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Warathorn Wongsawangsiri

Warathorn Wongsawangsiri

Partner

Warathorn is one of the leading disputes lawyers in Thailand.

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Experience

He is a seasoned litigator with over 16 years of experience in Thailand and other Asia region countries. He has successfully advised and represented major corporations and conglomerates in many of the country's most complex and high-profile commercial dispute matters.

He specialises in advising and representing clients on contentious issues with international elements. He has worked extensively and closely with clients throughout the entire dispute resolution processes including Thai court litigation, domestic and international arbitration (TAI, SIAC and HKIAC) and mediation. He has also advised clients in administrative law, bankruptcy and rehabilitation, class action, corporate and commercial, corporate governance and director liability, corporate investigations and compliance projects, concession, shareholders dispute, and product liability.

Warathorn's expertise spans across a broad spectrum of industries, including aviation,  banking and finance, construction and engineering, consumer product, energy (oil and gas  and renewable), government and public sector, health care, hotels and real estate, insurance, transportation and logistics, and telecommunications and media technology.

Warathorn has been consistently ranked as one of the most recommended and highly regarded dispute resolution lawyers in Thailand by Legal 500 and Who's Who Legal. Warathorn is also a facilitator of the Thai Institute of Directors (IOD) Director Certification Program and Director Accreditation Program. He is also a guest lecturer at several national law schools. He is the author of the Thailand chapters of The International Arbitration Review (The Law Reviews 2015-2018) and the Dispute Resolution Law Guide (LexisNexis 2018).

Waranthorn's experience includes advising:

Experience in Arbitration and International Arbitration
 

  • one of the largest brewery and distribution companies in South East Asia in a potential international arbitration with regard to a breach of the joint venture agreement for the amount worth approximately USD 250 million under SIAC Rules at Singapore International Arbitration Centre
  • one of the World's largest hotel companies with more than 1,400 hotels in its portfolio in an international arbitration pursuant to the breach of the Hotel Management Agreement under SIAC Rules at Singapore International Arbitration Centre*
  • one of the largest property development companies in Phuket, Thailand in relation to a contract dispute under SIAC Rules at Singapore International Arbitration Centre*
  • a publically listed company in an international arbitration pursuant to the breach of Shareholder Agreement under SIAC Rules at Singapore International Arbitration Centre*
  • the Thailand’s largest mobile and telecommunication public company in an arbitration claim for payment of THB 31.158 billion (approximately USD 985 million) for concession fees. The claimant is a former state enterprise of the Thai government. The client won the arbitration case*
  • a major Thai conglomerate in an international arbitration under the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce concerning shareholder disputes over the acquisition of shares in a major renewable energy business in Thailand. The disputed amount was more than USD 350 million (THB 12,250 million)*
  • a publicly listed TV broadcaster in a successful arbitration related to claims and counter-claims valued at THB 100 billion (approximately USD 3.3 billion) with respect to the termination of the television broadcasting concession between a private sector and the governmental authority*
  • a subsidiary of a global petroleum exploration and production company in arbitration arising from a joint operating agreement entered into in connection with a concession in the Gulf of Thailand granted by the Ministry of Energy. The total amount of damages claimed was approximately THB 1 billion (USD 28 million)*
  • a publicly listed construction company in ICC arbitration arising from  the wrongful termination of a subcontract agreement in relation to the construction of a UHV plant project. The total amount of damages claimed was approximately THB 350 million (USD 10 million)*
  • an international pioneer in the aerospace sector in an international arbitration pursuant to commission dispute under the purchase of aircrafts under ICC Rules in Singapore*
  • the fourth largest mobile and telecommunication company in Thailand in an arbitration proceeding involving revenue-sharing agreements which resulted in a demand for payment of THB 3.949 billion (approximately USD 116 million) for concession fees. The client won the arbitration case*
  • the owner of a luxury office building and hotel in Myanmar in an international arbitration in Hong Kong in relation to a hotel management agreement*
  • a renowned international insurance group and part of the third largest property insurance company in Japan, in insurance and re-insurance disputes before the Thai Arbitration Institution*

Experience in Commercial Disputes and others

  • one of the consortiums consisting of a public company being a majority shareholder of Bangkok mass transit system company, a regional airline based in Bangkok and one of the largest engineering and construction public companies in Thailand in a dispute regarding the project of international airport
  • a progressive real estate company listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) in a dispute in relation to a construction agreement for the project of one of the largest global chained-brand hotels valued at USD 400 million 
  • one of the largest property developers listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) whose portfolio is worth proximately THB 13,800 million in total, in a dispute in relation to a construction agreement for the several projects in Thailand
  • a subsidiary of one of the largest global construction and engineering companies in a dispute in relation to a construction agreement for the project in Thailand
  • one of the fastest growing airline cargo companies based in Dubai in a commercial dispute concerning two Boeing aircrafts worth approximately USD 16.9 million. Injunction was placed on the client prohibiting from flying these two aircrafts out of Thailand. The firm successfully challenged the injunction on an emergency basis and the injunction was lifted within one day
  • a major mobile service provider in Thailand in a dispute at the Administrative Court regarding the revocation of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunication Commission’s order with regard to additional payment during the remedy period
  • a major mobile service provider in Thailand in a telecommunication dispute with the National Broadcasting and Telecommunication Commission (NBTC) and the stateowned telecommunication company with regard to the utilisation of the 900 MHz frequency
  • the owner of a foreign direct investment company with a business in the area of hotel management and development whose portfolio is worth approximately USD 300 million in providing general legal and commercial advices in day-to-day business operations in Singapore, Myanmar and Thailand
  • a subsidiary of one of Japan’s largest general trading companies in a commercial dispute worth approximately THB 150 million
  • a subsidiary of one of the world's largest tire and rubber companies in a commercial dispute with regard to a breach of the sale and purchase agreement
  • a subsidiary of one of the leading manufacturers and distributors of pulp and paper in South East Asia in a commercial dispute arising from call and put option deed for the amount of approximately THB 2,800 million. The matter was under contemplation of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre while an interim injunction was also filed at the Thai court to seek a prevention of the sale of shares
  • a market leader in advertising, payment and logistic platforms in Thailand in two commercial litigation claims arising from the termination of an agency agreement and outstanding advertisement and production fees
  • the highly respected and globally renowned international arbitrators in successfully defending claims brought against them in the Thai court in their capacity as arbitrators in an ICC arbitration that had taken place in Bangkok. The claim was brought by the losing party at the arbitration and was entirely dismissed by the Court of First Instance
  • the state-owned oil and gas company and one of the largest corporations in Thailand in connection with a civil case in Indonesia and a class action law suit in Australia in relation to an oil spill in the Montara oil field in the Timor Sea*
  • the state-owned oil and gas company in the largest market capitalization on the Stock Exchange of Thailand as a result of the corporatization and privatization of the Petroleum Authority of Thailand. In the Supreme Administrative Court, the client succeeded in having a suit attempting to de-list and privatize it dismissed. This high-profile win helped to prevent severe damage to the structure of Thai capital markets*
  • a subsidiary of the largest insurance group in Japan and worldwide in successfully defending a THB 2.154 billion complex litigation claim (approximately USD 69 million) made by a major multinational automobile company, the plaintiff. The court of first instance dismissed all of the plaintiff’s claims. This case also set the precedent that an insurance claim in relation to business operations is a civil case, rather than a consumer case, thereby shifting the burden of proof to the plaintiff and barring claims for punitive damages*
  • one of the country’s most loved martial arts athletes and an actor in Hollywood movies in a contract dispute with a film company. The firm also successfully challenged the injunction to stop the release of the movie Fast and Furious 7 in Thailand, which was lifted by the court.*
  • a major oil and energy company in Thailand in a dispute in relation to an engineering, procurement and construction contract valued at THB 2.2 billion*
  • a large construction and engineering company in disputes related to a lump sum turnkey agreement. The disputed amount is approximately THB 800 million*
  • a Swiss multinational investment bank and financial services company, facility agent for offshore lenders for syndicate facilities of USD 250 million in connection with the reorganization of its debtors, a global manufacturer and fabricator of pipes, at the Central Bankruptcy Court*
  • a subsidiary of the Bureau of Crown Property in several litigation cases regarding lands and properties located in the prime area of Bangkok*
  • an oil explorer and operator of an offshore concession in the Gulf of Thailand in claims filed with the Songkhla Administrative Court regarding environmental issues*
  • a large telecommunication services provider in a THB 2 billion litigation claim (approximately USD 60 million) in relation to the revocation of business rehabilitation*
  • a major mobile service provider in Thailand on the revocation of the resolutions of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunication Commission (NBTC) rejecting interim measures for protection of subscribers after expiry of its concession with the state owned telecommunication company before the Central Administrative Court. The company won the case because the Central Administrative Court suspended the application of the resolutions of the NBTC.*
  • a network provider of high speed internet circuits in disputes filed at the court and the Office of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission regarding the use of underground cable lines. The claimant was a former state enterprise.*
  • the parent company of the largest mobile phone operator in Thailand in a civil claim for stock purchase valued at approximately THB 5,900 million*
  • the mobile and telecommunication public company in Thailand on legal issues regarding the 3G mobile network system and advice on bidding for a 3G mobile network license from the National Broadcasting and Telecommunication Commission*
  • the state-owned company that runs Thailand's international telecommunications infrastructure in relation to the deal with a major communications conglomerate in Thailand and subsidiaries, which entered 3G cellular service agreements, paving the way for collaboration on providing 3G-HSPA services.*
  • a multi-national real estate investment company based in Macau in relation to the enforcement of a Singapore International Arbitration Centre award in Thailand. The award was valued at USD 200 million (approximately THB 7 billion) and was in relation to a contractual dispute with a group of entities forming a multi-business company in South East Asia*
  • a subsidiary of the world’s largest food and beverage company in court proceedings in Thailand for the enforcement of an international arbitral award*
  • a major food and beverage company in the enforcement of arbitral awards for costs and expenses, which arose out of arbitration proceedings conducted under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules, in Thailand. The arbitral awards valued at approximately THB 152 million were in relation to a contractual dispute with one of Thailand’s largest can manufacturers*

*Experience gained prior to joining Herbert Smith Freehills

Accolades

  • Up and Coming Leading individuals - Dispute Resolution – Thailand, Chambers Asia Pacific, 2018-2020
  • Future Leader, Arbitration and Litigation in Thailand, Who’s Who Legal, 2019-2020
  • "Responsive and proactive in identifying issues and anticipating the next steps." Chambers and Partners, 2019
  • Future Leader, Most Highly Regarded, Who’s Who Legal: Litigation, 2018
  • Recommended Lawyer, Dispute Resolution, The Legal 500 Asia Pacific, 2017-2019
  • Asian Legal Business top 40 Under 40 lawyers in 2017
  • Reserved panel memberarbitrator of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC)
  • Member of the new Young SIAC (YSIAC) Committee at the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC)
  • Commission on Arbitration & ADR of ICC Thailand

 

Background

Fluent in Thai and English, Warathorn Wongsawangsiri was admitted to practice in 2004. He received a bachelor's degree in law (Frist Class Honours) from Chulalongkorn University and masters' degree in law (Honours) from Northwestern University School of Law in the United States. 

Warathorn is qualified as a Thai Barrister-at-Law and is a current member of the Thai Bar Association.