Appointment of New Country Manager for Lao PDR

Steve GoddardMike McDonald and Mark Stewart, the Directors and founders of Arion Legal are delighted to announce the appointment of Steve Goddard as our new Country Manager with effect from 17 October 2016. He takes over from Kate Baillie who is moving to Myanmar in the New Year. Kate will continue to consult to the firm until her departure.

Steve recently joined the Arion Legal team from Cambodia where, based in Phnom Penh, he was a Legal Advisor with a leading regional law firm, specialising in foreign direct investment under the Cambodian, Myanmar and Lao PDR legal frameworks and heading up, among others, its Corporate and Commercial Practice Group, while overseeing operations in Myanmar.

Steve is a qualified Australian Lawyer and has particular expertise in corporate law and restructuring projects including mergers and acquisitions, contractual arrangements, regulatory compliance and industry-specific licensing matters.

Prior to working in Southeast Asia, Steve studied and worked in Kunming, Yunnan Province, PRC, where he gained a proficiency in speaking Mandarin. Given the strategic co-operation agreement between Arion Legal and Yunnan Baqian Law Group (the largest law firm in Yunnan Province, PRC) to provide transnational legal services within Lao PDR and the Mekong Region, Steve is well-positioned to work with our Yunnan Baqian Law Group colleagues in assisting China-based investors to establish a legal presence and expand their businesses in Lao PDR.

We look forward to having Steve on board as Country Manager and to his participation in shaping the firm’s future and driving forward its continued development. For all future enquiries Steve can be contacted via our Vientiane office or directly by e-mail at stevegoddard@arionlegal.com.

We would also like to thank Kate Baillie for her substantial contribution to the firm as Country Manager. Kate has played a pivotal role in the establishment of the Arion Legal brand within Lao PDR, the delivery of exceptional professional service to our clients, the significant expansion of our client base and assistance with the development of our collaboration with Yunnan Baqian Law Group. We wish her all the best with her future endeavours in Myanmar.

Arion Legal in Lao PDR has expanded considerably over the last couple of years and now has a permanent professional staff complement of two Australian qualified lawyers (expanding to three in December), three Lao lawyers and an Australian CPA who heads up our tax advisory practice. The Yunnan Baqian Law Group also operates from our offices, ensuring on-going and close collaboration between the two firms. Added to this is the support and experience of the firm’s directors, specialist lawyers and consultants, collectively providing a full suite of services and expertise across the commercial spectrum.

We believe that Arion Legal is now exceptionally well-positioned and resourced to be able to provide practical, results-orientated and cost effective legal and tax services to our broad and diverse client base and we look forward to continuing to assist foreign and local investors in the development and expansion of their businesses in Lao PDR.