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Master of Laws
University of Michigan, USA, 2002

Bachelor of Laws
University of the Philippines, 1996
Dean’s Medalist

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
University of the Philippines, 1992
cum laude

Judy Hao

Ms. Hao is the Head of the Firm’s Corporate & Special Projects Department. She advises on the entry of foreign investments to the Philippines including the establishment of branch offices, subsidiaries, representative offices and regional operating headquarters of foreign enterprises. She has advised on the registration of incentives with the Board of Investments and the Philippine Economic Zone Authority, including the Clark Special Economic Zone.

Ms. Hao has provided advice on various business transactions of clients involving joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, legal due diligence reviews, privatization, reorganization, build-operate-transfer projects, franchising and licensing agreements, construction contracts, and real estate transactions. Ms. Hao has been involved in acquisitions covering, among others, a toll road project, an airport development project and a metro railway construction and development project.

Ms. Hao has also provided banking advisory services to local and foreign banks and has assisted in the preparation and documentation of loans, other credit transactions, and security documents. Ms. Hao also advises clients on projects involving the Real Estate Investment Trust Act and securities laws, and has represented issuers and underwriters on equity and debt capital raising transactions such as the offering of bonds, stock rights offering and private placements.

Among her significant transactions are:

  • assisted San Miguel Corporation in, among others, (a) its investment in Philippine Airlines, Inc. and Air Philippines, Inc.; (b) in the acquisition of the company that owns the concession to construct and operate the MRT-7; and (c) in the acquisition of the company that owns the right to extend, rehabilitate and operate the Caticlan Airport
  • assisted in several mergers and acquisition projects, whether on the buy side or sell side, including the investment in and acquisition of shares by Johnsonville LLC in Frabelle Corporation
  • acted as domestic counsel to joint lead managers in relation to the issuance by Petron Corporation of USD-denominated senior perpetual capital securities and the voluntary tender offer undertaken by Petron Corporation
  • acted as counsel for the arrangers and dealers in connection with the establishment of the medium term note programme of BDO Unibank, Inc., the issuance by BDO Unibank, Inc. of senior notes from the programme and subsequent updates to the programme
  • acted as counsel for the arrangers and dealers in connection with the update of the MTN programme of Union Bank of the Philippines and Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co., Inc., and subsequent issuances from the programme
  • acted as Philippine counsel to the joint lead managers in connection with the USD bond/notes issuance by BDO Unibank, Inc., AEV Equity, Filinvest Corporation, among others
  • acted as domestic counsel for the underwriters in connection with the initial public offering of several companies including Travellers International Hotel Group, Inc., Cebu Landmasters, Inc., Axelum Resources Corporation
  • acted as counsel for the underwriters in relation to the bonds issued by, among others, 8890, Inc., Vista Land, SM Prime Holdings, Inc., Century Property Group, Inc., Union Bank of the Philippines and Megaworld, Inc.
  • acted as domestic counsel to joint bookrunners in connection with the stock rights offer of BDO Unibank, Metropolitan Banking and Trust Corporation, and PS Bank
  • acted as counsel for the placement agents  in connection with the top-up placement of shares of Ayala Land, Inc.
  • acted as counsel for the underwriters in relation to the notes facility of several issuers/borrowers, whether secured and unsecured 

Ms. Hao has been cited by IFLR 1000, Asia Pacific Legal 500, Chambers and Partners, and Asialaw Profiles as one of the leading lawyers and market expert in the field of corporate and mergers and acquisitions and capital markets.

Ms. Hao was recognized by Asialaw Profiles as a Distinguished Practitioner in the practice areas of capital markets and corporate and M&A in 2019.

She was regarded as a Leading Lawyer, and was recommended for the practice areas of Banking and Finance, Capital Markets, Real Estate and Construction, and Corporate and M&A by The Legal 500 Asia Pacific for 2020. Ms. Hao was again recognized as a Leading Lawyer for the practice areas of Capital Markets and Corporate and M&A by The Legal 500 Asia Pacific for 2021. She was also included in the list of recommended lawyers in the practice areas of Banking and Finance, Projects and Energy, and Real Estate and Construction.

Ms. Hao was recognized by the Asia Business Law Journal as among the Philippines’ Top 100 Lawyers in 2021.

Ms. Hao is a member of the Makati City Chapter of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines, the Philippine Bar Association, Federacion International de Abogadas, and the University of the Philippines Women Lawyers’ Circle.