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Recent Developments

Attorney Sang Gon Kim Appointed as the New Executive Managing Director of Lee & Ko

Lee & Ko’s attorney Sang Gon Kim (aged 53) was appointed as its new executive managing director.
On February 25th, the managing committee held a meeting to appoint Mr. Kim as its executive managing director. 

This newly inaugurated executive managing director joined Lee & Ko in 1994 after graduating from Seoul National University College of Law and being admitted to the Korean bar in 1994 (a member of 23rd Judicial Research and Training Institute). Mr. Kim has established his position as a leading lawyer in the field of M&A and corporate restructuring. He has handled a wide variety of M&A transactions, whereby some of his more notable cases include a big deal between Samsung and Hanhwa, the Karl Icahn’s takeover attempt of KT&G, and the representation of major conglomerates including LG Group, SK Group and CJ Group in their restructuring into a holding company structure through share transfers. 

For the last thirty years, Mr. Kim spearheaded the firm’s growth by serving as a managing committee member since 2018, and in his role as the managing partner from 2021. His outstanding work capability and leadership has been highly applauded from other members of the committee, and this led to Mr. Kim being named the new executive managing director of the firm.
After the announcement of his appointment, Mr. Kim stated that, “I feel overwhelmed having to take on such an important role, but I will do my utmost best to keep Lee & Ko on the right path and compete with proficiency, as we have always done in the past.”
As one of the largest law firms in Korea, Lee & Ko employs about 780 professionals, including domestic and foreign lawyers, accountants, and patent attorneys, and maintains eight legal practice groups such as corporate, finance, dispute resolution, intellectual property rights, tax, fair trade, labor and criminal defense areas, as well as 80 legal professional teams providing legal advice. Earlier this month, Lee & Ko opened its Pangyo office, where Pangyo is considered home to many IT companies. 
Lee & Ko Opens PanGyo Office

We are pleased to announce the opening of our new PanGyo Office on February 14.  

PangGyo Office will be our first regional office to be set up within Korea.  We have already established our global footprint with offices in Beijing, Hanoi and Ho Chin Minh City, and our PanGyo Office will further take us closer to our clients and provide on-the-ground support to our clients doing business in this dynamic and ever-growing Korean market.

Dong Eun Kim, Managing Partner, will head up the PanGyo Office and Taejoo Kim will manage the office.  Other resident members will be Taejoo Kim (TMT), Jinku Kang (Corporate/M&A), Tae Jung Kim (Corporate/M&A), Hwan Sung Park (IP), Wooyoung Choi (IP), Junghwan (Justin) Maeng (IP), Seung Wan Hahm (Labor), Huijin Chae (Disputes), Tom Shin (Banking and Finance) and You Chull Jung (Financial Disputes).  They are a dedicated team of sector specialists known for their expertise and will provide comprehensive and focused response to our clients’ legal needs.

PanGyo Office will be supported by 780+ professionals in the firm’s Seoul Office to provide a seamless, one-office system service to our clients on corporate, M&A, banking and finance, capital markets, tax, fair competition, government regulations, healthcare, serious accidents, disputes and corporate criminal matters.

Lee & Ko has achieved a spectacular growth of 14.2% from last year and posted a revenue of KRW 365.8 billion for 2021.  We have firmly positioned ourselves as the second largest law firm in Korea thanks in large part to the trust and support from our clients.  

We have started 2022 with our representation in two of the major cases to make news in Korea this year: the Osstem Implant embezzlement case (one of the largest employee embezzlement case in history) and Sampyo quarry accident case, which is anticipated to be the first prosecuted case under the new Serious Accidents Punishment Act.   We have assigned a strong team of specialists to provide on-the-ground and expert advice to assist our clients to respond in a timely and efficient manner in these controversial cases.  Lee & Ko will continue to work closely with our clients and provide prompt and responsive advice that can be trusted. 
New Year Address by Yong-Seok Ahn, Lee & Ko’s Managing Partner


As we welcome 2022 together, I would like to take the opportunity to wish everyone a new year filled with hope and happiness.


Even though the past year was filled with various challenges and hardships due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we witnessed people from all walks of life pulling together as a community and doing their utmost to pursue the well-being and development of our community. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to these people, who have shown us the courage and strength to face 2022 with renewed optimism.


2021 was a very busy year for Lee & Ko, with highly capable professionals from more than 80 teams actively engaged in various matters. Last year, we saw an appreciable increase in the number of cases handled by our firm, both in terms of advisory matters including M&A, financial transactions, and compliance consulting, as well as dispute-related cases including litigation, arbitration, adjudication, and criminal cases.


This year, we will continue to provide quality legal services at home and abroad as your trusted partners. In 2022, we will especially focus on further enhancing the level of professionalism, specialization and efficiency of our services so that we can provide the best value not only to our clients, but to members of our firm as well. To this end, we are opening our Pangyo Office in February to enhance operational efficiency and convenience for both our clients and lawyers.


We at Lee & Ko firmly believe that our goals for growth should be guided by the fundamental principle of justice. In the Year of the Black Tiger, my hope is that we can all make courageous advances like brave tigers while remaining steadfast with our values and keeping to the right path forward. With our core values always in mind, we vow to fulfill our roles and responsibilities as a leading law firm in Korea and to dedicate our services to facilitate greater development in the legal services industry.  


Thank you again for your continued support, trust and partnership over the past 44 years. We wish this year will be a wonderful year full of health and peace for everyone.


Yong Seok Ahn

Managing Partner, Lee & Ko 

Lee & Ko Welcomes Chaemin Jung, Former Head of the National Police Agency’s Security Crime Analysis Division
The addition of Mr. Jung, the former head of the National Police Agency’s Security Crime Analysis Division, is aimed at strengthening its corporate criminal defense team.

In his 16 years of police service, Mr. Jung (34th Judicial Research & Training Institute) encompassed a wide range of intelligence, economy, and cybercrime investigation-related experiences in his career as the head of the investigation department at Seoul Jongro and Bangbae Police Stations, the head of criminal affairs department at Seoul Songpa and Dongdaemun Police Stations, the Head of Scientific Investigation Department at Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency. Also, after the launch of the National Office of Investigation of the National Policy Agency, Mr. Jung, in his capacity as the head of its Security Crime Analysis Division, played an active role in strengthening the division’s ability to investigate industrial technology leaks and defense-related corruptions.

Lee & Ko expects that the recruitment of Mr. Jung will enhance the capabilities of our corporate criminal defense team.
Mr. Si Hong Kim, Head of Financial Data Convergence Center at Korea Financial Telecommunications & Clearings Institute (KFTC), Joins Lee & Ko
Lee & Ko is proud to welcome Mr. Si Hong Kim, head of Financial Data Convergence Center at KFTC as an advisor.

Mr. Kim is an advisor who is currently an active advisor for the Digital Finance Council at KFTC and is Korea’s leading expert in Electronic Financial Transactions Act. Mr. Kim possesses a broad in-depth understanding and exhibits the highest level of expertise in the amendment of the Electronic Financial Transactions Act, which is about to undergo a comprehensive revision after 14 years of implementation.

In addition, Mr. Kim has accumulated vast hands-on experiences in various areas such as payment and settlement, authentication and big data, financial AI through his experiences working in the Financial Data Convergence Center at KFTC, the Financial Telecommunications & Clearings Research Institute, new business development office, FinTech office, etc. for the last 28 years.

Mr. Dong Eun Kim, a managing partner of Lee & Ko commented that, “the Digital Finance Team at Lee & Ko is comprised of leading experts with the highest level of unrivaled competence in the field of financial regulation, IT information protection and personal information policies”. He further stated that, “with the addition of Mr. Kim as an advisor in the Digital Finance Team, we expect that, upon resolution of the amendment to the Electronic Financial Transactions Act, we will be able to provide our clients with high-quality legal advice to ensure that businesses can comply with relevant regulatory terms and conditions in a prompt manner and establish a high level of competitiveness”
2021 New Year Address by Yong-Seok Ahn, Lee & Ko’s Managing Partner
The new year 2021 has dawned. As we move past a year which has been more difficult than what we had ever experienced, I wish all the families of our legal professionals health and happiness as we enter into a new year.

This year, Lee & Ko will continue to strive to provide the best legal services at home and abroad with flexible changes and innovations suited to the rapidly changing corporate environment. We will be a service-oriented law firm that faithfully provides legal support for the activities of Korean companies by recruiting and nurturing talented individuals with expertise, actively pioneering new fields of service, and supporting legal services for overseas business. Lee & Ko believes there is real value in serving society. We will always be with those that are underprivileged and continue to serve with warm considerate heart.

Just as our society has overcome numerous crises thus far only to use each crisis as a stepping stone to jump forward, we will also overcome this crisis wisely and grow from it. As a leader in the legal service industry, Lee & Ko will focus all of its passion and capabilities to make a new leap forward. Lee & Ko has the 'Lee & Ko spirit' of 'upright management', 'professional spirit' and 'consideration'. As a leading law firm in Korea, we promise to be faithful to the basics of upholding righteousness and to fulfill our role and responsibilities in helping the further development of the legal service industry.

Thank you again for the consistent trust you have given to Lee & Ko over the past 43 years. We wish this year will be a warm year full of health and peace for everyone.

Thank you.