Leading Individuals

TMT: foreign firms in China

Hogan Lovells

Advising TMT clients over their full business life-cycle, Hogan Lovells International LLP‘s Greater China practice also advises non-TMT sector organisations on their use of technology, particularly financial institutions, financial services providers, retailers, consumer brands, life sciences businesses and automotive sector clients. Notable areas of strength range from privacy and cybersecurity, open banking, and cloud and internet content provision services, to online payments, e-commerce, fintech and EduTech. The firm also houses specialists in satellites, network video, audio programmes, and blockchain and smart contracts. In Hong Kong, Asia-Pacific regulatory practice head Mark Parsons acts on the full range of technology and telecoms-related commercial and regulatory work; and Don Williams, who splits his time between the firm’s Shanghai and Silicon Valley offices, advises TMT companies throughout their entire lifecycle. On the mainland, Liang Xu is a cross-border joint venture and M&A deal expert, while Sherry Gong and Lu Zhou also both act on TMT-related transactions.

Practice head(s):

Mark Parsons

Other key lawyers:

Don Williams; Liang Xu; Sherry Gong; Lu Zhou; Tony Mou; Eugene Low; Andrew McGinty; Tommy Liu; Nicola Choi

Testimonials

The team has strong professional ability, especially in the compliance and privacy security aspects of TMT, and is good at linking up with other law firms around the world.’

‘Partner Mark Parsons and counsel Tommy Liu are great lawyers, and have an excellent track record in providing targeted legal advice and timely feedback.’

Key clients

IBM

Bank of China International

HSBC

Tencent

Linear Capital

Kuaishou

Ping An Global Voyager Fund

Aramco Ventures Investments

Hong Kong Technology Venture Company

ESGTech

Work highlights

  • Advised IBM on the global separation and reorganisation of its managed infrastructure services business.
  • Advised Bank of China International on the multi-vendor regional technology platform outsourcing for its private banking operations in Hong Kong, Singapore and Macau.
  • Advised Beijing Kuaishou Technology Co, a Chinese video-sharing mobile app business provider, on both its multi-jurisdictional and global data compliance project and the launch of its live streaming video in various jurisdictions.

Morrison Foerster

Morrison Foerster‘s 'dedicated, responsive, technically sharp and commercial' Greater China practice has longstanding on-the-ground experience in China TMT matters. Combining its enviable TMT credentials with widely respected venture capital and private equity fund expertise, the team is regularly instructed by both technology investors and start-ups. It also houses experts in the regulatory regimes of the internet, telecoms, cloud, payments, data and cybersecurity. In Hong Kong, Asia technology practice head Gordon Milner acts for international technology companies, banks and local start-ups, and has notable expertise in online services in China; Asia private equity group co-head Thomas Chou also acts on TMT matters; and Marcia Ellis is global private equity chair. In Shanghai, 'highly skilled technology and commercial lawyer' Chuan Sun is a TMT transactions specialist; and the track record of Beijing and Shanghai managing partner Paul McKenzie includes advising telecoms, media, internet, and computer software and hardware clients.

Practice head(s):

Gordon Milner

Other key lawyers:

Chuan Sun; Thomas Chou; Marcia Ellis; Paul McKenzie; Gigi Yuen; Tyler Xiu

Testimonials

‘The team is wonderful to deal with – dedicated, responsive, technically sharp and commercial. It is not everyday that clients find a technology law practice with competent and technically brilliant lawyers for technology matters at all levels, and who can work autonomously on various technology matters at the same time.

‘Highly commended is the training that Chuan Sun provides to the attorneys in the firm’s technology practice. It is difficult enough to find a truly competent technology lawyer these days, let alone a team of them within the same practice!’

‘Chuan Sun is a highly skilled technology and commercial lawyer. He goes to great depths to understand clients’ business, and works above and beyond the call of duty to deliver first-class legal documents, coupled with pragmatic and commercially-sound solutions. He is particularly knowledgeable on technical points of law, and up to date with recent tech trends and issues.’

‘Chuan Sun’s wealth of knowledge and experience helps clients find common ground with counterparties, so as to close complex transactions within tight deadlines. Highly recommended for clients looking for a commercially-minded and technically brilliant lawyer, who is able to bring together his team (even at short notice) to support his clients.’

‘Chuan Sun is exceptional. He has excellent grasp of the technical issues whilst providing clear and commercial advice.’

‘Paul Mckenzie and Gordon Milner are recommended for any tech companies that are looking for experienced outside counsel for significant deals in Greater China. Both of them are highly reliable, responsive and trustworthy.

‘Paul Mckenzie is not just technically strong but great at managing the entire deal process, coordinating the resources, and solving imminent and sudden issues in a deal.’

‘Gordon is an exceptional tech lawyer and always puts himself in the shoes of his clients – provides great solutions.’

Key clients

Airbnb

Alibaba Group

Dairy Farm

Oracle

Princeton Digital Group

Roblox

SoftBank

SoftBank Vision Fund

Verizon

Unity

Work highlights

  • Advised Roblox on its joint venture with Tencent and the establishment and launch of the Roblox platform in China.
  • Advised Amperex Technology on both its RMB14bn joint venture for mid-size battery cells and packs, and a $1.5bn technology cross-license arrangement with Contemporary Amperex Technology Co.
  • Advised Hong Kong-based Six Waves, a global publisher of mobile games, on its $201m acquisition by Sweden’s Stillfront Group.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP

Renowned for high-end and complex transactions across the full spectrum of M&A, private equity and TMT-related activities, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP‘s recent highlights include advising a DCP Capital Partners-led group of investors on the take-private acquisition of 51job, a US-listed, China-based provider of integrated human resource services. The practice is jointly led by experienced partners Judie Ng Shortell, a TMT sector expert who focuses on China-related private equity investments and cross-border M&A; and Greg Liu, whose recent track record includes acting for PAG, as an exchangeable note investor, on the take-private transaction of Taiwan Liposome Company. Both divide their time between the firm's Beijing and Hong Kong offices. Focused on China-related private equity investments, cross-border M&A and FDI (including TMT deals), Jack Sun was recently promoted to counsel.

Practice head(s):

Greg Liu; Judie Ng Shortell

Other key lawyers:

Jack Sun

Key clients

DCP Capital

General Atlantic

KKR

L Catterton Asia

Prosus

Work highlights

  • Advised a DCP Capital Partners-led group of investors on its take-private acquisition of 51job.
  • Advised PAG, as an exchangeable note investor, on the take-private transaction of Taiwan Liposome Company.
  • Advised L Catterton Asia, as lead investor, on a series B financing round of over $50m in Nebula Brands, a Chinese Amazon vendor aggregator.

Allen & Overy LLP

Working across its Hong Kong, Beijing, and Shanghai offices, Allen & Overy LLP‘s Greater China TMT group advises on a vast array of TMT work. It is notably focused on digitalisation matters, while covering TMT-related corporate, finance, capital markets, regulatory, antitrust, and dispute resolution aspects. The practice is additionally able to leverage PRC law advice through its Shanghai Free Trade Zone joint operation partner, Lang Yue Law Firm. In Hong Kong, US-qualified APAC head of corporate Victor Ho focuses on transactions comprising multidisciplinary complexities, such as antitrust issues, sensitive regulatory/compliance components, or IP/data/ innovative technology features; and David Norman acts for financial institutions and technology-focused corporations on strategic collaborations and partnerships involving digital ecosystems in Greater China. Beijing corporate partner Benjamin Crawford routinely works on TMT-related cross-border M&A, joint ventures, commercial contracts and significant shareholder arrangements.

Practice head(s):

Victor Ho

Other key lawyers:

David Norman; Benjamin Crawford

Key clients

Huawei

HP

Telenor

Stripe

FIS Global

TripAdvisor

WPP

Wolters Kluwer

Work highlights

  • Advised Discovery on the establishment of Amplify Health, a new insurtech business (in partnership with AIA Company).
  • Advised a sovereign wealth fund on its $400m pre-IPO investment in GoTo Group, an Indonesia-based multi-service platform and digital payment technology group.
  • Advised Stripe, an online financial services company, on its acquisition of the mobile point-of-sale business of BBPOS International and certain related companies of the BBPOS group.

Baker McKenzie FenXun

With notable strength in IT, e-commerce, fintech and data privacy, Baker McKenzie FenXun‘s Greater China TMT practice acts for both users and producers of technology. Its client base ranges from technology and outsourcing service providers, and e-commerce, media, entertainment and telecoms companies, to computer hardware and software providers, banks, insurance companies, industrial manufacturers, and consumer product brands. On the PRC side to the joint operation, FenXun Partners' Shanghai-based senior counsel Zhenyu Ruan, who 'provides excellent service', routinely assists with technological transactions, in addition to playing a key role in clients' expansion and cross-border efforts. Over in Hong Kong, experienced partner Paolo Sbuttoni advises on the regulatory aspects of IT contracts/outsourcing, privacy/data protection, and e-commerce, telecoms and internet matters; and particularly focused on Greater China, TMT practitioner Lex Kuo acts for Chinese technology companies on a range of regulatory and transactional projects.

Practice head(s):

Zhenyu Ruan; Paolo Sbuttoni; Lex Kuo

Other key lawyers:

Kelly Han

Testimonials

‘Senior counsel Zhenyu Ruan provides excellent service and client care with insightful knowledge.’

Key clients

TietoEVRY

Porsche

Subway

Jones Lang LaSalle

Abercrombie & Fitch

Sportswear

Work highlights

  • Advised TietoEVRY, a Finnish IT software and service company, on the acquisition of an IT R&D and consulting business operation from Ericsson China.
  • Assisted Porsche with the legal and regulatory aspects of the launch of the new version of the Porsche Connect mobile app in mainland China and Hong Kong.
  • Advised Subway on agreements with Chinese IT vendors for the design, set-up and implementation of China franchisee online ordering and a loyalty programme.

Bird & Bird

Bird & Bird houses a highly experienced practice for Asia-Pacific TMT regulatory work. Cloud, IT and telecoms expertise are a core area for the Hong Kong-based group, while recent instructions also include data and data protection matters. Other active areas are new technologies, particularly in the fintech/payment and blockchain/NFT space, in addition to the firm's robust mid-market technology and venture capital practice. The principal figures are former Herbert Smith Freehills of counsel James Gong, an August 2021 partner recruit and data protection and cybersecurity practice expert; and Ted Chwu, who is increasingly active in the data regulatory and commercial aspects of cross-border investments and projects in the internet and mobile economies. At counsel level, Clarice Yue has longstanding experience in Asia-Pacific-related TMT matters, while Michelle Chan stepped down from the partnership in late 2021, relocating to the firm's UK office as of counsel.

Practice head(s):

Ted Chwu; James Gong

Other key lawyers:

Clarice Yue; Michelle Chan

Key clients

WeBank

CVTE

Riot Games

SmartMore Corporation

Anycubic

Anker Innovations Technology

Work highlights

  • Assisted Webank with structuring commercial technology licensing arrangements for its international technology business.
  • Assisted Wise Road Asset Management with a cross-border licensing deal for semiconductor technology involving listed London Stock Exchange and Shanghai Stock Exchange companies.

Clifford Chance LLP

Acting for both Chinese and international clients, Clifford Chance LLP‘s Greater China TMT transactions team leverages the firm's cross-practice expertise in M&A, regulatory, antitrust, capital markets and dispute resolution. The team is also increasingly active in relation to the rapidly developing regimes governing electronic payments, cryptocurrencies and the use of artificially intelligent systems, along with technology infrastructure investment financing and complex data licensing arrangements. Dividing their time between the firm's Beijing and Shanghai offices, Terence Foo has longstanding experience in private and public M&A and joint ventures, including TMT sector deals; and Tim Wang is a cross-border M&A and capital markets expert. Also on the mainland, the recent track record of experienced partner Kelly Gregory includes assisting Tencent with private investments in the games, technology, medtech and fintech spaces; and in Beijing, 2021-promoted partner Yufei Liao specialises in corporate M&A, private equity, technology and capital markets work.

Practice head(s):

Terence Foo; Kelly Gregory

Other key lawyers:

Kelly Gregory; Yufei Liao

Key clients

Tencent

Zhihu

UNQ

SF Intra-City

China Youzan

iDreamsky

XD Inc

Medlive

SenseTime

Qingdao AInnovation

Work highlights

  • Advised Tencent on the merger between GoJek and Tokopedia to form GoTo Group.
  • Advised the joint sponsors, Credit Suisse, JP Morgan, CICC and CMB International (and the underwriters) on the IPO and dual primary listing of Chinese question-and-answer platform, Zhihu, on the main board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
  • Advised a multinational automotive company on achieving overall compliance with the PRC data/privacy laws.

CMS

Acting for global corporations on significant transactions in Europe, Mainland China and Hong Kong, CMS houses sector experts in TMT, network and IT infrastructure, as well as internet, e-commerce, and data protection and cybersecurity. The group also advises traditional businesses, such as automotive manufacturers, banks, supermarkets, public sector organisations, and life sciences and healthcare companies, on TMC issues. Clients additionally benefit from the firm's Technology and Innovation Centre, which comprises academics and specialists in technical areas of relevance to the TMT sector. Shanghai office managing partner Ulrike Glueck leads the China TMC sector group, while Beijing and Hong Kong managing partner Nick Beckett is the firm's global co-head of the life sciences and healthcare sector team. Corporate and dispute resolution practitioner Falk Lichtenstein provides further partner-level support in Beijing; and at senior associate level, Panpan Tang in Shanghai advises on IP, TMT, e-commerce and data protection issues.

Practice head(s):

Ulrike Glueck; Nick Beckett

Other key lawyers:

Falk Lichtenstein; Panpan Tang

Key clients

BP

Microsoft

Facebook

Discovery

Warner Music Group

AETN

Disney

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

A go-to practice for both international and Chinese TMT giants, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP also acts for a range of major investors on their TMT sector-related investments. The cross-practice team covers issues arising from the intersection of IP and data during corporate and commercial transactions, while additionally fielding sector specialists in automotive technology, life sciences, gaming and blockchain. The team is also increasingly active in cyber, privacy and data innovation work. In Beijing, practice leader Xiang Wang acts on all aspects of cybersecurity and data privacy, as well as IP issues; and Jinsong (Jeff) Zhang, a partner in the firm's Beijing and New York offices, has expertise in the life sciences, fintech, and automotive technology and mobility sectors. Elsewhere, Shanghai's Jeffrey Sun is a technology M&A expert, while of counsel Mimiao Hu in Beijing has extensive experience in cybersecurity and data privacy issues.

Practice head(s):

Xiang Wang

Other key lawyers:

Jinsong (Jeff) Zhang; Jeffrey Sun; Mimiao Hu

Key clients

Baidu

Sina Corporation

JD.com

Pactera Technology

Beijing Xiaomi Technology Corporation

Meituan

Tencent Technology

TikTok

ByteDance

KE Holdings

Perfect World Entertainment

Zhejiang Geely Holding Group

Chery Automobile Co

Work highlights

  • Advised Betta Games on the sale of its StarLark Studio to Zynga for $525m in cash and stock.
  • Advised JD Property, a subsidiary of JD.com, on its $800m non-redeemable series B preferred share financing.
  • Advised several leading Chinese technology companies on their global privacy and data protection issues.

Simmons & Simmons

Simmons & Simmons' Greater China TMT practice covers global data compliance, regulatory issues, competition and employment law matters. It is also active in investigations work, IP, TMT-related dispute resolution, and corporate and commercial deals. In addition to operating from offices in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai, the firm's Shenzhen office is particularly well placed to advise clients conducting business in the Pearl River Delta region, a key innovation and technology hub in China. Dividing her time between Shenzhen and Hong Kong, Jingyuan Shi, an expert in corporate and commercial transactions, data compliance and general regulatory matters, is the partner responsible for the TMT practice in the Greater China region. Also key to the group are George Chan, who leads the firm’s Beijing IP agency, while supervising associate Jenny Liu in Shenzhen acts for both international and domestic TMT sector companies.

Other key lawyers:

Jingyuan Sh; George Chan; Jenny Liu

DLA Piper

DLA Piper‘s Hong Kong-based APAC privacy and cyber practices are led by Carolyn Bigg, who assists with implementing and managing data privacy compliance programmes, as well as managing cyber incidents across Asia. In May 2022, Lauren Hurcombe, who advises e-commerce and technology sector clients on market entry strategies and expansion projects, was made partner, while fintech lawyer Alice Li joined as of counsel from Deacons. Other recent developments included the late 2021 recruitment of fintech head Kristi Swartz from now-closed Swartz, Binnersley & Associates, while former practice head Scott Thiel moved to lead TOKO, the firm’s digital asset creation engine.

Practice head(s):

Carolyn Bigg

Other key lawyers:

Lauren Hurcombe; Alice Li; Kristi Swartz; Yue Lin Lee; Amanda Ge

Key clients

Olympus Corporation

InterContinental Hotels Group

Levi Strauss & Co

The Hut Group

Lightricks

Science 37

Work highlights

  • Advised Olympus Corporation on the first-generation global business process outsourcing of its APAC, EU and Americas business to Genpact.
  • Acting as InterContinental Hotels Group’s legal counsel for privacy and cybersecurity-related work in Greater China.
  • Advising LS&Co on the full spectrum of privacy matters across the Asia Pacific region, including the implementation of new or revamped privacy compliance programmes in China.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Mandated by both established and developing tech players, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP's China practice covers M&A, international expansions, funding rounds, listings, joint ventures, competition and disputes. It also assists investors with tech company investments, in addition to leveraging the firm's joint operation with local legal practice Kewei Law Firm, which facilitates the provision of PRC law advice. Tommy Tong in Hong Kong and Shanghai-based Nanda Lau both advise on TMT-related M&A transactions, while Singapore's Mark Robinson leads the Asia TMT practice. Former of counsel and China TMT team head James Gong joined Bird & Bird's Beijing office during 2021.

Practice head(s):

Mark Robinson

Other key lawyers:

Tommy Tong; Nanda Lau; Adelaide Luke

Key clients

Alibaba

Axiata Group Berhad

Lagardère Travel Retail

Keppel Telecommunications & Transportation

Winwin Enterprises

TCV Capital

China International Capital Corporation Hong Kong Securities

CMBC International Capital

BofA Securities

Newborn Town

Work highlights

  • Advised Lagardère Travel Retail on its RMB720m investment by JD.com, CICC and other investors.
  • Advised Keppel T&T on the divestment of its 50% stake in Wuhu Sanshan Port Co to Sinotrans.
  • Advised Newborn Town on the HK$347m top-up placing of new shares on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong.

Latham & Watkins LLP

Advising both early stage start-ups and global organisations on transactional, regulatory and contentious matters, Latham & Watkins LLP‘s Hong Kong-based, Greater China TMT industry group comprises the firm's practices in data, technology transactions, entertainment, sports, media and fintech, along with corporate law and litigation. Frank Sun regularly advises on major buyouts and deals involving leading Chinese technology clients; and playing a key role in growing the data and technology transactions practice in China, 2022-elevated partner Kieran Donovan assists with complex cross-border commercial, outsourcing, technology, media and privacy matters.

Practice head(s):

Frank Sun; Kieran Donovan

Key clients

Tencent Holdings

Tencent Music Entertainment Group

Kuaishou Technology

Airwallex

Klook

Binance

Prudential

Futu

CyberArk

A2 Milk

Cerner Health

Linklaters

Linklaters‘ China TMT expertise covers technology, telecoms, data, and commercial and sectoral regulatory issues. The team’s technology and digital experience also extends to TMT-related contracts, corporate/M&A matters, antitrust issues, financing, digital infrastructure investments, and disputes; and it is able to draw upon PRC law advice through its joint operation with Zhao Sheng Law Firm. In Shanghai, counsel Alex Roberts assists with a range of TMT-related issues, including cross-border investments, the establishment of online platforms, IP protection, and data and cybersecurity matters. The Hong Kong TMT head is Albert Yuen, while Adrian Fisher heads the broader Asia TMT practice from Singapore.

Practice head(s):

Adrian Fisher; Albert Yuen

Other key lawyers:

Alex Roberts

Key clients

EdgePoint Infrastructure (DigitalBridge)

Bond Connect

Bank of East Asia

LRQA Group

Elex

PlusAI Corp

Alphawave

Razer

CVC Capital Partners

ASIFMA

Work highlights

  • Advised EdgePoint Infrastructure on its $750m sale-and-leaseback acquisition of over 4,200 telecoms towers from PT Indosat Tbk.
  • Advised Bond Connect on a joint venture arrangement with CFETS, in relation to the ePrime electronic bond issuance system.
  • Advised The Bank of East Asia on the sale of its life insurance unit, BEA Life, to AIA, which involved TMT elements.

Mayer Brown

Mayer Brown‘s Greater China practice advises on technology projects involving fintech, regtech, AI, P2P, emerging payment technologies, merchant solutions and mobile payments deals. The Hong Kong-based group also assists with data protection issues throughout Asia. Heading the Asia IP and TMT team, Gabriela Kennedy is a well-known data privacy and technology practitioner in Asia, while TL Lim is highly involved in cyber-related and data breach matters. Amita Haylock's experience covers a range of IP, TMT, and competition-related disputes.

Practice head(s):

Gabriela Kennedy

Other key lawyers:

TL Lim; Amita Haylock

Key clients

Zoom

Airport Authority Hong Kong

HKU

Fung Group

Towngas

Jardine Matheson & Company

Warner Media

Xperi Corporation

Work highlights

  • Assisted with the broadcasting and rights licensing aspects of a proposed launch of OTT services.

Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP

Housing TMT specialists from offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius’ broad practice routinely acts for major technology sector players, along with investment funds and financial institutions that are active in the TMT sector. In Hong Kong, Maurice Hoo, who is highly focused on technology companies that conduct business in Asia (particularly China), is experienced in advising private equity and venture capital investors, along with multinationals and strategic investors; and Edwin Luk's sector expertise covers technology media and telecoms companies.

Other key lawyers:

Maurice Hoo; Edwin Luk

Norton Rose Fulbright

Delivering ‘amazing and timely advice‘, Norton Rose Fulbright‘s Greater China practice stands out for its ability to advise financial institutions on both the technology and regulatory aspects of transactions and projects. It is also sought out for its credentials in cyber breach response and compliance work. Providing ‘commercially-sound solutions‘, Hong Kong-based data and TMT lawyer specialist Anna Gamvros heads the firm’s Asia-Pacific data protection, privacy and cybersecurity practice; Justin Davidson is an experienced IP and technology practitioner; and North Asia fintech leader Etelka Bogardi also leads the firm’s global payments practice.

Practice head(s):

Anna Gamvros

Other key lawyers:

Justin Davidson; Etelka Bogardi; Ruby Kwok; Edward Yau

Testimonials

‘The team is collaborative and full of experience – amazing and timely advice. Billings are also an accurate reflection of the work done.’

‘Anna Gamvros is an amazing practitioner, providing timely advice and commercially-sound solutions to clients’ problems.’

Key clients

Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute Company

City University of Hong Kong

Paul Hastings LLP

Paul Hastings LLP has a longstanding market reputation in Asia for its technology, media, entertainment and telecoms sector expertise. The firm's China practice consistently acts across high-stakes TMT-related transactions, including acquisitions, joint ventures, investments, real estate matters, and other corporate work. Dividing their time across the firm's Beijing and Shanghai offices, David Wang's admission to practice in California is of particular interest to technology clients seeking long-term overseas expansion; and Jia Yan acts on TMT-related corporate and M&A deals. In Beijing, Meka Meng provides additional partner-level corporate law expertise.

Practice head(s):

David Wang; Jia Yan; Meka Meng

Key clients

Samsung Electronics

Fosun Tourism Group

Universal Studios Beijing

Ping An

China Media Capital

CDH Investments

ICBC Asset Management

Binance

Beijing Shouhuan

H3C

Work highlights

  • Advised Beijing Shouhuan, a consortium of four state-owned companies, on the establishment of a mega-value Beijing Universal Resort, home to Universal Studios Beijing, Universal Citiwalk Beijing and two hotels.
  • Acting for a large US-listed Chinese technology conglomerate’s independent audit committee of its board of directors, in relation to a company investigation into allegations of misconduct and financial irregularities.
  • Acting for a large technology company on the internal reviews of its transactions and business dealings across China.