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Mathias Goh

Mathias Goh has an active practice in commercial dispute resolution and international arbitration. He has experience handling matters at all levels of the Singapore courts, and works on a wide range of commercial disputes including company, contract, employment, joint venture, shareholder, directors’ duties, tenancy, tort and trust-related disputes.

 

He previously practised with the international arbitration team of the Singapore office of global law firm, Norton Rose Fulbright, and worked on several high-value international arbitrations and claims administered under the arbitration rules of arbitration institutions such as the ICC, ICSID and SIAC.

 

In early-2020, Mathias Goh took up a role in Hong Kong with the regional legal team of global brewing and FMCG giant, Carlsberg. He assisted the Carlsberg group navigate several high-profile, commercial disputes arising out of its joint ventures in Asia. He later assumed the role as Head of Legal for Carlsberg’s operations in Hong Kong and was responsible for all its legal and compliance affairs.

 

Mathias presently services a large portfolio of players in the food and beverage (F&B) sector, acting for distributors, food equipment manufacturers, alcohol and beer producers, restaurants, bakeries and cafes. For some of these clients, Mathias acts as their external “in-house” counsel providing them with legal advice on almost all matters concerning their businesses in Singapore.

 

He also regularly advises corporates and senior employees on Singapore employment law issues. These employment law matters include employment agreements, employment manuals, transfer of employment issues, restraint of trade obligations, unfair dismissal claims, employee litigation, workplace harassment, redundancies, and restructuring of employee leave benefits schemes.

Mathias is qualified in Singapore, and England and Wales. He also teaches at the National University of Singapore (NUS).

Qualifications

  • Advocate and Solicitor, Supreme Court of Singapore (Admitted in 2014)

  • Solicitor, Roll of England and Wales (Admitted in 2019)

Education

  • Bachelor of Laws, LLB (Hons), National University of Singapore (NUS), Faculty of Law

 

Select legal experience in the F&B industry

 

  • Advising and representing a major international brewery in an SIAC arbitration where the sum in dispute exceeds USD 1 billion and which concerns a dispute with its joint venture partner. This dispute also involves a number of satellite litigation in four jurisdictions worldwide.

  • Advising and representing an international alcohol distributor on its rights and obligations concerning distribution agreements with a well-known Japanese alcohol producer concerning the distribution of its beverages in Singapore and several other markets in Asia.

  • Advising a well-known Singapore food and beverage company on franchising its business in other Asian markets.

  • Advising and representing a well-known Singapore food and beverage company on various construction issues concerning one of its new shops.

  • Advising and assisting a food equipment manufacturer with the registration of its trademark in Singapore and other jurisdictions in Asia and its agreements with distributors in those markets.

  • Advising and representing an alcohol supplier in legal proceedings for the recovery of sponsorship and marketing fees granted to on-trade outlets.

  • Advising a leading food delivery technology company to overhaul its employee benefits policy, including moving towards an unlimited leave entitlement policy.

  • Advising and reviewing distribution agreements for the sale and supply of wines and whisky across international borders.

  • Advising and drafting intellectual property (IP) licensing agreements for well-known trademarks in the F&B industry.

  • Advising a beverage producer on a commercial agreement for the use of retail space at malls and sports shop fronts for the display and sampling of their products to members of the public.

  • Advising and drafting contract manufacturing and brewing agreements for the production of craft alcohol.

  • Advising and drafting agreements for the supply and distribution of beverages to an airline as part of its in-flight meals for customers

  • Advising and representing the former chief executive officer in an employment dispute with a company in the alternative meat industry.

  • Advising the Singapore entity of one of the largest international distributors of spirits, aperitifs and whisky on issues arising out of the termination of one of its distribution agreements in Hong Kong. That distribution agreement is governed by Singapore law.

  • Advising and defending a distributor of Italian coffee and related products against various claims brought by a customer in the State Courts of Singapore.

  • Advising and representing an award-winning bar in Singapore to seek redress in relation to various acts of misconduct and theft of property committed by its previous general manager.

  • Representing an employee formerly employed by a leading supermarket chain headquartered in Europe to pursue claims for unfair dismissal.

  • Drafting agreements relating to the reorganisation and a business transfer between the affiliates of a leading F&B pastry brand in Singapore.

  • Drafting a consultancy agreement for the engagement of a senior consultant to perform services for a leading chocolatier group in Singapore.

  • Drafting a distribution agreement for a leading food handling equipment OEM in respect of the exclusive sale of its business equipment in Japan.

 

Select experience in shareholder and joint venture disputes

 

  • Advising and representing a Singapore group of construction companies in a minority oppression suit in the Singapore High Court. This matter went for trial and the case is reported as Koh Keng Chew and others v Liew Kit Fah and others [2016] SGHC 140.

  • Advising and representing medical professionals in a claim against joint venture partners in the Singapore High Court. This matter went to trial and the case is reported as Centre for Laser and Aesthetic Medicine Pte Ltd v Goh Pui Kiat and others [2017] SGHC 72.

  • Advising and representing several plaintiff companies in a complex dispute on trust law involving the recovery of assets amounting to US$600 million in the Singapore High Court. This matter went for trial and the case is reported as Compania De Navegacion Palomar, SA and others v Ernest Ferdinand Perez De La Sala and another matter [2017] SGHC 14.

  • Advising and representing minority shareholders in a shareholders’ oppression claim in the Singapore High Court. This case went to trial and is reported as Poh Fu Tek and others v Lee Shung Guan and others [2017] SGHC 212.

 

Select experience in Singapore employment law

 

  • Representing a USA-headquartered multinational company in the business of data centres in the enforcement of post-termination, restraint of trade covenants against a former employee.

  • Advising and representing a former executive of a renewable energy company headquartered in Singapore on that executive’s employment rights against the former employer

  • Advising a listed business aircraft jet manufacturer on its annual leave policy applicable to its Singapore-based employees.

  • Advising the Singapore office of a leading telco and internet service provider listed in Australia on various workplace health and safety claims alleged by an existing employee.

  • Advising one of the world’s largest producers of portable batteries on a number of different employment workstreams arising out of its Singapore-based employees.

  • Advising a renewables company based in California on its employment of a key executive in its Singapore office.

  • Advising the Singapore office of a leading data centre company headquartered in Australia on various employment workstreams such as the hire of executive employees and fixed term contractors.

  • Advising a senior director on his employment rights and obligations (including vesting of stock options) in connection with the termination of that person’s employment with the Singapore office of one of the world’s largest investment companies (in AUM) which is listed in New York.

  • Advising and representing former employees in a dispute with their former employer, the Singapore office of a leading Norwegian oil and gas extraction business.

  • Advising and representing a leading infant product distributor in Singapore against employment claims brought by its former general manager.

  • Advising and representing a former employee accused by that person’s former employer, a leading supplier of electronic components in the Asia region, of being in breach of various post-termination employment obligations.

  • Advising and drafting for a multinational hedge fund’s newly-incorporated Singapore business a bespoke employment contract for the employment of its Singapore managing director.

  • Advising various companies on issues arising out of a transfer of employment under the Singapore Employment Act in the context of sale of businesses.

  • Assisting a leading insurance company headquartered in Australia with the termination of one of its directors in Singapore and providing litigation support.

  • Advising an insurance company with issues relating to transfer of its existing employees in the context of a sale of business.

  • Drafting employment agreements for several MNCs in various industries including manufacturing, technology and healthcare for use in respect of their Singapore hires.

  • Advising a company on the risks of unfair dismissal claims which a terminated employee had threatened to bring against that company and providing advice on how to manage that dispute.

  • Advising a MNC on the processes to comply with under Singapore law in relation to a redundancy.

  • Advising the Singapore affiliate of a Fortune 500 parent company in the business of engineering, construction, and project management to review its Singapore employment contracts and advising on secondment arrangements of its international staff.

  • Advising and drafting documentation concerning retrenchment exercises for the Singapore office of several MNCs.

  • Advising and defending a leading orthodontist against claims brought by a former employer relating to alleged breaches of the employment contract.

  • Advising and defending a senior VP employee in the fintech and payments industry against claims brought by the employee’s former employer relating to alleged breaches of restraint of trade covenants. 

  • Advising and representing an employee on that employee’s rights and obligations in the context of a performance incentive program (PIP).

 

Other select litigation and arbitration experience

  • Representing an Indian construction conglomerate in a SIAC arbitration against a state-owned entity concerning a construction project in India. The value of the claims in this arbitration is approximately USD 400 million.

  • Representing an Indian construction conglomerate in ad hoc arbitration proceedings under the Indian Arbitration and Conciliation Act against a state-owned entity concerning a construction project in India.  The value of the claims in this arbitration is in excess of USD 600 million.

  • Representing a wholly-owned subsidiary of a Malaysian–listed oil and gas company in an ICC arbitration against a state-owned power board for recovery of outstanding fuel tariffs concerning a power plant located in Bangladesh. The value of the claims in this arbitration is approximately USD 14 million.

  • Representing a wholly-owned subsidiary of a Malaysian–listed oil and gas company in ICSID arbitration proceedings for recovery of outstanding fuel tariffs.

  • Representing a Singapore listed company (a medical group of companies) in a dispute with a former investor, and assisting with the drafting of public statements in connection with that dispute.

  • Advising an Asian state-owned airline on issues relating to bribes and fraudulent activities committed by a third party in connection with certain aircraft-related contracts

  • Advising and representing in SIAC arbitration proceedings an aircraft leasing company owned by a leading aviation-focused private equity company in America in the recovery of unpaid aircraft leasing fees owed by an Asian airline in excess of SGD 2 million.

  • Advising and representing a Singapore fintech company in a contractual dispute concerning an application programming interface (API) agreement.

  • Advising a key Singapore-government linked company in the local sports ecosystem on its rights and obligations arising out of various commercial agreements.

  • Advising and representing a leading Malaysian bank on the enforcement and perfection of various security agreements that are governed by Singapore law as against a major international EPC conglomerate.

  • Advising and representing an international F1 racing team on potential claims against a Singapore-incorporated company arising out of a sponsorship agreement. The value of this dispute is in excess of USD 2 million.

  • Advising and representing an MCST in tortious claims brought by a resident for alleged loss of personal items in the compound.

  • Advising and defending an accounting and professional services firm in a dispute with a former client for alleged deficient professional services rendered.

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