Wico, with two decades of experience in corporate finance, has been regularly cited in legal publications as a leading or highly recommended practitioner. In Chambers Global, he “wins praise from a variety of market sources…on both debt and equity issues” and “has developed particular experience of infrastructure business trusts, and is also recognised for his work on several substantial sukuk transactions in Singapore”. In Chambers Asia-Pacific, he is described as “‘one of the smartest lawyers around’ for both equity and debt capital markets work, with broad-based capability covering IPOs, bonds and securitisation”.
More than once, he achieved the record of working on both the largest IPO and the largest bond offering in Singapore in the same year. Since the inception of business trusts in Singapore, Wico has built up leading experience in infrastructure business trusts (BT), including working on a multi-billion IPO of the largest ever infrastructure BT. Beyond award-winning and landmark transactions in both equity and debt capital markets, his experience extends to securitisation and structured finance. One of his deals won both the Singapore Deal of the Year Award and the Singapore Structured Finance and Securitisation Deal of the Year from a legal publication.
In the emerging field of Islamic banking and finance, he is cited by Islamic Finance News in 2012 as a leading lawyer in Singapore. In Chambers Asia-Pacific, he is described as “a well-known figure in the Islamic Finance market. One client remarks, ‘he's capable, experienced, and provides practical opinions,’ while another highlights how approachable he is despite his seniority.” His track record of pioneering the largest sukuk transactions in Singapore includes the first sukuk issue, the first sukuk programme, the first statutory board issuer of sukuk and the first sukuk to cross the S$1 billion value.
In the field of innovative retail bond offerings, he advised on the pioneering retail offering of bonds under the exempt bond framework as well as the first in the world offering of listed retail bonds backed by cashflows from private equity funds.
He advised on a new method for issuing Singapore Government Securities (SGS) through the introduction of syndication and establishment of a new programme for SGS (Infrastructure). The initial bond issue of S$2.4 billion under this programme was the first 50-year (and longest) bond issued by the Singapore Government as well as Singapore’s inaugural sovereign green bonds and the longest-tenor green bond issued by a sovereign.
Wico’s other notable transactions include working on the first ever IPO of a securities exchange worldwide, the record-breaking acquisition by a Singapore corporate exceeding US$8 billion, the first publicly-rated synthetic securitisation by a Singapore bank and the first rated and listed asset securitisation programme in Singapore. He graduated from law school at the National University of Singapore and has a Diploma in banking and finance from The Institute of Banking and Finance, Singapore. He was called to the Singapore Bar in 1992 and was admitted as a non-practising solicitor of England and Wales and as an attorney and Counsellor-at-Law in the State of New York.
Wico is appointed by the Minister-in-Charge of the Monetary Authority of Singapore as a member of the Appeal Advisory Panels constituted under the Business Trusts Act, Financial Advisers Act, Insurance Act, Securities and Futures Act and Trust Companies Act. In addition, he is appointed by the Minister for Finance as a member of the Income Tax Board of Review. Wico is also a member of the Corporate Law Advisory Panel, which is a standing advisory panel to the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority. He has completed his terms of service as a member of the Accounting Standards Council.