Allen & Overy has added to its Hong Kong asset finance practice with the hire of a veteran specialist from Baker & McKenzie. The appointment of William Ho is complemented by the arrival of two other asset finance specialists, Tom Brown and Wayne Bannon, from the firm's Tokyo office.

Ho brings to the practice group 10 years' experience, with a track record that includes advising on the first US like-kind exchange earlier this year, the first US extra-territorial income lease and the first US-Exim bond-lent financing of aircraft. Brown also brings senior experience, having been involved on a variety of lease and off balance-sheet structures during his eight years in Asia.

"In the last couple of years, we have noticed a steady stream of highly structured and innovative cross-border asset finance transactions coming out of the market," says Joseph Tse, head of the Asian banking and finance group. "These transactions called for truly global asset and structured finance capabilities which only a handful of international firms could deliver."

A&O's global asset finance group comprises 140 lawyers and in Asia the team has people based in Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore, Shanghai and Bangkok.