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About Eric Johnson

Eric Johnson is an experienced US-qualified counsel based in our Hanoi office.

Eric specialises in international corporate transactions, advising multinational, private equity, sovereign wealth and venture capital clients on their acquisitions, JVs, divestments, co-investments and operations in Vietnam and across the Asia-Pacific region.  

Eric has extensive experience acting for clients across sectors, with a particular focus on technology, financial services, education, healthcare and real estate.

Prior to joining the Freshfields Vietnam team, Eric practised law in New York and Hong Kong at top international law firms.

Eric was elected to the board of governors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hanoi in 2019 and served three terms. Eric also represented the American Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam on the board of the Vietnam Business Forum.

Eric obtained a B.A. in Political Philosophy and English, magna cum laude, from New York University in 2006 and a J.D., magna cum laude, from Cornell Law School in 2011.

Recent work

  • GIC Private Limited on its $203 million minority investment in Vinmec International General Hospital (Vinmec), a subsidiary of Vingroup and owner and operator of seven general hospitals in Vietnam and a number of clinics and pharmacies across the country.
  • A US multinational fintech company on its Series B investment in a leading digital payments company in Vietnam.
  • An Asian sovereign wealth fund on its investment in an e-logistics company with operations across the Asia Pacific, including a major presence in Vietnam.
  • A US-listed tech company on its potential investment in a Vietnamese bank.
  • An Asian sovereign wealth fund on its Series B investment in a leading last-mile delivery e-logistics business in Vietnam.
  • Square Peg Capital, an Australian venture capital firm, on its investment via a convertible loan in a leading digital banking platform and in a Series A equity financing round in a social media start-up in Vietnam, both as lead investor.
  • Synergy Marine Group on the sale of minority ownership stake to Searchlight Capital Partners. Synergy was founded in 2006 by Captain Rajesh Unni and is now the fourth largest ship manager globally, with around 500 vessels under technical management, including tankers, dry bulk, containers and gas carriers.
  • A Japanese banking group on its potential investment in a fintech business in Vietnam.
  • A US private equity fund on their US$250m investment by way of convertible bonds and non-convertible warrant-linked bonds issued by one of the leading listed property development companies in Vietnam.
  • A global education investor on their 100% acquisition of an international K-12 school in Ho Chi Minh City.
  • A US private equity fund on a major acquisition in the real estate / gaming / hospitality sector in Vietnam.
  • A leading US multinational financial institution on the sale of its securities business in Vietnam to a Korean banking group.
  • Warburg Pincus on its US$370m pre-IPO investment in Techcombank, one of the largest commercial banks in Vietnam.
  • A private equity fund on the pre-IPO investments in two Vietnamese commercial banks.
  • A private equity fund on the sale of an international school in Vietnam.
  • A major banking and financial services corporation on the full exit of its strategic investment in a large Vietnamese commercial bank.
  • Stada on its block acquisition of shares in the Vietnamese pharmaceutical company, Pymepharco, taking it to a controlling 72 percent interest.
  • A multi-national energy firm on the bid to acquire a strategic stake in PV Oil, the second largest petroleum distributor in Vietnam, from the Vietnam government.
  • A multinational brewer on the US$5 billion bid for acquisition of Saigon Beer-Alcohol-Beverage Corporation, the largest brewer in Vietnam.
  • Mekong Capital on the formation of its fifth Vietnam-focused private equity fund, Mekong Enterprise Fund IV (MEF IV), as well as numerous investments and exits.
  • Asian and MENA sovereign wealth funds on numerous fund investments and co-investments across the Asia Pacific region.

Qualifications

Education

  • Cornell Law School, JD (magna cum laude)
  • New York University, BA. (magna cum laude)

Professional qualifications

  • Admitted to practice in the State of New York
  • Registered as a foreign legal practitioner with the Vietnamese Ministry of Justice

Membership

  • Member of the Board of Governors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hanoi (2019 – 2021)