Dao is the managing partner of DN Legal. She advises on all aspects of doing business in Vietnam. Her practice includes corporate and M&A, banking and finance, real estate, energy and infrastructure. She has acted for developers and the government of Vietnam on several landmark projects including the first licensed BOT project in Vietnam. Dao is fluent in English and Vietnamese.
The Asia Pacific Legal 500 2012 notes she "demonstrates a detailed view of on-going and likely future legal developments, a strong willingness to understand the client's needs, combined with a pragmatic approach". Dao is recognised as a leading lawyer by Chambers Asia in Corporate/M&A (2008-2014), Banking & Finance (2008-2012) and Projects & Energy (2010-2014); as a leading Real Estate lawyer by the Asia Pacific Legal 500 (2014); as leading lawyer by IFLR1000 in Corporate/M&A (2015-2017), Banking & Finance (2015-2017), and Energy & Infrastructure (2017); as leading lawyer by AI Global in Corporate (2016-2018), Energy & Infrastructure (2017), Banking & Finance (2018), as leading lawyer by AsiaLaw in Construction & Real Estate (2018).
- Admitted as solicitor, Hong Kong, 2002
- Admitted to the bar, State of New York, 1994
- Admitted to the bar, State of California, 1991
Banking & Finance
- HSBC on a tier 2 subordinated bond issue for the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV), the first tier 2 bond issued in Vietnam based on international standard documentation and the first listed bond of this nature.
- HSBC on setting up as the first wholly foreign-owned bank in Vietnam.
- JP Morgan on a USD108m syndicated loan for Masan Industrial, a member of Masan Group, one of the largest private sector groups in Vietnam. The loan was structured akin to a bond transaction.
- An international oil company in relation to its acquisition of shares in a Vietnamese provider of oil and gas stockpiling.
- H.C. Starck on a mining joint venture with Nui Phao Mining, developer of one of the largest tungsten mines in the world and a subsidiary of Masan Group, one of Vietnam’s largest private sector companies.
- Unilever on the acquisitions of tea plantations and tea processing factory in Vietnam.
- Anova Corporation, an animal feedstock producer, on the sale of its majority stake in a Vietnamese fish farming company.
- A global bank on due diligence of a multinational oil and gas company’s Vietnamese oil and gas assets for the purposes of a major refinancing.
- Nortel Networks on the dissolution of its subsidiary in Vietnam.
- Citigroup Venture Capital International on a proposed strategic equity investment in a publicly listed Vietnamese financial institution.
- Indochina Capital on its disposal of a 25% equity to Orix Group, a Japanese listed financial services group.
- A private equity fund on its strategic investment of a 20% equity stake in a Vietnamese-based corporate, being a subsidiary of one of the largest private sector listed companies in Vietnam.
- Prudential Property Investment Managers on the acquisition of 49% of the issued share capital to achieve ultimate ownership of 2 phases in a mixed-use residential development project in Vietnam.
- Jardine Matheson on two separate acquisitions of Vietnamese companies within the food & beverage sector.
- San Miguel on its acquisition of a USD35m food production business in southern Vietnam.
- Diageo on general licensing, corporate and commercial issues and on the acquisition of a local wine producer.
- Danone Group on general licensing, corporate, commercial and labour issues and on the establishment of a wholly foreign owned Danone subsidiary.
- International retailers on the establishment of retail stores in Vietnam, including leasing, licensing, financing, documentation and other regulatory work.
- Hubert Burda Media, a leading global media company, on its investment in the most popular search engine project in Vietnam.
- Indochina Capital on selling its certain shares to a BVI company.
- Vietnamese Advertising and Media (Dat Viet) on various corporate matters.
Energy and Infrastructure
- Mitsui Oil Exploration Co. (MOECO) on a potential acquisition of oil and gas assets in Vietnam.
- PetroVietnam Fertilizer and Chemicals Corporation on a proposed project finance offshore investment in a fertiliser plant in Morocco.
- An international energy company on a 2x2 700 MW coal-fired BOT power project in a joint venture with PetroVietnam.
- The Ministry of Planning and Investment on the drafting of BOT regulations in Vietnam in 1997, 2004 and 2009 and on the drafting of the Public Private Partnership legislation.
- Chevron on its oil and gas pipeline and energy project in Vietnam.
- A client on a passenger terminal BTO project at Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
- Wartsila on the first licensed BOT power project (120MW) in Vietnam. The deal was significant in that all the documentation became the model precedent for later BOT transactions in Vietnam.
- GS Engineering & Construction on the first licensed road project (USD340m) under the Built-Transfer structure, a special form of investment under Vietnam's BOT regulations, in which the developer will receive land in exchange for the road. Shortlisted by IFLR for "Project Finance Deal of the Year" in 2008.
- The Ministry of Industry of Vietnam and Vietnam Electricity (EVN) on the Phu My 2-2 (715 MW) and Phu My 3 (716.8 MW) power plant projects.
- An international consortium on bidding for a BOT project to build and operate a 1200 MW coal-fired power facility and assisting the consortium in its discussions with the Ministry of Industry and Trade, Vietnam Electricity and any other relevant Vietnamese authorities.
- Vinacomin in a joint venture with AES on a 1,100 MW coal-fired power project in a negotiated deal that had to be carried out on a BOT basis.
- Marubeni on the financing of a project to design, build, commission and operate a waste-to-power facility in Binh Duong Province, Vietnam.
- Vinacomin on the Vinh Tan 1 1,200 MW BOT power project.
- A renewable energy company in the acquisition of shareholding in a state-owned company under EVN that operates several hydropower plants in Vietnam.
- Indochina Land on the development, ownership restructuring, rental and sale of the 5-star luxury resort Hyatt Regency Danang Residences in Danang, Vietnam.
- Indochina Capital on the land acquisition, development, ownership restructuring, management and sale of the 5-star Nam Hai luxury resort in Hoi An, Vietnam.
- Indochina Land on the acquisition of 99% interest in a real estate development company.
- Kumho Asiana on the acquisition of the land for the Kumho Asiana complex consisting of an office tower, hotel under the InterContinental brand and service apartments.
- Gamuda Land on the restructuring and amendment of license for a USD846m mixed-use development project in Yen So Park, Hanoi.
- GS Retail on obtaining a retail license to build and operate a department store in Binh Duong, Vietnam.
- An international developer on the sale of its wholly owned real estate project consisting of a grade A office building.
- A foreign real estate and hotel management company and cornerstone investors in the establishment of a real estate fund to invest in a resort development project in Central Vietnam consisting of several hotels and residential villas and condominiums.
- A client on a development of an integrated resort complex (with casino) in Vung Tau province, Vietnam.
- Hamon Properties on the structuring of the Joint Venture with Son Kim Land in the development of Gateway Thao Dien, a luxury complex project in Ho Chi Minh City.
- Indochina Land on the sale of certain of its assets.