Press Release: The Asia Group Announces Rexon Y. Ryu as President and Ambassador Kurt Tong as Managing Partner

June 2, 2022

WASHINGTON, DC | June 2, 2022 – The Asia Group (“TAG”) is excited to announce changes to its corporate leadership that will further advance the firm’s mission of developing an industry-leading strategic and business advisory consultancy for companies in the Indo-Pacific region.

Mr. Rexon Y. Ryu will become President of The Asia Group and work closely with CEO Nirav Patel to guide the firm’s strategic direction and continued growth. A leading expert on U.S. national security and Indo-Pacific alliances and partnerships, Rexon will continue to lead TAG’s practices on aerospace & defense and South Korea, chair The Asia Group Foundation, and co-host the Tea Leaves podcast with Bloomberg’s Sherry Ahn.

“Rexon’s exceptional leadership across the firm and commitment to helping clients unlock opportunities will serve us well as we write a new and exciting chapter for The Asia Group,” said TAG CEO and Co-Founder Nirav Patel. “In nearly seven years at TAG, Rexon has helped drive strategic defense sales across Asia. In addition to his seasoned strategic counsel for our corporate clients, Rexon’s network spans business and governments across the world and brings an unrivaled depth of connectivity to The Asia Group.”

Rexon Y. Ryu draws on over two decades of experience working in business, global diplomacy, national policymaking, and executive leadership to provide companies with in-depth strategic guidance to effectively navigate the Indo-Pacific. Rexon previously served under three presidents, as Chief of Staff to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, and as a foreign policy advisor in the U.S. Senate.

Ambassador Kurt Tong, a prominent authority on diplomacy and economic affairs in East Asia, will become Managing Partner of The Asia Group. Alongside this role, Kurt will continue to lead the firm’s Japan and Hong Kong practices, assist with its China and region-wide work, spearhead TAG’s innovative thought leadership programs, and serve as a Director on The Asia Group Foundation Board.

“Kurt constantly redefines the standard for excellence in delivering insight and analysis to discerning observers of Asia,” said Nirav. “His decades of high-level experience bring unmatched capabilities as we expand our presence across the Indo-Pacific and drive forward an integrated client servicing approach that pairs global strategy with local solutions.”

Ambassador Kurt Tong brings thirty years of experience in the Department of State as a career Foreign Service Officer, most recently serving as Consul General and Chief of Mission in Hong Kong and Deputy Chief of Mission in Tokyo. Kurt played vital leadership roles as one of the original architects of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement, and a key negotiator of the Six-Party Talks with North Korea.

The Asia Group is the premier strategic and business advisory firm to the world’s leading companies seeking to excel across the Indo-Pacific. With a team of dynamic and experienced professionals – from consultants and former senior government officials to lawyers and investment bankers – The Asia Group supports companies with end-to-end integrated strategies for market entry and expansion. To learn more about The Asia Group, please visit or reach out to