Yo Ota



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Practice areas:
M&AJoint VenturesDefense against Hostile Takeover/Shareholder ActivismPrivate EquityStartups & Venture CapitalCross-border M&ACorporate GovernanceShareholders' Meetings & Relationships with ShareholdersCorporate DisputesIncorporated Associations & FoundationsCorporate & Commercial TransactionsCapital MarketsInsuranceFinTech BusinessesSecurities Litigation/Disputes Related to Financial ProductsEarly Stage RestructuringTax DisputesAdministrative LitigationConsumer Contract DisputesCivil Disputes Arising from Corporate ScandalsInvestor-State Dispute SettlementInternational LitigationIP TransactionsTrade Secrets/Unfair CompetitionPersonal Data & Privacy/Big Data BusinessesTelecommunication & MediaCorporate Crisis ManagementComplianceInternal Investigations & Outside InvestigationsAccounting FraudInsider TradingOther Breaches of the Financial Instruments & Exchange ActBreaches of Anti-Bribery & Anti-Corruption Laws & RegulationsAccidents, Deception, Misrepresentation of Products & FoodFraud of Directors & Employees such as EmbezzlementWhistle BlowingTax PlanningTax CounselingInternational TaxationLabor LawConsumer Contract ActAct against Unjustifiable Premiums & Misleading RepresentationsProduct Liability Act, Product Safety & the Recall of ProductsConsumer OrganizationsCross-border Transactions (General)Global ComplianceLobbying & Contributing to Planning & Enacting of Public PolicyEducational ActivitiesPublic Interest ActivitiesNatural Resources & EnergyTelecommunicationsBroadcasting Internet/Cyber LawEntertainmentSportsMedicine/Medical DevicesMedical Field/HealthcareHealthcare IT/Medical CloudBiotechnologyElectronicsAutomotive & Auto PartsAerospace/SpaceRobotics/Artificial IntelligenceChemicalsTurkey/Middle EastEU & EU Member StatesEuropean Countries (except EU Member States)/Russia/CIS United States
Admitted in Japan (1993)
Admitted in New York (2001)

Yo OTA has been a partner at Nishimura & Asahi (formerly Nishimura & Partners) since 2003.
He has a variety of practical international and domestic legal experience, including work in the areas of M&A transactions, corporate risk management and tax.

Recent activities


Impact Deal: European Tax Awards 2020



Top attorneys in Japan: Best Lawyers - 2021 edition



The Legal 500 Hall of Fame



Harvard Law School (LL.M.)
The University of Tokyo (LL.B.)

Professional experience

2019 -
Outside Corporate Auditor, Z Financial Corporation
2017 -
Outside Corporate Auditor, Ricoh Company Ltd.
2016 -
Outside Director, Nippon Kayaku Co., Ltd.
2013 - 2016
Professor, Graduate Schools for Law and Politics, The University of Tokyo
2012 -
Director, Japan Association of Corporate Directors
2007 -
Member of Responsibility Pursuit Committee, Nikko Cordial Corporation
2005 - 2013
Lecturer, Tax Law, Seikei University Law School
2005 -
Outside Director, Denki Kogyo Company, Limited
2005 - 2009
Outside Corporate Auditor, Culture Convenience Club Co., Ltd
2005 - 2008
Lecturer, Kyoto University Law School
2004 - 2016
Outside Corporate Auditor, Nippon Kayaku Co., Ltd.
2004 - 2005
Lecturer, Hitotsubashi University, Graduate School of International Corporate Strategy (ICS)
2003 - 2005
Lecturer in Law, International Transactions, Graduate School of Law, Chuo University
2001 - 2002
The Ministry of Justice, Civil Affairs Bureau (engaged in the reform of the Japanese Commercial Code)
2000 - 2001
Debevoise & Plimpton, New York
Lecturer in Law, International Taxation, St. Paul's (Rikkyo) University

Major Cases


Rescission of tax reassessment regarding an in-kind contribution of a partnership interest


Arbitration involving significant claims and its settlement concerning a joint venture between Japanese companies relating to power plant construction projects


Stripe International Inc. - Acquisition of stake in Vietnam's Global Fashion Trading Corp.


Nippon Paint Holdings Co., Ltd. - Acquisition of DuluxGroup Limited


Nippon Paint Holdings Co., Ltd. - Acquisition of Betek Boya ve Kimya Sanayi A.Ş.


Establishment of the Japan Network for Public Interest Activities


Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. - Acquisition of Shire plc


Adeka Corporation: Acquisition of majority stake in Nihon Nohyaku Co., Ltd.


Acquisition of the apparel business of NEM group by STRIPE INTERNATIONAL INC.


Acquisition of Japan Automobile Auction Inc. by USS Co,. Ltd.


Acquisition of Heroflon S.p.A. by DAIKIN INDUSTRIES, LTD.


Acquisition of Showa Yakuhin Kako Co., Ltd. from Unison Capital, Inc. by GC Corporation.

2015 - 2016

Acquisition of Ikyu Corporation by Yahoo Japan Corporation

2015 - 2016

Establishment of New Business Venture by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Ltd. and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.


Joint Venture (Establishment of Mitsui Chemicals & SKC Polyurethanes Inc.) by and between Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. and SKC Co., Ltd.


Acquisition of Tipness by Nippon Television Network Corporation


Subscription of third-party allocation of shares in Wuthelam Holdings Pte Ltd. and gaining corporate control over the Asian companies that are in joint ventures with the above company by Nippon Paint Holdings Co., Ltd.


Business integration between Mitsubishi-Hitachi Metals Machinery and Siemens AG in the steel and metal production machinery business

2013 - 2015

Full repayment of the public funds, about 871 billion JPY, by Resona Holdings, Inc.


Acquisition of Robeco Group by Orix Corporation using cash and treasury stock


Business integration between Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. and Hitachi, Ltd. on thermal power generation systems.


Acquisition of Cyber Agent FX, Inc. by Yahoo Japan Corporation


Acquisition of Showa Yakuhin Kako Co., Ltd. by the Union of GC Corporation and Unison Capital, Inc.


Subscription of third-party allocation of shares of ASKUL Corporation by Yahoo Japan Corporation


Sale of REX Holdings Inc. to Colowide Co., Ltd. by Advantage Partners

2012 - 2013

Hostile takeover bid against Accordia Golf Co., Ltd. launched by PGM Holdings


Privatization of GameOn, Co., Ltd. by Neowiz Corporation

2011 - 2013

A Price Determination Dispute for Appraisal Rights of Investment Equity Relating to the Merger and Acquisition

2011 - 2012

Business integration with Tokyo Stock Exchange Co., Ltd. and Osaka Stock Exchange Co., Ltd.


Management buy-out of Culture Convenience Club Co., Ltd.


Acquisition of Alico’s global business by MetLife, Inc.


Renault - Nissan Motor - Daimler

2009 - 2010

Tax Litigation concerning Finite Reinsurance Policies (Tokyo High Court)


Sale of 100% of the shares in Kyoei Fire & Marine Insurance Co. (UK) LTD, a subsidiary of The Kyoei Fire & Marine Insurance Co., Ltd., to Berkshire Hathaway Group

2007 - 2008

Proxy fight over the 2007 and 2008 General Shareholders’ Meetings of J-Power against the Children’s Investment Fund


Defense of Bulldog Sauce Co., Ltd. from a hostile takeover bid by Steel Partners


Business and capital alliance between Resona Holdings, Inc., and The Dai-ichi Mutual Life Insurance Company


Buy-out of The Tokyo Star Bank, Ltd., by Advantage Partners


Management buy-out of REX HOLDINGS CO., LTD., sponsored by Advantage Partners


Sale of 80% of the shares in The Kyoei Kasai Shinrai Life Insurance Co., Ltd. to Fukoku Mutual Life Insurance Company

2005 - 2006

Merger to create holding company structure by ITO-YOKADO CO., LTD., Seven-Eleven Japan Co., Ltd., and Denny's Japan Co., Ltd.

2004 - 2005

Merger of UFJ Holdings, Inc. and Mitsubishi Tokyo Financial Group, Inc.


Establishment of a joint venture company for the mobile "FeliCa" IC and service platform business between Sony Corporation and NTT DoCoMo


Restructuring of Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. and creation of a holding company structure

1998 - 1999

Strategic business alliance between Nomura Securities and The Industrial Bank of Japan


Spin-off of the financial system department of The Daiwa Bank, Ltd. and establishment of a joint venture company with IBM Japan

1997 - 2004

The largest tax litigation case in Japanese history, brought by The Industrial Bank of Japan ("IBJ"), contesting the disallowance of IBJ's write-off of bad loans in the principal amount of approximately 400 billion yen

1997 - 1999

Acquisition of Yamaichi Trust & Bank, Ltd., by Orix Corporation


Establishment of a satellite digital broadcasting joint venture (DirecTV Japan) among Hughes International, Culture Convenience Club and Mitsubishi Corporation, etc.


Acquisition of 50% of the equity interest in Nippon Glaxo Ltd., by Glaxo Wellcome plc.


Sale of 12.25% equity interest in Japanese listed pharmaceutical company, Hokuriku Seiyaku Co., Ltd., by G.D. Searle & Co.

1995 - 1996

Derivative trading loss matter at the New York Branch of The Daiwa Bank, Ltd.


Establishment of a joint venture company for a computerized flight reservation system business between Japan Air Lines and American Airlines


Acquisition of Ziff-Davis Publishing Company by Softbank Corporation


Establishment of a joint venture company for a computer software wholesaling business by and between Corporate Software Inc. and Fujitsu Ltd.