The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Latham & Watkins LLP

18TH FLOOR, ONE EXCHANGE SQUARE, 8 CONNAUGHT PLACE, CENTRAL HONG KONG
Tel:
Work +852 2912 2500
Fax:
Fax +852 2912 2600
Email:
Web:
www.lw.com

Hong Kong

Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins fields a team of Hong Kong, English and US law experts, making it an excellent choice for transactions of the utmost complexity and significance in Greater China and across the Asia Pacific region. It is particularly strong in the leveraged and acquisition finance space, as was illustrated in 2017 when Gary Hamp and counsel Manas Chandrashekar acted as borrower's and sponsor's counsel to Warburg Pincus on its proposed $8bn bid to acquire Global Logistic Properties; this was one of the largest leveraged acquisition financings ever put together in Asia. In addition, another notable deal saw Hamp work with other offices to assist Baring Private Equity Asia, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Fugue Finance with a highly complex, multi-tier international financing connected with the acquisition of Nord Anglia Education. Hamp also advised Partners Group on the financing aspects of its $235m LBO of Phillipines-based SPi Global. Elsewhere, the team has expertise in syndicated lending and bridge-to-bond financings, among other matters. Hamp covers inbound and outbound Asia-related transactions, while Howard Lam, who is bilingual in English and Mandarin, has a strong focus on China-related financing transactions. In addition to acting for sponsors and borrowers, the firm is also active in work for lenders; clients include Credit Suisse, HSBC, Bank of China and Morgan Stanley.

Leading individuals

Gary Hamp - Latham & Watkins

Howard Lam - Latham & Watkins

[back to top]

Corporate (including M&A)
Corporate (including M&A) - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP saw its deal volumes increase significantly in 2017, following a major expansion of the team in 2016. Its high-quality practice comes to the fore in high-profile, domestic and cross-border Greater China deals, as well as transactions across the Asia-Pacific region. Simon Cooke leads the group, whose M&A capabilities work seamlessly with the firm's complementary offerings in areas such as acquisition finance, corporate risk and government investigations, and data privacy and cybersecurity. In 2017, Cathy Yeung and members of the London office acted for China-based Hytera Communications on its acquisition of UK-based Sepura Group; this transaction represented the first acquisition of a UK-listed company by a Chinese company since 2012. In the retail and consumer sector, a more recent highlight saw Frank Sun co-lead a cross-office team that advised CITIC Capital China Partners III on its acquisition of Axilone, a France-based manufacturer of premium plastic and metal packaging for global cosmetic and beauty care brands. David Blumental, who is a fluent Mandarin and Shanghainese speaker, has assisted longstanding client Shandong Ruyi with a number of transactions, as part of the expansion of its global brand; a recent deal involved advising the client on its acquisition of INVISTA's apparel and advanced textiles business. Blumental also led a cross-office team that advised Shandong Ruyi's subsidiary company Jining Ruyi Investment on acquiring the UK-based Aquascutum Group for $117m. Another name to note is Amy Beckingham, who was one of the advisers to Indonesia-based motorcycle taxi fleet operator Go-Jek on an equity investment in it by Tencent. Terris Tang recently made partner.

Leading individuals

Simon Cooke - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Private equity
Private equity - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins LLP

Galvanised by a series of astute hires, Latham & Watkins LLP has rapidly positioned itself as a serious player in the Greater China private equity space; M&A, leveraged finance and corporate regulatory work are key strengths. The 'excellent' Simon Cooke heads the team and regularly leads on the most significant mandates, including his recent work for The Carlyle Group on its $2.75bn disposal of its Korean portfolio company ADT Caps to a consortium led by SK Telecom and Macquarie’s Korean Opportunities Fund. Mandarin-speaker Frank Sun has excellent credibility among Greater China-focused private equity clients and regularly advises them on their inbound and outbound deals. He recently acted for CITIC Capital Partners on its acquisition of France-based company Axilone, and represented Hillhouse Capital and Goldman Sachs on the acquisition of a minority stake in China-based Arraith Dental Group. The team is rounded out at partner level by the 'very accomplished' Amy Beckingham, who regularly acts for private equity sponsors on their investments and exits; she recently advised Warburg Pincus on its investment in Trax Technology Solutions, a Singapore-based developer of image recognition technology. Other clients include Carlyle Asia Partners, MBK Partners and Baring Private Equity Asia.

Leading individuals

Simon Cooke - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Projects and energy
Projects and energy - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP¬†has a focus on China-based and multinational energy and natural resources transactions, acting for clients including China-Africa Industrial Capacity Cooperation Fund and Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries. Practice head¬†David Blumental¬†possesses ‚Äėextensive experience and knowledge with regard to energy deals, broad connections and industry insights, and outstanding expertise in energy transactions‚Äô. Recent work includes advising a subsidiary of state-owned China Energy Investment Group on a joint venture between Manz and Shanghai Electric for the research, development and commercial production of solar energy panels and equipment.

[back to top]

Regulatory
Next generation lawyers

Simon Hawkins - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Restructuring and insolvency
Restructuring and insolvency - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins LLP

Able to leverage the prowess of superb finance and restructuring lawyers spread across its global network of offices, Latham & Watkins LLP 's three-partner team has 'an excellent reputation' in the market on behalf of a wide array of stakeholders including insolvency practitioners, corporates, funds and banks. 'Superb' team head Howard Lam has strong credentials in the Asia-Pacific market and is regularly at the forefront of the team's most significant mandates. In co-ordination with the Singapore office, Lam recently advised a group of syndicated lenders on the $4.5bn debt restructuring of PT Bumi Resources. Solicitor-advocate Simon Powell has an excellent reputation for handling contentious insolvency matters, and continues to represent China Life on all aspects of the winding-up proceedings against Yu Rui, a company incorporated in the Bahamas. The presence of US-qualified partner Josef Athanas is of particular benefit to clients where documentation is governed by US law.

Leading individuals

Howard Lam - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Structured finance and securitisation
Structured finance and securitisation - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins LLP

Led by Posit Laohaphan, Latham & Watkins LLP handles transactions across the full range of OTC and exchange-traded derivative products on behalf of an impressive array of global and Asian financial institutions, including Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank, Mizuho Bank and HSBC. Although the team handles work on its own, it also benefits from being able to work alongside colleagues spread across the firm's vast network of European, US and Asian offices and is consequently often a vital part of global teams across complex multi-jurisdictional matters. For example, in a novel matter involving significant input from New York, Laohaphan advised Deutsche Bank Securities in relation to China Lodging Group's $425m convertible bonds issuance. The arrival in October 2017 of Derek Chua from Linklaters strengthens the team's ability to handle a wide range of structured finance mandates involving debt- and equity-linked securities, structured equity financings, corporate derivative transactions, and a variety of retail and institutional structured products. Simon Hawkins is recommended for his derivatives regulatory expertise.

[back to top]

Hong Kong: Capital markets

Capital markets (debt)
Capital markets (debt) - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP¬†is one of the most active firms acting as issuer's counsel in the Hong Kong and PRC bond markets. It also has strong capabilities in relation to US listings, where its team is particularly highly regarded for its regulatory expertise. Jointly led by¬†Ji Liu¬†and¬†James Burnett, the team handles a broad cross-section of matters for issuers, underwriters and placement agents. Its wide-ranging areas of expertise include investment grade bonds, convertible bonds, global and European medium-term note programmes and exchange offers. In the high-yield space, Burnett, who has more than a decade of experience of the London high-yield debt market, advised the underwriters on Yango Justice International's $200m bond offering. The firm's other recent work includes Liu acting for China National Chemical (ChemChina) as issuer on a series of bond offerings, and also assisting Tianjin Rail Transit Group with a ‚ā¨400m bonds issuance. In 2017,¬†Cathy Yeung,¬†Allen Wang¬†and Terris Tang, who has recently made partner, advised Franshion Brilliant on a $500m senior guaranteed perpetual capital securities offering. In other developments, the practice was significantly strengthened recently when¬†Benjamin Su¬†re-joined the firm from¬†Kirkland & Ellis.¬†Counsel¬†Daying Zhang¬†has also been hired from the same firm.

Leading individuals

Ji Liu - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Capital markets (equity)
Capital markets (equity) - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP combines local law expertise with the resources of its international platform, putting it in high demand among issuers and underwriters for advice on their most challenging, big-ticket Hong Kong and US IPOs, and other equity offerings. The firm has more than two decades' experience of the Greater China market, and assists clients with the full range of issues from a Hong Kong, US and English law angle. A key figure at the firm is Cathy Yeung, who is global co-chair of the capital markets practice and also serves as chair of the Greater China practice. Illustrative of the firm's excellent reputation for assisting PRC banks with Hong Kong listings, Yeung worked alongside Allen Wang, recently promoted partner Terris Tang and others to act for Bank of Gansu on its HK$6bn IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. In the public utilities sector, Yeung and Tang were the lead advisers to Kunming Dianchi Water Treatment, a Yunnan-based wastewater treatment and reclaimed water supplier, on its $171m Hong Kong Stock Exchange IPO of H shares. In the US, a notable highlight saw Wang lead a cross-office team that acted for the underwriters (including Citigroup Global Markets, Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan, among others) in BEST Inc's $450m IPO on the New York Stock Exchange. The team also acted for the underwriters (including Morgan Stanley, UBS and Bank of America Merrill Lynch) on GreenTree Hospitality Group's $143m IPO on the New York Stock Exchange. Other notable individuals include Amy Beckingham and Simon Cooke, who advised MBK Partners HK on a block trade of 34 million H shares on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Benjamin Su and Daying Zhang recently rejoined the firm from Kirkland & Ellis. Zheng Wang made counsel in 2017.

Leading individuals

Cathy Yeung - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Hong Kong: Dispute resolution

Dispute resolution: international arbitration
Dispute resolution: international arbitration - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins LLP

Simon Powell¬†and Ing Loong Yang¬†head up the team at Latham & Watkins LLP, which has¬†‚Äėan excellent reputation‚Äô.¬†Recent work includes representing¬†Great Wall Pan Asia International Investment it its¬†$22m¬†claim¬†in an HKIAC arbitration seated in Hong Kong under a series of agreements related to provision of a loan to the chairman of a Hong Kong listed company.¬†Glory Empire Global, Shenzhen Yihua Computer, Pegatron Corporation and The Carlyle Group also count among the team's clients.

Leading individuals

Ing Loong Yang - Latham & Watkins LLP

[back to top]

Dispute resolution: litigation
Dispute resolution: litigation - ranked: tier 4

Latham & Watkins LLP

Simon Powell and Ing Loong Yang head up the team at Latham & Watkins LLP. Recent work includes assisting China Life in relation to a $2.5bn dispute with a high-net-worth individual from mainland China and various companies owned by the client, arising out of the sale and purchase of shares in a Mongolian mining company. The practice has been bolstered by the arrival of contentious regulatory expert Catherine McBride from Deutsche Bank. Clients include PwC and One Equity Partners.

[back to top]


Further information on Latham & Watkins LLP

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about Latham & Watkins LLP in other jurisdictions.

United Arab Emirates

Offices in Dubai

Belgium

Offices in Brussels

China

Offices in Shanghai and Beijing

Germany

Offices in Hamburg, Frankfurt, Munich, and Dusseldorf

Spain

Offices in Madrid and Barcelona

France

Offices in Paris

Hong Kong

Offices in Hong Kong

Indonesia

Latin America: International firms

India

Italy

Offices in Milan and Rome

Japan

Offices in Tokyo

London

Offices in London

Myanmar

Malaysia

Philippines

Russia

Offices in Moscow

Singapore

Offices in Singapore

South Korea

Offices in Seoul

Saudi Arabia

Offices in Riyadh

United States

Offices in Chicago, Washington DC, Silicon Valley, Orange County, Newark, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston, Boston, and Century City

Vietnam

Legal Developments in Hong Kong

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