Corporate (including M&A) in Hong Kong
Clifford Chance's outstanding track record in big-ticket, strategically significant corporate transactions is underpinned by its ability to provide full-service support. It combines M&A expertise with strengths in ancillary areas, such as regulatory, antitrust, intellectual property, acquisition finance, investment funds and capital markets. Led by Andrew Whan, the team advises on public and private M&A, China inbound and outbound M&A, and other cross-border transactions for international and domestic enterprises. It acts for clients from a wide range of industries, including technology, energy, infrastructure, healthcare, industrial, finance and consumer goods. Whan's group includes Emma Davies, who is experienced in M&A and joint ventures across the Asia-Pacific region, with a particular focus on China. Amy Ho has particular experience of the insurance, consumer goods and retail real estate sectors. Christine Xu and Tianning Xiang made partner.
Other key lawyers:
‘Great at advising on the legal aspects and also excellent at bridging differences between Chinese and European cultures’.
‘They have been excellent in helping us through the entire structuring and documentation process’.
‘Exceptional experience, creative problem solving and unrivalled reputation’.
‘Amy Ho is an exceptional practioner and is super-responsive. She has been very creative in structuring fee arrangements that work for us, and is always mindful of staffing deals efficiently’.
New World Development / NWS Holdings
Sun Hung Kai
Bank of China (Hong Kong)
Ping An Good Doctor
- Acted for China Literature Limited in its RMB15.5bn acquisition of New Classics Media from Tencent and management vendors.
- Advised Deutsche Post DHL Group (“DPDHL”) on the transfer of its supply chain operations in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau (“Greater China”) to SF Holding.
- Acted for Cainiao Network on its joint venture with China National Aviation Corporation (Group) Limited and YTO Express, and the joint venture’s $1.5bn investment in a logistics centre at Hong Kong International Airport.
- Acted for an international bank on its joint venture with consortium members to acquire 12 community retail centres in Hong Kong from Link REIT for HK$12bn.
Kirkland & Ellis has the capacity to advise on the US, English and Hong Kong law aspects of M&A transactions. It is adept at handling private equity deals, joint ventures and take private transactions, among various other matters. The Hong Kong team works particularly closely with specialists in debt finance and the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). One of the key partners is Nicholas Norris, who has over 25 years of experience acting for corporates, private equity investors and investment banks on a wide range of matters. Daniel Dusek is another one of the many heavyweight practititioners in the group, which has a first-class reputation in high-profile, multijurisdictional transactions. Han Gao, Carmen Lau, Shuting Qi and Rongjing Zhao were all promoted to partner.
Other key lawyers:
Shanghai RAAS Blood Products Co.
UBS AG (as financial advisor)
The Boeing Company
Special Committee of the Board of Directors of China Automotive Systems, Inc.
Shougang Concord International Enterprises
Church & Dwight Co., Inc.
Neoglory Prosperity Inc.
MicroPort Scientific Corporation
Loyal Valley Capital
Bain Capital Private Equity
The Carlyle Group
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board
- Advised a number of sovereign wealth funds on their investments in the $14bn Series C equity financing of Ant Financial.
- Advised FountainVest – as part of a consortium of investors – on a $6.4bn voluntary public tender offer to acquire Finnish sporting goods company Amer Sports Corporation.
- Acted for UBS AG, as financial adviser, on an unsolicited voluntary general offer by an entity associated with PAG Real Estate to acquire all the units of Spring REIT.
- Acted for GLP on its entry into a strategic partnership with IndoSpace, and certain co-investments in IndoSpace Core.
- Advised The Boeing Company on a complex joint venture with Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is particularly well-known for acting for Chinese and multinational companies on China-related inbound and outbound M&A and private equity deals. Its team has vast experience of market-shaping transactions across a wide ambit of sectors, including TMT, energy and power, oil and gas, automotive, healthcare, infrastructure, insurance and pharmaceuticals, among others. Julie Gao and Jonathan Stone jointly head up the team, which acts for bidders, sellers and target companies. The roster of clients includes circa half of the Fortune 250. In 2018, Paloma Wang joined from Shearman & Sterling and John Hartley joined as of counsel from Gibson Dunn.
ZhongAn Online P & C Insurance Co., Ltd.
Flex Ltd. (Singapore)
Medco Energi International
General Electric Company
Grab (GP Network Asia Pte. Ltd.)
- Advised Internet Plus Holdings Limited (a holding company created by Meituan and Dianping) on its $3.7bn acquisition of Beijing Mobike Technology Co. Ltd.
- Acted for Baidu, Inc. (China) on its $1.9bn sale of a majority stake in its financial services business to a consortium led by TPG Capital and The Carlyle Group.
- Acted for YY Inc. (China) on its $1.5 bn acquisition of Bigo Inc. (Singapore).
- Acted for ZTO Express (Cayman) Inc on its $1.4 bn sale of a 10% stake in the business to a consortium led by Alibaba Group Holding Limited and Cainiao Network Technology Co. Ltd.
- Acted for Ke.com on its $800m Series D financing led by strategic investor Tencent Holdings Limited.
Slaughter and May
Slaughter and May distinguishes itself in many of the most high-profile and significant M&A deals in Asia, where it is able to leverage its close relationships with PRC-based and regional preferred firms, and its Best Friends network. Its first-rate reputation sees it act for a broad base of clients, including Chinese SOEs and private companies, private equity houses, investment banks, and Asian and Hong Kong blue-chip corporates. The top-notch team is led by Peter Brien, who focuses on M&A, structured finance and general corporate matters. Other key figures include Benita Yu, John Moore, Lisa Chung and Clara Choi. Jing Chen rejoined the firm from the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX). Roger Cheng departed for the Securities and Future Commission and David Watkins relocated to the London office.
‘Benita Yu has in-depth knowledge of the Listing Rules and the Takeovers Code. She is also a member of the SFC Takeovers Panel, which gives her inside knowledge of how regulators view certain issues’.
‘David Watkins and Clara Choi provide high quality advice and a quick turnaround’.
COSCO Pacific Limited
- Advising Prudential Plc on the proposed demerger of its UK & Europe business (M&G Prudential) from Prudential Plc, resulting in two separately-listed companies.
- Advising Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Limited (SCBHK) on its strategic joint venture to build a new standalone digital retail bank in Hong Kong.
- Advising HNA Finance I Co., Ltd. (HNA Finance I) and Hong Kong International Construction Investment Management Group Co., Limited (HKICIM) on the proposed disposal by HNA Finance I of its 69.5% shareholding in HKICIM to Times Holdings II Limited (Times Holdings) and the possible mandatory general offers (Offers) to be made by Times Holdings to acquire all the issued shares in, and to cancel all outstanding share options of, HKICIM.
- Advising Cathay Pacific Airways Limited (Cathay Pacific) on its proposed HK$4.93bn acquisition of Hong Kong Express Airways Limited (HKE).
- Advising Orient Overseas (International) Limited (OOIL) on the sale of LBCT LLC to a consortium led by Macquarie Infrastructure Partners.
Allen & Overy
Allen & Overy's presence in the China market dates back more than 30 years, and its Hong Kong team works closely with counterparts in Beijing and Shanghai on inbound and outbound deals. In addition, the firm's geographical footprint further afield in the Asia-Pacific region, makes it a strong choice for other multijurisdictional mandates. The Hong Kong team advises on English, Hong Kong, US and Australian law issues for clients such as Chinese SOEs, privately-owned enterprises and multinational corporates. It attracts a strong flow of work across a number of sectors, including energy, consumer, education and TMT. Practice head Will McAuliffe, who has more than 25 years of experience, has been instrumental in the growth of the China corporate practice. Counsel David Norman specialises in cross-border joint ventures, M&A and minority investments.
‘A friendly team with a broad base of knowledge and a willingness to help with any issue that arises’.
‘Very responsive team focused on client requirements’.
‘The team speaks good English and is happy to take calls at short notice’.
21st Century Fox
- Assisted China Resources Enterprise and China Resources Beer (Holdings) Company with their long term PRC exclusive and worldwide non-exclusive strategic partnership and collaboration with the Heineken Group to the value of almost $4bn.
- Advised Thomson Reuters on its sale of a majority stake in its financial and risk business to private equity firm Blackstone Group.
- Advised Step Famous Investments on its voluntary conditional cash offer to acquire all the issued shares of Riviera (Holdings) Limited for $1.43bn.
- A global team is advising 21st Century Fox on the extensive merger control, regulatory and litigation issues connected with its proposed $71bn acquisition by Walt Disney.
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP advises clients on inbound and outbound Chinese M&A and private equity deals, strategic partnerships, joint ventures, spin-offs and privatisations, among other matters. It acts for clients in a broad base of sectors, including biotech, education, energy, financial institutions, healthcare, real estate and retail. Miranda So, who leads the Hong Kong team, is particularly active in cross-border M&A and private equity transactions with a nexus to the TMT sector. Counsel Sam Kelso is another notable individual in the group, which saw Yang Chu make partner. Paul Chow left the firm to become an in-house counsel at Cathay Pacific.
- Advised iKang Healthcare Group on its $1.2bn acquisition by a consortium comprising of Yunfeng Capital, Alibaba Group Holding Limited and members of iKang’s senior management.
- Advised Lufax (an online marketplace in China for the origination and trading of financial assets) on its issuance of approx. $2bn in class C shares to a consortium of investors led by Qatar Investment Authority, Hedosophia, Primavera, LionRock Capital, All-Stars Investment, Macquarie Capital and SBI Group.
- Advising Heineken NV on its entry into definitive agreements with China Resources Enterprise (“CRE”) and China Resources Beer (Holdings) Co. Ltd. (“CR Beer”) to create a long-term strategic partnership in mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.
- Advised Tencent Mobility Limited on its $317m equity investment in Bilibili Inc.
- Advised an affiliate of Unitas Capital on the $694m sale of Guangdong Jiahao Foods to Huabao International Holdings.
Herbert Smith Freehills
Herbert Smith Freehills combines sector expertise with strengths in a number of practice areas (including competition, finance and dispute resolution) to advise clients on all complexities associated with their most critical transactions. Its diverse workload includes China inbound and outbound investments, public takeovers and cross-border restructurings across the Asia-Pacific region. The team acts for clients from a multitude of industries, including TMT, energy, financial services, consumer, retail, aerospace, life sciences, healthcare and education. Matthew Emsley is the firm's head of corporate in Greater China. Tommy Tong advises on public and private M&A, and private equity transactions. Other key figures include Jason Sung, Calvin Ho and Hilary Lau.
CLSA Capital Markets Limited
Shunfeng International Clean Energy Limited
China International Capital Corporation Hong Kong Securities
China Resources Group
ENN Ecological Holdings Co. Ltd
Panda Green Energy Group Limited
Shangri-La Asia Limited
British American Tobacco
- Advised CLSA Capital Markets Limited, as the financial adviser to Shenzhen Investment International Capital Holdings Infrastructure Co., Ltd on a possible $1.89 bn unconditional mandatory cash offer to acquire all the issued shares of Hopewell Highway Infrastructure Limited.
- Represented Shunfeng International Clean Energy Limited in its proposed sale of PRC manufacturing business to an affiliate of its substantial shareholder for HK$4.7 bn,
- Represented China International Capital Corporation Hong Kong Securities, the financial adviser and lender to, Red Star Macalline Group regarding its general offer to repurchase up to 388.92 million shares for $585m.
- Advised Citigroup as financial adviser to Harbin Electric Corporation Co., Ltd. in its general offer and proposed privatisation by merger by absorption of Harbin Electric Company Limited for HK$3.1 bn.
- Advised Shangri-La Asia Limited on its proposed buy-out of a 25% interest in a joint venture in relation to a hotel property in Wenzhou, China.
Latham & Watkins LLP’s Hong Kong team is a core part of a wider Greater China group, which assists clients with both high-profile China-related transactions and cross-border matters elsewhere in the Asia-Pacific region. The firm offers extensive support on matters critical to large deals, such as antitrust, CFIUS, corporate risk and data privacy. Recent work has included assisting China-based clients with making a number of outbound acquisitions in the US, France and Switzerland. Complementing its strengths in the M&A sphere, the firm also attracts a notable portfolio of high-end private equity work. Simon Cooke's deal experience includes matters connected with the technology, food and beverage, telecommunications and healthcare sectors. Cathy Yeung, Frank Sun and David Blumental are among other names to note. Counsel Richard Watkins joined from Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton.
Other key lawyers:
The Coca-Cola Company
Baring Private Equity Asia
Charoen Pokphand Foods
Goertek (Hong Kong) Co., Ltd.
Providence Enterprise Limited
China Jinmao China Merchants Capital
Cathay Fortune Corporation
China Traditional Chinese Medicine Holdings Co.
Vinhomes Joint Stock Company
- Acted for The Carlyle Group on the disposal of its Korean portfolio company ADT Caps to a consortium led by SK Telecom of Korea and Macquarie’s Korean Opportunities Fund.
- Advised Hong Kong telecoms operator HKBN Ltd on its acquisition of WTT.
- Advised CITIC Capital Partners on the acquisition by CITIC Capital Asian Foods Holdings Limited of Amoy Food from Ajinomoto Co. Inc.
- Advised Warburg Pincus and state-owned enterprise Becamex IDC on their joint venture to form BW Industrial Development Joint Stock.
- Advised L Catterton Asia, on its $175m investment with JD.com in NASDAQ-listed Secoo Holding Limited.
Linklaters' Asia corporate practice is led by Robert Cleaver, whose vast deal experience includes transactions involving the insurance, infrastructure and technology sectors. The group acts on joint ventures, acquisitions and disposals, corporate restructurings and public takeovers. It works closely with the firm’s regulatory, competition, derivatives, finance, capital markets and employment practices. The firm advises international and Chinese clients, including investment banks, corporates and SOEs. Kevin Cheung has expertise in China-related inbound and outbound investments, and public and private M&A. Gilbert Li, Iris Leung and Christopher Yip are also recommended.
‘Genuinely interested in trying to find a solution which works for the client’.
‘Robert Cleaver is smart and pragmatic’.
China Merchants Group
China Three Gorges Corporation
China International Capital Corporation
Shenzhen Chiwan Wharf Holdings Limited
Xinjiang Xintai Natural Gas Co., Ltd.
China Shengmu Organic Milk Limited
Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Charoen Pokphand Group Co., Ltd
Chongqing Sokon Industry Group Co., Ltd.
- Advised the consortium comprising of CKA, CKI and PAH on its proposed A$13.2bn acquisition of an Australian listed company, APA, which is one of Australia’s leading energy infrastructure businesses by way of trust schemes.
- Advised Jardines on the formation of a new virtual bank joint venture with BOC Hong Kong (Holdings) and JD Digits (formerly JD FInance).
- Acted for CICC on the $7.8bn merger of CNBM and China National Materials Company Limited (Sinoma).
- Advised on the partial offer by Citigroup Global Markets Asia Limited on behalf of Liming Holding Limited to acquire a maximum of 50.5% of the issued share capital of AAG Energy Holdings Limited and to cancel a maximum of 50.5% of its outstanding options and restricted stock units.
- Advised Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) on the auction sale of its Indonesian life insurance business, PT Commonwealth Life (which includes a long-term life insurance distribution arrangement) for $290m.
Norton Rose Fulbright's corporate and M&A team is particularly strong in areas such as real estate, TMT, energy and natural resources, and life sciences. Its team combines knowledge about a full range of corporate and commercial issues, with expertise in related areas; practice head Psyche Tai and Vicky Lam are among a number of practitioners who are experienced in public M&A and equity capital markets transactions. Emma de Ronde and James Parker are active in M&A transactions in the financial services sector, which is complemented by their knowledge of related industry-specific regulatory issues. The group was strengthened by the arrival of Margie Chan from Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP. In addition, Allen Yee rejoined the firm as a consultant from Lei Shing Hong Limited.
Other key lawyers:
Beijing Capital Land Ltd
Hyperion Insurance Group Ltd
Kerry Logistics Network Limited
Magnus Concordia Group Limited
Moelis & Company Asia Limited
Renhe Commercial Holdings Company Limited
- Advising HSBC in its capacity as financial adviser to Times Holdings II Limited (a company owned and controlled by several Blackstone controlled funds) on the acquisition of a controlling interest in Hong Kong-listed Hong Kong International Construction Investment Management Group Co.
- Advised Moelis & Company Asia Limited in its capacity as financial adviser to Swire Pacific Limited (a Hong Kong listed issuer) on its successful privatisation of Hong Kong listed Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company Limited, by way of scheme of arrangement.
- Advised Beijing Capital Land Ltd on its circa $205m investment in a mixed-use real estate development project in Tianjin city, in China from MTR Corporation.
- Advised Hyperion Insurance Group Ltd on the acquisition by Howden Broking Group Limited of 60% of the issued share capital of IPG Asia Holdings Limited.
- Advised a subsidiary of Kerry Logistics on the formation of a series of joint ventures in Hong Kong, the Southeast Asia region (including Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia) and across nine provinces in China for the purpose of offering international freight forwarding, logistics and other related services.
Shearman & Sterling is the first port of call among a wide variety of clients for advice on multijurisdictional M&A and private equity transactions involving complex structuring requirements. The firm generates mandates from Chinese SOEs, multinational corporates, investors and private equity houses, among other clients. Its 40-year history in Asia underlines its market presence. Li Chen (whose practice is split between Beijing and Hong Kong) heads up the team, which acts for clients in sectors such as technology, media and communications, energy, infrastructure and finance. Max Hua joined from Haiwen & Partners, while Stephanie Tang joined Hogan Lovells.
Other key lawyers:
CarVal Investors, LLC
China Merchant Funds
China National Petroleum Company International/PetroChina
China State Construction Engineering Corporation
China Telecom Corporation
China-LAC Co-operation Fund
Danone Asia Pte Ltd
Hubei Science & Technology Investment Group
InfrAlpha Advisors (Hong Kong) Limited
Jiangxi Railway Investment Group Corporation
Russia China Investment Fund
Shanghai Electric Group
Sino Ocean Group
State Grid International Development Limited
- Advising China Telecom Corporation (“CTC”) on its joint venture with Udenna Corporation in connection with a telecommunications sector project in the Philippines.
- Advised a Chinese fund, as a member of a consortium of Chinese investors, on a $2.28bn investment into a Brazilian joint venture company, which was established for the purpose of operating a major hydroelectric power plant in Brazil.
- Acted for InfrAlpha and its affiliated funds on a $250m equity investment in Summit Power International, whose core business involves generating electricity and supplying it to the Bangladesh Power Development Board and Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board (with whom Summit Power International has long-term power purchase agreements in place).
- Acted for ICBC International Holding Ltd on a $200m investment (along with SPDB International Capital and Gaocheng Venture Capital) in Yitu Technology.
- Advised J.P. Morgan as financial adviser to the Independent Committee of the Board of Directors of iKang Healthcare Group, Inc on a $1.15bn “going private” acquisition by Yunfeng Capital and Alibaba.
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP has been a key fixture in the Greater China market since it opened an office in Hong Kong in 1993. In addition to acting for clients on a standalone basis, the Hong Kong team works with acquisition finance experts and specialists in other practice areas across the network to deliver a global offering. The group's many areas of expertise include acquisitions and divestments, joint ventures and minority investments. It acts for a wide range of clients, such as Chinese SOEs, Asia-based corporates, financial institutions, and global and Asia-based private equity firms. Key figures in the group include China practice head Celia Lam, Ian Ho, Anthony King, Chris Lin and Jin Hyuk Park. Yang Wang is the main contact in Beijing. Kathryn Sudol relocated to New York.
Alibaba Group Holding Limited
Aluminum Corporation of China
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
The Blackstone Group (and portfolio companies)
Bona Film Group
Cainiao Smart Logistics Network
China Life Insurance Company
China National Chemical Corporation
Citigroup Global Markets
iKang Healthcare Group
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (and portfolio companies)
Koubei Holding Limited
Morgan Stanley Private Equity
Primavera Capital Group
Sequoia Capital China Fund
Silver Lake Partners
Yunfeng Fund L.P
- Acted for Ant Financial on its $14bn Series C equity financing.
- Acted for Calsonic Kansei on its $7.1bn acquisition of Magneti Marelli.
- Acted for Siliconware Precision on its $5.7bn sale to Advanced Semiconductor Engineering.
- Advising KKR on its investment in India Grid Trust.
- Advised KKR on its $925m acquisition of Ramky Enviro Engineers Limited.
Sullivan & Cromwell
Sullivan & Cromwell's provides coordinated advice on the Hong Kong, US and English law aspects of headline domestic and cross-border transactions. With the Hong Kong and Beijing offices acting as one team, the firm is well-placed to serve the requirements of Chinese SOEs and other industry-leading companies, including those from areas such as consumer, energy, fintech, manufacturing and TMT. It has become particularly well-known for its strengths in Hong Kong public takeovers, China outbound transactions and other cross-border deals. Complementing the firm's Greater China presence, clients also benefit from the expertise of practitioners in the firm's US and European offices. The Hong Kong group includes Garth Bray, who has been a longstanding adviser to Alibaba on a wide range of corporate matters, and also advises clients such as Ant Financial and Booking Holding on their most significant deals. Another name to note is Kay Ian Ng, who is particularly experienced in transactions involving Hong Kong-listed companies. Other key practitioners include Chun Wei, Michael DeSombre and Ching-Yang Lin.
- Advised Citigroup, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley on Ant Financial’s circa $14bn Series C equity financing.
- Acted for NWS Holdings Limited on entering into a share purchase agreement with, among others, Chinese private equity firm Tongchuangjiuding Investment Management Group Co. Ltd to acquire the entire issued share capital of FTLife Insurance Company Limited for HK$21.5bn.
- Acted for a consortium led by China Three Gorges Corporation (including Hubei Energy Group Co., Ltd., ACE Investment Fund II LP and CNIC Corporation Limited) on its $1.39bn acquisition of Empresa de Generación Huallaga S.A. (EGH) from Odebrecht Energia del Perú S.A. and Odebrecht Energía S.A.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP attracts a large volume of high-value inbound and outbound transactions, and is notably strong in matters with a nexus to the TMT (including e-commerce) and healthcare sectors. It particularly stands out in US public M&A, where it acts for Chinese companies listed in the US on take-private transactions. Its Hong Kong team is part of a wider China platform, which advises on deals involving markets throughout Asia. Working with local law firms, the firm acts as international counsel on cross-border transactions. It also advises clients on a standalone basis, with its cross-office resources and multidisciplinary strengths enabling it to provide full-service support. The firm's strengths in acquisition and leveraged financing transactions are a particular value-add. The Hong Kong team includes lawyers who are qualified in the US, UK, Hong Kong, Australia and the PRC. It is jointly led by Charles Ching - who splits his time between Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong - and Tim Gardner. Henry Ong advises on Asia cross-border, and China and Hong Kong M&A transactions. Chris Welty and associate Kris Desrosiers are also names to note. Counsel Sandy Lin joined from Eversheds Sutherland.
‘The Hong Kong and China teams are very well integrated, proactive and very reliable’.
‘Their delivery of commercially based and sound advice – not just on deals but also on operational and strategic issues – makes them stand out from the rest’.
‘Henry Ong stands out for his strategic thinking combined with sound legal analysis. He is able to advise clients to make sound judgment calls when in difficult and complex situations’
‘Excellent legal advice combined with practical business experience’.
‘The team are knowledgeable and well-coordinated across different practice areas’.
‘The team are able to handle complex issues covering different practice areas, and address clients’ concerns very well, even if the deal is short-fused’.
‘Timely, practical and efficient’.
‘Knowledgeable and experienced’.
‘Tim Gardner (Hong Kong) and Charles Ching (Shanghai) are practical and very experienced’.
Naked Group Limited
Mr. Boquan He
Huanxi Media Group
Special Committee of the Board of Directors of Sinovac Biotech
Special Committee of the Board of Directors of Canadian Solar
- Advised Alibaba Group in its acquisition of 100% stake in Daraz.
- Advised the Consortium including the Chairman of eHi Car Services Ltd., MBK Partners, The Crawford Group, Inc., Ocean Link Partners, and Ctrip Investment Holdings in its $1.75 bn (including debt) take-private of eHi Car Services Limited.
- Advised Vistra Group in its acquisition of Radius Group.
- Advised Shanghai Pharmaceuticals in its $1.2 bn acquisition of Cardinal Health, Inc.
- Advised Huanxi Media Group Limited in its issuance of approximately $50m in new equity to Maoyan Entertainment, and Huanxi and Maoyan’s strategic alliance, cooperation, and co-investment arrangements.
Reed Smith Richards Butler
Reed Smith Richards Butler advises private companies and PRC SOEs on greater China and regional transactions, private equity investments, and company takeovers. Denise Jong and Michael Pepper head the team in Hong Kong alongside Shanghai-based Jay Yan and Beijing-based Michael Fosh.
Ashurst's team has extensive experience of advising on inbound and outbound cross-border transactions in China, Asia and further afield worldwide; recent work has seen it advise on deals involving at least 21 jurisdictions. The firm acts for clients from a broad cross-section of industries, including energy, financial services, infrastructure, mining, retail, TMT and venture capital. Clients include corporates, Chinese SOEs and investment banks. The team includes John Kim, who has experience of acting for South Korean clients in cross-border transactions and regulatory matters. Joshua Cole has over 20 years of M&A experience in Greater China and across Asia. Frank Bi, Peter Kwon, Chin Yeoh and Huiyeon Kim are among other recommended individuals. Sydney-based Mark Stanbridge is the head of the corporate transactions practice in the Asia-Pacific region.
‘The firm was very fast in responding to concerns and gives good, sound and practical legal advice’.
‘The Ashurst team has strong regional experience’.
‘The team is commercial and solutions-driven, and is a pleasure to deal with’.
‘Joshua Cole is an excellent lawyer. He is very commercial, responsive, flexible, on top of the legal issues and able to explain them in simple terms’.
Family Mart UNY Holdings
Macquarie Capital and Covanta Energy, LLC
Mercuria Investment Co., Ltd.
Synthesis Med Chem
- Advised Facebook on the establishment of number of joint ventures with other technology and telecoms companies to build, own and operate several pan-Asia telecoms backbone networks worth over $1.65bn.
- Advised Macquarie Capital and Covanta Energy, LLC on their successful consortium bid with Metro Pacific Investments Corporation to develop the Quezon City Waste to Energy Project in the Philippines.
- Advised FamilyMart UNY Holdings on the HK$300m sale of its retail businesses in Hong Kong to Henderson Land Development.
- Advised Mercuria Investment on the successful defence of an $860m hostile takeover offer by PAG for Spring REIT.
Baker McKenzie's top-notch deal execution capabilities are evidenced by its team's involvement in a significant number of large domestic and cross-border transactions. It advises on public and private M&A (and associated regulatory issues) for Chinese companies, SOEs, multinational companies, high net worth individuals and private equity funds. The group's work covers a wide variety of industries, such as healthcare, industrials, and materials, among many others. Team head Tracy Wut specialises in M&A and foreign direct investments in China, including those in the consumer goods and retail sector. Recently promoted partner Robert Wright and Dorothea Koo (who is the head of private equity in Hong Kong/China) are among various other notable individuals. Complementing its M&A expertise, the firm provides full support on the ancillary aspects of transactions, including tax, merger control, employment, pensions, litigation, intellectual property, HR and insurance. Associate Jeanie Kim left the firm for an in-house role at AXA.
Other key lawyers:
‘They have sufficient resources and expertise to cover the various aspects of M&A transactions including transaction structure, due diligence and execution’.
‘Christina Lee is able to understand and assess the strategic issues and provide advice, taking into consideration the overall transaction dynamics and negotiation strategies’.
‘They provide advice on other issues such as HR, taxation, anti-trust and insurance which are equally important in an M&A transaction’.
‘Christina Lee has in-depth knowledge, particularly of the Takeovers Code and listings rules’.
Akzo Nobel N.V.
Wolverine World Wide Inc.
Yuexiu Property Company Limited
Eastern Media International Corporation (TWSE stock code: 2614)
West Knighton Limited (“West Knighton”)
Chong Hing Bank
Gaw Capital Partners
- Advised Tencent on the €2.1 bn acquisition of a 27.3% stake in Ubisoft from Vivendi.
- Advised Carlsberg on its acquisition of an additional 25% stake in Cambrew Ltd, the Cambodian brewer of Angkor Premium Beer.
- Advised AkzoNobel, a global paints and coatings company headquartered in the Netherlands, on the acquisition of full ownership of its decorative paints joint venture from Swire Industrial.
- Advised Wolverine World Wide Inc on its $730m joint venture with Xtep International Holdings Limited to develop, market and distribute Merrell and Saucony products in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.
Deacons' excellent reputation sees it handle standalone mandates from Chinese companies, and it also generates a significant amount of international referral work. It advises on a full range of matters, including company mergers, acquisitions and disposals, private equity and venture capital investments, and local and cross-border joint ventures. It acted on nine takeover/privatisation deals in 2018; this represented over 15% of all takeover/privatisation transactions involving Hong Kong-listed companies to have completed that year. The firm provides an end-to-end service on all aspects of transactions, with specialists in ancillary disciplines advising on related issues, such as banking and finance, capital markets, employment and investment funds. The team is jointly led by Machiuanna Chu, Ronny Chow and Eugina Chan. Alexander Que has 22 years of experience in M&A, securities and compliance. Peter Cheng joined from Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP. Canny Lau was made up to partner in January 2020.
‘Deacons is able to advise on the various aspects of the M&A transactions in the various sectors, including structuring, potential risks on the execution front, dealing with the relevant regulatory authorities both locally and internationally, pre-completion restructuring, and post transaction integration issues’.
‘ Has in depth knowledge on all the rules and regulations relating to M&A’.
‘Alexander Que is very responsive and always enthusiastic’.
‘Alexander Que is very patient and is able to explain a difficult legal concept in a simply way to the client’.
‘Alexander Que is able to understand/ assess the strategic fronts and provide advice taking into consideration the overall transaction dynamics as well as the negotiation strategies during the various transaction stages’.
AAG Energy Holdings Limited
China Power Clean Energy Development Company Limited
Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company Limited
Kerry Logistics Network Limited
Lai Sun group, including Lai Sun Garment (International) Limited, Lai Sun Development Company Limited, eSun Holdings Limited and Lai Fung Holdings Limited
Manfield Chemical Holdings Limited
Rivera (Holdings) Limited
Shenwan Hongyuan (H.K.) Limited
The Wharf (Holdings) Limited
Wheelock and Company Limited
- Advised Wheelock and Company Limited on the HK$3.9bn acquisition by its wholly-owned subsidiary of a company which owns land under construction in Kai Tak, Hong Kong. The seller was a subsidiary of Hong Kong International Construction Investment Management Group Co. Limited.
- Advised Kerry Logistics Network Limited on its HK$3.6bn disposal of two wholly-owned subsidiaries (which own warehouses in Chai Wan and Shatin, respectively) to a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kerry Properties Limited.
- Advised Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company Limited on the privatisation of HAECO by Swire Pacific Limited.
- Advised Timenew Limited on its HK$1.2bn acquisition of Manfield Chemical Holdings Limited.
- Advised Rivera (Holdings) Limited on the voluntary conditional general cash offer by Step Famous Investment Limited to acquire all of the issued shares of Rivera (Holdings) Limited for circa HK$1bn.
King & Wood Mallesons
King & Wood Mallesons has a sizeable share of the market for Hong Kong and China M&A work, and the growth of its practice saw Ricky Lioe and Kanne Leung make partner in 2018. The firm's ability to practise Chinese law and other international laws makes it an equally strong performer in both domestic and cross-border mandates. Sheldon Tse and Hayden Flinn jointly lead the team, whose industry expertise spans areas such as energy and resources, financial services, real estate and infrastructure. Neil Carabine and Peter Bullock have specialist knowledge of the TMT sector.
Other key lawyers:
‘The corporate team provides an excellent level of service and works hard to find practical commercial solutions to issues’.
‘Neil Carabine is a very hands-on partner, who is easy to work with and has deep experience’.
GTA Semiconductor Co., Ltd.
Shui On Land
CLP Holdings Limited
Qingdao West Coast Holdings (Internation) Limited
Vobile Group Limited
Ascendas Hospitality Trust Management Pte Ltd
- Advising GTA Semiconductor, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of China Electronics Corporation (CEC), on its privatisation of Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation Limited by way of merger by absorption.
- Advised ZhongAn International Technology on the establishment of a virtual bank (ZhongAn Virtual Finance) in Hong Kong, which was pursuant to the HKMA’s latest consultation paper for virtual banks issued in February 2018.
- Acted for Shui On Land on the setup of a $1bn joint venture platform between Shui On Land, Manulife and China Life to acquire high-end office projects; this will initially be in Shanghai, with the potential to expand to other cities in China.
- Advised CLP Holdings Limited on the sale of 40% of CLP India Private Limited to Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), a leading global institutional investor for $400m.
- Acted for Qingdao West Coast Holdings (International) Limited (Qingdao West Coast) on an unconditional mandatory HK$1bn cash offer to acquire all the issued shares in Prosper Construction Holdings Limited.
Mayer Brown has a notable focus on heavily-regulated sectors and other industries where deep expertise is required, such as aviation, banking, chemicals, insurance, pharmaceuticals and real estate. Its team covers a full range of corporate issues for clients, including public and private M&A, private equity investments, spin-offs, joint ventures and strategic alliances. The group's expertise in this space is complemented by the firm's ability to offer support on related matters, such as competition clearances, CFIUS approvals, fund formation and tax planning. Hannah Ha leads the group, which was strengthened in 2019 by the arrivals of Steven Tran and Sheng Wu from Hogan Lovells and DLA Piper respectively.
‘Efficient, commercially sensible and always willing to run the extra mile’.
‘Hannah Ha is extremely efficient and wise, and she knows different cultures across the Asia-Pacific very well’.
China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd.
China Merchants Group
Dah Chong Hang
Sun Hung Kai
Merlin Entertainments Group
CapitaLand / Ascott
Shui On Land Limited
Tsingtao Brewery Company Limited
Principal International (Asia) Limited
Lai Sun Group
- Acted for Principal Financial Group on its proposed acquisition of control of CIMB-Principal Asset Management Group and CIMB-Principal Islamic Asset Management from its joint venture partner CIMB Group Holdings Berhad.
- Advised the investment manager (which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Shui On Land) of a joint venture established by Shui On Land, Manulife Financial and China Life Trustees on the joint venture’s first portfolio acquisition.
Morrison & Foerster features prominently in headline transactions in the Hong Kong and China M&A market, particularly those connected with the technology, financial services and real estate sectors. Its enviable client roster includes financial sponsors (and their portfolio companies), Chinese SOEs and privately-owned enterprises, and multinational corporates. Thomas Chou co-heads the private equity practice in Asia with Marcia Ellis. Vivian Yiu has over 20 years of experience advising on M&A, joint ventures and reorganisations, among other matters. The Hong Kong team works closely with practitioners in other offices, including Beijing-based partners Sherry Yin and Paul McKenzie.
Softbank/ Softbank Vision Fund
NewQuest Capital Partners
Farallon Capital Asia
Bain Capital Credit
Ark Pacific Capital
- Advised Alibaba Group Holding Limited on its acquisition of a 33% equity interest in Ant Financial, China’s leading financial services company.
- Advised Alibaba Group on Ant Financial’s $14bn Series C fundraising, valuing Ant Financial at approximately $150 bn; this represented the single largest fundraising by any company in the world to date.
- Acted for Softbank Vision Fund on an investment as part of a $3bn investment by Softbank and the SoftBank Vision Fund into Local Services Holding Company, a company established by Alibaba after consolidating the businesses of Ele.me and Koubei.com.
- Acting for SoftBank Vision Fund on a $1.5bn investment in Chehaoduo.
- Acted for SoftBank Vision Fund as lead investor on the combined $1bn financing in OYO Rooms.
Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison's standing in the corporate arena is reflected by its high-end work for the largest and most active market participants in the Asia-Pacific region. Its practice has built up a premier reputation in relation to domestic and cross-border M&A, public and private acquisitions and divestments, private equity investments, joint ventures, and growth capital and pre-IPO investments. The firm particularly stands out in challenging deals involving the TMT and sports sectors, although its portfolio of work is broader, and also includes matters connected with the food and beverage, insurance and retail industries, among others. Betty Yap and Judie Ng Shortell are particularly strong in handling Hong Kong/China-related inbound and outbound investments. Yap co-heads the team with Jack Lange; Jeanette Chan has joined Airwallex as its chief legal and compliance officer.
Dalian Wanda Group
State Grid Corporation
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
Universal Parks & Resorts
- Advised SoftBank Vision Fund on its $1.9bn investment in Chinese truck-hailing company Full Truck Alliance.
- Advised China-based investment management firm Hony Capital, along with TPG Growth, on its $100m+ equity financing round in STX Entertainment.
- Acted for Chinese internet giant Tencent on the acquisition of New Zealand-based gaming company Grinding Gear Games.
- Acted for KKR and Tencent, as lead investors, on a $175m minority investment in Voyager Innovations, which is the financial technology arm of PLDT Inc (a Philippines-based telecommunications and digital services provider).
- Advised Hillhouse Capital on the $1.68bn sale – alongside Permira – of Magento Commerce.
At White & Case, the Hong Kong team's expertise in large cross-border deals is complemented by the wider cross-practice resources available across the global network, making the firm a top choice among Chinese and international clients in their most critical transactions. The group's experience spans a multitude of areas, including mergers, public and private M&A, divestitures, leveraged buyouts, PIPE transactions, preferred equity investments and joint ventures. The group's broad industry expertise sees it act for clients in sectors such as mining and metals, real estate, travel, hospitality, industrial, financial services and TMT. Christopher Kelly is the head of the Asia- Pacific corporate practice. Daniel Yeh, Paul Tang, William Fong and Steve Sha all joined as partners from Ropes & Gray LLP.
Other key lawyers:
FWD Group Management Holdings
Noble Group Limited
Galaxy Entertainment Group Limited
Suzhou Dongshan Precision Manufacturing Ltd.
- Advised the management team of Noble Group Limited on a $3.5bn restructuring of the company.
- Advised Ctrip Financial Management (Hong Kong) Co., Limited on setting up a strategic joint venture with Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Limited, PCCW Limited, HKT Trust and HKT Limited to deliver a standalone digital retail bank in Hong Kong.
- Advised RRJ Capital on the buyout acquisition of gategroup Holding AG from HNA Group.
- Acted for Hong Kong-headquartered FWD Group Limited on the acquisition by its subsidiary, FWD Life Insurance (Bermuda) Limited, of 49% of the issued share capital of HSBC Amanah Takaful (Malaysia) Berhad from HSBC Insurance (Asia Pacific) Holdings Limited.
- Acted for Warburg Pincus on the $1bn acquisition of a 40% stake in a joint venture with the founders of Hande Group to invest in, among other things, special situation real estate projects in the PRC.
Debevoise & Plimpton LLP’s Hong Kong team, which is integrated into a wider cross-office Asian corporate practice, has US, English and Hong Kong law capabilities. It takes the lead on strategically significant matters for private equity firms, financial institutions, and Chinese and multinational corporates. William Chua and Edwin Northover are both joint heads of the group, whose areas of expertise include cross-border M&A and private equity investments, disposals, joint ventures, leveraged acquisitions and asset management deals. International counsel Allison Lee has particular experience of acting for private equity firms and insurance sector clients. Associate Wen-Wei Lai is dual-qualified to practise in New York and Taiwan.
‘Very good knowledge of private equity investments and pre-IPO investments’.
‘William Chua is very knowledgeable and responsive’.
‘Does what it takes to get the job done, which at times can include working with unreasonable time frames’.
‘Able to identify critical issues and develop pragmatic solutions’.
‘Able to provide high-quality and rapid support even when multiple projects are taking place concurrently’.
‘William Chua provides attention to detail and insightful advice to the deal’.
‘The team has very good knowledge of private equity transactions and pre-IPO investments’.
‘The team are able to provide high-quality and rapid support even when multiple projects are taking place concurrently’.
‘The team wants to make a difference and play a meaningful role in supporting our inorganic growth ambitions’.
‘Always looking for ways to improve their advisory services to us’.
Morgan Stanley Private Equity
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
- Advised HarbourVest Partners on its investments in Janalakshmi Small Finance Bank (formerly Janalakshmi Financial Services), a non-banking financial services company in India.
- Acted for a global private equity firm on its $10bn investment in a leading fintech company in China.
- Acted for a consortium of investors led by Hillhouse Capital on the $600m acquisition of a global financial services and fund business.
- Advised Unicharm, a publicly-listed company in Japan, on its $530m acquisition of DSG International, a publicly-listed company in Thailand.
- Advised a client on its strategic investment in, and related cooperation arrangements with, WeWork Companies, including the acquisition of naked Hub, a Chinese co-working startup.
Gibson Dunn's diverse workload covers a wide range of multijurisdictional corporate deals, including privatisations involving US and Hong Kong-listed Chinese companies, foreign direct investments into China, outbound investments and private equity transactions. Under the joint leadership of Graham Winter and Yi Zhang, the practice is continuing to gain momentum, with new and existing clients turning to the firm on their most sophisticated deals. Clients include PRC-based and multinational companies, private equity funds and banks. The Hong Kong team - which also includes Scott Jalowayski, Brian Schwarzwalder and Paul Boltz - works closely with its counterparts in the US and Europe.
First Pacific Company
Melco International Development
Goldstone Investment Co.
Kangde Xin Composite Material
D. E. Shaw
Capital Today Group
Meralco PowerGen Corporation
Huamao Property Holdings Ltd.
- Acted for Yida China on its $700m acquisition of an offshore company that indirectly holds real estate development projects in Dalian, China.
- Advised First Pacific Company Limited on the $300m sale of its 50% stake in Goodman Fielder to Wilmar International.
- Advised Bluestone Global Holdings Limited on the $573m privatisation and delisting of Portico International Holdings Limited.
- Advised Meralco PowerGen Corporation on its bid for the 51% ownership interests of AES Corporation in the Masinloc Power assets, including a 630-MW coal power plant in the Philippines.
- Advised Capital Today Group on the secondary restructuring of its investment in Yifeng Pharmacy.
Goodwin's team demonstrates strong market knowledge in areas such as telecoms, media and entertainment, technology, life sciences and financial services. It handles a full spectrum of corporate and private equity transactions for a sizeable number of regional and international private equity and venture capital firms, as well as public and private companies, and investment banks. Yash Rana , who set up the Hong Kong office in 2008, is the founding chair of the Asia practice. Rana works with Douglas Freeman . In addition, other notable individuals at the firm are Bosco Yiu, debt finance specialist Daniel Lindsey and life sciences sector expert Wendy Pan, who joined from Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Kirkland & Ellis and Sidley Austin respectively.
‘Deep knowledge of Chinese and Indian markets and trends’.
‘Yash Rana is extremely diligent and responsive. Despite time differences, he is always available’.
‘Yash Rana always has a firm grasp of the critical commercial issues we care about’.
Duff & Phelps
Falcon Edge Capital
FountainVest Partners (Asia) Limited
Goldman Sachs PIA
Hillhouse Capital Management
Morningside Venture Capital
- Acted for FountainVest Partners and The Carlyle Group on their $2.2bn sale of equity stakes in Focus Media to the Alibaba group.
- Advised FountainVest Partners and its portfolio company Trusted Doctors on a merger agreement with Tencent Doctorwork.
- Acted for SpeedCast on its $135m acquisition of Globecomm.
- Acted for LionRock Capital on various investments in Sichuan Jinxin Fertility Medical Management Co. Ltd.
- Acted for Duff & Phelps as financial adviser on the $1.1bn going-private acquisition of eHi Car Services by a consortium formed by MBK Partners and Ray Zhang, Chairman and CEO of eHi Car Services.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius (in association with Luk & Partners) excels in advising Chinese and global clients on landmark and other high-profile transactions in China and many other jurisdictions worldwide. It undertakes a full range of corporate matters, and is particularly active in matters connected with fast-evolving industries, such as biotech, fintech, artificial intelligence and mobile technologies. The firm's ability to cover the full spread of corporate and private equity work is supported by its capabilities in related areas, including capital markets, regulatory, employment, litigation and antitrust. Edwin Luk and Maurice Hoo jointly lead the M&A practice in Hong Kong, which generates work from multinational companies, hedge funds, individual investors and sovereign governments.
Anta Sports Products Ltd.
GCL-POLY Energy Holdings Limited
Cainiao Network Technology Co., Ltd. the logistics arm of Alibaba Group
China Hengshi Foundation Company Limited (Hong Kong Stock Code: 1197)
- Acted for ANTA Sports Products Limited, which led a consortium in the $5.39bn leveraged buyout of Finland’s Amer Sports Corporation, by way of a voluntary public tender offer made in accordance with the Finnish Securities Market Act.
- Acted for Warburg Pincus on the $2.7bn sale of Mobike, the world’s largest and most technologically advanced smart bike-sharing platform, to Meituan-Dianping.
- Acted for Cheyipai on its sale to SouChe.com.
- Acted as international counsel to Alibaba’s logistics arm Cainiao Smart Logistics Network on the structuring, negotiation and finalisation of a joint venture with the Malaysian Airport Holdings Berhad (“MAHB”), as the concessionaire of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport project, to set up the world’s first electronic world trade platform (“eWTP”).
- Acted for GCL-POLY Energy Holdings Limited on its $26m strategic investment in Lamtex Holdings Limited.
Paul Hastings LLP
The expertise of Paul Hastings LLP's Hong Kong team is brought to bear in innovative and high-value outbound acquisitions and other corporate work involving complex structuring, regulatory and other challenging requirements. Raymond Li and Vivian Lam jointly lead the group, which coordinates deals in the Asia-Pacific region, and works closely with other offices in the global network in other cross-border matters. Clients include investment funds, Chinese SOEs and multinational corporates. Other key figures include recently promoted partner Bonnie Kong, and of counsels May Lun and Sophie Han. Steven Winegar departed for an in-house role at Ping An Group, while Nan Li joined Tian Yuan Law Firm.
‘The partner and the associate were very professional and the turnaround time was very quick’.
‘They have a strong capability in dealing with counterparties’.
Ping An Insurance
Alpha Investment Partners
City Football Group Limited
- Acted for COSCO SHIPPING Holdings Co. Ltd and Shanghai International Port (Group) Co. Ltd. on a $6.3bn voluntary general cash offer for all of the issued shares of Orient Overseas (International) Limited.
- Acted for CDH Genetech, which is part of the CDH Investments group, on its $1.4bn acquisition of Australian medical device company Sirtex Medical.
- Acted for CIMC-TianDa Holdings Company Limited on the proposed acquisition – through its subsidiary Allied Best (China) Fire Safety Appliances Manufacturing Co. Ltd – of 60 per cent of the equity interests in Shenyang Jietong Fire Truck Co. Ltd for circa $88m.
- Advised Sino-Ocean Group on its $95m acquisition of boutique hotel and members’ club Soho House in Chicago.
- Advised China Smarter Energy Group Holdings on its $134m acquisition of Ningxia Guxin Electricity Investment, which owns a 300 MW grid-connected solar power project in Ningxia, China.
Dechert serves as a one-stop shop in strategic corporate and M&A transactions, where its ability to cover all related matters (including finance, real estate and commercial litigation) comes to the fore. Although the overwhelming majority of its work has a cross-border component, the firm is also highly active in domestic mandates. Stephen Chan and David Cho co-head the team, which acts for clients on public and private M&A, private equity transactions, restructurings and joint ventures, among other matters. Stephen Chan has over 15 years of transactional experience. The team also includes Yang Wang, who made partner in January 2019, and associate Jason Wu.
Fortune Group Holdings Limited
MIE Holdings Corporation
Lone Star Fund
China Financial Services Holdings Limited
Portico International Holdings Limited
Songbird SG Pte. Ltd.
- Advised Fortune Group Holdings Limited, which is wholly owned by Chatchaval Jiaravanon, on the $150m acquisition of FORTUNE media brand from Meredith Corporation Limited.
- Advised Lone Star Fund on its $810m indirect acquisition of significant unconventional Coalbed Methane (CBM) blocks in China.
- Advised TerraPower on an $810m joint venture with China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) to develop Traveling Wave Reactor (TWR) technology, which promotes clean energy growth,
- Advised MIE Holdings Corporation on two M&A transactions connected with its sale of oil and gas assets in Canada, which constituted major disposals under the Hong Kong Listing Rules.
- Advised China Financial Services Holdings Limited on the acquisition of certain loan portfolio and equity interests of three Chinese companies from The Bank of East Asia, Limited and Credit Gain Finance Company Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of BEA.
At DLA Piper, reflective of the continued growth of the practice and increase in workflows, Henry Cheng (who has over a decade of corporate and M&A experience) was hired from Kirkland & Ellis. Luke Gannon heads up the team in Hong Kong, which attracts a sizeable volume of large and complex deals, including public takeovers, private M&A, private equity investments, restructurings and related regulatory compliance matters. It demonstrates particularly strong capabilities in sectors such as healthcare, life sciences, insurance, renewable energy and natural resources, and technology. Other key practitioners are Heng Loong Cheong and Gloria Liu.
Aetna Global Holdings
Nanjing Xinjiekou Department Store
Silk Road Fund
Qumei Home Furnishing Group
- Advised CVS Health and Aetna Global Holdings on a wide range of complex issues connected with the circa $69bn merger of US-based retail pharmacy and healthcare company CVS Health with US-based managed healthcare company Aetna.
- Advising Laureate Education on the $162m sale of its global network institution in Malaysia – INTI University and Colleges – to Affinity Equity Partners.
- Advising Fosun on its subscription of a controlling stake in French couture label Jeanne Lanvin for €120m.
Eversheds Sutherland's team in Hong Kong works collaboratively with members of the Beijing and Shanghai offices to advise high-calibre clients on large cross-border M&A and private equity transactions. It acts for a mix of Chinese SOEs, US corporates, international corporates and private equity clients. Charles Butcher, who is the head of M&A in Hong Kong, has grown the firm's portfolio of regional and international mandates, and acts for clients in sectors such as TMT, life sciences, energy and natural resources. Asia corporate head Stephen Mok has over 25 years of M&A experience. Dickson Ng and Amy Yu are other key figures in the group.
‘Holistic approach to M&A – bringing resources from all areas of the firm together to provide the best advice to the client’.
‘Network of reliable partners in case of the need to reach out externally for a specific enterprise in a jurisdiction or subject matter’.
‘Able to break down complex legal issues into simple, easy to understand frameworks for clients’.
‘Very clear communication’.
CGN Energy International Holdings Co., Limited (CGNEI)
China Development Bank (CDB)
China National Petroleum Corporation
China Nuclear Power Engineering Co., Ltd. (CNPE)
China State Energy Engineering Corporation Ltd. (Sinomec)
China-LAC Cooperation Fund (CLAC Fund)
Iron Mountain Incorporated
Sirtex Medical Limited
- Acted as lead counsel to HNA Aviation on its sale of low-cost carrier Hong Kong Express Airways to Cathay Pacific for HK$4.9bn.
- Advised Iron Mountain Inc on its acquisition of Lane Archive Technologies Limited in the Philippines.
- Acted as international deal counsel to Quad/Graphics, Inc on its $132.5m acquisition of Periscope.
- Advising Sirtex Medical Limited on the Hong Kong/PRC corporate and international antitrust aspects of its takeover by CDH Investments.
Hogan Lovells' global reach and multidisciplinary strengths make it well-positioned to handle a full spread of corporate matters for clients. Led by Jun Wei, who is the chair of the Greater China practice, the team advises on China inbound/outbound and other multijurisdictional deals, as well as domestic M&A, for Chinese and international clients. It is particularly active in sectors such as life sciences and healthcare, energy, TMT, retail and real estate sectors. Tim Fletcher heads up the specialist financial institutions group, which handles corporate transactions and regulatory matters for banking, insurance and fund clients, among others. Stephanie Tang, who is the head of private equity, joined from Shearman & Sterling. Andrew McGinty is also recommended.
- Advised Tricor Group (a portfolio company of private equity firm Permira) on the acquisition of Richful Deyong Group.
Howse Williams' corporate and commercial team is led by name partner Chris Williams, who has extensive experience of acting on cross-border M&A in Southeast Asia. Elsewhere, other members of the group assist Hong Kong- listed companies with corporate transactions, as well as regulatory and compliance-related issues; Brian Ho, Christopher Yu Chia Ching Tan and Heidi Lee are names to note in this space. Gilles Cardonnel specialises in deals connected with the luxury/retail industry. Denise Che is also recommended.
Cinemaxx, the Lippo Group
Hongkong Chinese Limited (HK Stock Code: 655)
Hanergy Thin Film Power Group Limited
Dafeng Port Heshun Technology Company Limited
- Advising Altavia on the acquisition of Creative Capital.
- Advising Maus Freres on various corporate and commercial matters related to their brands Lacoste, Gant and Aigle.
- Advising the Lippo Group and its movie theatre chain operator PT Cinemaxx Global Pasifik on a strategic partnership with Cinépolis de México, S.A. de C.V.
- Advising Hong Kong Chinese Limited on the HK$349m sale of Lippo Securities (the securities arm of Lippo group) to G-Resources Group Limited.
- Acted as Hong Kong legal counsel to Hanergy Thin Film Power Group Limited on the scheme of arrangement proposed by its controlling shareholder and its subsequent delisting from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
K&L Gates' practice in Hong Kong is integral to the broader Greater China offering, which also encompasses the Beijing and Shanghai offices. The firm has a notable focus on China-related inbound and outbound M&A, where it acts for clients in a wide range of industries. Frank Voon, who divides time between Beijing and Hong Kong, is experienced in corporate matters connected with the real estate, pharmaceutical and mining sectors. Other areas of activity for the team include fintech, oil and gas, financial services, energy and natural resources, telecommunications and fintech. Virginia Tam handles a mix of public and private M&A, PIPEs and joint ventures, among other matters. Asia managing partner David Tang (whose practice is split between Seattle and Beijing) oversees the group, which acts for mid-market and fast-growth companies, private equity firms and global corporates.
Other key lawyers:
China Union Pay
CITIC Pacific Mining
- Acted for Protective Industrial Products on the China-related aspects of its acquisition of West Chester Protective Gear.
- Acted for Kaisa Group Holdings, a Hong Kong listed real property developer, on its acquisition of an additional $9m worth of shares of Nam Tai Properties (NTP) in the open market.
- Acted for a Tokyo-listed conglomerate in the chemicals industry on the acquisition of two PRC-based chemicals manufacturers.
Minter Ellison's practice, which is led by Fred Kinmonth, features prominently in the mid-market space, where it advises Chinese businesses and entrepreneurs on hostile and recommended takeovers, trade sales and acquisitions, private equity transactions and privatisations. Kinmonth's team includes highly regarded practitioner Barbara Mok, who is fluent in English, Mandarin and Cantonese. Katherine U, Anne Ko and George Tong are other notable individuals.
Tesson Holdings Limited
- Acted for Leyou Technologies Holdings Limited on acquisitions totalling HK$260m made by its wholly-owned subsidiary.
- Acted for Hopson Development Holdings Limited on the HK$1.1 bn acquisition by its wholly-owned subsidiary of the entire issued share capital in a BVI company which owns the 49th floor of The Center in Hong Kong.
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP expanded its Hong Kong team by hiring of counsel William Ho from Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in October 2018. Ho is experienced in advising private equity funds on their investments in Asia, particularly in the technology sector. He also assists early-stage start-up companies in Greater China and Southeast Asia with capital raisings, financings and general corporate matters. Mark Lehmkuhler and Scott Peterman are two other names to note in the group, which also undertakes a particularly significant amount of outbound M&A work for Chinese SOEs. Beyond technology, the team is also highly active in corporate and commercial matters involving the energy and infrastructure sector, as well as the automotive and life sciences industries. Sook Young Yeu and managing associate Anson Chan are also recommended. Mark Weeks splits his time between Tokyo and Hong Kong.
‘Jeff Zhang is dedicated to serving his clients, and is able to leverage off the firm’s global network to provide services in specialised areas’.
JD.com Inc.; JD Logistics
Silk Road Fund
Haier Group Corporation
China Ping An Insurance Overseas and Ping An Technology
Zhejiang Geely Holding Group
China Reform Overseas Hongkong Company
Advanced Semiconductor Engineering
BOE Technology Group
LexinFintech Holdings Ltd
- Advised Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE) on its $127m acquisition, through its wholly-owned subsidiary J&R Holding Limited, of NXP Semiconductor’s 40% stake in Suzhou ASEN Semiconductors Co., Ltd.
- Acted for JD.com on the US$2.5bn Series A financing of JD Logistics by multiple investors, including Hillhouse Capital, Sequoia China, China Merchants Group, Tencent, China Life, China Development Bank Capital FOF, China Structural Reform Fund, GIC and ICBC International.
Proskauer Rose LLP acts for a number of longstanding corporate clients in their most complex Asia inbound and outbound transactions. It is also prominent in the private equity sphere, where it serves as a trusted adviser to China-based, Asian and other international funds. Yuval Tal, Ying Li and Jeremy Leifer are key contacts at the firm, where the work spans sectors such as real estate, healthcare, life sciences, and media and entertainment. The Asian hospitality industry is a particularly key area of strength, with the group handling a large volume of transactions for Western and Asian hotel brands. Senior associate Vivian Ho is recommended.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team at Proskauer is excellent at responding to the needs of its clients’.
‘Very proactive and dedicated to delivering the best results to clients’.
‘Ying Li is very close to his clients and finds the right solutions’.
Accor – Tribe
Formosa International Hotels Corporation
Schroder Adveq Management AG
Publicis Groupe SA
Country Garden Asset Management
The Recording Academy®
Mori Building Real Estate Advisory Co., Ltd
Huarong International Financial Holdings Ltd
Accor – Ctrip
- Acting for long-time Barcelona-based client Grifols S.A. on its entry into a strategic alliance with Chinese blood plasma company, Shanghai RAAS Blood Products Co Ltd.
- Advised long-time client Accor on its recent acquisition of Tribe, Australia’s first integrated modular hotel brand.
- Advised Formosa International Hotels Corporation (FIH), an international luxury hospitality group based in Taiwan, on the sale of a 51% stake in the Regent Hotels and Resorts brand to InterContinental Hotels Group for $39m and an option to sell the remaining 49%.
- Advising Schroder Adveq on global investments in venture and growth capital, buyouts and turnarounds.
- Advising Publicis on its acquisition of a Shanghai-based video production business, through the purchase of equity interests in a Chinese wholly foreign-owned enterprise.
Ropes & Gray LLP
Ropes & Gray LLP acts for a number of the largest corporates in China, as well as many of the most active private equity firms in the market. It generates a strong pipeline of mandates in areas such as healthcare, life sciences and electronics, among others. The technology industry is a particular strong suit of the practice, as is illustrated by the fact that the team undertakes a notably significant amount of work for Alibaba in this space. Led by James Lidbury, the group handles a full spread of matters for clients, including cross-border M&A, private equity buyouts, take-private transactions, PIPEs, growth capital investments, divestitures and joint ventures. It acts on matters across the Asia-Pacific region, the US and the UK. Peng Yu is another recommended individual in the team, as is Oliver Nip, who was promoted to partner in November 2018.
‘The team has in-depth knowledge of the Chinese TMT industry, with both local and international insights’.
‘Oliver Nip and his team are professional and efficient, commercially-oriented and they don’t compromise on the legal technicalities’.
‘Oliver Nip is technically strong and is always accessible when you need him’.
‘Oliver is a newly promoted partner who is extremely technical and concise’.
‘I’m very happy with their work’.
‘Good value for money, given the quality legal services provided by the team’.
ASM Pacific Technology
Hong Kong International Construction Investment Management Group
- Advising Alibaba on its strategic partnership with Cartier-owned Richemont, in order to bring the retail offerings of YOOX Net-A-Porter Group (YNAP), a leading online luxury fashion retailer, to Chinese consumers.
- Acted for Ant Financial (Alipay) on its strategic partnership with OpenRice Group, Hong Kong’s most popular online restaurant database and review service.
- Acted for Alibaba as a co-leader, together with Yunfeng Capital, on the $1.4bn all-cash 13e-3 transaction to privatise iKang Healthcare Group.
- Acted for ASM Pacific on its acquisition of US-based company TEL NEXX from Tokyo Electron Limited.
- Advised Vivo Capital on the $400m consortium acquisition of Sinovac Biotech, the China-based biopharmaceutical company focused on vaccines.
Stephenson Harwood has been active in the Greater China market for over 40 years. Led by Paul Westover, it handles a wide variety of corporate matters for companies listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, international corporates and regional businesses. It also generates a significant amount of work from overseas-based law firms. The team's workload includes M&A, fundraisings, cross-border restructurings, acquisitions and disposals of assets, joint ventures and regulatory compliance. It acts for clients across multiple industries, such as manufacturing, technology, sports and entertainment, among others. Westover works with Jane Ng and Ivy Wong. In 2019, Allen Shyu departed for for Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, while Anthony Chan moved to Squire Patton Boggs.
Duff & Phelps, LLC
Blue Umbrella Limited
The joint provisional liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials Group Limited/ PricewaterhouseCoopers
eSun Holdings Limited
- Advised Duff & Phelps LLC on the sale and purchase of business and assets of Zolfo Cooper (Hong Kong) Limited.
- Acted for Blue Umbrella Limited on the $11m sale of its Pre-Employment Screening (PES) division to CISIVE in five jurisdictions.
- Acting as Hong Kong legal counsel to the joint provisional liquidators of CECEP COSTIN New Materials Group Limited on the proposed acquisition of a real estate portfolio.
- Advised eSun Holdings Limited on its HK$37.5m acquisition of a 10% shareholding interest in Intercontinental Group Holdings Limited from Lai’s Holdings Limited.
Addleshaw Goddard's team is particularly knowledgeable about the entire lifecycle of growth companies; its work for companies and investors in this space ranges from early-stage investments to later stage exits. Practice head Andrew Yang features prominently in the start-up community in Hong Kong and South East Asia. Elsewhere, the group provides ongoing advice to FTSE100 and FTSE250 companies. Also notable is that it is highly active in the fintech arena, where it acts for fintech companies and financial institutions. Private equity work - where the firm acts for funds, investors and investee companies - is another area of focus. Daniel Wan and Lance Jiang are also recommended.
CM Seven Star Acquisition Corporation
No Ordinary Designer Label Limited (trading as: Ted Baker)
- Acted for CM Seven Star Acquisition Corporation on the $454m acquisition of Kaixin Auto Group, a subsidiary of NYSE-listed Renren Inc.
- Advising No Ordinary Designer Label Limited on a joint venture in Hong Kong and China with Long Goal and Open Apparel to drive the long-term expansion of Ted Baker in these markets.
Forming part of a wider China M&A team, O'Melveny's Hong Kong-based group has strong deal execution capabilities; this is evidenced by its excellent record in high-value public and private M&A deals, leveraged acquisitions, private equity buyouts, take-privates, spin-offs and joint ventures. Nima Amini, Edwin Kwok and Li Han are among the main contacts in the team, which acts for domestic and international clients, with a focus on Chinese companies and financial investors. Its areas of sector expertise include technology, e-commerce, life sciences, real estate, media and entertainment, industrial, manufacturing and retail. Ke Zhu made partner.
ATAI Management Consortium
eHi Car Services
Founders of Adicon Holdings
GIC Private Limited
PAG Real Estate
JHL Biotech, Inc
Kordis Holding Limited
- Acted for Seek Group on its £50m investment in social learning platform FutureLearn.
- Acted for the two founders of Adicon Holdings Limited on the sale of 66% of the company to a consortium comprised of Meinian Onehealth Healthcare, funds managed by the Caryle Group and four Carlyle co-investors.
- Acted for Weichai Power on its $183m investment in and joint venture with Ballard Power Systems, a dual-listed (Toronto Stock Exchange and Nasdaq) global provider of innovative clean energy fuel cell solutions.
- Assisted Silicon Valley-based electric vehicle company Lucid Motors with obtaining over $1bn in investments from the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia.
- Advised GIC Private Limited, the Government of Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, on an offer and sale, (alongside Bain Capital Partners LLC) of an equity stake in outsourcing company Genpact Ltd. for an aggregate purchase price of $324m.
Tanner De Witt, which was established in 1999, generates mandates both directly from clients on a standalone basis and also as part of an international network of firms. Eddie Look, Tim Drew and Edmond Leung jointly lead the team, which is well-known among local businesses operating in the mid-tier segment of the Hong Kong market. It also acts for a significant number of multinational household-name entities. The multifaceted practice covers M&A, joint ventures, reorganisations, licensing and franchising arrangements, private equity transactions, and regulatory compliance, among other matters. Pàdraig Walsh is particularly knowledgeable about various subsets of the technology sector, including fintech, biotech, insurtech, edutech and cleantech. River Stone and Jan Möller (who is dual-qualified to practise in the Netherlands and Hong Kong) are also recommended.
‘Very professional lawyers, able to solve problems in a timely manner’.
‘Jan Möller has profound knowledge of Hong Kong law and he is able to solve our problems in a very short time’.
BMW Hong Kong
Hong Kong Rugby Union
Hugo Boss AG
- Advised IAI on the sale of a 50% stake in Deep C Green Energy (Hong Kong) Limited to TEPCO Power Grid, Inc. and also entering into a joint venture arrangement with TEPCO for the continued distribution, sale and retail of electricity in the DEEP C Industrial Zones in Haiphong, Vietnam.
- Advised Universal Pictures on the Hong Kong law aspects of promoting its blockbuster movie Skyscraper.
- Assisted Shenzhen Investment Holding Company Limited with establishing a Hong Kong SPV, taking a bridge loan from HSBC and subscribing a significant amount of newly H shares in Vanke Group.