Private equity in Hong Kong

Clifford Chance

Benefiting from deeply entrenched ties with international sponsors as well as pan-Asian and China-based funds, Clifford Chance has exposure to a wide range of mandates in the region and is consequently well-versed in current market norms. Working closely with the office's pre-eminent finance team on leveraged deals, and able to tap into the firm's vast global network of offices, the team is a natural choice for clients on big-ticket cross-border mandates where it is also able to leverage the firm's strong competition capabilities should the need arise. As well as the team's strength advising sponsors on the downstream investment work, it is also well-placed to follow the client through to an exit strategy, whether it be via an M&A process or a listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Co-heads Andrew Whan and Neeraj Budhwani have an excellent reputation in the market and both regularly lead on the highest-profile matters handled by the team. Whan recently advised MBK Partners and TPG portfolio company WTT on its merger with Hong Kong Broadband Network.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Whan and Neeraj Budhwani

Other key lawyers:

Bryan Koo; Maureen Ho

Key clients

CVC Capital Partners

Carlyle

Affinity Equity Partners

Actis

Partners Group

Permira

TPG Capital

PAG

MBK

EQT

Work highlights

  • Represented Partners Group on its $1.34bn acquisition, via joint venture, of Dinghao Electronics Plaza.
  • Represented Cassia Investments on the sale of its stake in Shanghai Tang Group.
  • Represented EQT on its proposed minority investment into VBill.
  • Represented MBK Partners and TPG on the merger of WTT and HKBN.
  • Represented CVC on its HK$2bn investment in RKE International Holdings.

Kirkland & Ellis

Regularly acting for longstanding institutional international private equity sponsors, and also picking up a significant amount of work for regional China-based funds, Kirkland & Ellis remains one of the most prolific firms in the market. Benefiting from market-leading debt finance expertise (on both the bank debt and high yield front), in addition to restructuring and fund formation prowess, clients are appreciative of the firm's ability to provide a 'joined-up and cohesive offering', enabling the team to handle all aspects of work for sponsor clients, not just in relation to the downstream investment mandates. In a deal which showcased the firm's coordinated approach, (involving as it did input on the debt finance, capital markets and antitrust front), Daniel Dusek and Nicholas Norris recently provided the corporate/M&A input to FountainVest Partners on its $6.4bn voluntary public tender offer for all the shares in Finnish sporting goods company Amer Sports Corporation. Gary Li is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Dusek; David Patrick Eich; Gary Li; Nicholas Norris; David Zhang and Joey Chau

Other key lawyers:

Xiaoxi Lin; Pierre-Luc Arsenault

Key clients

FountainVest Partners

Blackstone

Loyal Valley Capital

TR Capital

Coatue Management

Bain Capital Private Equity

The Carlyle Group

Centurium Capital

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

UBS AG (as financial advisor)

GLP

Special Committee of the Board of Directors of China Automotive Systems, Inc.

Shougang Concord International Enterprises

Work highlights

  • Advised a number of sovereign wealth funds in their investments in the $14bn Series C equity financing of Ant Financial.
  • Advised FountainVest’s $6.4bn voluntary public tender offer for all the shares in Finnish sporting goods company Amer Sports Corporation.
  • Represented Blackstone in its investment in YiChang HEC ChangJiang Pharmaceutical Company Limited.
  • Advised Loyal Valley Capital and TR Capital in their respective investment in Shanghai Junshi Biosciences Co., Ltd.
  • Represented Bain Capital Private Equity in the Series A financing of its controlled portfolio company, Lionbridge Capital.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison

Benefiting from a longstanding presence in Hong Kong and the PRC, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison's five-partner Greater China private equity offering has been a key resource for many of the firm's leading global private equity clients (including KKR and Carlyle) on their strategic investments in the region. As well as her work for international sponsors, Betty Yap has an excellent reputation for numerous regional investors, including Hillhouse Capital, which she regularly advises on its investments/divestments across a range of sectors including TMT. Alongside Jack Lange, another pivotal member of the team, Yap recently advised Hillhouse on the $1.68bn sale of Magento Commerce to Adobe.

Practice head(s):

Jack Lange, Betty Yap and Jeanette Chan

Other key lawyers:

Edwin Chan

Key clients

KKR

Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia

The Carlyle Group

PAG

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan

Apollo Global Management

Hillhouse Capital

DCP Fund

ShawKwei & Partners

IDG Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised SoftBank Vision Fund on its investment in Chinese truck-hailing company Full Truck Alliance.
  • Advised China-based investment management firm Hony Capital, along with TPG Growth, in its $100m+ equity financing round in STX Entertainment.
  • Represented KKR and Tencent, as lead investors, in a $175m minority investment in Voyager Innovations, the financial technology arm of PLDT Inc, a Philippines-based telecommunications and digital services provider.
  • Advised Hillhouse Capital, alongside Permira, a global private equity firm, on the $1.68bn sale of Magento Commerce, a global provider in cloud digital commerce innovation to Adobe.
  • Acted for IDG Capital in its investment, alongside I.T Group, of approximately $200m in Acne Studios, a Stockholm-based fashion house with signature retail stores across the world.

White & Case

The 'client-oriented and proactive' team at White & Case displays 'excellent market insight' on behalf of an impressive roster of global and Asia-based private equity sponsors, which are appreciative of the firm's ability to 'work well with other offices across the firm's international network', and to provide a one-stop-shop service to sponsors across every aspect of the ecosystem -  from fund formation, investment and financing strategies, through to exits. Bolstered by the arrival in February 2019 of several well-respected practitioners from Ropes & Gray LLP, including Daniel Yeh (who now heads the firm's Asia Pacific private equity offering), the team now has the critical mass and expertise to seriously challenge the top-tier firms in the market. Able to execute deals in Asia utilising New York and UK law, the team is able to provide an extremely versatile and flexible service to clients engaged in investments across a range of sectors, including TMT, pharmaceuticals and healthcare. One of the new arrivals from Ropes & Gray LLPWilliam Fong is appreciated for his 'willingness to go the extra mile' and is a key member of the team that includes Christopher Kelly, who handles private equity mandates as part of his broader ranging M&A offering.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Yeh

Other key lawyers:

Christopher Kelly; Paul Tang; Steve Sha; William Fong

Testimonials

‘The team provides an exceptional client service.’

Key clients

The Carlyle Group

CVC

Baring Private Equity Asia

I Squared Capital

RRJ Capital

Warburg Pincus

Work highlights

  • Advised RRJ Capital in the buyout acquisition of gategroup Holding from HNA Group.
  • Represented Warburg Pincus on the acquisition of a minority 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.
  • Representation of CVC Pacific on its acquisition of a majority equity stake in UnitedLex, a leading alternative legal services provider.
  • Following its previous work in relation to the debt financing for the HK$14.5bn acquisition of HGC in 2017, the firm advised ISQ and HGC in connection with the refinancing, amendment and extension of the previous debt financing and incorporation of a new term loan facility, totalling approximately HK$7.9bn.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Benefiting from a sizeable presence in Hong Kong and Beijing – many of whom are Mandarin speakers – Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP is well-placed to advise the firm's core roster of institutional international private equity sponsor clients, including Blackstone and KKR, on their investment activity throughout the Asia Pacific region. US and Hong Kong-qualified partner Ian Ho has an 'excellent perspective of the market', and in what was the largest private equity-backed transaction in Taiwan, recently advised KKR, as lead investor of a consortium, on the $1.56bn acquisition of Taiwan-based LCY Chemical.

Practice head(s):

Ian Ho; Anthony King; Celia Lam; Chris Lin; Jin Hyuk Park

Key clients

Apax Partners

The Blackstone Group (and portfolio

companies)

Fountainvest

KKR

Lexington Partners

Morgan Stanley Private Equity

Primavera Capital Group

Sequoia Capital China Fund

Silver Lake Partners

Yunfeng Fund L.P

Work highlights

  • Representation of Ant Financial in its $14bn Series C equity financing by numerous institutional investors.
  • Represented KKR on its investment in India Grid Trust.
  • Represented KKR on its $1bn sale of KCF Technologies.
  • Represented a KKR-led consortium in its $1.56bn acquisition of LCY Chemical.
  • Acted for KKR in connection with its acquisition of a majority stake in Ramky Enviro Engineers for approximately $530m.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP

Benefiting from a 'seamless global reach' across the US, Europe and Asia Pacific, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP's Hong Kong private equity team is well-placed to handle work on its own or in concert with other offices for a plethora of leading local and international sponsors. With significant expertise across the corporate and financing front, clients appreciate the team's ability to provide 'strategic and commercial advice' to investors across a range of industry sectors, including TMT, healthcare and retail. As well as its expertise on the front end of deals, clients are also appreciative of the firm's strong restructuring offering,  'which is helpful in terms of considering any downside risks and potential mitigants on any given deal'. 'Practical and experienced' team head Tim Gardner regularly spearheads the highest-profile deals handled out of Hong Kong for international sponsors as well as more regional players, including Hillhouse Capital and MBK Partners; he recently advised the latter (as part of a consortium) on the $1.75bn privatisation of eHi Car Services. Chris Welty also regularly handles private equity deals as part of his broad-ranging corporate offering and has developed particular expertise advising on take-private deals in the region.

Practice head(s):

Tim Gardner

Other key lawyers:

Chris Welty; Sandy Lin; Kris Desrosiers

Testimonials

‘The firm has an excellent local and foreign practice team which can advise on various cross-border issues faced by private equity firms.’

‘The team provides excellent legal advice combined with practical business experience.’

‘The team provides timely, efficient and practical advice.’

Key clients

Lone Star

Softbank Vision Fund

The Rohatyn Group

Technology Crossover Ventures

TPG Capital

TPG Growth

General Atlantic

MBK Partners

Baring Private Equity Asia

Advent International

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan

GIC

Primavera Capital

Warburg Pincus

Hillhouse Capital

FountainVest Partner

Work highlights

  • Advised SoftBank Vision Fund on its $2bn investment in Coupang.
  • Represented the consortium (including MBK Partners) in its $1.75bn (including debt) take-private of eHi Car Services.
  • Advised Warburg Pincus in its investment in Sichuan Jinxin Fertility Group.
  • Advised Advent International Corporation in its acquisition of a controlling interest in BioDuro.
  • Advised Hillhouse Capital Group in its $101m minority PIPE investment in China Biologic Products.

Latham & Watkins LLP

Although it is newer to the Hong Kong market than many other firms in the latest ranking, Latham & Watkins LLP has rapidly been able to replicate the firm's US and Europe-based private equity credentials by virtue of some astute strategic hires and the ability to leverage strong relationships with core existing firmwide clients. With expertise on the corporate, finance and regulatory fronts, and benefiting from lawyers with Hong Kong, UK and US qualifications, the team is able to provide a one-stop-shop service to sponsors throughout their lifecycle and is praised for its ability 'to combine local knowledge and an appreciation of cultural sensitivities with a true understanding of cross-border issues'. Team head Simon Cooke has a strong reputation among Asian and international sponsors on their investments and exits in the region; he recently advised Carlyle Group on the disposal of its Korean portfolio company ADT Caps to a consortium led by SK Telecom and Macquarie’s Korean Opportunities Fund, in what was one of Korea’s largest private equity exits to date. Native Mandarin speaker Frank Sun excels in advising private equity clients on complex in-bound and out-bound China deals.

Practice head(s):

Simon Cooke

Other key lawyers:

Amy Beckingham; Frank Sun; Zhonghua Shi

Key clients

Vinhomes Joint Stock Company

The Carlyle Group

TPG Capital

CITIC Capital Partners

Tencent Holdings

Warburg Pincus Asia

Baring Private Equity Asia

Partners Group

MBK Partners

Nexus Point

CDH Investments

Platinum Equity

ICG

Boyu

Primavera

Orix Asia

Gojek

Nord Anglia

Work highlights

  • Advised Vinhomes Joint Stock Company on its initial equity offering and the equity investments both at the listco and project company levels from GIC Private Limited.
  • Represented 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.
  • Advising HKBN on its entry into a Merger Agreement with MBK Partners and TPG.
  • Advised CITIC Capital Partners on the acquisition by CITIC Capital Asian Foods Holdings Limited of Amoy Food from Japanese seasonings giant Ajinomoto Co., Inc.
  • Advised Warburg Pincus and Becamex IDC on their joint venture to form BW Industrial Development Joint Stock, the largest for- rent industrial and logistics developer in Vietnam.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

With UK- and US-qualified lawyers based in Hong Kong and Beijing, and also able to tap in to the expertise of lawyers from across the firm's extensive global network, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton's full-service private equity offering has a strong pedigree on behalf of major international private equity sponsors, including TPG, on its Asia-based investments, as well as work for a growing roster of regional sponsors, including Hillhouse Capital and Hony Capital. With expertise on the capital markets and corporate private equity front, Freeman Chan is regularly at the forefront of the most significant investments and exits handled by the team, including his recent work for TPG on the sale of an equity stake in China International Capital Corp.

Practice head(s):

Freeman Chan and Gabriele Antonazzo

Key clients

Bain Capital

CDH Investments

China International Capital Corporation

Hillhouse Capital

Hony Capital

HOPU

PAG Asia

Primavera Capital

Temasek Holdings

TPG

Work highlights

  • Represented TPG in the sale of an equity stake in China International Capital Corp.
  • Represented a TPG-led consortium on its proposed acquisition of a minority stake in jewelry brand, APM Monaco.

Gibson Dunn

Led on the private equity M&A front out of Hong Kong by Scott Jalowayski and Brian Schwarzwalder, and recently afforded added synergies by the arrival, in April 2018, of two prominent fund formation partners from Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLPGibson Dunn is an increasingly attractive proposition for international sponsors on their work in the region, in addition to a growing roster of local entities, including Boyu Capital and Anchor Equity Partner. The scope of the firm's transactional work includes leveraged buyouts, minority growth equity investments, consortium deals, take privates, carve outs and joint ventures. The team has recently handled numerous high-profile exits, including for Goldman Sachs on its sale of shares in eHI Car Services to a consortium of acquirers, as part of the consortium’s take private acquisition of eHi.

Practice head(s):

Scott Jalowayski and Brian Schwarzwalder

Other key lawyers:

James Jackson; Albert Cho; John Fadely

Key clients

Goldman Sachs

Bain Capital Private Equity

Anchor Equity Partners (Asia) Limited

Boyu Capital

CITIC Capital

Capital Today Group

AGIC Capital

Longreach Capital Partners

Neuberger Berman

I-Squared Capital

Work highlights

  • Represented Anchor Equity Partners (Asia) in connection with its sale of Korean pharmaceutical distributor Geo-Young to Blackstone Group.
  • Advised on the secondary restructuring of Capital Today’s investment in Yifeng Pharmacy.
  • Represented Goldman Sachs in its sale of shares in eHi Car Services to a consortium of acquirers, including MBK Partners, as part of the consortium’s take private acquisition of eHi.
  • Advised CITIC Capital and Caixin Global on the acquisition of the Global Markets Intelligence Division, a financial information database operator, from Euromoney Institutional Investor.

Morrison & Foerster

Leveraging the firm's overarching sector strengths across TMT and life sciences and also benefiting from a 'well-connected' bridgehead between mainland China and the firm's office in Silicon Valley, Morrison & Foerster  provides a 'very impressive service' to a range of global and regional investors, including private equity funds, Chinese insurance businesses and sovereign wealth funds on their venture capital and private equity investments/exits. The 'very commercialMarcia Ellis has vast experience in the region and as well as advising pure sponsor clients, also has very strong connections with major regional conglomerates, including Alibaba and Softbank, which generates a significant deal flow.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Chou and Marcia Ellis

Other key lawyers:

Amit Kataria; Vivian Yiu; Catherine Liu; Brian Snyder; Sunandini Das; Ching Sing So; Olivia Tang; Sarah Luo

Testimonials

‘The team has a lot of experience and is good at problem-solving in a commercial manner.’

‘Thomas Chou is helpful, connected, thoughtful, hardworking and professional.’

Key clients

Softbank/ Softbank Vision Fund

Alibaba Group

GLP

Ascendent

Ally Bridge

BlackRock

NewQuest Capital Partners

Vectr Ventures

Intudo Ventures

Farallon Capital Asia

Bain Capital Credit

Ark Pacific Capital

Celadon Partners

Work highlights

  • Advised Alibaba Group in relation to Ant Financial’s most recent $14bn Series C fundraising.
  • Advised Alibaba Group Holding in Alibaba’s acquisition of a minority equity interest in Ant Financial, China’s leading financial services company.
  • Represented Softbank Vision Fund in connection with a $3bn investment by Softbank and the SoftBank Vision Fund into Local Services Holding Company.
  • Represented SoftBank Vision Fund in connection with an $1.5bn investment in Chehaoduo.
  • Advised Hong Kong-based financial services and technology company Oriente on its $105m initial funding round.

Ropes & Gray LLP

Despite a number of high-profile departures of late, including most recently leading private equity lawyer Daniel Yeh to White & CaseRopes & Gray LLP still maintains a solid offering on behalf of numerous pre-eminent US sponsors active in the region (including Bain Capital and TPG) as well as several regional big-hitters (Alibaba and MBK Partners). Mandarin-speaking Hong Kong- and US-qualified partner Peng Yu takes the lead on many of the mandates handled by the team and has a flourishing reputation in relation to China-facing private equity transactions.

Practice head(s):

Peng Yu

Other key lawyers:

Oliver Nip

Testimonials

The team provides helpful and detail-oriented advice. 

The ability to think outside the box is amazing.

Oliver Nip is extremely technical and concise. 

Key clients

Bain Capital

Baring Private Equity

MBK Partners

TPG Capital

Alibaba

China Resources

HKICIM Group

Vivo Capital

Work highlights

  • Represented Bain Capital in the acquisition of World-Wide Packaging, a leading US-based provider of cosmetics packaging, and its concurrent bolt-on acquisition of a leading Chinese cosmetics packaging manufacturer.
  • Advising Alibaba across a range of transactional work, including on a strategic partnership with Richemont and joint venture with YOOX Net-A-Porter Group.
  • Advised TPG Capital in its joint venture with China Lodging Group, a leading hotel operator in China, and in the follow-on acquisition of two hotel properties in Beijing.
  • Represented Hong Kong-based, China Resources Capital Management on its restructuring of its investment in GenesisCare.
  • Advised China Resources Capital Management as part of the China Resources consortium in its £600m bid to acquire a minority stake in the Dudgeon offshore wind farm in the UK.

Shearman & Sterling

Although lacking the strong institutional ties with major international sponsors that are the hallmark of some of the firms in the ranking, Shearman & Sterling's Greater China practice –  which houses M&A, fund formation and leveraged finance practitioners across Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai – generates a substantial deal flow by dint of its strong ties with regional funds, sovereign wealth funds and Chinese banks with private equity arms. Team head Li Chen splits her time between Hong Kong and mainland China, and is noted for her experience at handling China inbound and outbound transactions across a range of industry sectors including energy, healthcare, entertainment, telecoms, real estate and public utilities.

Practice head(s):

Li Chen; Lorna Chen

Other key lawyers:

Paul Strecker

Key clients

Bain Capital

CarVal Investors

China Merchant Funds

China National Petroleum Company International/PetroChina

China State Construction Engineering Corporation

China Telecom Corporation

China-LAC Co-operation Fund

Danone Asia

Huawei

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

Taikang Insurance

Temasek

ZZ Capital

Work highlights

  • Advising China Telecom Corporation on its joint venture with Udenna Corporation with respect to the joint venture’s telecommunications project in the Philippines.    
  • Advised a Chinese fund, as a member of a consortium of Chinese investors, to contribute into a Brazilian joint venture company established for the purpose of operating a major hydroelectric power plant in Brazil.
  • Represented InfrAlpha and its affiliated funds in connection with its equity investment in Summit Power International.
  • Represented ICBC International Holdings, as part of a consortium, on an investment in Yitu Technology.
  • Advised CarVal Investors in connection with a minority equity investment in Shanghai Wensheng Asset Management Company.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius (in association with Luk & Partners)

Since its establishment in January 2017, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius (in association with Luk & Partners)' Hong Kong office has rapidly made inroads into the regional private equity market. Less of a gatekeeper offering than some of the firms in the ranking (in that it is fed less work from institutional clients of the firm), its client roster is primarily self-generated, with the majority of clients following the team that left Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP in 2017. Active across the fund lifecycle, from formation through to investment and exit (which is aided by a strong Hong Kong IPO offering), the team's client base runs the gamut from global sponsors (Permira Capital, Carlyle) and regional funds (Hillhouse Capital), through to Chinese banks with investment arms (Bank of China International). Maurice Hoo heads the team.

Practice head(s):

Maurice Hoo

Other key lawyers:

Ning Zhang; Connie Cheung

Key clients

Warburg Pincus

Sequoia Capital

Hillhouse Capital

Permira Capital

The Carlyle Group

Fortress Investment

Credit Suisse

Bank of China International

Oaktree Capital

TRG Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised ANTA Sports Products as part of 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.
  • Advised Warburg Pincus on numerous transactions, including its recent LBO of Beijing-based retailer, Leyou.
  • Advised Cheyipai on its sale to SouChe.com, China’s b-to-b marketplace and financing giant backed by several strategic investors including Ant Financial, Alibaba and Warburg Pincus.
  • Represented Sequoia Capital in its investment in Beijing-based Chehaoduo Group.
  • Represented Gaorong Capital on its $940m investment in Nuro, the US-based driverless delivery startup.

Paul Hastings LLP

Acting on its own, as well as in concert with lawyers in mainland China, South Korea and Japan, Paul Hastings LLP's Hong Kong team has strong ties with global and local investment managers and excels at handling private equity M&A and late-stage venture capital mandates within the TMT, fintech and real estate sectors. Vivian Lam co-heads the team alongside Neil Torpey (following his recent relocation to Hong Kong from New York) and is particularly noted for her strong ties with Chinese investors.

Practice head(s):

Neil Torpey and Vivian Lam

Other key lawyers:

Fang Pei

Key clients

CDH Investments

SoftBank

China Media Capital

Ping An Group

Carlyle Group

Alpha Investment Partners

AEW Global

China Orient Summit Capital (COS Capital)

Newquest Capital

ARA Asset Management

Falcon Edge Capital

Work highlights

  • Represented CDH Genetech, part of the CDH Investments group, on its $1.4bn acquisition of all the issued shares of Sirtex Medical, an Australian medical device company, through a Scheme of Arrangement.
  • Represented Golden Fortune, as investor and ICBC Asset Management (Global), as investment manager, on the $75m investment in the convertible note financing of Uxin, the largest used car e-commerce platform in China.
  • Represented SCPG Holdings, China Vanke and Triwater Asset Management Holdings, on their formation of an offshore consortium in connection with a $1.33bn acquisition of a large-scale China real estate portfolio from CapitaMalls Asia, a wholly owned subsidiary of CapitaLand.
  • Advised CDH Investments, together with Joyoung, on the $1.1bn acquisition of Shark Ninja, a leading US home appliance company.
  • Advised PAG fund in the $730m hostile takeover of Spring REIT.

Proskauer Rose LLP

Headed by the 'extremely helpfulJay Tai Proskauer Rose LLP's 'experienced and efficient' team has excellent traction among local Asia-based funds engaged in Chinese and Southeast Asian transactions, as well as on outbound investments, where it can effectively leverage the firm's wide-ranging network of offices. The team is particularly active in relation to investments in the healthcare, financial services, TMT and real estate sectors, and also boasts a very strong reputation in the local market within the growing secondaries space.

Practice head(s):

Jay Tai

Other key lawyers:

Ying Li; Jeremy Leifer; Vivian Ho

Testimonials

‘The experienced and efficient team is responsive and provides high-quality advice.’

‘Jay Tai provides practical advice and also helps to facilitate internal coordination within the firm, ensuring that the best service is provided.’

Key clients

CCB International Asset Management

Partners Group

Schroder Adveq

Abax Global Capital

Haitong International Securities Group

OCI

OCBC

Peterson Group

Country Garden Asset Management

HQ Capital OCBC

B.M. Holding (Group) Co., Ltd

Huarong International Financial Holdings

Mori Building Real Estate Advisory Co., Ltd

Work highlights

  • Represented CCB International Asset Management on numerous private equity investments, including on the subscription of senior secured guaranteed notes and exchangeable notes issued by a company group for the  acquisition of a transportation company in China.
  • Advising Partners Group on the disposal of a portfolio of public securities of a Hong Kong-listed manufacturing company.
  • Continued to advise Abax Global Capital, as part of a Chinese investment consortium, on the restructuring and additional financing for the acquisition of assets in Argentina by a Chinese dairy maker.
  • Advised Haitong International Securities Group on several matters, including on an equity investment and debt refinancing in relation to the privatisation of a NYSE-listed company involved in medical and hospital business in China.
  • Represented OCBC, as part of a consortium, for the $200m sale of a minority interest in Tsingda eEDU Corporation.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

Global M&A powerhouse Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP handles  a wide range of private equity investments and exits, as part of the Hong Kong office's overarching corporate and capital markets coverage. Aided by a strong presence in Beijing and Shanghai, as well as globally, the team handles work for Chinese companies investing in the US and 'going private', and also for non-Chinese private equity houses worldwide making investments in China. Julie Gao heads up the firm's China practice from the Hong Kong office and is noted for her private equity M&A work, as well as her capital markets expertise – which frequently manifests itself in terms of an exit strategy for funds. Sector strengths include TMT, energy, retail and real estate. Geoffrey Chan is also a key member of the team, given his focus on the formation and structuring of Asia-based US dollar-denominated private investment funds.

Practice head(s):

Julie Gao, Jonathan Stone and Geoffrey Chan

Other key lawyers:

Xuan Zhang

Key clients

Asia Investment Capital

Baidu Capital

Baring Private Equity Asia

Blackstone Group

Carlyle Group and Carlyle Asia Partners

Cenova Capital

CITIC PE Advisors and CITIC Securities

CLSA Sunrise Capital

Cowin Capital Asset Management

Equis Funds Group

Forebright Capital Management

FountainVest Advisors

Hony Capital

HOPU Fund Management

Ivanhoe Cambridge

Morgan Stanley Private Equity

Nesta Investment Holdings

Permira Funds

RRJ Management Ltd.

Sequoia Capital

Sky9 Capital

Temasek Holdings

Tiger Investment Management

Unicorn Partners Advisors

Vision Plus Capital International Management

Yixin Capital

Work highlights

  • Represented Baidu, Inc (China) in its $1.9bn sale of a majority stake in its financial services business to a consortium led by TPG Capital and The Carlyle Group.
  • Advised Ke.com in its $800m Series D financing led by strategic investor Tencent.
  • Represented Leading Smart (now known as Minglue Technology Group) in its business combination with MiningLamp and its $200m+ financing led by Tencent, Golden Endeavor, Avic Trust and Huaxing Capital.
  • Acted for CITIC Private Equity on the formation of the client’s China private equity fund III.
  • Advising Cenova Capital in the formation of its first US-dollar denominated fund of $240m.

Baker McKenzie

Acting on its own and/or in harness with other offices across the firm's extensive Southeast Asian network (including offices in mainland China, Singapore and Vietnam), Baker McKenzie's Hong Kong team handles the full array of private equity-related work, from fund formation, through to investments, bolt-on acquisitions and exits. Dorothea Koo leads the practice on the M&A front and has strong ties with regional sponsors, corporate venturers and pension funds. The team is particularly active on deals within the financial services, TMT and real estate (where the firm is also known for its fund formation capabilities) sectors.

Practice head(s):

Dorothea Koo

Other key lawyers:

Jason Ng; Tracy Wut; Edwin Wong; Robert Wright

Key clients

Abu Dhabi Retirement Pensions & Benefits Fund

APG Asset Management

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

Cognita Asia Holdings

EQT

Gaw Capital Partners

Goodman Group

One Equity Partners

SINO-CEE Fund

Tabuman Centers

500 Startups

Work highlights

  • Advised EQT Mid Market Asia on its acquisition of a minority interest, by way of subscription of newly issued shares in China Shine, a fast-growing facility management service provider with a focus on the Chinese market.
  • Advised One Equity Partners on the acquisition of ePAK, a secondary buyout deal.
  • Acted for Gaw Capital Partners on the formation of a co- investment fund that will invest alongside Gateway Real Estate Fund V to acquire 17 Hong Kong malls from Link REIT.
  • Advised Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Goodman Group on their additional equity commitment of $1.75bn to Goodman China Logistics Partnership to fund their portfolio expansion in mainland China.
  • Advised Angelo Gordon on the acquisition of nine floors in an office building in the Kwun Tong area of Hong Kong’s Kowloon East.

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP handles a significant amount of private equity work out of its broader corporate and M&A offering, where it advises both local and international sponsors, in addition to Chinese corporates invested into by private equity sponsors. Team head Miranda So has a strong reputation for work in the TMT sector, and frequently advises Chinese multinational investment holding conglomerate, Tencent, on its investment activity.

Practice head(s):

Miranda So

Other key lawyers:

Sam Kelso

Work highlights

  • Advised iKang Healthcare Group, a major provider in China’s fast growing private preventive healthcare services market, on its $1.2bn acquisition by a consortium of Yunfeng Capital, Alibaba Group Holding 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 approximately $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 in connection with its entry into definitive agreements with China Resources Enterprise  and China Resources Beer (Holdings) Co. Ltd.  to create a longterm strategic partnership in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.
  • Advised Tencent Mobility in connection with its equity investment in Bilibili Inc.
  • Advised Tencent Holdings and Tencent Music Entertainment Group in connection with the private placement of TME shares to WMG China LLC, an affiliate of Warner Music Group, and Sony Music Entertainment, for an aggregate cash consideration of approximately $200m.

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

Led by the 'proactive and responsiveWilliam Chua out of Hong Kong, and also able to tap into the firm's broader Asia network (which includes a presence in mainland China and Japan), Debevoise & Plimpton LLP's 'small and productive team' displays 'excellent market insight' on behalf of local and international  sponsors on their pan-Asian investments. Chua has particular expertise advising on investments in the financial services sector.

Practice head(s):

William Chua

Other key lawyers:

Edwin Northover; Allison Lee; Wen Wei Lai

Testimonials

‘The office has very good knowledge of the private equity market.’

‘The team is familiar with market practice in the US and Hong Kong, including as it relates to Chinese companies that list in either country.’

‘William Chua and Wen-Wei Lai are experienced in due diligence and providing relevant and practical advice on private equity transactions. They are proactive and responsive to timelines, and have a very good appreciation of in-house needs.’

Key clients

HarbourVest Partners

Hillhouse Capital

Hony Capital

Boyu Capital

Morgan Stanley Private Equity

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan

Work highlights

  • Advised HarbourVest Partners on its investments in Janalakshmi Small Finance Bank, a non-banking financial services company in India.
  • Represented a global private equity firm in its investment in a leading fintech company in China.
  • Represented a global private equity fund in its investment in an online financial services company in China.
  • Represented a consortium of investors led by Hillhouse Capital in the acquisition of a global financial services and fund business.
  • Advised Hony Capital in its strategic investment in, and related cooperation arrangements with, WeWork Companies, including the acquisition of naked Hub, a Chinese co-working startup.

DLA Piper

Praised for its 'excellent market insight', DLA Piper's Hong Kong office provides an 'exceptional service' for numerous major Chinese clients in the mid-market buyout space. The team has expertise throughout the fund lifecycle, from fund formation and ongoing operational needs, through to investments and exit strategies, and has particular strengths in theTMT, energy and education sectors.

Practice head(s):

Gloria Liu

Testimonials

Highly commercial and effective. 

Market insight; bench of expertise; good language capability; reasonable billing. 

Gloria Liu has an outstanding commercial sense. 

Key clients

China Ping An Insurance Overseas

Coatue

China Everbright

Silk Road Fund

Valuestone Global Resources Fund

Actis

OrbiMed

CICC

China Merchants Capital

EQT Asia Mid Market Fund

Macquarie Asia Infrastructure Funds 1 & 2

Work highlights

  • Represented Coatue on its ground-breaking equity investment in the $14bn pre-IPO financing of Ant Financial.
  • Advised Rajax and its founders in the $9.5bn trade sale of Rajax to Alibaba.
  • Acted for China Ping An Insurance Overseas (Holdings) on the $1.5bn exit from its strategic investment in Bigo, a fast-growing live-stream company.
  • Acted as lead global counsel to Meicai, the China-based private company in the agricultural sector, on its $750m Series F financing
  • Represented China Ping An Insurance Overseas on its private equity investment in global education service provider, Whittle School & Studios.

Goodwin

Co-headed by the 'extremely diligentYash Rana and Douglas Freeman , the 'very responsive' team at Goodwin excels at handling private equity/venture capital mandates within the TMT, life sciences and financial services (fintech) sectors – where it is able to leverage the firm's deep industry knowledge and transactional track-record. The team benefits from strong ties with numerous Asia-focused investors, with mandates running the gamut from early-stage venture and late-stage growth matters, through to buyouts and take-private transactions.

Practice head(s):

Yash Rana and Douglas Freeman

Testimonials

‘The highly commercial Yash Rana has deep knowledge of Chinese and Indian markets and trends.’

Key clients

DST Global

Duff & Phelps

Falcon Edge Capital

FountainVest Partners (Asia) Limited

Goldman Sachs PIA

Hillhouse Capital Management

LionRock Capital

Morningside Venture Capital

PAG

TA Associates

Work highlights

  • Represented an affiliate of PAG in its disposal of shares in SeaWorld Entertainment.
  • Represented LionRock Capital in its acquisition of Inter Milan football club.
  • Represented a global private equity firm in its investment in a wholly owned subsidiary of Ant Financial.
  • Represented FountainVest Partners and The Carlyle Group in their sale of equity stakes in Focus Media.
  • Represented FountainVest Partners in a merger agreement with Tencent Doctorwork.

Herbert Smith Freehills

Aided by practitioners spread across the firm's international network, should the need arise, Herbert Smith Freehills regularly handles private equity/venture capital work for international and Asia-based funds. Corporate/M&A partner Tommy Tong often leads on the most significant mandates handled by the team and has been particularly active of late advising on deals in the life sciences and TMT sectors.

Practice head(s):

Matt Emsley

Other key lawyers:

Tommy Tong

Key clients

SAIF Partners

Carlyle Group

TCV

Temasek

Yunfeng Capital

CITIC Private Equity Funds Management

China Reform Venture Capital Investment Management

Work highlights

  • Advised JD.Com, along with Singapore’s Provident Capital Partners, as lead investors in the $2bn Series F investment funding round in Go-Jek, Indonesia’s first unicorn company that specialises in ride-hailing and logistics.
  • Assisted Taobao China Holding and a Hong Kong-headquartered private investment group, as investors in the latest fundraising round of Indonesian-based e-commerce company Tokopedia in December 2018, which raised over $1.1bn.
  • Advised Temasek during the $320m funding round of G7, the company’s largest funding round so far led by private equity firm HOPU Investments.
  • Advised Carlyle on a share swap transaction involving ArtGo Holdings and China first Capital Group.
  • Advised CITIC Private Equity Funds Management on the acquisition of Pine Medical Limited, the Hong Kong-based pharmaceutical company that produces and sells medical products including drug-coated balloons mainly in China.

Hogan Lovells

Headed out of Hong Kong by Stephanie Tang, following her arrival in January 2019 from Shearman & SterlingHogan Lovells' Greater China private equity practice is well-placed to handle work for Chinese entities on their outbound investments and international funds on their investments across Asia Pacific (where it is also aided by a strong network of offices in the region including in Beijing, Singapore and Vietnam). Tang has a particularly strong reputation in the TMT sector and is also noted for her excellent track record advising on take-private transactions of US-listed Chinese companies.

Practice head(s):

Stephanie Tang

Other key lawyers:

Andrew McGinty

Key clients

Sedgwick Inc.

Ekornes ASA

Work highlights

  • Advised Sedgwick, Inc., a global provider of technology-enabled risk, benefits, and integrated business solutions, on its $6.7bn sale of KKR’s majority stake in the enlarged Sedgwick group to The Carlyle Group.
  • Advised Ekornes ASA on the PRC regulatory element and deal financing element of the $640m sale to a Chinese buyer consortium.
  • Advised Tricor Group, Asia’s leading global corporate services provider and a portfolio company of private equity firm Permira, on the acquisition of Richful Deyong Group.

King & Wood Mallesons

Aided by practitioners on the ground in mainland China, as well as more broadly throughout Asia Pacific, King & Wood Mallesons' Hong Kong-based team has deep connections with numerous Greater China-focused private equity firms, venture capital investors and sovereign wealth funds, which are appreciative of the 'very commercial service' the team is able to provide on inbound and outbound mandates. Splitting her time between Hong Kong and Beijing, team head Helena Huang has an excellent track record across onshore and offshore private equity fund formation matters, as well as on the resultant downstream investments. Although the team handles work across numerous industry sectors, it has developed a particular degree of expertise within the TMT space.

Practice head(s):

Huang Wen and Helena Huang

Testimonials

‘Huang Wen is an expert in the market who is proficient in Chinese business and international market rules.’

Key clients

HongKong Bora Holdings

CMC Inc.

Soho China Limited

Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group Co., Ltd. (Ant Financial)

Baidu

Bluepool Capital

Ningbo Jifeng Auto Parts Co., Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Advised HongKong Bora Holdings on its repurchase of 11% shares held by Gabo Holdings Inc. which is a SPV wholly owned by Bank of China Group Investment Limited.
  • Advised CMC on the closing of its approximately RMB10bn Series A round financing.
  • Advised Soho China on the disposal of the company holding its Sky Soho project, which is a commercial building situated at Hongqiao Linkong Economic Zone in Shanghai.
  • Acted for Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group Co., Ltd. in connection with its Series C equity financing totalling approximately $14bn.

Linklaters

Implementing a multi-disciplinary approach which draws upon the office's expertise across M&A, investment funds, restructuring, capital markets and financing, Linklaters represents fund managers and private equity houses on all aspects of the industry, from fundraising and structuring to buyouts, public to privates and portfolio assistance – including restructuring advice. Able to leverage the knowledge of lawyers based in mainland China and from across the firm's broader global offices, the team excels at handling cross-border mandates.

Practice head(s):

Robert Cleaver

Other key lawyers:

Alex Bidlake

Key clients

Hammer Capital Consulting

PT Pamapersada Nusantara (PAMA)

CTBC Bank

Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia

GLP Pte. Ltd

Cathay United Bank

Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank

Work highlights

  • Acted for Hammer Capital Consulting as Tranche B notes purchaser in the acquisition financing for The Centre.
  • Advising PAMA in relation to the acquisition by its subsidiary, PT Danusa Tambang Nusantara, of the Martabe Gold and Silver Mine located in North Sumatra province in Indonesia.
  • Acted for CTBC Bank, Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank, and an arranger on the financing of the LBO of Grobest Group by a vehicle controlled by private equity sponsor, Permira.
  • Advised Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia on its €48m investment in Korres S.A. Natural Products and a follow-on investment in the company.
  • Advised GLP on the Series C round investment into Next Trucking.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

Although it is rebuilding somewhat out of Hong Kong, following the departure of several private equity practitioners to Morgan, Lewis & Bockius (in association with Luk & Partners) in 2017, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP's Greater China offering remains significant by virtue of its continued strong presence in Beijing and Shanghai. The arrival in October 2018 of counsel William Ho from Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison signals a degree of intent to continue to build out the Hong Kong team in light of the departures, particularly given Ho's track-record advising major private equity funds in their tech investments across Asia. Venture capital remains a core strength of the team's work, with regular mandates flowing from Chinese company founders and companies in early and later-stage financing rounds. Mark Lehmkuhler has moved to Fangda Partners.

Other key lawyers:

William Ho; Scott Peterman

Key clients

JD.com Inc.

Silk Road Fund

China Media Capital

China Ping An Insurance Overseas and Ping An Technology

China-LAC Cooperation Fund

China Reform Overseas Hong Kong Company

Everpine Capital

Welkin Capital Management

JD Logistics

Work highlights

  • Represented JD.com in the $1bn Series A financing for JD Health.
  • Represented JD.com in the $2.5bn Series A financing for JD Logistics.
  • Represented a Chinese state-owned private equity fund in its sale of shares in Bilibili.

Reed Smith Richards Butler

Forming an integral component of its Greater China private equity offering (which also includes input from the firm's Beijing and Shanghai offices), Reed Smith Richards Butler's long-established Hong Kong corporate practice continues to handle a significant volume of work for local and international funds, in addition to work for corporates as targets of private equity investments. Able to leverage the expertise of the firm's China life sciences practice, the team has niche expertise advising on venture capital-related work within the medical technology and life sciences sectors.

Practice head(s):

Denise Jong; Mark Cornell; Michael Pepper and Anthony Woo

Other key lawyers:

Delpha Ho