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Baker McKenzie


Asia Pacific: Regional International Arbitration

Leading firms
Leading firms - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie handles cases ranging from engineering and construction matters through to commodities and joint ventures disputes. In Singapore, Nandakumar Ponniya handles cases with Indonesian elements; another contact of note is Andi Kadir, who practices as part of the firm's Indonesian affiliate. Wynn Pakdeejit in Bangkok also handles both arbitrations and the enforcement of their awards. As far as the Chinese-speaking world is concerned, David Liou in Taiwan is also notable. The firm also includes investment treaty specialist Jo Delaney in Australia. Leng Sun Chan SC is now part of Essex Court Chambers.

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Hong Kong

Antitrust and competition
Antitrust and competition - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

Benefiting from ‚Äėexcellent competition law knowledge, particularly in the telecoms arena‚Äô, Baker McKenzie¬†has been well-positioned to leverage this longstanding experience in the telecoms industry (the only sector to be previously affected by competition laws in Hong Kong prior to the 2015 Competition Ordinance) to be at the forefront of the nascent competition laws within the country. Team head¬†Stephen Crosswell¬†has ‚Äėexcellent real-life local experience‚Äô and is consequently a vital resource for clients seeking to navigate the nuances not only of the new local competition law regime but also across other Asian jurisdictions ‚Äď including China, where it is able to deal directly with the Ministry of Commerce of the People‚Äôs Republic of China (MOFCOM) by dint of the firm‚Äôs joint operation with the mainland China-based FenXun Partners. Crosswell led, alongside FenXun Partners, on the merger control aspects of Murata Manufacturing's $155m acquisition of Sony's battery business. In addition to his high-profile merger control practice, Croswell also benefits from higher rights of audience, affording him the ability to appear before the Competition Tribunal and Appeal Courts. As well as handling numerous non-public investigations on behalf of Hong Kong corporates, he continues to represent British Telecom in its defence against the first prosecution brought by the Hong Kong Competition Commission. Special counsel¬†Thomas Jenkins¬†has a flourishing reputation in the market for both contentious and non-contentious matters; he continues to play a key role, alongside Crosswell, on behalf of British Telecom as one of the respondents in the bid-rigging case brought by the Competition Commission.¬†Other clients include FedEx, Platinum Equity and Aston Martin.

Leading individuals

Stephen Crosswell  - Baker McKenzie

Next generation lawyers

Thomas Jenkins  - Baker McKenzie

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Asset finance (including aviation and shipping finance)
Aviation finance - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Headed by Andrew Lockhart, Baker McKenzie's two-partner aviation finance team handles a broad range of work for a varied mix of clients including lessors, airlines, lenders and lessees. Able to leverage the expertise of practitioners spread across many Asia-Pacific jurisdictions, the team excels at handling complex transactions in the region, with Lockhart and Allen Ng having a particularly strong track record advising on leasing and finance deals in Thailand. Harvey Lau retired in December 2017.

Leading individuals

Allen Ng - Baker McKenzie

Andrew Lockhart - Baker McKenzie

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Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's 'responsive and very experienced' team, which is jointly led by Andrew Lockhart and Barry Cheng, provides an end-to-end service to clients on a wide variety of transactions, including those connected with syndicated loans, project finance, structured finance and acquisition and trade finance. Lockhart and Allen Ng have a notable specialism in aviation finance. Other names to note in the group are Sally Hung and associate Karine Chan, who recently acted for Crédit Agricole in the provision of a $420m syndicated term loan facility to Bluestar Finance Holdings as part of a group refinancing. In 2017, Hung and Chan also advised a syndicate of lenders (led by Mizuho Bank) on the provision of a $390m offshore syndicated loan to the Macau branch of Bank of Communications. Simon Leung is another key practitioner in the group, which also counts ING Bank, Natixis and ARA Asset Management as other active clients. May Tse is a recommended associate. Harvey Lau has retired from private practice.

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Corporate (including M&A)
Corporate (including M&A) - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie offers excellent market coverage, having advised clients on corporate transactions in China for more than 40 years. Underlining its commitment to its China-related offering, it operates a Joint Operation Office in Shanghai Free Trade Zone with PRC firm FenXun Partners. The core pillars of the practice in Hong Kong include acting for public and private companies on all aspects of their domestic and international activities, as well as assisting state-owned enterprises with their overseas investments. In 2017, team head Tracy Wut and associate Jeanie Kim acted for the Hong Kong-headquartered Pure Group on the negotiation of strategic investment partnerships with FountainVest Partners and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan. In a more recent highlight, Wut also worked with the Paris office to advise Tencent on acquiring a 27.3% stake in video games publisher Ubisoft from Vivendi. Christina Lee, special counsel Betty Wong and associates Janice Wong and Stephanie Mak acted for East Harvest Global on its HK$800m acquisition of Branding China Group. Dorothea Koo, Grace Tso and Nancy Leigh are other notable practitioners. Former team head David Fleming has retired from private practice.

Next generation lawyers

Jeanie Kim - Baker McKenzie

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Insurance
Insurance - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's team possesses¬†‚Äėstrong technical knowledge and advice is solutions focused and consistent with the client‚Äôs objectives‚Äô. Practice head¬†Martin Tam¬†is¬†‚Äėvery detailed and precise in his advice and has a good grasp of the specific technical requirements under Hong Kong law and regulation‚Äô.¬†Recent work¬†includes advising AIA Company on its restructuring of the AIA Retirement Fund Scheme, including on the regulatory approval process with the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC),¬†as well as advising the¬†Hong Kong Federation of Insurers on its establishment of a centralised insurance claims database. Other clients¬†also¬†include Allianz.

Leading individuals

Martin Tam - Baker McKenzie

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

With ten IP-focused partners based in Hong Kong and China, and able to leverage the expertise of practitioners spread throughout the firm's international network, the 'excellent' team at Baker McKenzie has the strength in depth to handle a tremendous volume and diversity of work on the contentious and non-contentious fronts. The team has 'a fantastic reputation' for handling trade mark prosecution matters and coordinates work, alongside other Asia-Pacific offices, on behalf of international corporates seeking brand protection across the Asia-Pacific region, as well as for Hong Kong-based multinationals and a growing roster of Chinese companies that are looking to expand globally. Maria Smith leads the firm's Hong Kong and regional brand protection and enforcement team. Loke-Khoon Tan heads up the firm's overall IP offering and is particularly noted for his PRC-related trade mark enforcement practice. Consultant Clifford Borg-Marks is also well respected in the market in relation to China IP matters and has aided many international corporates in establishing and consolidating their intellectual property rights (IPR) in the PRC. As well as recently assisting Whirlpool with obtaining well-known trade mark recognition for its Chinese house mark, Borg-Marks recently represented DreamWorks in high-profile domain name litigation in China. Ruby Chan specialises in brand protection work and is regularly instructed by major international companies seeking to exploit their IPR across multiple jurisdictions. Shih Yann Loo is a noted IP litigator.

Leading individuals

Loke-Khoon Tan - Baker McKenzie

Ruby Chan - Baker McKenzie

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Investment funds
Investment funds - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie is a strong choice for sponsors, institutional investors and financial investors seeking advice on China-related private fund structures. Its team has vast expertise in a wide range of vehicles involving asset classes such as private equity buyout funds, hedge funds, real estate funds,  energy, infrastructure, debt and distressed assets. Reflective of the quality of the practice, the firm acts as lead counsel to Gaw Capital Partners on all of its China-related investment funds mandates; in 2017, team head Jason Ng, Edwin Wong and Karen Man were part of the cross-office team that acted for the client on the formation of its fifth flagship real estate fund Gateway Real Estate Fund V, which closed with $1.3bn in final commitments. A more recent highlight saw Ng, Wong and others advise the same client on the formation of a $349m fund, which was set up for the client to acquire (along with Allianz Real Estate and other investors) Sky Soho, a Grade A office asset in Shanghai. The firm also has an active investor-side practice, where it acts for Chinese financial institutions and other Chinese institutional investors, as well as foreign sovereign wealth funds and pension funds. In addition, the firm has a standout reputation in REIT transactions; it is advising on the ten current REITs in Hong Kong at the time of writing, acting either as manager or trustee counsel; Milton Cheng and special counsel Jeremy Ong are recommended for their REIT expertise. Karl Egbert joined the firm's New York office from Dechert; although he is now New York-based, he frequently works in Hong Kong.

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Labour and employment
Labour and employment - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

Benefiting from longstanding experience in the local market, Baker McKenzie's 'very strong' Hong Kong practice is the fulcrum from which the firm provides advice to multinational clients on their most pressing employment matters, not just locally but also throughout Asia, where it can team up with practitioners in local offices should the need arise. Praised for its 'sensitive and thoughtful advice', the team excels at handling work within heavily regulated industries, including the TMT and financial services sectors, for clients including Wells Fargo, BT and Lenovo. The 'excellent' Rowan McKenzie has broad-ranging expertise across the gamut of contentious and non-contentious matters; he recently successfully defended a global beverages company against a wrongful termination claim brought by a former employee at the Labour Tribunal following their summary dismissal for gross misconduct. Appreciated by clients for her 'even-handed approach', Susan Kendall provides 'fair and balanced advice' to clients engaged in contentious employment matters; her recent cases have included matters relating to misappropriation of confidential information and allegations of sexual harassment. 'An internationally recognised authority in his area of expertise', Jonathan Isaacs is the principal point of contact for clients seeking advice on China employment law matters and is particularly appreciated for his 'knowledge of how the Chinese law is evolving'. Isaacs is also aided in his mainland China-related work by virtue of his ability to leverage the firm's Joint Operation with PRC law firm FenXun Partners, enabling it to provide local law capabilities to clients through a team of PRC-qualified lawyers. Sonia Wong and Catherine Leung are recommended at associate level.

Leading individuals

Rowan McKenzie - Baker McKenzie

Susan Kendall - Baker McKenzie

Next generation lawyers

Catherine Leung - Baker McKenzie

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Real estate
Real estate - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

Edmond Chan and Rico Chan head up the team at Baker McKenzie. Recent work includes advising Silk Road Fund on the $1.2bn sale of two Florentia Village retail projects in Wuqing and Shanghai, and of a future pipeline project to a newly established fund. The team has also assisted Excel Partners China Fund on a $175m term loan facility secured by a complex package, mainly consisting of the mortgage of the Excel Centre, a Grade A office building on Beijing financial street.

Leading individuals

Edmond Chan - Baker McKenzie

Rico Chan - Baker McKenzie

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Regulatory
Regulatory - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Cynthia Tang leads on the contentious side at Baker McKenzie, focusing on domestic as well as global litigation and financial services regulatory enforcement; Karen Man heads the non-contentious regulatory practice, with a strong focus on fintech. In recent highlights, the team advised LGT on its acquisition of ABN AMRO's private banking business in Asia and the Middle East, particularly regarding the asset purchase agreement, which triggered a number of regulatory considerations. It also represented China Galaxy in the acquisition of the cash securities business of CIMB in various jurisdictions, including Hong Kong, UK, US, Indonesia and India. Clients include China Construction Bank Asia, DSB and the Carlyle Group. Associate Grace Fung is another name to note.

Leading individuals

Cynthia Tang - Baker McKenzie

Next generation lawyers

Grace Fung - Baker McKenzie

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Regulatory: anti-corruption and compliance
Regulatory: anti-corruption and compliance - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's practice is led by Asia Pacific head of compliance and investigations, Mini vandePol. Recent highlights include being retained as the only international law firm, selected by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council (SASAC), to assist with the building of a compliance system for a major SOE. Cynthia Tang and Gary Seib are also key contacts in the Hong Kong office.

Leading individuals

Mini vandePol - Baker McKenzie

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Restructuring and insolvency
Restructuring and insolvency - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie is well-placed to handle Greater China-related restructurings and insolvencies by virtue of not only housing numerous practitioners in Hong Kong but also in mainland China with significant insolvency expertise. Although the team handles work for a range of stakeholders on both the creditor and debtor side, it has been particularly active on behalf of insolvency practitioners on numerous pan-Asian insolvencies. Kwun Yee Cheung has been at the forefront of most of these instructions, including her work for the official receiver of Hong Kong on the insolvency of Bank of Credit and Commerce Hong Kong, and the liquidators of General Nice Resources on its multi-jurisdictional insolvency. Solicitor-advocate Gary Seib regularly handles insolvency litigation as part of his broader commercial litigation prowess.

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TMT
TMT - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Able to call upon IT and e-commerce experts from across the firm's global network, Baker McKenzie excels at handling multi-jurisdictional mandates on behalf of both end-users and producers of technology. 'Particularly noted for its transactional work', the firm is able to provide a multi-disciplinary approach to M&A matters in the sector, which brings together practitioners with  regulatory, transactional and IP expertise. Corporate partner Nancy Leigh excels at handling regulatory and transactional matters in the IT and communications space, while Paolo Sbuttoni is noted for his expertise in the fintech space in addition to work relating to data privacy and cybersecurity. Clients include eBay, Google, China Eastern Airlines and SAP.

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Tax and trusts
Tax and trusts - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

'Trailblazers in relation to Hong Kong tax matters', and also able to leverage a huge global tax team to resource multi-jurisdictional matters, Baker McKenzie has the 'economies of scale' and the expertise to handle a tremendous volume and variety of contentious and non-contentious matters. Richard Weisman acts for ultra-high-net-worth Asia-based families on international tax and wealth planning matters, as well as providing the tax structuring on M&A and other corporate transactions. Alongside Pierre Chan, Weisman provided the Hong Kong tax input in relation to LGT Group Foundation's $20bn acquisition of ABN AMRO's Asia and Middle East private banking business. As well as providing tax-related wealth management expertise and general tax advisory work, team head Steven Sieker has an excellent reputation for handling contentious tax matters; he recently negotiated a multimillion-dollar settlement claim with the Hong Kong Inland Revenue Department on behalf of a major global retailer relating to a claim for offshore profits. Senior associate Carrie Lui has a particularly strong reputation advising on the tax aspects of major restructuring and M&A projects.

Leading individuals

Richard Weisman  - Baker McKenzie

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Hong Kong: Capital markets

Capital markets (equity)
Capital markets (equity) - ranked: tier 5

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's team acts as Hong Kong and US legal counsel to sponsors and underwriters on the entire ambit of capital markets transactions. Its recent work included Christina Lee acting for Hong Kong Stock Exchange Main Board-listed company REXLot Holdings on a HK$25m rights issue. Lee also worked with Beijing-based Greater China practice head Jackie Lo to advise HNA Finance I and CCB International  Capital as the underwriters on the circa HK$9.25bn rights issuance by Hong Kong International Construction Investment Management Group in 2017. Another key figure in Hong Kong is Ivy Wong, who was the lead adviser to Everbright Grand China Assets on its $20m global offering and Hong Kong Main Board IPO. In addition to advising issuers and underwriters on IPOs and secondary offerings, the team also assists listed companies with compliance-related issues and public takeovers, among various other matters.

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Hong Kong: Dispute resolution

Dispute resolution: litigation
Dispute resolution: litigation - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's practice head¬†Cynthia Tang¬†is¬†an expert in listed company and financial services regulatory enforcement¬†who has ‚Äėin-depth knowledge and is well¬†connected‚Äô.¬†The team attracted a number of high-profile cases and¬†acts for clients across the entire spectrum of disputes and contentious work, from compliance and regulatory investigations through to commercial litigation, shareholder disputes, commercial and international arbitration, contentious restructuring and insolvency.¬† Mini vandePol¬†is also singled out. Special counsel Jannice Lau¬†is ‚Äėvery diligent in her analysis‚Äô.

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Asia Pacific: Regional International Arbitration

Leading firms
Leading firms - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie handles cases ranging from engineering and construction matters through to commodities and joint ventures disputes. In Singapore, Nandakumar Ponniya handles cases with Indonesian elements; another contact of note is Andi Kadir, who practices as part of the firm's Indonesian affiliate. Wynn Pakdeejit in Bangkok also handles both arbitrations and the enforcement of their awards. As far as the Chinese-speaking world is concerned, David Liou in Taiwan is also notable. The firm also includes investment treaty specialist Jo Delaney in Australia. Leng Sun Chan SC is now part of Essex Court Chambers.

[back to top]

Hong Kong

Antitrust and competition
Antitrust and competition - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

Benefiting from ‚Äėexcellent competition law knowledge, particularly in the telecoms arena‚Äô, Baker McKenzie¬†has been well-positioned to leverage this longstanding experience in the telecoms industry (the only sector to be previously affected by competition laws in Hong Kong prior to the 2015 Competition Ordinance) to be at the forefront of the nascent competition laws within the country. Team head¬†Stephen Crosswell¬†has ‚Äėexcellent real-life local experience‚Äô and is consequently a vital resource for clients seeking to navigate the nuances not only of the new local competition law regime but also across other Asian jurisdictions ‚Äď including China, where it is able to deal directly with the Ministry of Commerce of the People‚Äôs Republic of China (MOFCOM) by dint of the firm‚Äôs joint operation with the mainland China-based FenXun Partners. Crosswell led, alongside FenXun Partners, on the merger control aspects of Murata Manufacturing's $155m acquisition of Sony's battery business. In addition to his high-profile merger control practice, Croswell also benefits from higher rights of audience, affording him the ability to appear before the Competition Tribunal and Appeal Courts. As well as handling numerous non-public investigations on behalf of Hong Kong corporates, he continues to represent British Telecom in its defence against the first prosecution brought by the Hong Kong Competition Commission. Special counsel¬†Thomas Jenkins¬†has a flourishing reputation in the market for both contentious and non-contentious matters; he continues to play a key role, alongside Crosswell, on behalf of British Telecom as one of the respondents in the bid-rigging case brought by the Competition Commission.¬†Other clients include FedEx, Platinum Equity and Aston Martin.

Leading individuals

Stephen Crosswell  - Baker McKenzie

Next generation lawyers

Thomas Jenkins  - Baker McKenzie

[back to top]

Asset finance (including aviation and shipping finance)
Aviation finance - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Headed by Andrew Lockhart, Baker McKenzie's two-partner aviation finance team handles a broad range of work for a varied mix of clients including lessors, airlines, lenders and lessees. Able to leverage the expertise of practitioners spread across many Asia-Pacific jurisdictions, the team excels at handling complex transactions in the region, with Lockhart and Allen Ng having a particularly strong track record advising on leasing and finance deals in Thailand. Harvey Lau retired in December 2017.

Leading individuals

Allen Ng - Baker McKenzie

Andrew Lockhart - Baker McKenzie

[back to top]

Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's 'responsive and very experienced' team, which is jointly led by Andrew Lockhart and Barry Cheng, provides an end-to-end service to clients on a wide variety of transactions, including those connected with syndicated loans, project finance, structured finance and acquisition and trade finance. Lockhart and Allen Ng have a notable specialism in aviation finance. Other names to note in the group are Sally Hung and associate Karine Chan, who recently acted for Crédit Agricole in the provision of a $420m syndicated term loan facility to Bluestar Finance Holdings as part of a group refinancing. In 2017, Hung and Chan also advised a syndicate of lenders (led by Mizuho Bank) on the provision of a $390m offshore syndicated loan to the Macau branch of Bank of Communications. Simon Leung is another key practitioner in the group, which also counts ING Bank, Natixis and ARA Asset Management as other active clients. May Tse is a recommended associate. Harvey Lau has retired from private practice.

[back to top]

Corporate (including M&A)
Corporate (including M&A) - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie offers excellent market coverage, having advised clients on corporate transactions in China for more than 40 years. Underlining its commitment to its China-related offering, it operates a Joint Operation Office in Shanghai Free Trade Zone with PRC firm FenXun Partners. The core pillars of the practice in Hong Kong include acting for public and private companies on all aspects of their domestic and international activities, as well as assisting state-owned enterprises with their overseas investments. In 2017, team head Tracy Wut and associate Jeanie Kim acted for the Hong Kong-headquartered Pure Group on the negotiation of strategic investment partnerships with FountainVest Partners and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan. In a more recent highlight, Wut also worked with the Paris office to advise Tencent on acquiring a 27.3% stake in video games publisher Ubisoft from Vivendi. Christina Lee, special counsel Betty Wong and associates Janice Wong and Stephanie Mak acted for East Harvest Global on its HK$800m acquisition of Branding China Group. Dorothea Koo, Grace Tso and Nancy Leigh are other notable practitioners. Former team head David Fleming has retired from private practice.

Next generation lawyers

Jeanie Kim - Baker McKenzie

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Insurance
Insurance - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's team possesses¬†‚Äėstrong technical knowledge and advice is solutions focused and consistent with the client‚Äôs objectives‚Äô. Practice head¬†Martin Tam¬†is¬†‚Äėvery detailed and precise in his advice and has a good grasp of the specific technical requirements under Hong Kong law and regulation‚Äô.¬†Recent work¬†includes advising AIA Company on its restructuring of the AIA Retirement Fund Scheme, including on the regulatory approval process with the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC),¬†as well as advising the¬†Hong Kong Federation of Insurers on its establishment of a centralised insurance claims database. Other clients¬†also¬†include Allianz.

Leading individuals

Martin Tam - Baker McKenzie

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

With ten IP-focused partners based in Hong Kong and China, and able to leverage the expertise of practitioners spread throughout the firm's international network, the 'excellent' team at Baker McKenzie has the strength in depth to handle a tremendous volume and diversity of work on the contentious and non-contentious fronts. The team has 'a fantastic reputation' for handling trade mark prosecution matters and coordinates work, alongside other Asia-Pacific offices, on behalf of international corporates seeking brand protection across the Asia-Pacific region, as well as for Hong Kong-based multinationals and a growing roster of Chinese companies that are looking to expand globally. Maria Smith leads the firm's Hong Kong and regional brand protection and enforcement team. Loke-Khoon Tan heads up the firm's overall IP offering and is particularly noted for his PRC-related trade mark enforcement practice. Consultant Clifford Borg-Marks is also well respected in the market in relation to China IP matters and has aided many international corporates in establishing and consolidating their intellectual property rights (IPR) in the PRC. As well as recently assisting Whirlpool with obtaining well-known trade mark recognition for its Chinese house mark, Borg-Marks recently represented DreamWorks in high-profile domain name litigation in China. Ruby Chan specialises in brand protection work and is regularly instructed by major international companies seeking to exploit their IPR across multiple jurisdictions. Shih Yann Loo is a noted IP litigator.

Leading individuals

Loke-Khoon Tan - Baker McKenzie

Ruby Chan - Baker McKenzie

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Investment funds
Investment funds - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie is a strong choice for sponsors, institutional investors and financial investors seeking advice on China-related private fund structures. Its team has vast expertise in a wide range of vehicles involving asset classes such as private equity buyout funds, hedge funds, real estate funds,  energy, infrastructure, debt and distressed assets. Reflective of the quality of the practice, the firm acts as lead counsel to Gaw Capital Partners on all of its China-related investment funds mandates; in 2017, team head Jason Ng, Edwin Wong and Karen Man were part of the cross-office team that acted for the client on the formation of its fifth flagship real estate fund Gateway Real Estate Fund V, which closed with $1.3bn in final commitments. A more recent highlight saw Ng, Wong and others advise the same client on the formation of a $349m fund, which was set up for the client to acquire (along with Allianz Real Estate and other investors) Sky Soho, a Grade A office asset in Shanghai. The firm also has an active investor-side practice, where it acts for Chinese financial institutions and other Chinese institutional investors, as well as foreign sovereign wealth funds and pension funds. In addition, the firm has a standout reputation in REIT transactions; it is advising on the ten current REITs in Hong Kong at the time of writing, acting either as manager or trustee counsel; Milton Cheng and special counsel Jeremy Ong are recommended for their REIT expertise. Karl Egbert joined the firm's New York office from Dechert; although he is now New York-based, he frequently works in Hong Kong.

[back to top]

Labour and employment
Labour and employment - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

Benefiting from longstanding experience in the local market, Baker McKenzie's 'very strong' Hong Kong practice is the fulcrum from which the firm provides advice to multinational clients on their most pressing employment matters, not just locally but also throughout Asia, where it can team up with practitioners in local offices should the need arise. Praised for its 'sensitive and thoughtful advice', the team excels at handling work within heavily regulated industries, including the TMT and financial services sectors, for clients including Wells Fargo, BT and Lenovo. The 'excellent' Rowan McKenzie has broad-ranging expertise across the gamut of contentious and non-contentious matters; he recently successfully defended a global beverages company against a wrongful termination claim brought by a former employee at the Labour Tribunal following their summary dismissal for gross misconduct. Appreciated by clients for her 'even-handed approach', Susan Kendall provides 'fair and balanced advice' to clients engaged in contentious employment matters; her recent cases have included matters relating to misappropriation of confidential information and allegations of sexual harassment. 'An internationally recognised authority in his area of expertise', Jonathan Isaacs is the principal point of contact for clients seeking advice on China employment law matters and is particularly appreciated for his 'knowledge of how the Chinese law is evolving'. Isaacs is also aided in his mainland China-related work by virtue of his ability to leverage the firm's Joint Operation with PRC law firm FenXun Partners, enabling it to provide local law capabilities to clients through a team of PRC-qualified lawyers. Sonia Wong and Catherine Leung are recommended at associate level.

Leading individuals

Rowan McKenzie - Baker McKenzie

Susan Kendall - Baker McKenzie

Next generation lawyers

Catherine Leung - Baker McKenzie

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Real estate
Real estate - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

Edmond Chan and Rico Chan head up the team at Baker McKenzie. Recent work includes advising Silk Road Fund on the $1.2bn sale of two Florentia Village retail projects in Wuqing and Shanghai, and of a future pipeline project to a newly established fund. The team has also assisted Excel Partners China Fund on a $175m term loan facility secured by a complex package, mainly consisting of the mortgage of the Excel Centre, a Grade A office building on Beijing financial street.

Leading individuals

Edmond Chan - Baker McKenzie

Rico Chan - Baker McKenzie

[back to top]

Regulatory
Regulatory - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Cynthia Tang leads on the contentious side at Baker McKenzie, focusing on domestic as well as global litigation and financial services regulatory enforcement; Karen Man heads the non-contentious regulatory practice, with a strong focus on fintech. In recent highlights, the team advised LGT on its acquisition of ABN AMRO's private banking business in Asia and the Middle East, particularly regarding the asset purchase agreement, which triggered a number of regulatory considerations. It also represented China Galaxy in the acquisition of the cash securities business of CIMB in various jurisdictions, including Hong Kong, UK, US, Indonesia and India. Clients include China Construction Bank Asia, DSB and the Carlyle Group. Associate Grace Fung is another name to note.

Leading individuals

Cynthia Tang - Baker McKenzie

Next generation lawyers

Grace Fung - Baker McKenzie

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Regulatory: anti-corruption and compliance
Regulatory: anti-corruption and compliance - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's practice is led by Asia Pacific head of compliance and investigations, Mini vandePol. Recent highlights include being retained as the only international law firm, selected by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council (SASAC), to assist with the building of a compliance system for a major SOE. Cynthia Tang and Gary Seib are also key contacts in the Hong Kong office.

Leading individuals

Mini vandePol - Baker McKenzie

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Restructuring and insolvency
Restructuring and insolvency - ranked: tier 3

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie is well-placed to handle Greater China-related restructurings and insolvencies by virtue of not only housing numerous practitioners in Hong Kong but also in mainland China with significant insolvency expertise. Although the team handles work for a range of stakeholders on both the creditor and debtor side, it has been particularly active on behalf of insolvency practitioners on numerous pan-Asian insolvencies. Kwun Yee Cheung has been at the forefront of most of these instructions, including her work for the official receiver of Hong Kong on the insolvency of Bank of Credit and Commerce Hong Kong, and the liquidators of General Nice Resources on its multi-jurisdictional insolvency. Solicitor-advocate Gary Seib regularly handles insolvency litigation as part of his broader commercial litigation prowess.

[back to top]

TMT
TMT - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Able to call upon IT and e-commerce experts from across the firm's global network, Baker McKenzie excels at handling multi-jurisdictional mandates on behalf of both end-users and producers of technology. 'Particularly noted for its transactional work', the firm is able to provide a multi-disciplinary approach to M&A matters in the sector, which brings together practitioners with  regulatory, transactional and IP expertise. Corporate partner Nancy Leigh excels at handling regulatory and transactional matters in the IT and communications space, while Paolo Sbuttoni is noted for his expertise in the fintech space in addition to work relating to data privacy and cybersecurity. Clients include eBay, Google, China Eastern Airlines and SAP.

[back to top]

Tax and trusts
Tax and trusts - ranked: tier 1

Baker McKenzie

'Trailblazers in relation to Hong Kong tax matters', and also able to leverage a huge global tax team to resource multi-jurisdictional matters, Baker McKenzie has the 'economies of scale' and the expertise to handle a tremendous volume and variety of contentious and non-contentious matters. Richard Weisman acts for ultra-high-net-worth Asia-based families on international tax and wealth planning matters, as well as providing the tax structuring on M&A and other corporate transactions. Alongside Pierre Chan, Weisman provided the Hong Kong tax input in relation to LGT Group Foundation's $20bn acquisition of ABN AMRO's Asia and Middle East private banking business. As well as providing tax-related wealth management expertise and general tax advisory work, team head Steven Sieker has an excellent reputation for handling contentious tax matters; he recently negotiated a multimillion-dollar settlement claim with the Hong Kong Inland Revenue Department on behalf of a major global retailer relating to a claim for offshore profits. Senior associate Carrie Lui has a particularly strong reputation advising on the tax aspects of major restructuring and M&A projects.

Leading individuals

Richard Weisman  - Baker McKenzie

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Hong Kong: Capital markets

Capital markets (equity)
Capital markets (equity) - ranked: tier 5

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's team acts as Hong Kong and US legal counsel to sponsors and underwriters on the entire ambit of capital markets transactions. Its recent work included Christina Lee acting for Hong Kong Stock Exchange Main Board-listed company REXLot Holdings on a HK$25m rights issue. Lee also worked with Beijing-based Greater China practice head Jackie Lo to advise HNA Finance I and CCB International  Capital as the underwriters on the circa HK$9.25bn rights issuance by Hong Kong International Construction Investment Management Group in 2017. Another key figure in Hong Kong is Ivy Wong, who was the lead adviser to Everbright Grand China Assets on its $20m global offering and Hong Kong Main Board IPO. In addition to advising issuers and underwriters on IPOs and secondary offerings, the team also assists listed companies with compliance-related issues and public takeovers, among various other matters.

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Hong Kong: Dispute resolution

Dispute resolution: litigation
Dispute resolution: litigation - ranked: tier 2

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's practice head¬†Cynthia Tang¬†is¬†an expert in listed company and financial services regulatory enforcement¬†who has ‚Äėin-depth knowledge and is well¬†connected‚Äô.¬†The team attracted a number of high-profile cases and¬†acts for clients across the entire spectrum of disputes and contentious work, from compliance and regulatory investigations through to commercial litigation, shareholder disputes, commercial and international arbitration, contentious restructuring and insolvency.¬† Mini vandePol¬†is also singled out. Special counsel Jannice Lau¬†is ‚Äėvery diligent in her analysis‚Äô.

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Further information on Baker McKenzie LLP

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about Baker McKenzie LLP in other jurisdictions.

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Asia Pacific: Regional International Arbitration

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Legal Developments by:
Baker McKenzie LLP

  • The New Turkish Code of Obligations: Important Changes for Leases of Residential & Business Premises

    For decades, the primary Turkish laws governing leases of residential and business premises have been the Law on Leasing Real Property dated May 27, 1955 (the ‚ÄúLease Law‚ÄĚ) and the Turkish Code of Obligations No. 818 dated April 22, 1926 (the ‚ÄúObligations Code‚ÄĚ). Both of these laws, however, will be repealed and replaced with the new Turkish Code of Obligations No. 6098 dated January 11, 2011 (the ‚ÄúNew Obligations Code‚ÄĚ), which will enter into force on July 7, 2012.
    - Esin Attorney Partnership

Legal Developments in Hong Kong

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