Latham & Watkins LLP > Beijing, China > Firm Profile

Latham & Watkins LLP
BEIJING 100004

China > Restructuring and insolvency: foreign firms Tier 2

The Hong Kong-based Greater China restructuring and insolvency practice at Latham & Watkins LLP has significant experience in debtor-side and creditor-side matters, with the team’s representative expertise covering workouts, restructurings and bankruptcy cases. Its recent workload includes advising on bondholder and debtor-side work, along with liquidations and insolvency mandates; and the group is active in representing creditor and debtor clients in relation to offshore debts borrowed or issued by Chinese corporations from the energy, real estate, finance, manufacturing, aviation and mining sectors. Clients additionally appreciate the firm’s ability to draw upon its European and US restructuring and special situations teams. Howard Lam‘s practice covers the representation of banks, bondholders, investors and insolvency practitioners in distressed contexts; and associate Flora Innes has significant experience in corporate restructurings, insolvency proceedings and cross-border disputes. Josef Athanas retired from the partnership in October 2021.

Practice head(s):

Howard Lam

Other key lawyers:

China > Dispute resolution: Litigation: foreign firms Tier 3

With access to a large pool of advocates as a result of its OneAsia strategy, Latham & Watkins LLP combines strong collaboration and familiarity with the Greater China and offshore markets to provide a broad service in high-profile and complex litigation. Among its recent highlights, the firm is representing Sinovac Biotech’s board of directors against dissident shareholders. Acting on this matter and also leading the team overall is Hui Xu, noted for multi-jurisdictional white-collar investigations and litigation. Dominic Geiser, who joined from Herbert Smith Freehills in August 2022, showcases particular expertise in complex commercial litigation involving offshore and cross-border elements, many of which feature elements of fraud, asset tracing or injunctive relief. Bolstering the department’s capabilities in relation to internal investigations and cross-border litigation is associate Sean Wu, who acts for multinational clients in the online commerce, finance and technology sectors.

Practice head(s):

China > Projects and energy: foreign firms Tier 3

With a grasp of multi-jurisdictional energy projects in both a conventional and renewable context, Latham & Watkins LLP‘s Hong-Kong based practice draws from its international network, handling work that spans across the entire energy value chain, with a clientele featuring a variety of global energy companies and funds. Heading the practice is David Blumental, with over 20 years of experience acting for Chinese and Asia-based clients on cross-border energy, natural resource and infrastructure transactions surrounding renewables and emerging technologies, including upstream oil and gas, liquified natural gas and independent water and power water projects.

Practice head(s):

China > Regulatory/compliance: foreign firms Tier 3

Latham & Watkins LLP advises MNCs and financial institutions on a range matters, with the team regularly conducting internal investigations and risk assessments for clients related to the FCPA, Chinese commercial bribery laws, as well as other anti-bribery regulations. It is also particularly adept at advising US-listed companies operating in China. It has strong on the ground expertise, with practice head Hui Xu splitting his time between Beijing and Shanghai. Xu has rich experience handling multi-jurisdictional investigations involving FCPA and Chinese bribery laws. Meanwhile, senior associate Sean Wu is experienced in a range of regulatory and compliance mandates, including government investigations, internal investigations, and compliance programs.

Practice head(s):

Hui Xu

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Sinovac Biotech Ltd.

HollySys Automation Technologies

China > TMT: foreign firms Tier 3

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

Practice head(s):

Frank Sun; Kieran Donovan

Key clients

Tencent Holdings

Tencent Music Entertainment Group

Kuaishou Technology







A2 Milk

Cerner Health

China > Corporate and M&A: foreign firms Tier 4

At Latham & Watkins LLP, the Shanghai office works closely with the firm’s team in Hong Kong to advise on deals throughout the Asia Pacific region. The team is highly active in the private equity sphere, where it represents both buyout houses and portfolio companies on deals; it is also engaged on strategic M&A, where its work includes acting for multinationals acquiring Chinese companies as well as advising on domestic transactions. Rowland Cheng serves as managing partner of the Shanghai office and has deep experience of cross-border corporate matters.

Practice head(s):

Rowland Cheng

China > Private equity: foreign firms Tier 4

Able to boast client relationships with major regional and global private equity players, Latham & Watkins LLP‘s private equity practice in Asia is led by Hong Kong-based Simon Cooke, who covers a range of public and private transactions across the Asia-Pacific, including joint ventures, mergers, equity investments, disposals and privatisations.

Practice head(s):

Simon Cooke

Key clients

Warburg Pincus


Platinum Equity

The Carlyle Group

Trustar Capital (Formerly CITIC Capital)

Baring Private Equity Asia

Partners Group



Boyu Capital

MBK Partners

CDH Investments



China > Banking and finance: foreign firms Tier 5

Latham & Watkins LLP features a dedicated sponsor-side practice, offering a full service in relation to recapitalisation transactions, mezzanine facilities, syndicated lending and acquistion financing. Timothy Hia leads the Hong Kong-based practice which includes Andrew Bishop  who has experience advising private equity funds, venture funds, credit funds and other institutional investors in complex financing across the Asia-Pacific region. Howard Lam expands the firm’s field of expertise to leveraged buy-outs, acquisition financings, margin loans and bridge financing, while counsel Lynsey Edgar focuses on take-private financings and syndicated lending.

Practice head(s):

China > Data protection: foreign firms

Led by Frank Sun and Kieran Donovan, Latham & Watkins LLP handles a range of data and technology work, acting for clients in the TMT sector in complex cross-border transactions and cybersecurity matters.  

China > Fintech: foreign firms

Elevated to the partnership in March 2021, Hong Kong-based fintech transactions specialist Simon Hawkins at Latham & Watkins LLP leads both the firm's Asia and global fintech industry group, in addition to being co-chair of its blockchain and cryptocurrency task force.

Hong Kong > Dispute resolution: litigation

Led from Shanghai by Hui Xu, and including increased firepower from Hong Kong, particularly in light of solicitor/advocate Dominic Geiser‘s arrival from Herbert Smith Freehills in August 2022, the Greater China disputes team at Latham & Watkins LLP excels in handling complex, multi-jurisdictional mandates where it is able to effectively mobilise resources from its US offices, in particular. The team is particularly adept at handling disputes within the financial services and asset management sector, where it is able to handle parallel regulatory investigations, should the need arise.  

Practice head(s):

Hui Xu (Shanghai)

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

China Life Insurance (Overseas) Company

China COSCO Shipping Corporation

Sinovac Biotech Ltd.

China Orient Asset Management (International) Holding Limited

United Microelectronics Corporation

Shenzhen Senior Technology Material Co.

HollySys Automation Technologies Ltd

The firm: Latham & Watkins is a leading international law firm serving multinational companies, start-ups, investment banks, private equity funds, venture capital firms, sovereign wealth funds, governments and other organisations. The firm’s globally integrated platform spans Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the US, and consists of internationally recognised practices across a wide spectrum of transactional, litigation, corporate and regulatory areas. Latham attorneys offer unrivalled legal resources and strategic commercial thinking to provide clients with innovative solutions to complex commercial matters.

Asia practice: Businesses and investors seeking innovative solutions to their most complex corporate, financial, regulatory and litigation challenges turn to Latham in Asia for strategic thinking and experienced counsel. Latham has extensive experience advising on the international aspects of a broad range of corporate and finance transactions for clients across the region, notably Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. With more than 150 lawyers operating from six offices in Asia, Latham provides clients in the region and clients looking to do business in Asia with expert advice under US, English, Hong Kong, Japanese and Singapore law. Latham’s deep roots in the financial and economic markets in the region are further strengthened by the firm’s local language capabilities.

Latham continues to receive awards and acclaim from a number of leading financial and legal publications for landmark and precedent-setting deals.

Areas of practice: As part of the Greater China practice, lawyers in the Beijing office handle a range of transactions, including international capital markets, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, private equity, restructurings and project financings. The firm’s clients regularly take advantage of the Greater China practice’s intimate knowledge of the marketplace and are supported by the full resources of Latham & Watkins’ global network of offices.

Members of the team draw on more than 25 years of experience advising clients doing business in China. As counsel to issuers or underwriters, the firm’s lawyers have been involved in many international equity, debt and equity-linked offerings by issuers in China and across Asia. The firm also represents some of the world’s largest private equity funds and multinational corporations in their acquisitions or investments in the PRC, across Asia and globally. In addition, the firm regularly acts as lead counsel for the sponsors or lenders on the region’s landmark power, petrochemical, and oil and gas projects. The team also advises US, European, Middle Eastern and Asian companies conducting business in China and throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Beijing-based lawyers regularly work with the major Chinese law firms on PRC projects, and are experienced in co-ordinating the work of local counsel to provide seamless legal services to clients.

The team includes lawyers who are fluent in Chinese languages and dialects including Mandarin, Cantonese, Shanghainese, Hakka and Taiwanese and have received US, English and PRC legal education and training.

Antitrust and competition
Banking and finance
Capital markets
Corporate governance
Data privacy and cyber security
Entertainment, sports and media
Foreign direct investment
High yield
International arbitration
Mergers and acquisitions
Private equity
Project development and finance
Public company representation
Restructuring, insolvency and workouts
White-collar defence and investigations
Number of lawyers : more than 2,400
in Asia : 120+