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TMT: foreign firms

Index of tables

  1. TMT: foreign firms
  2. Next Generation Partners

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Baker McKenzie FenXun is a market leader for regulatory matters and global transactions. It has a particular focus in the fintech space which it advises on privacy, cybersecurity and financial services regulation and compliance. Practice head Howard Wu assisted Ningbo Joyson Electronic with raising $250m equity financing from Future Industry Investment Fund in connection with Joyson’s acquisition of Takata Corporation; Zhenyu Ruan is assisting Chinese clients with formulation and implementation of an EU GDPR compliance programme and advised a cloud computing company on China regulatory requirement pertaining to its internet data centre related business models; Vivian Wu advised Merck Sharp Dohme on data mapping and compliance issues. It works closely with its Hong Kong team which includes Nancy Leigh and Paolo Sbuttoni, with notable expertise in M&A transactions and regulatory matters respectively.

Hogan Lovells International LLP is singled out for its 'excellent knowledge of the Chinese market'. Coupled with its global network of offices, it is a poplar choice among multinational and major Chinese TMT sector companies which regularly instructs the team on big-ticket cross-border M&A, antitrust, and data privacy regulation mandates. Practice head Andrew McGinty 'understands client's needs' and recently assisted a US technology company with China cybersecurity and compliance issues relating to data localisation and export; he also acted for a financial institution on facial recognition project for credit card applications. Antitrust specialist Adrian Emch and transactional lawyer Roy Zou advised a social media company on antitrust matters in China and Hong Kong as well as export control matters. Associate Wensheng Ren is 'a bright, young lawyer who has a sophistication beyond his experience'.

Morrison & Foerster LLP is highly regarded for cross-border transactions, particularly involving US clients looking to enter into the China market, as well as domestic clients on outbound mandates. Its dedication in the TMT space, coupled with its strong venture capital and private equity practice, makes it the 'go-to' firm for technology investors and start-up companies. Among its recent highlights, it advised SoftBank on its $9.6bn investment in Xiaoju Kuaizhi, and assisted Tencent with its patent cross-licence with Google covering a broad range of products and technologies. Data privacy matters also feature. The practice is led by Hong Kong-based Gordon Milner and Beijing-based Paul McKenzie which also includes the 'commercially minded and very experienced' Thomas Chou who focuses on private equity transactions.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP maintains a leading position in the market and is praised for its 'commercially savvy and technically excellent advice'. Leveraging its solid reputation in handling cross-border investment and M&A transactions, 2017 saw the team advising on a steady flow of big-ticket transactions. It continues to advise Tencent on its various multimillion-dollar TMT investment globally, handle Didi Chuxing's investment in Grab and act for Nasper in its disposal and placing of issued share capital of Tencent. The team also assisted Rackspace with its incremental loan in connection to its acquisition of Datapipe, a cloud server management company. The five-partner team is led by Hong Kong-based Jeanette Chan who is 'unbelievably responsive with huge energy', and includes Judie Ng Shortell and Greg Liu in Beijing who focus on M&A and private equity investments.

Allen & Overy LLP handles a healthy mix of transactional and regulatory work including financing, M&A, data protection and cybersecurity. The team advises on English, Hong Kong, US and Australian law from its network of offices in China. It advised FIS, an international provider of financial services technology and outsourcing services, on the sale of its subsidiary Sungard Kingstar Data Systems to Zhongping Capital; acted for Baidu on its investment in Bitauto, a provider of internet content and marketing services for China’s automotive industry; and handled the China antitrust clearance aspect of Broadcom's acquisition of Brocade. Victor Ho is the key contact from its Beijing office and works closely with Will McAuliffe in Hong Kong. Ho is particularly experienced in the fintech space, advising on cryptocurrency, artificial intelligence, cross-border payments, initial coin offerings and blockchain technology. Counsel Benjamin Crawford who splits his time between Beijing and Hong Kong is also a name to note.

CMS provides 'pragmatic and insightful advice in an accessible and actionable fashion'. The practice is led by Shanghai-based Ulrike Glueck and includes lawyers with IP, data protection, and corporate and commercial expertise. Glueck recently advised a Chinese manufacturing company on the risks of a guarantee provided by a Chinese company for an offshore sales contract and assisted a multinational software developer with its software development and license in China. Beijing managing partner Nick Beckett is another key contact and advised an energy sector client and a navigating service provider on cybersecurity and data protection matters as well as high-profile patent infringement disputes. Falk Lichtenstein is another name to note.

Covington & Burling LLP is also ranked.

O'Melveny has a wealth of experience advising complex cross-border transactions, litigation and regulatory issues in the IT and media industry. Its client roster features well-known US IT and media companies, start-ups as well as private equity and venture capital firms specialising in technology start-up investment. Beijing office managing partner Ke Geng recently assisted a management consortium with its $200m leveraged acquisition of ATA Online (Beijing) Education Technology and advised China Securities (International) Corporate Finance Company on the IPO and listing of Digital Hollywood Interactive on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Walker Wallace handled ForceShield Software's series B financing led by Eight Roads Ventures, with SB China Venture Capital being a co-investor, and advised a US-based gaming and media streaming website on the licensing of its content to Chinese companies. Hong Kong-based Nima Amini is also a main contact, and acted for Seek in its $1bn acquisition of Zhaopin, a online recruitment platform.

Simmons & Simmons gives 'commercial and practical advice in a timely fashion'. The 'vastly experienced' Jingyuan Shi assisted a Chinese smart phone producer with its global data privacy compliance matter and advised a fund manager on a series of TMT early stage investments. Its Greater China team was also part of a global team that acted for a Chinese manufacturing company on EU competition, global data compliance, IP and corporate and commercial matters. IP partner George Chan is also recommended.

Bird & Bird advises on an increasing number of data protection mandates including privacy and protection of trade secrets and GDPR. It recently assisted Ustwo with the licensing of the sequel to the mobile game Monument Valley. The practice is predominantly based in Hong Kong, which includes Justin Walkey, Michelle Chan and counsel Clarice Yue. Shanghai-based Christine Yiu is recommended for technology litigation and has notable experience with regulatory issues relating to inventor remuneration policy and technology transfer in China.

Highlights for DLA Piper saw a global team advising a large media company on a multi-jurisdictional data protection compliance mandate. It also advised a US software company on the establishment of a joint venture in China and assisted with its content purchase arrangement with third-party service and technology provider as well as content licensing and onwards distribution. Qiang Li and Horace Lam are names to note, based in Shanghai and Beijing respectively. Hong Kong-based Scott Thiel and of counsel Carolyn Bigg are also recommended.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has a highly-regarded transactional team from its Hong Kong office, which handles an array of China-related matters including corporate and M&A deals, financing transactions and IP matters. The team advised Starbucks on a series of digital collaborations with Tencent and Alibaba including acceptance of Tencent and Alibaba‚Äôs digital payment services in Starbucks‚Äô Chinese stores; assisted Hutchison Telecommunications Hong Kong with the $1.86bn sale of its fixed-line telecoms business Hutchison Global Communications to I Squared Capital; and acted for China Development Bank on the restructuring of its $245m loan to Nextel Telecomunica√ß√Ķes, a wireless communications service provider in Brazil. The team also counts Lenovo as a key client and advised it on the JP¬•25.5bn acquisition of part of Fujitsu‚Äôs PC business. Corporate lawyer Alan Wang splits his time between Beijing and Shanghai, and is recommended along with Hong Kong-based Richard Bird.

Latham & Watkins LLP handles transactional and compliance work for clients in the media, technology, gaming and technology sectors. The team counts Tencent as a key client and advised it on its data governance structure, its negotiations with financial institutions, and its payment and cloud service. Other highlights include acting for Caesars Entertainment in its sale of Playtika to a consortium of investors led by Shanghai Giant Network Technology, and advising Qianxin Technology, an affiliate of Qihoo 360, on the acquisition of a minority stake in Beijing NetentSec, a provider of Internet control and content management solutions. Hong Kong-based Frank Sun and counsel Lex Kuo are names to note.

Mayer Brown's transaction-focused team is highly regarded in the technology and telecoms space, handling outsourcing, data privacy and regulatory matters. It is also active in the fintech space and recently advised on a number of mobile payment mandates for financial institutions and retailers. On the transaction side, it acted for a Hong Kong-listed technology and service company on the multimillion-dollar issuance of shares and convertible bonds. Alibaba also features in its client list which the team assisted with telecoms licensing, domain name, and cloud offering and associated data privacy matter. TMT specialist Gabriela Kennedy heads the practice from its Hong Kong office.

Norton Rose Fulbright 'provides precise and detailed as well as practice and highly operable advice'. It has particular expertise in advising international companies (particularly US-headquartered technology companies) on regulatory and compliance matters in China; it continues to receive a steady flow of cybersecurity matters. Barbara Li is singled out for her 'deep understanding of the sector and the China regulatory environment' which enables her to 'accurately grasp the legislative intent of the newly enacted laws and regulations from multiple dimensions'. Anna Gamvros is a leading figure for technology and data privacy and is based in Hong Kong.

Paul Hastings LLP's client roster features international technology giants, investment funds, SOEs and conglomerates. Leveraging its M&A capiblity, it is well placed to handle high-value M&A, joint venture and capital markets transactions. Among the recent mandates, it assisted Ping An Trust with its $1.6bn acquisition of AutoHome, an automobile trading and information website. David Wang, Jia Yan and Nan Li are the key names to note.


TMT: PRC firms

Index of tables

  1. TMT: PRC firms
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Fangda Partners is particularly active representing TMT sector clients and internet companies in overseas equity and debt offerings. Key areas of expertise include financing, acquisitions and divestments. Its impressive client list features Alibaba, Didi Chuxing, Yunfeng Capital and Focus Media and a number of financial institutions. It also has experience in cross-border M&A, private equity investment and corporate finance, as well as licensing, outsourcing and IP.  Jeffrey Ding and Richard Guo are names to note from its Beijing office, while William Huang,  Michael Qi and corporate finance lawyer Doris Tang are the main contacts in Shanghai.

According to one client, Global Law Office is 'the complete package'. It advises on the full remit of transactions with an emphasis on private equity and venture capital investments, IP, and contentious matters for high-profile clients such as Tencent and Sequoia Capital. Shanghai-based Steven Yu advised SIG China, Shunwei Capital and Westsummit Capital in their respective series C preferred share investment, series C-1 and C-2 preferred share investment in BingEx, a Cayman company operating an online-to-offline (O2O) platform for express delivery services; Yu also assisted Shanghai-based Mogoroom, an apartment rental O2O platform with its series C financing from a consortium of institutional investors. Shenzhen-based Cheng Li and Jihong He advised Hive Box in its $725m series-A financing. IP specialists Meph Gui and Jack Li are also key names to note and have notable experience in contentious and non-contentious patent and trademark matters.

With a strong focus in the TMT sector and a wealth of experience acting for private equity and venture capital funds, Han Kun Law Offices has a market leading practice which make it a popular choice among clients such as Chinese TMT giants Baidu, Tencent, JD.com, Warburg Pincus, Legend Capital and Fidelity Asia Venture. 2017 has been another prolific year for the team; highlights included advising China Structural Reform Fund as one of the investors in China Unicom's mix ownership reform, handling iQiyi's US IPO and listing on the Nasdaq global market, and assisting Tencent and JD.com on their joint investment in Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties. Chaoying Li acted for Tencent in its $5bn global medium term note programme, Dafei Chen assisted Meituan-Dianping with its $4bn series C round of equity financing. Yijun Chao counts Mtime and NIO as his clients, and advised the latter in its series C and series D funding rounds, raising capital from Tencent, Baidu and a number of co-investors. Tracy Zhou and Gloria Xu are also names to note.

King & Wood Mallesons excels in telecoms and technology, particularly in the digital technology sphere, and has experience of advising on national broadband roll-outs, regulatory reform and IT system procurement. The firm engages in M&A, IPO and corporate transactions as well as IP and compliance matters. Recent instructions in the IP field include representing a Chinese company against its major competitor in a number of patent infringement disputes and acting for a multinational company in defending patent infringement litigation cases before four local courts. Rocky Lee is recommended for cross-border transactions and is particularly experienced in working with TMT start-up companies on a complex structure establishment. Yue Wang specialises in foreign-related litigation and arbitration and advises clients in the sports, culture and entertainment industries. IP specialists Rui Wang and Richard Zheng, corporate practitioners Tianning Ma and Peng Mu and Shenzhen-based capital market specialists Rui Zhou are also recommended. All individuals mentioned above are based in Beijing and Shanghai unless it was stated otherwise.

TransAsia Lawyers' impressive client list features many multinational and Chinese e-commerce companies such as Amazon, Google, Qunar, Ali Pictures and Akamai Technologies. Managing partner Philip Qu and recently promoted partner Eric Johnson acted as PRC counsel for WeWork on its acquisition of NakedHub; Qu also assisted Airbnb with the launch of its trips and experiences offering in China and acted for T. Rowe Price Group as one of the investors in the investment participation in Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group's share sale. Other highlights include acting for Ainemo on its financing of $170m from Baidu and advising Comcast on its PRC media ownership and compliance matters relating to global regulatory clearance for its proposed $65bn bid for Fox. Kevin Guo and Justina Zhang are also highly recommended.

Zhong Lun Law Firm has a broad TMT practice which regularly advises clients in the telecoms, e-commerce, cloud computing, technology and fintech sectors; it also counts investment funds and venture capital firms as its core clients. The team includes experts in corporate and M&A, private equity, antitrust, IP and capital markets. Recent instructions saw it handling a large number of high value corporate and corporate financing transactions. Among them, Victor Yu and Bijun Huang advised Tencent on its investment in UBTECH Robotics, its series B investment in Yonghui Yunchuang Technology and its series D $1bn investment in NIO. William Qiu and Johnson Zhu acted for Tsinghua Unigroup on its acquisition of SiliconwareTechnology (Suzhou). Anthony Zhao has particular expertise in cross-border transactions, often combining both offshore and onshore structures. IP and antitrust specialist Jihong Chen advised Samsung SDS on the compliance aspect of its cloud service in China. Senior associate Mei Han is also recommended.

DaHui Lawyers' team expanded with the arrival of Julia Dai from Latham & Watkins LLP and Xikang Wang from Goldman Sachs. The practice advises clients across a range of TMT sectors, including internet, mobile, publishing, new media, sports and events. Managing partner Richard Ma is advising British Medical Journal on its China market entry strategy including licensing and regulatory matters, and assisted Newegg with its $250m equity sale to Hangzhou Liaison Interactive Information Technology. Other highlights include advising a Chinese investment bank on its multibillion-RMB financing for a fintech company via a private equity fund structure and handled a licensing mandate with a multinational e-commerce company for a publishing company. Brendon Wu and counsel Cloud Li are other names to note.

JunHe LLP's multidisciplinary team handles a broad range of mandates for TMT sector clients. Among its recent highlights, the IP team successfully assisted a Chinese e-commerce company with a patent infringement litigation, invalidating two key patents of its major competitor, and represented a Chinese multinational conglomerate company in filling trade mark opposition before the China Trademark Office (CTMO)¬†; the capital markets team including Yi Wang¬†and Wenjin Jiang¬†advised Uxin Group on its $500m financing; the corporate transactional team advised¬†Youzu Interactive on its ‚ā¨80m acquisition of¬†Bigpoint HoldCo, a German online gaming company and handled Jiafu's acquisition of¬†ETL Public Company. The team also counts BMW as a major client which it advises on various telecoms-related regulatory matters including automobile telematics services, internet mapping and positioning service.¬†Maochang Li¬†advises private equity funds with a focus on the hi-tech and IT industries, and¬†Jun Gong¬†has notable experience handling corporate transactions for media sector clients.

AnJie Law Firm advises on a mix of corporate, financing, M&A, IPO and IP matters. Recent instructions include acting for a number of private equity funds in their investment in e-commerce and technology companies and assisting Ali Entertainment Group with copyright and regulatory issues. Dan Zhang, Jing He and Michael Gu are the names to note.

Guantao Law Firm has expertise in e-commerce, biotech, new materials and telecoms matters. Yang Wang focuses on private equity financing and investment, advising on corporate finance matters and cross-border transactions. Other recommended practitioners include Leiming Sheng and Weimin Gan.

Hylands Law Firm is singled out for its IP capability in the media, culture and entertainment space; it also advises international film and entertainment companies on M&A transactions, film co-productions and disputes. In 2017, Rong Yu and Shan Tao advised a Chinese e-commerce company on compliance, consumer protection and copyright collective management issues and acted for a video sharing company on an anti-piracy monitoring matter. Zhengning Li advised Shine Asia Film& Media on the investment and the production of film Detective Chinatown 2 and represented 180 Digital in an advertising contract dispute.

Jingtian & Gongcheng is regularly instructed by e-commerce companies, technology firms and media groups on investments and financing, securities issues and listings, and M&A transactions. The team advised Xiaomi on its $4.7bn listing at the Hong Kong Stock Exchange; acted for Baidu on its $1.5bn debt issuance; and advised JD Finance's restructuring terminating its VIE arrangement with JD Group. Managing partner Xiang Gao is the key contact within the team which also includes Jinjin Chen who is particularly experienced in advising emerging companies on their IPOs.

Llinks Law Offices handles a mix of M&A and capital market transactions. Among its recent instructions, Nicholas Lou and Lawrence An advised SenseTime on its private financing; David Yu assisted Shanghai Yiguo E-commerce with the sale of its shares to Alibaba and Bailian Grou; and Xun Yang advises Elemental Concept 2016 on data protection and cybersecurity issues relating to the development, licensing and operation of medical record system for hospitals in China. FG Venture features in its new client list.


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