment, Eng is a council member with the Singapore Business Federation and the Corporate Governance Council, as well as a member of several boards.

“We are pleased to welcome Rachel to our PwC global legal network firm, which focuses primarily on legal services adjacent to PwC’s core services. I foresee that we will have opportunities to continue working with WongPartnership in areas outside our core capabilities,” said Yeoh Oon Jin, PwC Singapore’s Executive Chairman.

Alvin Yeo, Chairman and Senior Partner of WongPartnership, responded in kind; “We have a strong working relationship with PwC Singapore and have been involved in many of their initiatives including the merger of Pricewaterhouse and Coopers & Lybrand in 1998. Our collaboration will continue going forward. We are sad to see Rachel leave us but we are happy to have her join an institution that has been a friend of WongPartnership for many years.”PwC continues legal services push in Asia with appointment of Rachel Eng During her time with WongPartnership, where twice she won the Managing Partner of the Year award at the Asia Legal Business SE Asia Law Awards, Eng specialised in real estate investment trusts and funds, corporate advisory, and listings – including an involvement in several high profile multi-billion dollar IPOs – along with a focus on corporate governance. She was also a member of the Committee on the Future Economy led by Finance Minister Heng Swee Kiat – with the finance ministry rolling out several future economy initiatives this year.

Further to her legal work, Eng, who was the first female to lead a big law firm in Singapore, is an active supporter of women’s workforce empowerment and gender diversity in corporate leadership – and was named the Women of the Year in 2014 by leading Singaporean women’s magazine Her World. Eng started her legal career in 1991, after graduating finance-focused law studies with honours at the National University of Singapore.

For PwC, the high-profile recruit will join the firm’s more than 3,500 legal professionals operating in over 100 countries – with the Big Four outfit aggressively expanding its legal offerings in Asia. Earlier this month, PwC added Singapore full-service firm Teng and Co. to its Asia network as an independent local law firm – to be led by Joanna Teng as Managing Director – and has been bolstering its legal personnel ranks across East Asia through partnerships and recruits.

Yeoh Oon Jin, Executive Chairman, PwC Singapore said of the new addition; “I would like to welcome Teng and Co. to the PwC network. We believe that legal advice integrated with other areas of expertise within PwC will help better serve business needs of clients. I am confident that their adjacent legal capabilities will enhance the value we bring to the wider business community.”


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Deloitte adds Richard Hayler as Disputes and Arbitration leader

16 April 2019

Deloitte has brought in Richard Hayler as its new Southeast Asia Disputes and Arbitration Leader. Hayler crosses from FTI Consulting – continuing the recent personnel shuffle in the regional forensics space.

Following the onboarding of veteran forensics expert Jarrod Baker as its new Forensic Investigations Leader for Southeast Asia earlier this year, global professional services leader Deloitte has added another ex-FTI Consulting executive to its regional forensics practice with the appointment of Richard Hayler as its new Southeast Asia Disputes and Arbitration leader. It’s Hayler’s second stint at the Big Four firm.

Originally starting out as an auditor in the chemicals, pharmaceuticals & energy practice of fellow Big Four firm KPMG in the UK (via a five-year Technical Director role with specialist life sciences consultancy Primarius), Hayler after three years crossed to Deloitte in 2008, serving as an Associate Director for its Forensic & Dispute Services division in London, and then from 2012 in Singapore. 

From there, Hayler joined the Singapore office of FTI Consulting’s Economic & Financial practice, promoted to senior managing director at the beginning of last year. Now, like his colleague Baker, Hayler has returned for his second stint with Deloitte, after respectively four and nearly six years with FTI. Meanwhile, FTI recently added e-discovery expert Christopher Marks as a senior managing director – continuing its global raid on Ernst & Young.

“I am delighted to be returning to Deloitte rejoining old friends and being on board with a great team,” Hayler said. This is an exciting time to be back at Deloitte as the firm has made great strides integrating to serve its clients across Asia Pacific better and I look forward to being part of that success.” As of September last year, Deloitte began integrating its Asia Pacific arms into single operational unit – with a co-attendant $321 million investment committed to human capital.Deloitte adds Richard Hayler as Disputes and Arbitration Leader in Southeast AsiaHayler across his career has developed expertise in a broad range of  competencies around forensics, disputes and litigation, including complex valuations, M&A and contractual disputes, accounting irregularities; alleged misappropriation, asset tracing and fraud investigations among others – having led or advised teams multiple jurisdictions in “some of the largest and most complex cases in the last decade.”

“Having Richard in our leadership team is a strong market differentiator,” said Tim Phillipps, Deloitte’s Financial Crime Strategy and Response Network leader for APAC. “His track record and extensive experience will be critical as we continue to expand and strengthen our presence in the Southeast Asia region.  It will enhance our capacity to serve our clients, and ensure that we continue to provide clear, timely and insightful counsel.”

In addition to Deloitte, Hayler serves on the Standards Review Board of the International Valuation Standards Council, as well as being a member of the adjunct faculty at Singapore Management University’s School of Law and the Honorary Treasurer for the Board of Directors of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Singapore. He was also last year a group representative for financial & fintech business group with the local British Chamber of Commerce.

According to the firm, Hayler’s recruitment forms part of its plans to expand its forensics services in the region – a practice which has already grown substantially in recent years to include more than 125 dedicated forensic practitioners based in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam, with growth driven by investment in disputes and arbitration, electronic discovery, investigations, forensic digital platforms and financial crime advisory and analytics among other areas.