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Drinks With The Deal: Kirkland’s Lee Talks About Webtoon IPO, Changes in Legal Industry

Published: July 3rd, 2024
Kirkland partner Ed Lee discusses his pride in helping take the media and technology company public and how the legal industry has evolved over his career.

Lawyers often talk about the pride they feel in helping clients transform their businesses through key transactions. Edward Lee offered a particular personal example of that sentiment in this week’s Drinks With The Deal podcast.

Lee, a corporate partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP in New York, advised Webtoon Entertainment Inc. (WBTN) on its IPO along with Kirkland’s Michael Kim and Joshua N. Korff. The Los Angeles-based media and technology company began trading on Thursday, June 27, the day Lee recorded the podcast, in which Lee discussed his career and how he’s seen the legal industry evolve in his time as a lawyer.

Webtoon takes its name from a genre of digital comic that originated in South Korea in the late 1990s, and Naver Corp., a South Korean internet company and one of Lee’s clients, launched Webtoon in 2004.

“I’m a Korean-American,” Lee said on the podcast. “My parents emigrated in the 1970s. Over the last five or 10 years, the explosion of Korean culture in the U.S. and in New York in particular has been an amazing experience for me as a Korean-American to witness.”

“As a father of young Korean-American children, it’s really cool that they get to see that people are interested in their culture and media content from where their grandparents live. I feel like Webtoon is an example of that. That my capital markets partners and I played a role in a little bit of that cultural expansion and acceptance in the U.S is something I couldn’t have fathomed growing up in the 1980s and 1990s.”

Check out the podcast with Edward Lee below:

More podcasts from The Deal are available on iTunesSpotify and on

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