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Editorial

Investment funds: foreign firms

Index of tables

  1. Investment funds: foreign firms
  2. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Clifford Chance LLP's practice covers hedge, private equity, real estate and registered funds; and it typically advises on the launch, registration and ongoing operation of investment funds, as well as assisting with regulatory and securities law. The team advised Allianz Real Estate (Asia Pacific branch) on its investment in Redwood Japan Logistics Fund II.  Ying White heads the funds and investment management group in China, focusing on onshore and offshore fund formation and offshore investments by Chinese institutions. Hong Kong's Mark Shipman is the global funds head and Matthias Feldmann leads the global hedge fund sub-sector.

Simmons & Simmons 'always provides instant response and support'. The practice is highly regarded for its advice to fund managers across Asia on hedge, private equity and exchange-traded funds, as well as other retail funds. The team assisted Man Group with the launch of its first onshore private securities investment fund in China. Beijing's Melody Yang focuses on fund formation; fund regulatory issues; fund investments by institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals and companies; managed account arrangements; and private equity investments. Yang is 'very responsive and detail minded and is able to coordinate different teams very well and stick to schedules'. In Hong Kong, Rolfe Hayden is Asia financial Markets head.

Baker McKenzie FenXun acts in a broad range of asset classes, including private equity, real estate, energy, infrastructure, mezzanine, hedge funds, debt and distressed assets. The practice was lead counsel to Gaw Capital Partners on the formation of its fifth flagship private equity real estate fund, Gateway Real Estate Fund V. Jason Ng is co-global funds group chair; and Milton Cheng and Edwin Wong are other key contacts.

'With expert knowledge of the China market and its link to US dollar investment funds', Shearman & Sterling LLP's 'team is very timely and diligent; it is also very knowledgeable about the region and able to anticipate needs and problems ahead of schedule'. The practice includes advising private equity, hedge and real estate funds as well as investment management firms on regulatory matters, new fund product designs and offerings of interests in private funds. Greater China head Lorna Xin Chen also leads the Asia asset management and investments funds practice and 'can always be relied on to get the job done'.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP is highly rated for its work on China-focused funds, including advising on the complex regulatory issues involved in fundraising for sponsors; and the team was recently very active in Asia real estate fund formation projects. It acted on the formation of a pan-Asia focused fund with $6bn in capital commitments from over 100 investors. Hong Kong's Adam Furber heads the firm’s Asia private funds practice.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP 'acts very professionally and provides prompt responses during negotiations'. The team advises investors, sponsors and strategic parties on the formation, capitalisation and operation of investment funds and fund managers, including venture funds and venture portfolio transactions. It acted for HOPU, a well-known private equity investor in China, in the establishment of the Hopu Fund III and related regulatory advice and filings. In 2017, Geoffrey Chan joined the Hong Kong office from Ropes & Gray LLP to lead the Asia Pacific investment management practice. To some, Chan is 'probably the most knowledgable fund formation counsel around'.

Cooley LLP opened a Beijing office in 2018; the launch brought in Xun Zeng, who has extensive experience in investment fund formation and fund management, including private equity, venture capital and hybrid funds, from Ropes & Gray LLP. Pang Lee in Shanghai is focused on venture capital, buy-out and special situation funds; and his Asian funds practice is particularly focused on fund managers making investments in China and India.

Morrison & Foerster LLP's team is 'very knowledgeable, friendly, and responsive'. The practice's core expertise lies in private equity funds and real estate funds. Hong Kong-based Jason Nelms, whose 'advice is very thorough yet distilled in a clear manner', focuses on fund formation work that is pan-Asian and international in scope; and Serena Tan assists with the formation, structuring and related activities of buyout, growth capital and venture capital funds as well as co-investment vehicles and other alternative investment funds. Tan 'has good technical and market knowledge'.

'Very professional and generous with its time and resources', Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP's practice includes private equity sponsor fund formation and investor representation; private equity joint ventures; sophisticated hybrid funds; hedge funds; managed accounts; and regulatory advice. The key advisors are Sook Young Yeu and Scott Peterman in Hong Kong; Peterman is 'one of the most experienced fund lawyers in town, who demonstrates deep knowledge of fund restructuring and the local regulatory environment'.

'Valued greatly for its cost-efficiency', Paul Hastings LLP's 'overall level of service is outstanding, its excellent attorneys understand that clients' business usually requires immediate attention, and they always respond before deadlines'. The practice is best known for high-level real estate investment fund matters and fund formation. Beijing-based Meka Meng , who is 'particularly good', was promoted to partner and recently advised, along with the Hong Kong office, ICBC International Investment Management, on its investment in a fund sponsored by Hillhouse.


Investment funds: PRC firms

Index of tables

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

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Advising on some of the most innovative fund structures and some of the largest funds, Fangda Partners is a regular counsel of choice for global fund managers when setting up RMB funds. Representative work for the practice includes advising on the structuring, restructuring, formation and operation of alternative investment products, including private equity funds, co-investment funds, fund of funds, corporate venture funds, and separately managed accounts; the firm fields lawyers with sector expertise in infrastructure and real estate, film, hotels and finance. The client list includes The Blackstone Group, Boyu Capital and Warburg Pincus. Recent high-profile work includes acting for global private equity manager, The Carlyle Group (as sponsor and manager) in structuring and forming its second RMB-denominated private equity fund, which targets investment opportunities in the retail, financial services, telecoms, media, technology and healthcare sectors. Richard Guo leads the firm's asset and investment management and investment funds practice; Guo's experience includes acting for a wide range of sponsors in their fund formation and related activities and he advises on the creation of innovative RMB fund structures. Zhen Chen co-leads the RMB fund practice with Guo and Candy Tang and Lily Yin are also key members.

Han Kun Law Offices regularly assists a large number of venture capital and private equity funds with fund formation matters. The team advised Everbright Holdings on forming blind-pool and special purpose vehicle RMB funds; it also assisted securities firm CITIC GoldStone with forming ten industry-focused funds, including the TMT, healthcare and finance sectors. Other highlights include advising Baidu Capital as fund counsel, which teamed up with China Life Insurance to launch a RMB14bn investment fund to back companies in the mobile internet, artificial intelligence and FinTech sectors. James Wang is highly rated for the design and implementation of fund and asset management products; Evan Zhang advises on the formation, operation, project investment and management of domestic and offshore private investment funds. Other key advisers include Kelvin Gao, Lin Zhou, who joined from Haiwen & Partners, Yin Ge, formerly of Clifford Chance LLP, and Huaying Qi, who was hired from Cooley LLP. The associates to note are Wensi Dai and Lu Ran.

With one of the largest professional funds teams in the Asia Pacific region, King & Wood Mallesons' clients include managers of private equity, venture capital, debt, infrastructure and real estate funds, as well as hedge funds, secondary funds, funds of funds, and emerging market funds. Typical work includes formation and structuring; negotiating business and legal terms with investors; drafting joint venture and partnership agreements; appointment documents for fund administration representatives; and fund custodian agreements. The team advised Gopher Asset Management Company on the establishment of an RMB equity investment fund, which focuses predominantly on equity investments in real estate development businesses. Gong Mulong is a fund formation expert, who advises on onshore structures as well as red-chip structure investments; China management committee chair Zhang Yi specialises in private equity fund formation; Lin Zhijun is a TMT sector expert.

JunHe LLP has advised on a large number of fund formation projects, including parallel funds, umbrella funds, feeder funds, and mezzanine funds. It acted for Zhongan Huixin Fund, which invests mainly in network information security industry-related businesses, on a fund formation contract. Sammuel Zhao acts for a variety of domestic funds, including industry investment funds, particularly regarding fund establishment and investments; Man Wang has extensive experience in fund formation; Nelson Zhou recently advised private equity houses on their investments in financial institutions.

Zhong Lun Law Firm fields lawyers who are experienced in fund formation, fundraising, investments, project management and fund exits. The practice advised a France-based private equity and venture capital firm on establishing and registering its RMB fund management company. Jason Liu has particular expertise in TMT, insurance and healthcare as well as structured financing; Catherine Chen's practice is focused on private equity fund raising, establishment and investment, along with M&A deals and capital markets; Lefan Gong advises clients on fund formation, establishing red-chip structures, and wealth management related matters. Other notable practitioners are Kejun Guo and senior associate Lulu Jiang.

Dentons China reguarly assists with the establishment of renminbi, successor, private equity and buyout funds. Other areas include mezzanine, property and securities investment funds, and funds of funds. It acted for China Innovative Capital in the structuring of an energy fund. Beijing-based senior partner Yuan Yuan and Xianlai Liu are the names to note.

FenXun Partners advises offshore, RMB and parallel funds on their investments in China, foreign ownership issues, and fund and investment structures; the practice also assists with financing, exits and restructuring matters, as well as governance, tax planning and executive compensation issues. The firm benefits from its joint operation with Baker McKenzie LLP, which provides specialised funds teams in global financial hubs such as New York, London, Hong Kong and Singapore. Sue Liu 'has a wealth of local experience and industry knowledge and her advice is very succinct, which demonstrates her knowledge of clients' industries and the types of issues clients need to deal with in China'.

Llinks Law Offices 'provides timely responses and very good in-depth knowledge of the market, and goes beyond providing strict legal interpretations'. The firm's client base includes domestic fund management companies and their subsidiaries, private equity, venture capital and securities investment funds, as well as insurance and insurance asset management companies and a large number of foreign fund management institutions. Recent work includes advising on the establishment of a fund management company, including structuring the fund and compliance issues. Sandra Lu 'provides business-efficient solutions'.

Global Law Office has funds experience in a range of sectors, including pharmaceutical and healthcare, life sciences, healthcare, telecoms, energy and semiconductors. It assisted Beijing Culture Centre Construction and Development Fund Management Company with obtaining a Shenzhen foreign limited partner fund management company qualification. Managing partner Jinrong Liu is the key contact.

Grandall Law Firm's recent work includes advising Cenova IV RMB Fund on drafting the equity structure of a private equity management company; and assisting Cura Xuyin Investment Fund with fund raising documents, asset management contracts and ancillary agreements and negotiations with investors. Jing Zou specialises in private equity and venture capital investment funds.

Acting for investment firms, sponsors, venture capitalists, institutional investors and portfolio companies, Guantao Law Firm advises on all types of private funds, such as private equity, hedge, real estate and venture capital funds as well as assisting with fund of funds matters. The key contacts are Sun Dongying, who heads up the team, Yang Wang and Li Yan.


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