Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

China > Corporate and M&A > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

PRC firms

Index of tables

  1. Corporate and M&A: PRC firms
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which PRC firms clients in China using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

Fangda Partners’ ‘outstanding’ practice handles the full range of corporate and commercial transactions for a diverse array of clients. It has notable strength in M&A and its work in this space saw Jonathan Zhou and Leo Lou advising Baoshan Iron and Steel Company on the merger with Wuhan Iron and Steel Company, creating China’s biggest steelmaker; Michael Han and Peng Tan advising Xiaoju Kuaizhi on its $7bn acquisition of Uber (China); and Jeffrey Ding and Diana Xue handling China National Chemical Corporation’s $43bn purchase of Syngenta. The team has been particularly active in the TMT sector; recent highlights include its advice to Alibaba Group on its complete takeover of Youku Tudou, and acting for China Music Corporation on its merger with Tencent’s QQ music business. Chuanjie Zhou, Norman Zhong and Michael Qi are also recommended.

JunHe LLP fields a number of highly regarded practitioners who regularly handle big-ticket cross-border M&A transactions, particularly joint ventures, foreign direct investments and divestments. Highlights included assisting CITIC and its subsidiaries with the transfer of RMB31bn equity interests to China Overseas Land & Development, assisting Dynamic Ever Investment and Fujian Petrochemical Company with their RMB34.5bn joint venture of Fujian Gulei Petrochemical, and acting for China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation on an asset and business restructuring relating to the Sichuan-East China natural gas transmission pipeline project. The 59-partner team is jointly headed by Shanghai-based Joe Chen and Beijing-based Henry Shi. Other key names include M&A expert Wei Xiao, who is recommended for share acquisitions and compliance matters; the well-regarded Adam Li, who focuses on M&A, joint ventures and IPO transactions; private equity specialist Binxue Sang, who advises multinational on cross-border transactions; and Kirk Tong, who has particular experience in foreign direct investment, capital markets and antitrust matters. Hongli Mastands out’ and Ran Ju is also recommended.

King & Wood Mallesons is well positioned to act for a mix of multinational and domestic clients on complex M&A and joint venture mandates. Leveraging its global footprint, the team is regularly instructed on cross-border transactions for clients in the energy, infrastructure, manufacturing and financial services sectors. Recent highlights include successfully advising Apex Technology as the lead investor on the $4bn acquisition of Lexmark International, assisting Bank of China with its disposal of Nanyang Commercial Bank, acting for a consortium of leading Chinese companies and institutional investors on their £2.4bn investment in data centre company Global Switch, and handling Qingdao Haier’s asset purchase of GE’s appliances business. The sizeable team is led by the highly regarded Ping Xu and has been further strengthened by the recent arrival of Kaichang Yong from Baker McKenzie FenXun Joint Operation Office, Xiaoyang Li from JunHe LLP and Conghua Jiang from AllBright Law Offices. Other names to note include Harry Du, who is prominent in the commercial real estate and infrastructure sectors, Kaiding Wang, who focuses on corporate governance and cross-border M&A transactions, and Yi Zhang, who specialises in corporate restructuring, M&A and outbound investments by Chinese companies.

Zhong Lun Law Firm’s team stand out for its capacity to handle high-profile cross-border M&A transactions. As evidence of this, the group advised Khazanah Nasional Berhad (as one of the investors) on the restructuring and financing of Cainiao Logistics (an affiliate of Alibaba Group), handled I Squired Capital’s acquisition of four state-owned new energy companies, and assisted Komatsu with a $2.8bn-plus multi-jurisdictional acquisition of Joy Global, which included handling the merger filing before China’s Ministry of Commerce, People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM). The team is a popular choice for clients in the TMT space, which it regularly advises on transactions and regulatory issues; clients include Jiayuan.com International, Booking.com, Kingsoft Cloud and Tencent. Anthony Zhao is recommended for large private equity and venture capital investments, M&A transactions, corporate finance and restructurings, with particular expertise advising on cross-border transactions combining both offshore and onshore structures; Audry Li focuses on advising multinational companies on cross-border transactions as well as handling compliance issues; Scott Guan’s client base spans a wide range of sectors including manufacturing, chemical products, technology, retail and natural resources; and Yun Zhou is particularly active in the real estate sector and is recommended for M&A, private equity and investment funds transactions. Cindy Guo, Yinzi Hu - Haoze Li and Bijun Huang are also names to note.

Global Law Office has an outstanding record in onshore and offshore M&A transactions, where it acts for a client base that includes a mix of domestic and overseas listed companies, SOEs and financial institutions. In 2016, Jinrong Liu and Alex Liu advised Hubei Sanonda on its RMB18.4bn-plus purchase of ADAMA Agricultural Solutions. Highlights for Huawei Lin included handling Cindat Capital and Union Life Insurance’s joint investment in a Welltower portfolio of real estate assets, assisting Primavera Capital with its acquisition of Kerr Investment Holding, and advising Blackstone on its $15bn acquisition of GLP. Miller Wang, Shanghai-based Yu Zhang and pharmaceuticals sector specialist Alan Zhou are also recommended.

Han Kun Law Offices has a leading presence in the TMT sector, where the team receives a steady flow of instructions from a range of industry players. For example, it advised Uber (China) on its $35bn merger with Didi Chuxing, acted for iDreamSky Technology during its take-private transaction and delisting from NASDAQ, and assisted Tujia.com, China’s largest B2C sharing accommodation platform, with its acquisition of short-term rental website Mayi.com. Other highlights include assisting Karl Lagerfeld with the sale of its China business, advising Taikang Insurance Group on its investment in IHH Healthcare’s China business, and acting for Berjaya (China) Great Mall on its sale of the construction project of Berjaya (China) Great Mall Recreation Centre to Beijing SkyOcean International. Chaoying Li splits his time between the firm’s Beijing and Shenzhen offices, while Dafei Chen operates from Beijing and Hong Kong. David Tang focuses on corporate compliance, foreign direct investment and cross-border M&A, and ‘corporate star’ Bing Xue specialises in venture capital, private equity and M&A transactions.

Jincheng Tongda & Neal has an impressive record handling PRC inbound deals, outbound public M&A, and take-private transactions, where it advises international financial institutions, institutional investors, private equity and venture capital firms, private PRC companies and SOEs. The team handles a large number of overseas M&A mandates involving developing regions as a result of the One Belt One road initiative, and its established Japan desk advises well-known technology companies on compliance, M&A and international trade matters. Insurance specialist Lan Lan, public M&A expert Xiaodong Zheng, Ketong Shi, who specialises in M&A and restructuring mandates, and the ‘highly responsive and thorough’ Annie Wu, who focuses on outbound investment, are the practice heads. Lan and George Yu advised Citigroup, as local counsel on its $3bn sale of its minority stake in China Guangfa Bank to China Life Insurance. Stephen Jun is highly recommended for his work in the real estate, natural resources and energy sphere; he acted for Sunac China during its $670m acquisition of seven properties held by Top Spring International. Other clients include GE (China), Zhejiang Xianju Junye Pharmaceutical, China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation and Hyosung Corporation. Associate Jiangxia Lu is also highly regarded. Wei He was promoted to partner in 2017.

Leveraging its solid record in the IPO and capital markets space, Jingtian & Gongcheng regularly advises a large number of listed companies on M&A transactions. It handled China Overseas’ RMB41bn acquisition of the residential business of CITIC Real Estate, which included advising on the antitrust aspects of the deal. Other highlights included assisting Suning Holdings Group with its $290m acquisition of majority shares of FC Internazionale Milano, acting for Kunming Shenghuo Pharmaceutical Group during the sale to Shenzhen-listed company China Resources Sanjiu Medical & Pharmaceutical, and assisting Wanda Cinema Line with the acquisition of marketing specialist Propaganda GEM. Wei Bai specialises in restructuring and M&A transactions, Guanchun Dai excels in high-value outbound transactions, Xiang Gao specialises in security compliance and corporate restructuring matters, and Shanghai-based Zejia Chen is also noted.

Tian Yuan Law Firm is a popular choice for major SOEs, foreign investors, financial institutions and a large number of listed companies. A team, led by Haijiang Li, Han Li and Tao Wang, advised Puxin Education on the £62m purchase of Pearson’s language training subsidiary Global Education. Other clients include Yunda Express, Beijing Jingneng Power, Luuenmei Quantum and China Yangtze Power.Yanling Ren focuses on domestic and cross-border M&A and franchising issues, and managing partner Xiaohui Zhu specialises in capital markets and M&A transactions. Yu Piao, Guanxiong Wu and Aihua Xiao are also key contacts.

Allbright Law Offices is experienced in advising domestic and foreign clients on acquisitions, foreign direct investments and general corporate matters. Recent instructions include establishing a Sino-foreign joint venture company, handling a corporate restructuring and advising on cross-border acquisitions. Practice head Victor Wang is highly recommended for his experience in private equity, M&A and venture capital transactions. Capital markets specialists Guoquan Shen, Philip Zhang and Ark Bao are also recommended.

Commerce & Finance Law Office handles the full range of M&A and corporate transactions with particular strength in inbound mandates. Its client list includes investment banks, financial advisers and various well-known companies. It advised China International Corporation, the financial adviser of Baosteel, on the latter’s merger with Wisco, and assisted Phoenix Healthcare with its acquisition of a subsidiary of CR Healthcare. Xiaoman Zhang, Jian Zhang and Gang Wu are the main contacts.

DeHeng Law Offices has an impressive record acting for SOEs and state-backed investment funds, and is increasingly handling inbound M&A and green field investments. Clients include Beijing E-Town International Investment & Development, CITIC Guoan Group and Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties. In 2016, managing partner David Chen served as lead counsel to China Gold International Resources on its acquisition of a Russian gold mine, and assisted state-owned investment firm Beijing Jianguang Asset Management with the multibillion-dollar acquisition of NXP Semiconductors’ standard products unit. Shanghai-based Yanan Zhao has a solid record handling domestic M&A, notably in the real estate sector. Yuan Wang joined from Chiomenti Studio Legale in 2017.

Grandall Law Firm is a popular choice for domestic clients, which it advises on corporate restructurings and M&A transactions. In 2016, Charles Guan assisted a Chinese consortium, led by Giant Investment (HK), with acquiring social gaming platform Playtika Holding from Caesars Interactive Entertainment for $4.4bn in an all-cash deal. Henry Huang’s recent highlights include advising OmniVision Technologies on the $1.9bn acquisition by a Chinese PE consortium consisting of PRC Venture Partners, CITIC Capital and Golden Stone Investment. Chun Li excels in cross-border agriculture investment, and counts Beidahuang Group, Xinjiang Production and Construction and Hainan State Farms as clients. Xiaoliang Wu has notable experience advising A-share listed companies on corporate restructurings, and Paula Yu handles general corporate transactions and foreign direct investment.

Guantao Law Firm handles inbound and outbound M&A transactions for multinational corporations and leading domestic clients. Recent highlights include advising China Life Investment Holding Company on its $600m investment in Didi Chuxing and acting as the PRC counsel for Gome Holdings on its transfer of equity interest in Gome Xinda Commercial Factoring to Sino Credit Holdings. The team is jointly headed by Beijing-based Dongying Sun and Bo Su, and also includes Henry Hong who has considerable expertise in capital markets, corporate restructuring and private equity investment transactions.

Haiwen & Partners is a popular choice for big-ticket domestic and cross-border M&A transactions, including acquisitions of material assets, stock purchases, restructurings and joint ventures. Clients include China Huarong Asset Management, China International Capital Corporation and China Minmentals. Key names to note include Weibo Jiang, Fei He, and Xiajun Fang, who joined the Shanghai office from JunHe in 2017.

Shanghai-based Llinks Law Offices’ client roster features a number of private equity funds and domestic clients from a broad spectrum of industries. In 2016, Leo Wang advised Jiangsu Shuangliang Technology on the RMB3.2bn-plus sale of the controlling interest in Jiangsu Youli Investment, while Wayne Chen and Selena She advised A-share listed SOE Sinochem International on its high-profile merger with Halcyon Agri, creating the world’s largest natural rubber supply chain manager. David Yu’s client list includes large financial institutions and domestic companies, and recent instructions include establishing a joint venture company and handling cross-border acquisitions.

Anjie Law Firm expanded its corporate offering in southern China when it established a Shenzhen office with the hire of managing partner Catherine Guo, cross-border M&A specialist Ju Qiu and Huaming Yu, who joined from Zhong Lun Law Firm in 2016. Guo led a team that assisted state-owned investment firm Avic Capital with its $8.6bn joint venture acquisition of Finnish game developer Supercell and acted for Avic Trust during its acquisition of ARA Asset Management. Beijing-based Yu He also handles corporate governance issues.

Broad & Bright’s 15-partner team, which is jointly led by Shanghai-based David Wang and Beijing-based Hongchuan Liu, regularly advises on the establishment of foreign invested companies, asset restructurings, and acquisition and disposal matters. Recent highlights include advising a Finnish company on its divestment of shares in a Shanghai-based joint venture company, handling a multibillion-dollar going-private transaction, and acting for an automobile sector client on the formation of a joint venture in China.

At DaHui Lawyers, managing partner Richard Ma advised the PRC subsidiary of Messe München Group on its purchase of the majority share of a company that will run the Fenestration China show, and acted for the publicly listed Zhejiang Dragon Pipe Manufacturing on its RMB2.7bn acquisition of Beijing Muzhiwan Science and Technology and Sooying Science and Technology. Other clients include Comcast, Newegg, live broadcasting platform InKe and eLong. TMT sector specialist Brendon Wu is another name to note.

Dentons China’s team handles cross-border M&A transactions and regularly acts as local counsel on the China-related global deals. Recent highlights include advising Ingredion on acquiring all of the outstanding shares of TIC Gums and acting for a manufacturer during its investment in a solar-thermal power station project. Shanghai-based Nancy Sun has extensive experience advising clients on inbound and outbound transactions, Daniel Wei focuses on M&As as well as real estate and construction projects, and Beijing-based Xuefeng Peng is another name to note.

East & Concord Partners predominantly advises domestic clients on corporate transactions including M&A and establishing new companies. The group advised Homeinns Hotel Group on its $16bn merger with BTG Hotels Group (Cayman), a wholly-owned subsidiary of BTG Hotel Group (Hong Kong). Founding partner Yi Yao is recommended for assisting Chinese companies with outbound investments, Cindy Hu focuses on corporate restructurings and corporate finance transactions, and Zhifang Lu has notable experience advising foreign clients on a range of issues involving foreign direct investment, venture capital investment and private equity investment.


Foreign firms

Index of tables

  1. Corporate and M&A: foreign firms
  2. Other recommended firms
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Foreign firms clients in China using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

Regularly acting for high-profile international and Chinese clients, Clifford Chance LLP is highly rated for its expertise in private and public deals, China inbound and outbound M&A, including multi-jurisdictional matters, and domestic M&A, with the financial services, consumer, industrial and healthcare sectors being particular strengths. Among the firm’s high-profile outbound deals, Beijing-based Terence Foo led advice to Shenzhen Stock Exchange-listed Zhejiang Jinke Entertainment on its $1bn acquisition of Outfit 7, a creator and developer of mobile games. Inbound highlights for the practice included Hong Kong’s Amy Ho advising West Heaven, a joint venture, and Eagle Development Holding Corporation on the sale of Gain Success to Spring Wisdom, a special purpose vehicle. Tim Wang is another highly regarded Beijing-based practitioner, while in Shanghai, Glen Ma, Kelly Gregory and Jean Yu are key advisers. In Hong Kong, Andrew Whan heads the Asia Pacific corporate and M&A practice; and Emma Davies, who splits time between Hong Kong and Shanghai and leads the firm’s corporate practice in mainland China, are also recommended. Yan Yuan is a well-regarded Shanghai counsel.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer grew its practice through the promotion of Jason Xu and Yan Chen to the partnership. The team is widely praised for its experience in large China outbound deals but it is also considered a go-to adviser for strategic China inbound M&A and joint venture deals. Recent highlights saw the practice act for Chinese industrial group Midea during its tender offer for Frankfurt-listed Kuka, which marked the largest ever acquisition of a German company by a Chinese bidder. On the sell side, the team advised Cheung Kong Property Holdings on the headline sale of Mapleleaf Developments to a purchaser managed by ARA Asset Management. Alan Wang, Richard Wang and Jack Wang are highly rated. In Hong Kong, Robert Ashworth is co-head of global M&A and Teresa Ko is China chair.

Linklaters is recommended for both its international and China-side capabilities, which are complemented by the firm’s practices in regulatory, antitrust, derivatives, financing and capital markets and employment law; and its lawyers have sector expertise in finance, private equity, FIG, energy, mining and resources, and TMT. Significant matters include advising China COSCO Shipping Corporation on its acquisition of a minority stake in Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank; it also advised the Bank of East Asia on the high-value sale of Tricor Holdings to private equity firm Permira. Shanghai’s Jian Fang is the China managing partner, and Gilbert Li, recently promoted partner John Xu and senior consultant Richard Gu are also key Shanghai advisers, as is associate Colette Pan. Kevin Cheung is highly regarded in Beijing. Notable Hong Kong names include Robert Cleaver, Matthew Middleditch, Annabella Fu van Bijnen, and Craig Dally, along with Alexandra Bidlake and recently promoted capital markets partner Iris Leung. Simon Meng was hired in Shanghai from King & Wood Mallesons, while Simon Poh left for K&L Gates’ Shanghai office and Pui Hong Chik joined Ashurst in Hong Kong.

Highly rated for big-ticket M&A deals, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP practices US, Hong Kong, Japanese and English law around the Asia region. The team is particularly rated for transactions where Chinese companies acquire significant assets in the US, as well as substantial M&A deals in China’s TMT sector. Highlights included acting for China-based ride-hailing service provider, Didi Chuxing (Hangzhou Kuaizhi Technology Co.) (China) in its acquisition of UberChina from Uber Technologies. Peter Huang and Haiping Li lead the firm’s Beijing and Shanghai offices, respectively. In Hong Kong, Julie Gao chairs the firm’s China practice, and Jonathan Stone leads the corporate practice in Asia (excluding Japan). Other key advisers in Hong Kong are Christopher Betts, Will Cai, Edward Lam, and Geoffrey Chan, the latter joining from Ropes & Gray LLP. Daniel Dusek left the firm for Kirkland & Ellis in Hong Kong, and Gregory Miao and Jon Christianson retired from the practice.

Allen & Overy LLP grew its ‘excellent practice’ through the hire of Chinese M&A and private equity specialist Wayne Lee in Hong Kong from Shearman & Sterling LLP. The corporate group provides English, Hong Kong, US and Australian law advice on public and private M&A, privatisations, private equity, joint ventures, capital markets and restructurings, and is assisted by specialist teams covering IP, antitrust, regulatory, and employment law. Recent highlights include advising Liberty Mutual on the sale of its 51% stake in Liberty Insurance Company, a PRC property and casualty insurance company, to Sanpower Group. China corporate head Victor Ho divides time between Beijing and Shanghai; his team includes Ji Zou (‘attentive to client needs and provides practical counsel’), counsel Richard Qiang and senior associate Taoye Ye (‘very receptive to client requests and always willing to help’).

Baker McKenzie FenXun Joint Operation Office stands out for its ability to provide clients with an integrated international and PRC law platform in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone. The practice has longstanding corporate and M&A experience in China, both on the inbound and outbound side. Sector expertise spans the energy and natural resources, TMT, real estate, and pharmaceuticals and healthcare industries, among others. The firm advised Yuexiu Property Company (YPC) on the proposed acquisition of a 50% equity interest in Zhoushan Xin De Business Development Co. by YPC’s wholly owned subsidiary. The recommended Beijing advisers are Boo Bee Chun, Jackie Lo, Jon Eichelberger and Stanley Jia. In Shanghai, Howard Wu heads the firm’s Asia Pacific IT and communications group, and Danian Zhang, Cherrie Shi and Zhenyu Ruan are also highly rated.

DLA Piper regularly acts in complex cross-border deals and the practice has significant insurance industry expertise. It has also developed a reputation among transportation, freight and logistics sector clients. In other areas, Shanghai-based Roy Chan advised Shanghai Jin Jiang International Hotels on its circa-$1.3bn acquisition of Plateno Group from a number of private equity funds. Qiang Li and Stewart Wang are also key names in Shanghai. Hong Kong-based Paul Chen is Asia corporate head, and Sheng Wu, who divides time between Hong Kong and Beijing, recently made partner. Former Shanghai corporate head, Kit Kwok departed for China Ping An Insurance Overseas (Holdings), while James Chang joined in Beijing from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP.

Hogan Lovells International LLP has a focus on energy, infrastructure, financial services, insurance, life sciences, consumer and TMT sector deals, and the team is able to assist with the issues that impact cross-border M&A, from acquisition financing, antitrust, regulatory compliance and tax to IP, employment, national security review and foreign investment regulation. Together with the firm’s Madrid and Paris offices, Beijing office managing partner Jun Wei advised HNA Group on its $1.5bn takeover for Swiss Airline caterer business Gategroup, the world’s second largest airline caterer. Shanghai-based China and Asia Pacific corporate head Andrew McGinty, Shanghai office managing partner Philip Cheng, and Beijing’s Steven Robinson, Liang Xu and Roy Zou are other key contacts. Larry Sussman joined in Beijing from O'Melveny, where he was Beijing managing partner and Asia transactions head, while Michael Chin exited for Simmons & Simmons LLP’s Hong Kong office.

Norton Rose Fulbright’s corporate and M&A team advises clients from the financial institutions and insurance sectors, as well as handling matters spanning industries such as real estate, technology, and energy and natural resources. It advised Shandong Gold Mining Co on the $960m acquisition of 50% of the shares in a gold mine in Argentina. In Shanghai, Lynn Yang, office head Sun Hong and of counsel Tony Zhong are highly regarded, as is Beijing office head Wang Yi, corporate and projects lawyer Barbara Li (also in Beijing) and Hong Kong office head Psyche Tai. Shanghai consultant Justin Wilson retired from the partnership.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is recommended for high-end, complex transactions, particularly involving the TMT sector and private equity investments, and it has specific experience in Taiwan-related deals. Beijing’s Greg Liu led the advice to IDG Capital, and its portfolio company Titan Gas Technology Holdings, on the acquisition of a controlling stake in HKSE-listed Shun Cheong Holdings. Also in Beijing, Judie Ng Shortell is recommended. Hong Kong-based Betty Yap is ‘terrific – technically excellent, very responsive and a pleasure to deal with’. Jack Lange and Jeanette Chan are other key names.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP has significant expertise in cross-border public and private M&A and joint ventures, as well as the representation of private equity clients, both in strategic investments and fund formation. The practice acts for Chinese state-owned and non-state-owned companies and financial institutions in their business activities in the US and the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Australia and across Asia; and it assists international financial institutions, corporations and investors with Greater China matters. Shaolin Luo and recently promoted counsel Yang Wang in Beijing led advice to China National Agrochemical Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of ChemChina, on its acquisition of a 40% stake in Tel Aviv-based Adama Agricultural Solutions, a global crop protection company. Key Hong Kong contacts include Kathryn King Sudol, China practice head Celia Lam, Anthony King, Chris Lin and recently elected partner Ian Ho.

White & Case LLP has extensive experience advising on groundbreaking acquisitions and high-end deals. The firm grew the Greater China practice through the hire of Andre Zhu in the Beijing office from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP to enhance its M&A bench strength. It also promoted Shanghai’s Jiong Deng to local partner; and relocated long-term partner Vivian Tsoi to the Shanghai office after spending a year in the firm’s Singapore office. Tsoi was part of a cross-border team that advised China Three Gorges Corporation, through a subsidiary, on its purchase of the equity interests in a Duke Energy Corporation subsidiary. Also in Shanghai, China practice head Alex Zhang and Lucy Xu are highly rated. Former China practice head Xiaoming Li left for Han Kun Law Offices.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP is experienced in advising multinational corporations, private equity investors and hedge funds on inbound Chinese investment, finance and joint venture transactions, and pre-IPO investments, as well as Chinese companies on their worldwide outbound investments. The practice is also particularly well known for going-private transactions involving US-listed Chinese companies. Ling Huang and Denise Shiu acted for the controlling shareholder of Beijing Miteno Communication Technology Co., which develops, constructs and installs communication towers, in its acquisition of Blackbird Hypersonic Investments.

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP is highly rated for cross-border deals, particularly China outbound acquisitions. The practice’s client base includes Chinese SOEs, as well as Hong Kong-listed corporations and Taiwanese companies that have interests in Chinese companies. Together with the New York and Hong Kong offices, Beijing’s Howard Zhang advised Freeport-McMoRan, a US-based natural resources company, on the $2.77bn sale of its interests in TF Holdings to China Molybdenum, one of the world’s largest molybdenum and tungsten producers. Also in Beijing, Li He is highly regarded. Key Hong Kong practitioners include Paul Chow and Miranda So.

Mayer Brown JSM’s ‘overall level of service is excellent, due to its in-depth knowledge of its clients’ businesses and culture’. Furthermore, the lawyers are ‘proactive and to the point in their legal advice’. The M&A practice regularly works alongside the firm’s regulatory, tax, fund formation and investment management, technology, and real estate specialists. Hong Kong-based Jeckle Chiu, who is ‘singled out as being particularly good’, led advice to Dah Chong Hong Holdings on its acquisition of Li & Fung’s consumer and healthcare distribution business in mainland China, Hong Kong and several other countries. Key Beijing contacts include China projects head Xiangyang Ge and Beijing office partner-in-charge Ian Lewis. The firm enjoys an association with PRC firm Jingtian & Gongcheng.

Morrison & Foerster LLP is highly rated for deals involving the TMT, life sciences and real estate sectors. A cross-office team recently acted for Global Logistic Properties, a provider of modern logistics facilities in China, Japan and Brazil, on various matters, including the acquisition by its China platform of a 45.6% shareholding in Beijing Shounong Joint Stock Company. Beijing and Shanghai managing partner Paul McKenzie and Beijing-based Sherry Yin are key practitioners, as is Shanghai’s Maria Wang. Vivian Yiu joined the Hong Kong office from Allen & Overy.

Paul Hastings LLP stands out for matters relating to the TMT, life sciences, healthcare and real estate sectors. David Wang and Jia Yan led the advice to Samsung Electronics on the Chinese aspects of its high-profile $8bn acquisition of Harman International Industries. Vivian Lam, Raymond Li, Douglas Freeman and Victor Chen are also notable names. Meka Meng is a key of counsel.

Shearman & Sterling LLP rehired M&A partner Li Chen, who has a particular focus on outbound acquisitions and investments by Chinese enterprises, following a six-year stint at two other international firms. In addition to China outbound acquisitions, the firm also handles going-private transactions for US-listed Chinese companies. It recently advised Bank of Communications on its acquisition of approximately 80% of Brazil’s Banco BBM’s outstanding shares. Lee Edwards, Xiaogang (Sean) Wang and Stephanie Tang are also recommended.

Recent work highlights at Sidley Austin LLP include advising Xiwang Foodstuffs Company on its $730m acquisition of Iovate Health Sciences International, a Canadian nutritional supplement maker. Key Greater China contacts include chief representative of the Shanghai office Zhengyu Tang, as well as Joseph Chan, Lan Tao, Mengyu Lu, Constance Choy and Christopher Cheng.

Sullivan & Cromwell is particularly well regarded for Hong Kong public takeovers, China outbound investments involving Chinese SOEs in the energy and infrastructure sector, and cross-border M&A matters. Alongside the Hong Kong office, Beijing’s Gwen Wong acted for China Mengniu Dairy Company in its acquisition of a minority stake in China Modern Dairy Holdings from an affiliate of KKR. Chun Wei is managing partner of the firm’s Hong Kong office.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLPprovides very good advice judgement calls and responsiveness’. The team regularly assists with Asia-led, cross-border transactions for clients from the consumer, TMT, industrial, energy, pharmaceuticals, healthcare and financial services sectors. A cross-practice, cross-border team advised HNA Group on its $6.5bn acquisition of an approximate 25% equity interest in Hilton Worldwide Holdings from Blackstone. Charles Ching divides time between Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong, and ‘stands out for his deep knowledge and experience of the legal and regulatory landscape across the US, Hong Kong and China’. Li Li and Suat Eng Seah left the firm.

The team at Ashurst delivers ‘very strong commercial sense, responsiveness and high-quality work’. It handles a range of corporate transactions, from China outbound and inbound M&A work, to regulatory and restructuring issues. Noted for his ‘flexibility and business acumen’, Shanghai’s Michael Sheng heads the firm’s corporate and M&A practice in mainland China. Also in the Shanghai office, Daniel Oehvall is a key counsel.

Baker Botts L.L.P. stands out for its focus on energy and natural resources sector transactions, and the practice is well known for advising on corporate, regulatory and compliance issues for clients with operations in Asia. Jeff Layman in Beijing, Russell Wilkinson and Michael Arruda in Hong Kong, and Joanne Du, who divides time between Hong Kong and Beijing, are recommended advisers.

Bird & Bird has particular strength in deals involving technology and communications, life sciences and healthcare, retail, entertainment, media and sports, and aviation. The practice also has notable private equity and venture capital expertise. John Shi, Shan Lai and Sven-Michael Werner are highly rated.

At CMS, ‘the service is very good, timely and pragmatic, and shows good understanding of clients’ business needs’. The team is well known for cross-border M&A transactions across a diverse range of industries. Managing partner of the Shanghai Office Ulrike Glueck is a key contact.

Clyde & Co LLP focuses on M&A, business acquisitions and disposals, strategic alliances, joint ventures, market entry issues, and corporate governance and compliance matters. China corporate group leader Michael Cripps in Shanghai led the advice to Sanpower Group during its acquisition of 51% shares of Liberty China’s registered capital.

Eversheds Sutherland’s ‘very good team is practical and provides timely spending reports, which is good for clients’ budgeting’. The firm recently advised on transactions across industry sectors such as real estate, food and drink, energy and natural resources, TMT, and financial services. The key Beijing names are office managing partner Ingrid Zhu-Clark and China corporate head Jay Ze, who is ‘very hardworking and responsive, and has a superb sense of how Chinese and foreign regulators will approach transactions’. In Shanghai, Jack Cai is the office managing partner and a name to note.

Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I. is recommended for its advice to the firm’s predominantly French client base on investments in China across a range of sectors, including automotive, distribution and retail, life sciences, manufacturing, oil and gas, and sport and leisure. In addition, it acts for several Chinese clients on high-profile outbound deals involving Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Fan Jiannian in Shanghai and Guo Min in Beijing are key contacts.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP recently promoted Beijing’s Wang Zhong to partner. The practice covers China inbound and outbound M&A, private equity, and capital markets, and it stands out for its energy sector expertise. Nanda Lau, Beijing office head Tom Chau and Karen Ip are recommended names.

K&L Gates strengthened its Shanghai practice through the hires of Simon Poh and Amigo Xie from Linklaters and Llinks Law Offices, respectively. The firm recently acted for clients from the real estate, oil and gas, funds, pharmaceuticals, consumer, leisure and technology sectors. Ian Liao, Henry Wang, Grace Fan-Delatour and Frank Voon are key contacts.

Latham & Watkins LLP regularly acts in high-profile M&A transactions in China, as well as across Asia, Europe and the US. Shanghai managing partner Rowland Cheng and Beijing’s Yilong Du are key advisers.

Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP opened a five-partner Shanghai office after hiring office head Mitch Dudek, the ‘extremely knowledgeable’ Todd Liao, Alex Wang, Eddie Hsu and Cindy Pan from Dentons’ Shanghai branch. Ning Zhang and Mathew Lewis also joined the Beijing and Shanghai offices, respectively, from Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP. Beijing office head Xiaowei Ye is highly rated.

O'Melveny is recommended for its advice to companies and financial investors on M&A deals, and investments in (and disposals of) businesses and assets, whether public or private, domestic or international. Shanghai-based Walker Wallace is ‘an outstanding negotiator, who provides real insight and judgement when helping clients take a course of action’. In Beijing, Ke Geng ‘understands exactly what clients need, and is very commercial and solution-oriented’. David Roberts left the firm and former Beijing managing partner Larry Sussman joined Hogan Lovells International LLP.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP’s Hong Kong office recruited M&A and private equity specialist Scott Peterman and M&A partner Mark Lehmkuhler from Jones Day and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP, respectively; meanwhile, Ning Zhang left for Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP’s Beijing office. The practice is well regarded for advising Chinese state-owned and private entities on their outbound investments, and is highly rated for its technology sector experience. Jeffrey Sun, divides time between Shanghai and Beijing, and Betty Louie splits her practice between the firm’s Italy and Beijing offices.

Reed Smith Richards Butler act for PRC businesses involved in outbound investments and offshore transactions, as well as foreign clients investing in mainland China. Beijing office head Michael Fosh, energy and natural resources specialist Jie Zhang and Shanghai office head Jay Yan are all widely praised.

Simmons & Simmons is well known for its focuses on asset management and investment funds, financial institutions and TMT. Beijing’s Eric Lin is highly rated. Former China head Davis Wang left to establish an advisory firm.


GC Powerlist -
China and Hong Kong

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in China

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to

Press Releases worldwide

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to