The editorial team of China Business Law Journal showcases the winning law firms that made well-recognized achievements in 2016

The National Bureau of Statistics recently announced China’s GDP grew by 6.7% in 2016, the slowest in 26 years but still within the government’s target range of between 6.5% and 7%. The Chinese economy is still active in many areas, both inbound and outbound.

To name a few transactions, China General Nuclear Power Corporation has invested in Hinkley Point C, the first generation III nuclear new-build project in the UK and one of the largest energy and infrastructure projects to be carried out in the country this decade. ChemChina has acquired Syngenta, the largest outbound transaction by a Chinese company to date. Zhejiang Geely issued the first overseas green bonds by Chinese automakers. Inbound transactions are also eye-catching: JD.com and Walmart formed a strategic partnership, and Didi Chuxing acquired Uber China, changing the landscape of the mobile taxi-hailing market in China.

Many other significant deals also made headlines and enhanced law firms’ reputations, bringing big profits to domestic and international law firms, such as a Chinese consortium’s purchase of the Premier League football club West Bromwich Albion, and the World Bank issuing the first SDR denominated bonds in China’s inter-bank bond market.

In 2016, China Business Law Journal received nominations, votes and recommendations from hundreds of in-house counsel, executives and other decision-makers from both international and domestic companies.

It is notable that many in-house counsel attach more importance to whether the law firm is efficient and professional and has a better understanding of clients’ needs, if the legal team is able to find a practical solution for its clients, and if it has a deep understanding of related laws and regulations. In additional to these requirements, different practice areas had more particular demands.

For M&A, clients also care about whether the law firms’ advice can strike a balance between commercial needs and legal compliance. In telecoms, median and technology, it is also expected that the law firm has solid general knowledge but also a fast learning capability to acquire expertise for individual projects. Regarding restructuring and insolvency, clients also pay attention to whether external legal counsel have a good understanding of the structure of a particular company.

China Business Law Journal’s China Business Law Awards are based on hundreds of nominations and comments received mostly from China-focused corporate counsel, senior managers and legal professionals around the world. We consulted widely with law firm clients by conducting surveys to ascertain the level of their satisfaction with the services provided by the relevant firm. In determining the winners, the nominations and comments were considered carefully in combination with other factors, such as each firm’s landmark deals, cases and other notable achievements in the past year.

China Business Law Journal takes pride in announcing eight awards for law firms of the year, three awards for best performance law firms, and in each practice area or industrial sector five PRC winners and five international winners of equal standing.

The awards are designed to showcase the diversity of talent in the market while offering assistance to in-house readers as they consider and select their legal advisers.

Although detailing the achievements of all the winners is not possible, it is necessary to point out that regardless of coverage, each winning firm in each category carries the same weight of achievement – and deserves the same level of congratulations. Well done to all our winners!

Law firm of the year

年度卓越律所

Law firm of the year

中国

China

国际

International

离岸

Offshore

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

汇嘉开曼群岛律师事务所

Walkers

北京

Beijing

上海

Shanghai

广东

Guangdong

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

锦天城律师事务所

AllBright Law Offices

广信君达律师事务所

Guangdong ETR Law Firm

香港

Hong Kong

西部

Western China

的近律师行

Deacons

泰和泰律师事务所

Tahota Law Firm

The winners of our prestigious awards are: King & Wood Mallesons (KWM), Law firm of the year (China); Baker McKenzie, Law firm of the year (international); Walkers, Law firm of the year (offshore); Deacons, Law firm of the year (Hong Kong); Zhong Lun Law Firm, Law firm of the year (Beijing); AllBright Law Offices, Law firm of the year (Shanghai); Guangdong ETR Law Firm, Law firm of the year (Guangdong); Tahota Law Firm, Law firm of the year (Western China).

KWM played a role in various significant China-related deals, 13 of which have been recognized by China Business Law Journal’s 2016 Deals of the Year awards, including China General Nuclear Power Corporation’s investment in the UK’s Hinkley Point C project, China Zheshang Bank’s IPO in Hong Kong, and Zhejiang Geely Holding Group’s issue of the first overseas green bonds by Chinese automakers.

According to KWM, China’s economy and clients’ needs have transformed in the past few years from a traditional to a more diversified and internationalized market driven by the globalization of Chinese enterprises, the “One Belt One Road” (OBOR) initiative, high-technology development and the internet-plus economy.

KWM has been involved in all major projects with one of the largest urban rail transportation companies in China, including two metro line projects in a top-tier city. “Lawyers from KWM contributed a lot into these projects,” says an in-house counsel from the company.

The firm also placed more attention on the introduction, cultivation and promotion of talent. In 2016, it promoted 20 lawyers to partnerships. The specialties of these newly promoted partners range across different practice areas and industries, covering banking and finance, securities, corporate M&A, capital markets, real estate, intellectual property, commercial disputes, restructuring & insolvency, and employment. These promotions continue to strengthen KWM’s professional capability and enable it to provide comprehensive legal services to local and global clients.

“KWM shows its extremely strong expertise and service consciousness when advising us on out-bound investment projects,” says one in-house counsel from a well-known insurance company. “KWM has abundant experience and high-quality professional skills,” says another client from one of the largest state-owned electricity producers in China. “Under the firm’s assistance, we completed the successful acquisition of our first offshore project.”

Baker McKenzie is another outstanding player in China-related transactions, including CRRC corporation’s issue of H-share convertible bonds, Top Spring’s issuance of two tranches of convertible bonds, and the Shanghai Disneyland project.

“The [firm’s] response is very quick, as well as its turnaround time on a request, and many times I will send out a request and get a response the same day – even though it is very late in China,” says a client from a medical device trade association in Washington DC. “They are proactive at reminding us of agreements that need updating months before they are due, and they also have turned around critical items such as employment agreements within 24 hours.”

“Baker handles all of our company’s trademark clearance, filing, prosecution and enforcement in China, Hong Kong and beyond, and the results have been remarkable,” says an expert senior counsel at an American coffee company. “Just this year, for example, they took a case that our company lost in the lower courts, and managed to appeal it to the Supreme People’s Court of China, which accepted review and, in an unprecedented decision, declared our company’s mark so famous that its fame carried into goods and services on which it had no filings. Baker’s strategy, approach and arguments allowed our company to obtain one of its biggest wins ever in China.”

Walkers provides full services of Bermuda, British Virgin Islands (BVI) and Cayman Islands legal advice. In offshore work, Walkers led with contributions to many high-profile deals. The firm participated in Alibaba’s privatization and takeover of Youku Tudou, China Jinjiang Environment’s IPO in Singapore, and Didi Chuxing’s M&A with Uber China.

In response to consistent client demand, Walkers has expanded its global legal footprint to Bermuda through its exclusive association with Taylors since January 2016. Walkers also expanded its capabilities into Guernsey in July 2016 through a merger with AO Hall, a local firm which was established in 2005. The merger adds 13 lawyers, including six partners, to the Walkers network, resulting in 10 offices globally. “I am happy with the services and expertise provided by Walkers,” says a partner at a leading international law firm. “I find them prompt, practical, and responsive.”

One of Deacons’ highlights in 2016 was the launch of its client feedback programme. This type of programme is well entrenched at leading international law firms overseas, but the firm believes that most, if not all, such firms have not yet instituted such a programme in Hong Kong. The strategy focused on bringing the voice of the client into Deacons, and is a significant development keeping the firm at the forefront of the industry.

“The firm not only provides legal services, but gives insights from a commercial perspective, which is what in-house counsel look for,” says an in-house client from a Hong Kong-listed property company. “The firm also voluntarily provides trends and developments in the legal area that is particularly tailored to our needs, from their understanding of our business.”

Zhong Lun Law Firm continues to be a leader in offering full legal services. The firm advised many eye-catching transactions including Ping An Insurance Group’s acquisition of a stake in Autohome from Telstra, Poland’s issue of the first panda bonds by a European sovereign state in China, and the development of Thar Block II coal mine in Pakistan. In May 2016, Zhong Lun expanded its New York office and opened two offices in two major US cities: Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Zhong Lun provides “timely and efficient legal services” and “solved problems in time” for a thermal power project in Mongolia to succeed, says a client involved in the project. “Zhong Lun and our company negotiated with the Mongolia party over more than 10 rounds and completed signing contracts after three nights of working together under a tight schedule.”

Zhong Lun has advised a leading business supplies and equipment company on its new energy projects in Pakistan, the Philippines and other countries. “Its legal service is professional, rigorous and highly efficient,” says an in-house counsel with the company.

AllBright Law Offices continued to strengthen its influence nationwide with the opening of offices in Zhengzhou, Fuzhou and Nanchang, and the recruitment of 239 new lawyers. The law firm also utilized new tech including AllBright IMS and Office 365 systems.

The firm participated in a China party winning the malleable cast-iron pipe fittings anti-dumping case before the European Court of First Instance, and Qihoo 360 Technology’s going private and delisting from the NYSE, among others.

“Lawyers at AllBright Law Offices have rich experience in practice”, says a client from a tyre manufacturer in China. “Based on the firm’s full integration and co-ordination of its different practice areas, and extensive accumulation of commercial resources, lawyers in the firm provide complete legal services for domestic and foreign customers in many practice areas.”

“AllBright helped us win a trademark lawsuit where an infringer’s affiliate was held jointly liable for the damages under the ‘pierce the corporate veil’ principle, which is kind of unprecedented,” says a chief IP counsel for North Asia at a US multinational conglomerate. “The firm also provided valued support to our patent enforcement matters in Shandong province. They are resourceful and cost-effective.”

Guangdong ETR has a newly established Tokyo branch office. Cooperating with DTL Law Office, the firm also set up an office in Bangkok. In China, its Foshan branch was approved, while the Beijing, Shanghai and Zhuhai branches are under construction. Ten new partners were added in 2016, and the firm has more than 330 practising lawyers.

“We are very satisfied with ETR’s legal service and expertise,” says a client from a tech engineering company in China. “The firm is sincere with its clients and able to give professional legal advice.”

The firm advised Suofeiya Home Collection on its public issuance of 20 million shares, which raised RMB1.1 billion (US$160 million). It also assisted the Guangzhou Municipal Cultural Market administrative law enforcement team in its infringement of copyright case against the DJ020 website, which provided unauthorized access to the public, for payment, to 60,000 pieces of music.

ETR served as a leading Chinese blasting company’s legal counsel for its IPO and follow-up private placements. “The legal team designed professional plans for the client in different periods, from the company’s share reform, pre-IPO merger and final listing to the follow-up non-public offering of shares,” says a legal spokesperson from the blasting company. “The team’s dedication left a deep impression on us.”

With its headquarters in Chengdu, Tahota is the first law firm from the western region to have overseas offices. The firm has completed its strategic distribution in places including Hong Kong, Guiyang (China), Seoul and Busan (South Korea), with 12 new branch offices in total.

Tahota has about 150 partners and drew more than RMB400 million in business revenue in China last year. Compared with the previous year, the firm’s overall business revenue grew by 52.66%.

To achieve a cross-regional collaborative office model and attain the integrated strategic objectives of brand unity, unified resources and unified operating mode of operation, Tahota adopted the IMS system, which was integrated into a knowledge management system of procurement to achieve global sharing of resources.

Tahota made outstanding achievements in finance, securities, medical treatment, environmental energy, aviation, transnational business, human resources, IP and high-end hotels. The firm advised Chongqing Dasheng Group on its cross-border RMB bond issuance project in Singapore. It also provided brand protection services for famous spirit companies and specialist legal services for the Great Wall (De yang) investment fund project.

卓越综合实力律所

Best overall law firms

中国所

PRC firms

国际所

International firms

离岸所

Offshore firms

大成律师事务所

Dentons

贝克·麦坚时 律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

康德明律师事务所

Conyers Dill & Pearman

方达律师事务所

Fangda Partners

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

迈普达律师事务所

Maples and Calder

君合律师事务所

JunHe

史密夫斐尔 律师事务所

Herbert Smith Freehills

汇嘉开曼群岛 律师事务所

Walkers

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

年利达律师事务所

Linklaters

Best overall law firms (PRC)

One outstanding achievement of JunHe in 2016 was the deepening of reform of its remuneration distribution system of partners. In the evaluation of partners and lawyers, JunHe used a unique evaluation system allowing personnel of co-operated projects and cases to evaluate each other. The final evaluation is not only results-oriented, but based on collaboration and enhancement of the team’s reputation.The winners are Zhong Lun Law Firm, JunHe, Dentons, Fangda Partners and King & Wood Mallesons.

JunHe acted as legal counsel for BTG Hotels’ major asset restructuring and acquisition of Home Inns Group, China Merchants Shekou Industrial Zone Holdings merger with China Merchants Property Development by share exchange, and Top Spring’s issuance of two tranches of convertible bonds.

JunHe has a team of people extremely focused on international trade cases and they work with international counsel from the EU, US and Turkey seamlessly,” says a vice president and general counsel from a global leader in the solar industry. “They are knowledgeable on WTO rules and local practice.”

Dentons has more than 7,300 lawyers around the world and its legal service extends to more than 50 countries including Canada, the US, Britain, Australia and the entire Asia-Pacific region. In China, Dentons has 43 offices and its services cover almost all provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions.

Dentons participated in many significant deals including anti-dumping investigations by the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) into Chinese bulldozer manufacturers, the joint venture of China Electronics Technology Group and Microsoft, and China Yangtze Power’s major asset restructuring.

The firm’s client from a Chinese modular housing company says Dentons gave very professional advice for the company on issuing shares and merging a conglomerate providing petroleum logistics and offshore engineering services via share exchange in the process of major assets restructuring. “The firm gave us great assistance for designing a plan and making the right decision at the turning points,” says the client.

Dentons served as legal counsel for our company in many M&A projects,” says a legal counsel from one of the largest automotive logistics service providers in China. “The legal team is very professional and gives timely feedback.”

During 2016, Fangda agreed to fund a Career Development Fellowship in Chinese Commercial Law at Oxford University. It will focus on exploring how best to understand Chinese law and the links between law, politics, the economy and society, both within China and in the context of transnational relations.

A few Fangda partners have also personally contributed funds to this sponsorship, which is intended to encourage students from mainland China and Hong Kong to study law in the UK, particularly the Hong Kong law students, who will become an important source of intake for the Hong Kong office in the future.

Fangda participated in numerous deals in M&A, private equity and venture capital, and disputes, including Alibaba’s privatization and takeover of Youku Tudou, ChemChina’s acquisition of Syngenta, and Didi Chuxing’s M&A with Uber China.

According to a client from the investment department of a leading bank, Fangda is one of the long-term co-operative law firms of the bank for its branches’ M&A financing. “The legal team make documents in an accurate and efficient way, helping our bank take the advantage in a very competitive acquisition project.

A general counsel from a world-leading shipping company says Fangda lawyers have provided service on very short notice, enabling the company to respond to extensive requests from the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in a professional and timely manner. “They were able to grasp the particulars of our industry and our company role in that industry so that after seven months the NDRC’s investigation came to the conclusion that our company was not in violation of the antitrust laws of China,” the client says.

Best overall law firms (international)

Herbert Smith Freehills is one of the largest international firms in Greater China, with offices in Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai. The firm is a leading full-service firm with all of its practice areas highly recognized. Herbert Smith Freehills advised on many significant deals including China General Nuclear Power Corporation’s investment in the UK’s Hinkley Point C project, and China General Nuclear Power Corporation’s purchase of power assets from Edra Global Energy.The winners are Baker McKenzie, Clifford Chance, Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells and Linklaters.

Hogan Lovells has experienced substantial growth in 2016, both in China and across the Asia-Pacific. In China, Hogan Lovells entered into a formal association with Fujian Fidelity Law Firm in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone in September 2016, becoming the third international law firm to enter into such an association.

In Hong Kong, the firm bolstered its capital markets team with the hire of heavyweights Sammy Li and Stephen Peepels. Both partners have an excellent track record and client base, which they brought to Hogan Lovells. Among its eye-catching deals, Hogan Lovells advised UBS as the placing agent in respect of a placement of 658 million new shares of Far East Horizon Limited for approximately US$585.8 million. The firm also acted for Goldman Sachs on its investment in Asia Clean Capital via a US$40 million project financing and subscription for equity warrants.

Linklaters continues to provide high-quality legal services, especially in banking and finance. The firm continues to be mandated by international lenders, and regional and international corporates, with whom it has longstanding working relationships on complex cross-border finance deals.

Best overall law firms (offshore)

Conyers has been in Hong Kong for more than 30 years and continued to lead the way in providing offshore legal advice to many of the region’s largest institutions and corporations in 2016.The winners are Conyers Dill & Pearman, Maples and Calder, and Walkers.

With the Hong Kong and Singapore offices combined, the firm has 33 lawyers in Asia, making it one of the largest offshore firms in the region. Conyers’ Hong Kong office is recognized as the leading adviser for IPOs, M&A, corporate finance and capital markets.

In 2016, its lawyers advised on some of the most renowned deals, in particular Youku Tudou on its US$3.5 billion privatization by Alibaba, Qihoo 360 Technology on its US$9.3 billion take-private transaction, which both won awards in China Business Law Journal’s Deals of the Year. The firm also acted as counsel for the buying consortium in connection with Mindray Medical International’s US$3.3 billion buyout.

Conyers also continues to retain a leading share of the IPO market, completing 44 IPOs in 2016. In recent years, Asia has experienced phenomenal growth in bond and high-yield note offerings. The Conyers team acted as offshore legal adviser to the majority of Hong Kong-listed (and numerous unlisted) Bermuda, BVI and Cayman Islands companies engaged in raising debt capital in Asian debt markets. The clients of representative transactions in 2016 include State Grid Overseas Investment, China Resources Land, Yuexiu Transport Infrastructure and New World Development Company.

“Conyers has a wealth of experience in practically every restructuring scenario, and their corporate, banking and litigation department and co-ordination with their overseas offices such as in Bermuda and Cayman Islands is excellent,” says a partner from a Hong Kong law firm. “They can truly provide a seamless service.”

With a 13% rise in its lawyer headcount last year, Maples and Calder’s quick growth consolidated its position as easily one of the largest offshore firms in the world. The firm’s 14 strategically placed offices in key financial centres provide a time zone-convenient global network, which complements its expertise across all key jurisdictions in the industry.

Its significant deals included Apex Technology acquisition of a full stake in Lexmark International, Meituan-Dianping’s US$3.3 billion private fundraising, and Qihoo 360 Technology’s take private and delisting from the NYSE.

A partner in the aviation finance team of an international law firm was extremely happy with Maples and Calder. “They provide accurate and timely advice, no matter what the time pressure.”

Best performance law firms

AnJie Law Firm’s business continued to expand via the setting up of a new office in Shenzhen. At present, there are more than 20 lawyers in the Shenzhen office to develop its service in investment funds, insurance, dispute resolution, real estate, labour law, competition law and other fields. Headquartered in Beijing, AnJie also has branches in Shenzhen and Shanghai. Its legal services cover northern, eastern and southern areas of China.The winners are AnJie Law Firm, DaHui Lawyers and Guantao Law Firm.

AnJie has achieved a notable performance in many practice areas, especially PE/VC, healthcare, pharma and life sciences. The firm participated in Tencent raising funds and acquiring a majority stake in Supercell. It also represented Morningside’s investment in Keep App.

After the recruitment of two partners, DaHui Lawyers continues strengthen its legal service in general corporate, M&A, outbound investment, private equity and venture capital financing and investment, fund formation and operation, and employment and labour.

DaHui Lawyers has an active and growing dispute resolution team. The firm recently expanded to have lawyers qualified in the US, UK and Hong Kong, who have appeared before a range of international arbitration centres including China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission’s (CIETAC) Hong Kong Arbitration Centre, Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre and Singapore International Arbitration Centre. Domestically, its team’s years of litigation experience have given the firm a developed understanding of PRC judicial procedure and practice, and a strong understanding of Chinese society.

In 2016, the team participated in a number of complex commercial litigation and arbitration cases in courts at different levels and in different jurisdictions, on matters such as trade-secret infringement, IP protection, labour disputes and commercial bribery. These matters spanned a wide range of industries such as finance, real estate and construction, giving its team an acute business sense for providing solution-driven and practical advice to a range of clients, both Chinese (NetEase, Baidu and many state-owned enterprises) and multinational (Boeing, Philips and RELX).

Dahui’s practice in M&A also received recognition from clients. “DaHui is professional, consistent and reliable,” says a client from an international event-organizing company. “The firm has a good team and their advice balances between commercial needs and what is necessary from legal perspective.”

In April last year, Beijing Guantao Law Firm merged with Shanghai Zhongmao Law Firm. In August, Beijing-headquartered Guantao also merged with Shenda Partners. The name of the new firm after merger continues to be Guantao Law Firm in English. The firm started to adopt a knowledge resources gathering and sharing platform, and private cloud system.

Guantao participated in the Shanghai Disneyland project, China Life insurance strategic investment in Didi Chuxing, EU anti-dumping investigations against Chinese companies exporting galvanized metal sheets, and other significant deals.

Guantao advised a leading Chinese multinational telecoms equipment company on its restructuring of foreign-funded enterprises, technology licensing, consignment and other aspects. “Guantao’s legal team is familiar with related laws and international business practices, and can quickly give us feasible advice in terms of China’s existing laws and regulations,” says the client from the investment department of the company. “The team also reviews and revises the related documents in a timely fashion.”

Guantao advised China’s Petroleum Engineering & Construction Corporation on its Vietnam 2 x 600MW investment project, China’s largest single investment project in Vietnam. “Guantao provided legal services for us during the whole process and had a great contribution in plan designing and negotiation,” says a client from the corporation.

Anti-bribery & compliance

反腐败及合规

Anti-bribery & compliance

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

锦天城律师事务所

AllBright Law Offices

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

方达律师事务所

Fangda Partners

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

英士律师事务所

Ince & Co

元达律师事务

MWE China Law Offices

高博金律师事务所

Kobre & Kim

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

瑞格律师事务所

Ropes & Gray

The PRC winners are AllBright Law Offices, Fangda Partners, King & Wood Mallesons, MWE China Law Offices and Zhong Lun Law Firm. International winners are Baker McKenzie, Clifford Chance, Ince & Co, Kobre & Kim, and Ropes & Gray.

Fangda has represented both leading MNCs and Chinese companies in complex government enforcements and internal investigations, helping clients establish state-of-the-art compliance programmes and advising on cutting-edge legal issues.

The firm has been expanding its regulatory compliance team by attracting the best talent, including a former prosecutor, a senior partner with experience in criminal cases, and a high-profile former in-house compliance lawyer.

“Fangda has not only experienced lawyers engaged in years of compliance and investigation, but also officials who used to work in the Industrial and Commercial Bureau and Procuratorate for many years, giving us daily consultations on law enforcement and justice,” says a legal director of a leading international pharmaceutical company. Yin Yunxia, a partner at Fangda, was recommended by clients due to her work efficiency, abilities to cope with difficulties, and deep understanding of clients’ interests.

MWE China was also active in anti-bribery and compliance. The firm represented a multinational technology company in an intense eight-month investigation by the central government. The representation involved negotiations with the central government over numerous complex issues, including the conflict and differences between Chinese anti-bribery laws and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing requirements, cross-board evidence collection, extra-territorial jurisdiction, statute of limitations, attorney-client privilege, state secrets, and individual liability for executives.

The firm also represented a prominent state-owned enterprise in a comprehensive compliance investigation covering numerous matters related to a 50/50 joint venture (JV) between the client and a foreign-listed company, implicating both US and PRC law. MWE China and FCPA experts from McDermott Will & Emery collaborated with the legal teams of the JV partner to clarify issues of fact and law in order to fully satisfy the US regulator’s demands.

Kobre & Kim is one of the few firms to have former US government prosecutors and investigators permanently based in Asia. Its team includes four former government attorneys with experience from their prior service as Department of Justice prosecutors, and SEC enforcement lawyers focused on internal investigations and government enforcement. Its Asia-based investigations team is regularly called upon to represent clients operating in China in response to US government inquiries and enforcement actions involving allegations of bribery, money laundering, sanctions violations and financial fraud.

Banking & finance

银行及金融

Banking & finance

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

锦天城律师事务所

AllBright Law Offices

A&L Goodbody

大成律师事务所

Dentons

安理国际律师事务所

Allen & Overy

环球律师事务所

Global Law Office

亚司特律师事务所

Ashurst

君合律师事务所

JunHe

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

年利达律师事务所

Linklaters

The PRC winners are AllBright Law Offices, Dentons, Global Law Office, JunHe, and King & Wood Mallesons. International winners are A&L Goodbody, Allen & Overy, Ashurst, Clifford Chance, and Linklaters.

AllBright Law Offices set up new offices in Zhengzhou, Fuzhou and Nanchang. AllBright advised Cathay United Bank Company branch on restructuring of its corporate bank, and also advised the Ningbo branch of Mega International Commercial Bank on its RMB1.2 billion loan project. The vice president of a silver exchange in China says AllBright has a deep understanding of China’s current laws, regulations and institutional environment in particular. “The firm gave us practical and valuable advice based on its abundant experience from banking and finance clients.”

“The legal team of AllBright is very responsible and efficient,” says an in-house client, who highly recommended senior partner Guo Zhongqing for his experience, expertise and forward-looking legal advice on risk prevention.

JunHe continued to provide high-quality professional legal services in its core banking and finance businesses. Its leveraged finance team was involved in a major part of take-private transactions in 2016, including the financing arrangements in the take-private deals of iDreamSky Technology, Mindray Medical International and E-House (China) Holdings.

JunHe also advised sovereign wealth funds and private equity houses on their investment in internet financing companies, including Sequoia Capital’s investment in JD Financial Group, and two PE funds’ investment in a leading personal wealth management firm.

JunHe and our company have worked on many deals together and they have always delivered in providing the timeliest, up-to-date and complete service that we desire,” says a client from a leading multinational investment bank. “Nelson Zhou in the Shanghai office has worked with us tirelessly for many years and he is outstanding.”

A&L Goodbody also had an excellent performance in 2016. The firm’s banking and finance team remains the largest in Ireland, with more than 40 lawyers including 16 partners spread throughout its offices in Dublin, London and Belfast. Working closely with its financial regulation group, its team of experts has responded to the growing demand for legal advice on the impact of capital, derivative and clearing legislation from banks, broker dealers, clearing houses and funds.

Its achievements include advising Avenue Capital on its JV arrangement with an existing aircraft lessor, and Macquarie Airfinance on its acquisition of an aircraft operating lease portfolio from AWAS Aviation Capital.

Capital markets

资本市场

Capital markets

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

国浩律师事务所

Grandall Law Firm

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

国枫律师事务所

Grandway Law Offices

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

嘉源律师事务所

Jia Yuan Law Offices

达维律师事务所

Davis Polk & Wardwell

竞天公诚律师事务所

Jingtian & Gongcheng

富而德律师事务所

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

长盛律师事务所

Troutman Sanders

The PRC winners include Grandall Law Firm, Grandway Law Offices, Jia Yuan Law Offices, Jingtian & Gongcheng and Zhong Lun Law Firm. International winners are Baker McKenzie, Clifford Chance, Davis Polk & Wardwell, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, and Troutman Sanders.

Grandway Law Offices had an outstanding performance in capital markets in 2016. “Under professional legal consultation of Grandway, our A-share IPO was completed within 10 months without any legal obstacles in the whole auditing process,” says its client from a listed pharmaceutical company.

Grandway also advised on the IPO of a leading computer networking company in China. “Grandway is involved in preliminary planning, demonstration, contract drafting, negotiation and due diligence. We are very satisfied with its expertise, professional competence and legal service”, says the client.

Wang Guan, a partner of Grandway, was highly recommended by his client. “He fully demonstrated his excellent professional ability, communication skills and service when giving legal advice,” says the client.

In-house clients also recommended Zheng Chao, a partner of Grandway. “He left a great impression on me as he is familiar with all kinds of laws and regulations, including IPO, asset restructuring and other procedures and rules; he is also good at communicating and always gives feasible advice.”

In-house clients also recommended Jiang Runming and Sun Dongsong due to their extensive expertise.

Troutman Sanders also had notable achievements in capital markets in 2016. The firm advised a micro-credit company on its IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. “By its rich experience, expertise, considerate service, excellent communication skills with the intermediaries and unique leadership abilities, Troutman Sanders helped us complete the H shares IPO within nine months,” says a client from a micro-finance company. “The whole legal team of Troutman Sanders is excellent because of their spirit, passion, patient and expertise.”

Freshfields continues to advise on the leading IPOs in Asia. In the past year, its team completed six Hong Kong listings, including four with an offering size of more than US$1 billion. The firm also advised on a number of high-profile Asian listings for some of Asia’s leading banks and financial services businesses.

Competition and antitrust

竞争及反垄断

Competition & antitrust

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

安杰律师事务所

AnJie Law Firm

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

世泽律师事务所

Broad & Bright

富而德律师事务所

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

众达律师事务所

Jones Day

天地和律师事务所

T&D Associates

年利达律师事务所

Linklaters

天元律师事务所

Tian Yuan Law Firm

孖士打律师事务所

Mayer Brown JSM

The PRC winners are AnJie Law Firm, Broad & Bright, King & Wood Mallesons, T&D Associates, and Tian Yuan Law Firm. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Jones Day, Linklaters, and Mayer Brown JSM.

As one of the few law firms with comprehensive experience in antitrust legal services, Tian Yuan participated in influential major cases of antitrust investigation and litigation, undertaking concentration declaration and antitrust compliance.

Among its achievements, Tian Yuan assisted Haier in its antitrust investigation. This was the first anti-monopoly investigation case against the vertical price monopoly agreement of home appliance enterprises. This complex probe involved online and offline sales channels and covered a variety of different forms of price monopoly. Tian Yuan also advised Hanjin Shipping and a well-known multinational medical equipment company on antitrust investigation.

King & Wood Mallesons combines understanding of the law with deep industry expertise and knowledge, and its clients are in sectors including mining, agriculture, automobiles, food and beverage, high-tech, trading, telecoms, distribution, aircraft leasing, healthcare, chemicals and manufacturing.

In the area of merger filing, King & Wood Mallesons has dealt with some difficult filings with serious competition concerns. For example, in Nokia’s acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent, the firm successfully convinced MOFCOM to clear the transaction with remedies that had the least impact to the client, and within a relatively short timeframe. For clients who failed to notify, the firm helped them to clarify the legal and factual basis with MOFCOM, and fight for a more desirable result.

King & Wood Mallesons antitrust team counselled our company on a concentration of undertaking case with MOFCOM,” says an in-house counsel. “During the process, the firm demonstrated a high standard of professionalism, specifically with giving high-quality opinions in a timely manner.” The in-house counsel highly recommended partner Susan Ning at the firm.

Baker McKenzie became the first international firm entering into a joint operation in the Shanghai FTZ, joining with FenXun Partners. The firm has the one of the largest antitrust teams in the world, making it counsel of choice for clients involved in cross-border mergers and investigations.

The legal team at Baker McKenzie works closely with specialists in its dispute resolution groups in Hong Kong and China, and is backed by the expertise and resources of the firm’s global antitrust and competition practice. The firm advised FedEx on the Chinese merger clearance aspects of its €4.4 billion (US$4.6 billion) acquisition of TNT, an excellent illustration of international co-ordination in the face of complex facts and economics.

Baker McKenzie also advised Allnex on merger control clearance in China in respect of a proposed JV relating to the manufacture and distribution of amino resins in China. The transaction demonstrated recent significant expansions in the crosslink sector and the impact on deal timetables of the short-form filing procedure.

Dispute resolution

争议解决

Dispute resolution

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

大成律师事务所

Dentons

史密夫斐尔律师事务所

Herbert Smith Freehills

方达律师事务所

Fangda Partners

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

竞天公诚律师事务所

Jingtian & Gongcheng

瑞生律师事务所

Latham & Watkins

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

孖士打律师事务所

Mayer Brown JSM

天同律师事务所

Tian Tong Law Firm

世达律师事务所

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

The PRC winners are Dentons, Fangda Partners, Jingtian & Gongcheng, King & Wood Mallesons, and Tian Tong Law Firm. The international winners are Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells, Latham & Watkins, Mayer Brown JSM, and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.

Jingtian & Gongcheng has a broad commercial practice that incorporates high-value corporate, finance, securities and insurance disputes, and the firm had a series of impressive representations in these fields. The firm also enhanced its presence in IP and unfair competition disputes, international arbitration, as well as insolvency and liquidation proceedings.

Dentons also had an outstanding performance in this sector. “As our long-term legal counsel, Dentons provides efficient and professional legal services on dispute resolution projects for our company,” says a client from a leading media company in China, who recommended Li Tao, a senior partner at the firm. “Under Li Tao’s co-ordination arrangements, the company’s requirements have always been met in time, and satisfactory results can be guaranteed.”

Latham’s PRC dispute resolution team focused on complex international, multijurisdictional and large-ticket domestic commercial litigation, arbitration and contentious regulatory matters in the areas such as antitrust and competition, contentious bankruptcy and insolvency litigation, anti-corruption and anti-bribery (including under the FCPA and UK Bribery Act), investment, commercial and trade disputes.

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom also came out on top. Examples of Skadden’s recent arbitration work include representing the major shareholder in a US$2 billion fight for control over a Shanghai-based book publisher and operator of online games. Pursuant to an attempted takeover, a minority shareholder launched injunction proceedings in Hong Kong and a winding-up petition in the Cayman Islands.

Part of this dispute also related to the value of the company. Skadden’s clients valued the company at US$2 billion, whereas the minority shareholder valued it at US$8 billion. Skadden successfully defended the major shareholders in injunction proceedings in the Hong Kong courts and the matter is now proceeding to arbitration at the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC). The firm believes this is one of the largest-value HKIAC arbitrations currently in progress.

Another matter from Skadden’s litigation practice is its work on what is believed to be the largest, highest-value, most complex multi-jurisdictional dispute currently taking place in the world. It involves litigation in the courts of Hong Kong, Taiwan, Bermuda and in various US courts concerning purpose trusts created under the law of Bermuda. The dispute concerns accusations of misappropriation of assets estimated in excess of US$20 billion.

Employment and labour

雇佣及劳动法

Employment & labour

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

上海蓝白律师事务所

Lanbai Law Firm

亚司特律师事务所

Ashurst

隆安律师事务所

Longan Law Firm

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

江三角律师事务所

River Delta Law Firm

欧华律师事务所

DLA Piper

权亚律师事务所

TransAsia Lawyers

安睿律师事务所

Eversheds Sutherland

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

西盟斯律师事务所

Simmons & Simmons

The PRC winners are Lanbai Law Firm, Longan Law Firm, River Delta Law Firm, TransAsia Lawyers, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Ashurst, Baker McKenzie, DLA Piper, Eversheds Sutherland, and Simmons & Simmons.

Lanbai Law Firm has gathered an impressive array of domestic experts in employment and labour, covering this important area of China’s economy. “Lanbai Law Firm makes plans by analysing clients’ needs and requirements,” says a legal counsel from a leading American science-based products and services company. “It’s HR salon is also impressive.”

Mu Lili, a partner at Lanbai, was recommended by the in-house counsel for her professional advice and patience in answering every concern about the company’s legal matters and human resources in time. “Ms Mu helps customers resolve a complex labour dispute with her unique care and kindness.”

TransAsia was also eye-catching in this arena. The firm assisted one of the world’s biggest oil companies in terminating its case successfully via mutual agreement for proposed company de-registration. It also advised a renowned international PE investment fund company on its employment non-compliance for a proposed acquisition.

“TransAsia conducts meticulous planning with accompanying documentation for every problem we work with them on, including building multiple scenarios,” says a managing director from a leading American manufacturer. “The firm also has in-depth knowledge of local – not just national – regulations and legal requirements applicable to our cases.”

The client added that TransAsia provided great support during interviews with associates and partners under investigation, always providing sound advice while protecting the legal rights of all involved. He recommended TransAsia’s senior partner Isabelle Wan for her accumulated significant experience in handling employment and labour issues.

Longan Law Firm and River Delta Law Firm also attracted a great deal of attention in this practice area. A legal counsel at a supplier of fuel dispensers said of Longan: “We deeply appreciate Longan’s expertise, good attitude and communication skills.”

While the Eversheds team does regularly work on global projects, the focus tends to be more on high-end, strategic employment matters, where it works as a dedicated, stand-alone practice. “Eversheds give practical, accurate, timely employment advice,” says a client from a leading insurance brokerage in Hong Kong. “The advice given by Eversheds has enabled our firm to avoid litigation for many years.”

Jennifer Van Dale, a partner at Eversheds, heads its Hong Kong and Asia-Pacific employment practice, representing employers and senior executives. She was highly recommended by the client: “In my opinion, Jennifer is the top employment lawyer in Asia.”

Intellectual property

知识产权

Intellectual property

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

安伦律师事务所

An Tian Zhang & Partners

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

中国国际贸易促进委员会 专利商标事务所

CCPIT Patent and Trademark Law Office

鸿鹄律师事务所

Bird & Bird

铸成律师事务所

Chang Tsi & Partners

飞翰律师事务所

Finnegan

柳沈律师事务所

Liu Shen & Associates

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

万慧达北翔知识产权集团

Wan Hui Da – Peksung IP Group

孖士打律师事务所

Mayer Brown JSM

The PRC winners are An Tian Zhang & Partners, the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade’s (CCPIT) Patent and Trademark Law Office, Chang Tsi & Partners, Liu Shen & Associates, and Wan Hui Da – Peksung IP Group. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, Bird & Bird, Finnegan, Hogan Lovells, and Mayer Brown JSM.

A significant development of An Tian Zhang & Partners was the structure adjustment of its patent department. By clearly dividing the function of each team, the firm created an internal co-operation mode headed by a project manager and supported by all department members.

Among its notable achievements, An Tian Zhang & Partners represented Wuhan Runlin Technology Development (the plaintiff) in filing a complaint against BMW (China) Automobile Trading, BMW (China) Services, and an authorized dealer of BMW for infringement of two Chinese patents, of which the plaintiff is the sole licensee. The firm made a successful defence and filed invalidation announcement requests for the two patents. The firm successfully had the two patents in suit invalidated by the Patent Re-examination Board (PRB), and the court made a judgment in favour of its client based on the invalidation decision, which is another victory against abusers of patents.

An Tian Zhang & Partners also filed an invalidation request against a Chinese patent and successfully had the patent invalidated in administrative proceedings on behalf of its client. This case had significant meaning as the Supreme Court had clarified in its judgment as to when the description of a patent must be cited to explain claims.

Chang Tsi & Partners also participated in eye-catching cases such as having Levi’s “LEVI’S” trademark and carriage graphics trademark recognized as well-known trademarks that enjoy trademark protection. “Chang Tsi & Partners typically provides a response, and if possible a complete response, on the same day that they receive the request,” says a client from an American multinational direct sales company. “For some requests that are not able to be completed on the same day, the firm confirms receipt and provides an estimated time for providing the complete response.”

The client recommended the firm’s partner David Lee for his responsive, tireless and client-focused work. Spring Chang, a founder and partner at Chang Tsi & Partners, was also recommended for her hard work and dedication to clients.

Hogan Lovells has one of the largest IP practices in Greater China, with more than 50 IP practitioners, both locally and internationally qualified. The firm is well known for using its experience from other jurisdictions to prevent and solve local issues. It has set precedents using this approach, including: winning the first interim injunction before the new Guangzhou IP court; initiating the first actions in China against retailers and hard-disk loaders of pirated software; and bringing the first trade-dress infringement case in Shanghai under the Anti-unfair Competition Law.

Hogan Lovells’ patent practice has continued to grow globally, including in China, where patent and trade secret counselling and litigation, and IP-technology transactions, are taking up a larger share of the team’s workload. The China team has increased its technical capability in the areas of electrical, chemical and environmental engineering, and added lawyers who have passed, or will soon take, the PRC patent bar. The team has focused on industries in China where patents and technology are core to the business, such as automotive, energy, TMT and life sciences.

Hogan Lovells participated in significant cases such as Yvolution securing a patent infringement to stop counterfeits, Blizzard Entertainment’s preliminary injunction case, and the Tencent domain name victory for weixin.com.

International trade

国际贸易

International trade

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

德恒律师事务所

DeHeng Law Offices

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

天达共和律师事务所

East & Concord Partners

欧华律师事务所

DLA Piper

海华永泰律师事务所

Hiways Law Firm

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

金诚同达律师事务所

Jincheng Tongda & Neal

英士律师事务所

Ince & Co

君合律师事务所

JunHe

世强律师事务所

Steptoe & Johnson

The PRC winners are DeHeng Law Offices, East & Concord Partners, Hiways Law Firm, Jincheng Tongda & Neal, and JunHe. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, DLA Piper, Hogan Lovells, Ince & Co, and Steptoe & Johnson.

East & Concord Partners had some significant achievements in this practice area. Among them, the firm advised on the Eurasian Economic Union’s anti-dumping investigations into Chinese bulldozer manufacturers, several anti-dumping investigations by the EU into Chinese castings cases, and anti-dumping price commitment negotiations between the EU and citric-acid enterprises.

East & Concord Partners showed a high professional attainment and excellent attitude,” says a director of legal services from a chamber of commerce, who also recommended Vivian Wang, a partner at the firm.

Jincheng Tongda & Neal’s international trade team was selected by MOFCOM for several WTO dispute settlement cases. The team represented the Chinese steel industry and several individual steel producers in the US 337 investigation against Chinese carbon and alloy steel. Section 337 of the US Tariff Act of 1930 declares the infringement of certain intellectual property rights and other forms of unfair competition in import trade to be unlawful practices. The US International Trade Commission can conduct investigations into allegations of such unfair practices.

The firm also assisted the Chinese tile industry in several anti-dumping investigations initiated by various countries including Brazil, Columbia, Mexico, India and the EU.

“Since the original survey started in 2012, Jincheng Tongda & Neal has helped our company get the lowest tariff rate among all Chinese companies from the same industry,” says a client from a large privately owned monosodium glutamate manufacturer. “Since then, the preliminary decision on our tariff rate has remained the lowest compared with other Chinese companies in the same industry in the first year and the second year.”

International trade is one of the core sector groups of Ince & Co, globally and in China. The firm has continued to improve and expand its legal services for trading clients in China, including its consolidated and improved capabilities in handling Africa-related matters. Ince & Co advised one of China’s largest commodity traders on issues arising out of the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone. The firm also entered into a new legal panel appointment with China Minmetals Corporation, the largest supplier nationwide of raw materials for the metallurgical industry, and also the largest steel trading company in China.

Ince & Co’s expertise in trade and transportation industries, combined with its unique footprint in major trading centres, uniquely positions the firm to assist clients in projects in relation to the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative. China’s OBOR policy has been a major focus of the firm’s shipping and international trade group in the past year and it has also launched a successful thought leadership campaign around OBOR and its sea strategy.

Mergers & acquisitions

并购

Mergers & acquisitions

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

方达律师事务所

Fangda Partners

安睿律师事务所

Eversheds Sutherland

国浩律师事务所

Grandall Law Firm

富而德律师事务所

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

海问律师事务所

Haiwen & Partners

谢尔曼·思特灵律师事务所

Shearman & Sterling

君合律师事务所

JunHe

盛信律师事务所

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett

通力律师事务所

Llinks Law Offices

世达律师事务所

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

The PRC winners are Fangda Partners, Grandall Law Firm, Haiwen & Partners, JunHe, and Llinks Law Offices. The international winners are Eversheds Sutherland, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Shearman & Sterling, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.

Grandall Law Firm participated in a number of large-scale mergers & acquisitions (M&A) projects that are influential in the industry, including Giant Interactive Group returning to the A-share market, Shanghai Jin Jiang International Hotels (Group) acquiring Keystone, and Yinyi Group acquiring 100% of shares from Nippon Aleph Corporation.

Haiwen & Partners assisted A-share companies in major asset restructurings and international M&A, such as Jinan Diesel Engine’s US$11.3 billion acquisition of China Petroleum Capital, Liaoning Zhongwang’s backdoor listing via CRED Holding, and Tianjin Tianhai Investment’s US$6.4 billion privatization of Ingram Micro.

M&A is one of Llinks’ core businesses. The firm participates in every aspect of the transaction, from design of the transaction structure to due diligence, drafting of multilingual transaction documents, and delivery management. It also provides services to meet the specific requirements of M&A in China.

A big part of Llinks’ business is cross-border transactions. The firm is also good at utilizing the advantages of its own system, combining M&A with other business. For example, the firm will work closely with a bank’s lawyers when dealing with M&A transactions in financial institutions.

Llinks Law Offices has been acting as our legal counsel for many years and it contributes to our company’s development,” says a client from a large molybdenum producer. “In our international large-scale M&A projects, the legal team, led by Chen Zhen and Zhang Zhengyi, provided very important help for the success of the projects.”

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett’s M&A team, based in the firm’s Hong Kong and Beijing offices, worked on some significant M&A transactions in 2016. The firm has a diverse and active practice, and has worked on a variety of high-profile public and private transactions for acquirers, target companies, private equity sponsors and large-cap private companies.

Simpson Thacher represented China National Chemical Corporation (ChemChina) in its US$43 billion acquisition of Swiss agrochemical and seeds company Syngenta by way of a public tender offer, the largest foreign acquisition by a Chinese company.

It also represented Alibaba Group Holding in its US$5.7 billion going private transaction involving Youku Tudou. Daniel Fertig, a partner at Simpson Thacher, was recommended by a CFO from a leading multinational provider of high-availability IT services. “Daniel is deeply experienced with Chinese companies listed in the US,” says the CFO. “He always has a good attitude and is highly responsive to the client’s needs.”

Private equity and venture capital

私募股权/风险投资

Private equity & venture capital

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

方达律师事务所

Fangda Partners

科律律师事务所

Cooley

观韬中茂律师事务所

Guantao Law Firm

凯易律师事务所

Kirkland & Ellis

汉坤律师事务所

Han Kun Law Offices

美富律师事务所

Morrison & Foerster

瀚一律师事务所

Han Yi Law Offices

奥睿律师事务所

Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe

中豪律师集团

Zhonghao Law Firm

盛信律师事务所

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett

The PRC winners are Fangda Partners, Guantao Law Firm, Han Kun Law Offices, Han Yi Law Offices, and Zhonghao Law Firm. The international winners are Cooley, Kirkland & Ellis, Morrison & Foerster, Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett.

Han Yi Law Offices represented a leading Chinese SOE fund manager in connection with the structuring and establishment of a series of RMB investment funds in China, and also represented a veteran fund manager in connection with the structuring and formation of an agribusiness RMB fund in China.

“Han Yi Law offices is very professional and experienced in the PE industry,” says a client from a leading multinational private equity firm. “Having worked with them numerous times over the past decade, I am always impressed with their efficiency, knowledge and dedication.” The client recommended Richard Xu, the founder and head of the law firm, for his vast knowledge, experience, and strong work ethic.

Zhonghao Law Firm also had notable achievements. “As our legal counsel, Zhonghao Law Firm was involved in the due diligence of our private equity fund projects on many occasions and its expertise was appreciated,” says a client from a respectable PE investment fund management institution. “With prudent work and patience, Zhonghao helped us to be one of the first private equity fund management companies registered successfully in Chongqing.” The firm’s partner Qing Miao was recommended by clients for her expertise and attitude.

Morrison & Foerster continued the strategic build-out of its team in the region with multiple senior-level additions. The firm has gained a market-leading reputation for representing private equity funds and issuers in the TMT, consumer/retail, life sciences and real estate spaces.

Morrison & Foerster represented some of the largest regional funds and leading players including Ally Bridge, Ark Pacific Capital, Ascendent Capital Partners, Carlyle Group, CITIC Capital, Global Logistic Properties, Temasek, Softbank and Tencent Holdings. These names are among the most active participants in this market.

Orrick’s China PE team had a busy year, closing more than 65 PE/M&A transactions with an aggregate deal value of approximately US$24 billion. In the past year, its team has doubled in size, with about 20 lawyers dedicated to handling private equity/venture capital matters. “By co-operating with headquarter resources, Orrick has internationalized experience in project operation and support,” says a client from a leading multinational venture capital firm

Restructuring and insolvency

破产及重组

Restructuring & insolvency

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

锦天城律师事务所

AllBright Law Offices

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

大成律师事务所

Dentons

安睿律师事务所

Eversheds Sutherland

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

高嘉力律师行

Gall Solicitors

炜衡律师事务所

W&H Law Firm

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

邓伟德戴源恒律师行

Tanner De Witt

The PRC winners are AllBright Law Offices, Dentons, King & Wood Mallesons, W&H Law Firm, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Clifford Chance, Eversheds Sutherland, Gall Solicitors, Hogan Lovells, and Tanner De Witt.

Zhong Lun Law Firm transactions included representing Shenzhen Prosunpro Solar Industrial on its restructuring, involving a debt amount of about RMB600 million (US$87 million) and about 170 creditors. Zhong Lun also participated in the Changjiang Pension/Pacific Insurance policy loan asset support plan, marking another effective attempt for policy loan assets as asset-backed security (ABS) basic assets.

Gall Solicitors’ performance was also notable with its insolvency litigators continuing to act in high-profile insolvencies and corporate collapses in Hong Kong. The firm is also one of the few in Hong Kong acting for litigation funders, and was at the forefront of two major decisions in Hong Kong relating to litigation funding in insolvency administrations.

Gall has undertaken a wide variety of instructions and clients, with matters ranging from liquidations and receiverships to cross-border matters. The firm’s practice has a particular focus on the identification, protection and realization of assets in insolvency administrations.

Among its significant cases, Gall represented the chairman of a solar company listed on the New York Stock Exchange in relation to his company’s debt obligations exceeding US$2 billion. It also represented provisional liquidators of a listed company in an audit negligence claim against a global accounting firm.

Tanner De Witt’s restructuring and insolvency team has eight lawyers and two trainees. The firm continues to win some of the largest cases in Hong Kong. The firm has also substantially increased its exposure in the restructuring space, and advised on Kaisa Group’s debt restructuring.

Structured finance and securitization

结构性融资/资产证券化

Structured finance & securitization

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

德恒律师事务所

DeHeng Law Offices

安理国际律师事务所

Allen & Overy

奋迅律师事务所

FenXun Partners

亚司特律师事务所

Ashurst

环球律师事务所

Global Law Office

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

君泽君律师事务所

JunZeJun Law Offices

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

英士律师事务所

Ince & Co

The PRC winners are DeHeng Law Offices, FenXun Partners, Global Law Office, JunZeJun Law Offices, and King & Wood Mallesons. The international winners are Allen & Overy, Ashurst, Baker McKenzie, Clifford Chance, and Ince & Co.

JunZeJun Law Offices assisted in Ping An Securities/Vanke supply chain finance asset-backed specific plan No. 1 to No. 5. The firm participated in the scheme on all sides, including the screening of assets, the design of the credit-enhancement method, the planning of the transaction and drafting of documents.

JunZeJun also provided full legal services for Boshi Capital/Ping An Bank’s “Cheng Xin Cheng E” asset-backed specific plan No. 1 to No. 10, including providing distribution model demonstration, transaction structure design, due diligence investigation in project subject and basic asset, a full set of special plans, documents drafting, etc.

“JunZeJun is professional, innovative and rigorous,” says a client from a Chinese securities company. “We are very satisfied with this firm.” The client recommended Li Wenmin, a partner at the firm.

Ince & Co was also active this year. The arrival of Balbir Bindra in 2016 as a partner in the firm’s Hong Kong office established a dedicated debt securities and structured finance practice to enhance the existing offering at the firm.

This enabled the firm to offer clients a more diverse range of financing options, and formed part of its strategy of building out its services offering in its specialist sectors, particularly transport, aviation, maritime, energy, offshore drilling, natural resources and infrastructure.

The new team has represented investment banks, heavy engineering industrial groups, commodity investment funds and aviation structuring teams this year on transactions utilizing structured financial products for tax, legal, regulatory or credit arbitrage, broadening sources of funding and maximizing returns.

Ince & Co advised a Beijing-based global commodities investment fund on financial structuring and execution on collateralized bond financing for the establishment of a nickel mining project in the Philippines. It also advised a listed PRC shipbuilding group on secured bond financing relating to HK-listed bonds.

Ashurst was also involved in some outstanding transactions. The firm advised Nomura as arranger in relation to a ¥5 trillion (US$44.1 billion) multi-issuer repackaging/securitization programme and various drawdowns for Kai Limited and Hale Kai Limited as issuers. It also advised Bank Indonesia on the preparation of a standard form document to be used as a local law, local language master agreement for derivatives market participants in Indonesia.

Taxation

税务

Taxation

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

大成律师事务所

Dentons

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

华税律师事务所

Hwuason Lawyers

CMS中国

CMS China

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

基德律师事务所

Gide Loyrette Nouel

明税律师事务所

M&T Lawyers

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

中伦律师事务

Zhong Lun Law Firm

泰乐信律师事务所

Taylor Wessing

The PRC winners are Dentons, Hwuason Lawyers, King & Wood Mallesons, M&T Lawyers, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, CMS China, Gide Loyrette Nouel, Hogan Lovells, and Taylor Wessing.

Hwuason’s tax planning services have become more mature and product-oriented as it strengthens the requirement of compliance, especially in M&A, splitting variable interest entities (VIEs), and high-tech enterprises tax preference application. The firm keeps expanding its business of tax dispute resolution services around China, and its case win rate has also increased.

Zhong Lun Law Firm represented several international leading real estate funds in disposing of their PRC real estate investment projects and advised them on the PRC tax aspect of the transactions. The total value was more than RMB4 billion.

The firm also represented a leading US company in PRC transfer pricing audit and PE audit. The most notable feature about this project was the continual defence strategy development and adjustment.

Gide Loyrette Nouel’s tax team in China continued to build on its good reputation in 2016. It has provided tax-related advice on a range of transactions, including group reorganizations, M&A, tax planning and structuring, joint ventures, major projects/project financing, business establishment and operations, tax- efficient financing, tax compliance, transfer pricing, tax disputes and tax reform issues.

“Having recently engaged Gide to represent us on our investment in a French company in the healthcare industry, I am very happy with the excellent services provided by their lawyers in both the Beijing and Paris offices,” says the general manager of an exporter of shoes and fashion accessories. “Gide’s lawyers, from partners to associates, are very professional and responsive, and communication between us was as smooth as it can be since we received trilingual support – English, French and Chinese.”

The client highly recommended Ronan Diot, a counsel at Gide. “Apart from his swift and smooth manners, he is very humorous, which makes working with him a pleasant experience. The fact that Ronan is trilingual also helped tremendously in facilitating negotiations with our French partners.”

Aviation & shipping

航空及海商海事

Aviation & shipping

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

协力律师事务所

Co-effort Law Firm

其礼律师事务所

Clyde & Co

大成律师事务所

Dentons

夏礼文律师事务所

Holman Fenwick Willan

凯荣律师事务所

Shanghai Kai-Rong Law Firm

英士律师事务所

Ince & Co

四维乐马律师事务所

Sloma & Co

罗夏信律师事务所

Stephenson Harwood

敬海律师事务所

Wang Jing & Co

华盛律师事务所

Watson Farley & Williams

The PRC winners are Co-effort Law Firm, Dentons, Shanghai Kai-Rong Law Firm, Sloma & Co, and Wang Jing & Co. The international winners are Clyde & Co, Holman Fenwick Willan, Ince & Co, Stephenson Harwood, and Watson Farley & Williams.

Co-effort Law Firm assisted its clients in successfully dealing with its many major maritime disputes and transactions. The firm advised disputes on sales/purchase contracts and financing lease contracts for China’s first professional-level coastal minerals mining and dressing integration ship, valued at RMB150 million. The firm assisted its client, won the arbitration and retrieved the ownership of the ship. The firm also participated in large-scale offshore life platform construction projects, including negotiating with a Singapore ship-owner, designing a transaction frame, drafting bilingual contracts and co-ordinating the relationship between the parties.

“The shipping team from Co-effort Law Firm is very professional and efficient, and the firm masters the professional knowledge by dealing with a large number of shipping litigation, arbitration and non-litigation legal issues,” says a client from a shipping project company. “The team is always able to provide comprehensive and professional legal advice based on our business model, business content, market competition, regulatory environment and other aspects to efficiently reduce potential legal risks in our business.”

Aviation and shipping is a core business of Shanghai Kai-Rong Law Firm. The firm continues to develop in this sector and works closely with international counterparts in the industry to provide high-quality legal services.

In 2016, Shanghai Kai-Rong continued to represent Malaysian Airlines and its insurers in handling claims, litigation and other matters relating to the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines MH370 in March 2014. It also represented American Airlines, British Airways, TransAsia Airways, Dragonair, Cathay Pacific, Delta Air Lines, Air China and many other airlines dealing with luggage losses, refusals, personal injury, aviation file review and other legal affairs. The firm has developed into a leading law firm in aviation.

Wang Jing & Co also attracted attention in this practice area. The firm assisted COSCO Shipping and its P&I Club on handling a cargo claim valued at about US$1.5 million. It also assisted a Chinese state-owned shipping company and its overseas subsidiaries in dealing with a case of arrest of the client’s vessels in Singapore and South Africa for a claim of mis-delivery of a previous shipment carried by the clients. The case was complex as a re-arrest of vessels by cargo interests that had goods laden on board the arrested vessels. The total value of the claims was more than US$11 million.

Stephenson Harwood acted on significant matters in the PRC market and apart from longstanding clients, this year it acquired a number of new clients in shipping and aviation finance that are major players in the PRC asset finance market including airlines, and major PRC and international lenders.

“Stephenson Harwood is familiar with the project in the structure, terms, risk sharing, general terms of market practice and practice in China,” says a client from the aviation department of a bank financial leasing company in China. “Being able to act as a project co-ordinator and manager in conjunction with a client’s project, the firm always provides clients with legal and advisory services outside of their expectations.”

Simon Wong, a partner at Stephenson Harwood, was highly recommended by the client. “Equipped with foresight and determination, he always gives customers visionary advice and suggestions in challenging and complex situations.”

Construction & infrastructure

建筑及基础设施

Construction & infrastructure

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

建纬律师事务所

City Development Law Firm

的近律师行

Deacons

天达共和律师事务所

East & Concord Partners

基德律师事务所

Gide Loyrette Nouel

观韬中茂律师事务所

Guantao Law Firm

霍金路伟律师事务所

Hogan Lovells

万商天勤律师事务所

V&T Law Firm

孖士打律师事务所

Mayer Brown JSM

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

品诚梅森律师事务所

Pinsent Masons

The PRC winners are City Development Law Firm, East & Concord Partners, Guantao Law Firm, V&T Law Firm, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Deacons, Gide Loyrette Nouel, Hogan Lovells, Mayer Brown JSM, and Pinsent Masons.

City Development Law Firm continues to be active in this area. It participated in some significant deals including the Neixiang-Dengzhou Expressway project, a key construction project contributing to the highway network in Henan province and development of the regional economy.

City Development Law Firm has a very high degree of expertise in construction and infrastructure, and its spirit of initiative and strong sense of responsibility won our trust and respect,” says an in-house client from a China engineering and research company. Tan Jinghui, a partner at the firm, was highly recommended. “She has rich experience in construction and participated in a number of important domestic policy formulations and research.”

V&T Law Firm’s performance also draw great attention, as it provided special legal services for the construction of PPP projects in Zhongwei city, in Ningxia Hui autonomous region. It also advised on an intelligent city industrial park PPP project in Zhong Xing, Shandong province.

“V&T Law Firm is able to respond to our various requirements in a timely manner, and can solve the problem as quickly as possible,” says a client in charge of PPP projects at a local government institution in China. “Under the legal and regulation premise, the firm combines franchise rights with the right of use of commercial and residential land for joint bidding simultaneously, and this innovative method won recognition from the Ministry of Land and Resources, the Ministry of Finance and the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).”

Zhang Xiaofeng, a partner at V&T Law Firm, won admiration from his clients for his expertise and service quality. “Zhang Xiaofeng is able to analyze objectively and use reachable resources to solve problems,” says a client from the city construction bureau of Deyang in the Sichuan province.

Deacons’ performance was also eye-catching. “The firm not only provides legal services, but also gives insights from a commercial perspective, which is what in-house counsel look for,” says an in-house client from a leading property company in Hong Kong and the mainland. “I recall a case that was litigious at the beginning and developed into a win-win situation for both parties after several rounds of discussion involving Deacons’ input and analysis.”

The in-house client recommended Kwok Kit-cheung, a partner at Deacons. Instead of giving lengthy advice with many qualifications that in-house would not find useful, the deliverables are succinct and with substance, says the client. “Given his quality surveying background, he knows the technicalities, which enables him to give practical solutions.”

Energy & natural resources

能源及自然资源

Energy & natural resources

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

金诚同达律师事务所

Jincheng Tongda & Neal

安睿律师事务所

Eversheds Sutherland

金杜律师事务所

King & Wood Mallesons

格拉塔律师事务所

GRATA International

阳光时代律师事务所

Sunshine Law Firm

史密夫斐尔律师事务所

Herbert Smith Freehills

天元律师事务所

Tian Yuan Law Firm

年利达律师事务所

Linklaters

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

文森·艾尔斯律师事务所

Vinson & Elkins

The PRC winners are Jincheng Tongda & Neal, King & Wood Mallesons, Sunshine Law Firm, Tian Yuan Law Firm, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Eversheds Sutherland, GRATA International, Herbert Smith Freehills, Linklaters, and Vinson & Elkins.

Jincheng Tongda & Neal represented the Zhongwang Group, the largest industrial aluminium extrusion products research and development manufacturer in Asia, and the second-largest in the world, in connection with its acquisition of Aleris Corporation, a global aluminium rolled products producer, in a transaction valued at about US$2.33 billion. The firm also represented China Nonferrous Metal Industry’s Foreign Engineering and Construction in an engineering procurement and construction project involving a copper mining company in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Jincheng Tongda & Neal possesses extensive experience, especially in the energy and natural resources sectors, having handled a number of significant cross-border transactions related to the industry my company is pursued in,” says a client from a leading multinational aluminium company. “JT&N’s team is responsible, client-oriented and commercially savvy.” Annie Wu Guohua, a senior partner of the firm, was highly recommended by the in-house client.

Herbert Smith Freehills has a leading reputation for advising companies, sponsors, banks, governments and other public bodies on all aspects of major projects in sectors as diverse as oil and gas, mining, power, nuclear, renewables, water and waste, rail, airports, ports and roads.

Its Greater China projects and energy team is among the largest and most experienced in the region. The team can provide full service to deliver complex projects and transactions for clients around the world, whether a new country entry, a bid, an M&A deal, project structuring, project financing, project development and construction or a related dispute.

Herbert Smith Freehills has also acted on first-of-a-kind deals and projects, as well as new developments projects in industries such as unconventional gas, floating LNG projects and renewables.

Linklaters was also active in the past year. The firm advised on the US$2 billion project financing to Kazakhstan Petrochemical Industries for the development of a 500,000 ton/year polypropylene project in Kazakhstan, and also the Hubco 2x660MW coal-fired power project financing in Pakistan covered by Sinosure.

Entertainment & sports

娱乐及体育产业

Entertainment & sports

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

锦天城律师事务所

AllBright Law Offices

高伟绅律师事务所

Clifford Chance

天达共和律师事务所

East & Concord Partners

科文顿·柏灵律师事务所

Covington & Burling

金诚同达律师事务所

Jincheng Tongda & Neal

普衡律师事务所

Paul Hastings

权亚律师事务所

TransAsia Lawyers

立杰律师事务所

Rajah & Tann

盈科律师事务所

Yingke Law Firm

泰乐信律师事务所

Taylor Wessing

The PRC winners are AllBright Law Offices, East & Concord Partners, Jincheng Tongda & Neal, TransAsia Lawyers, and Yingke Law Firm. The international winners are Clifford Chance, Covington & Burling, Paul Hastings, Rajah & Tann, and Taylor Wessing.

Yingke Law Firm advised the makers of the “Legend of Paladin” game on its copyright, trademark, unfair competition, and corporate reputation dispute. The firm also advised the makers of “Chronicles of the Ghostly Tribe” on authorship rights and protection against work integrity infringements.

Yingke also provided legal services for organizations and celebrities in show business such as Qiong Yao, Li Yifeng, Wu Xiubo, Tian Liang, and SNH48.

Paul Hastings’ clients included media companies, advertising networks, mobile and digital media businesses, film and television studios and other content creators, broadcasters, cable networks and satellite operators, content distributors, over-the-top networks, social networks, producers and distributors of videogames and mobile apps, software service providers, talent agencies, and private equity and venture capital investors in media, entertainment and technology companies.

Paul Hastings represented Beijing Shouhuan Cultural Tourism Investment, a consortium of four state-owned companies, in connection with Comcast NBC Universal and the development of the first “Universal” branded theme park and resort in Beijing and China. The firm also represented Fosun International, the largest private-owned conglomerate in China, in its acquisition of Cirque Du Soleil, the world’s largest theatrical production company.

Rajah & Tann’s Shanghai representative office was particularly active in advising clients in the hospitality industry in the preparation, negotiation, amendment and finalization of hotel/serviced apartment management agreements, as well as documents for branded residential projects. Its clients included Fairmont Raffles Hotels International, Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts, Capella Hotel Group and Oakwood Asia Pacific.

Rajah & Tann acted for Fairmont Raffles Hotel International in drafting, negotiating and finalizing documents relating to branded residential projects in Chengdu, Shenzhen, Nanjing, Sanya and Suzhou, in China. Branded residences are quite new in China and the issues arising from their establishment are quite complicated. Parties involved include the developer, the individual buyer, the property management company and the hotel operator. The issues involved include how to control the risk on the construction and operation of residential properties on lands zoned for “commercial” and/or “tourism” purposes, how the licence of the hotel operator’s trademark can be protected, how to deal with the uncollected property management fees, and the restrictions of PRC laws on rental programmes.

“We are very pleased with the support we have received from the shanghai office of Rajah & Tann and especially due to the timeliness of responses, quality of work, and creative commercial and legal solutions,” says the senior vice president of a leading hotel.

Linda Qiao, senior international counsel at Rajah & Tann was strongly recommended. “She has a good grasp of complex commercial and legal issues and typically has a solution,” says the client. “She is a good cross-cultural communicator and diligent in responses even with time zone challenges.”

Healthcare, pharma & life sciences

医疗、制药及生命科学

Healthcare, pharma & life sciences

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

安杰律师事务所

AnJie Law Firm

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

环球律师事务所

Global Law Office

CMS中国

CMS China

汉坤律师事务所

Han Kun Law Offices

科文顿·柏灵律师事务所

Covington & Burling

瀚一律师事务所

Han Yi Law Offices

谢尔曼·思特灵律师事务所

Shearman & Sterling

中伦律师事务所

Zhong Lun Law Firm

盛智律师事务所

Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton

The PRC winners are AnJie Law Firm, Global Law Office, Han Kun Law Offices, Han Yi Law Offices, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, CMS China, Covington & Burling, Shearman & Sterling, and Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton.

AnJie Law Firm advised Yuantai Changqing Fund on its private equity investment into You Jian Health. In this transaction, AnJie represented Yuantai Changqing to provide due diligence, design a transaction frame and issue transaction documents. The firm also represented Chenxing Fund in completing its private equity investment into Kang Fuzi, and Wei Yi group on completing the acquisition of medku.com.

CMS China also had a great performance including advising a HKEx-listed and leading biopharmaceutical company engaged in the research, development, production and commercialization of pharmaceuticals for the Chinese healthcare market, on the technology transfer of a new diabetes medicine from a leading Chinese biopharmaceutical company. This included provision of regulatory advice, review of the technology transfer contract, trademark licensing issues as well as review of the supply agreement.

“CMS’s China team provided us with excellent legal services regarding our acquisition of a pharmaceutical company”, says a deputy general manager of another pharmaceutical company’s legal department. Nick Beckett, the managing partner at the firm’s Beijing office and global co-head of life sciences, was recommended by the client: “He has excellent knowledge and experience in the pharmaceutical industry.”

Shearman & Sterling’s China team continued to advise on significant corporate matters, high-profile Hong Kong public M&A transactions and take-private transactions for a life science company worth more than US$3 billion. Apart from the transactional front, the team has vast experience advising pharmaceutical and medical device companies such as GlaxoSmithKline to conduct investigations and compliance matters in China.

Sheppard Mullin is another law firm attracting attention in this practice area. “Sheppard Mullin assisted our company in several international investment and M&A projects in the practice area of healthcare, pharma & life sciences,” says an in-house counsel from a leading pharmaceutical company in China. “The firm is able to detect problems in time, analyze the problems and solve them, reflecting its excellent professionalism.” Michael Zhang, a special counsel at Sheppard Mullin, was recommended for his expertise and efficiency.

Insurance & reinsurance

保险与再保险

Insurance & reinsurance

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

安杰律师事务所

AnJie Law Firm

贝克·麦坚时律师事务所

Baker McKenzie

邦信阳中建中汇律师事务所

Boss & Young

德汇律师事务所

Dorsey & Whitney

德和衡律师事务所

DHH Law Firm

英士律师事务所

Ince & Co

金诚同达律师事务所

Jincheng Tongda & Neal

孖士打律师事务所

Mayer Brown JSM

瀛泰律师事务所

Wintell & Co

高露云律师事务所

Wilkinson & Grist

The PRC winners are AnJie Law Firm, Boss & Young, DHH Law Firm, Jincheng Tongda & Neal, and Wintell & Co. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, Dorsey & Whitney, Ince & Co, Mayer Brown JSM, and Wilkinson & Grist.

Boss & Young advised on a large number of claims disputes, insurance subrogation disputes and revocation of third-person lawsuits for many domestic and foreign companies including Ping An Property & Casualty Insurance Company, ACE insurance (formerly Chubb Insurance), People’s Insurance Company (Group) of China (PICC), China Life, Anxin Agricultural Insurance, and Zhong An Online.

Through non-litigation and litigation dispute resolution, Boss & Young helped the insurers to deal with unreasonable claims; and through subrogations, the firm successfully retrieved indemnity from the responsible parties, winning recognition and praise from the clients. “Boss & Young has a strong team of lawyers, providing professional legal service for the clients,” says a client from a leading insurance company in China. “The firm represents our company in several major property insurance cases and assisted us to reduce losses effectively.”

Dorsey & Whitney represented PICC Property & Casualty Company, the largest property insurance company in China and Asia, as well as a number of its insureds, in a variety of litigation matters in the US and with regulatory consultation matters.

Wilkinson & Grist is also a strong player in this practice area. “W&G looks at your requirements and the counterpart’s requests together to provide a solution,” says an in-house counsel from a well-known multinational insurance company. The client strongly recommends Raymond Chan, the firm’s managing partner: “Raymond is very pragmatic and will provide solutions instead of giving you a bunch of disclaimers for an opinion.”

The PRC winners are Boss & Young, Guantao Law Firm, King & Wood Mallesons, Llinks Law Offices, and Zhong Lun Law Firm. The international winners are Baker McKenzie, DLA Piper, Gowling WLG, Mayer Brown JSM, and Paul Hastings.

Llinks Law Offices’ services in this area cover the equity and debt co-operation of more than 80 real estate development projects, the fund-raising and establishment of more than 20 real estate projects, the construction legal services (including engineering procurement construction contracts) for more than 10 real estate projects, and more than 10 major real estate transactions.

DLA Piper is deeply rooted in the real estate industry in Greater China. The firm’s team can advise on areas including due diligence, acquisitions, divestment, structuring, financing and taxation, leasing and facilities management, project and commercial developments, hotel management and agreements, trusts, fund formation and restructuring.

DLA Piper also has extensive experience in cross-border transactions, both domestic and outbound investment. Its recent transactions included advising Carlyle Asia Real Estate’s team on the sale of Central Plaza office tower in Shanghai to V Capital, the private equity arm of Chinese real estate developer Vanke. Central Plaza is a grade A office tower in Shanghai’s central business district, Huangpu, next to the Shanghai Municipal Government and other landmark buildings.

The firm also represented Gaw Capital Partners and Pioneer Global Group on the acquisition of the InterContinental Hong Kong and advised the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board on the joint establishment of a US$500 million Korean logistics development platform, with an option to increase the size of the total equity commitment in the joint venture to US$1 billion.

Gowling WLG advised on a range of significant real estate transactions in Canada. “Gowling WLG has a high level of professionalism in this practice area, good quality of work and gives valuable advice,” says a client from a commercial properties company in Canada. Jack Yong, a partner at Gowling, was recommended by the client. “He is really familiar with laws related to commercial real estate, and very professional,” says the client. “He is also very patient in answering clients’ questions and helps clients deal with tough problems to protect their legitimate rights and interests.”

Technology, media and telecommunications

科技、媒体及电信(TMT)

Technology, media and telecommunications (TMT)

中国所 PRC firms

国际所 International firms

达辉律师事务所

DaHui Lawyers

鸿鹄律师事务所

Bird & Bird

方达律师事务所

Fangda Partners

美富律师事务所

Morrison & Foerster

汉坤律师事务所

Han Kun Law Offices

宝维斯律师事务所

Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison

立方律师事务所

Lifang & Partners

盛信律师事务所

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett

权亚律师事务所

TransAsia Lawyers

世达律师事务所

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

The PRC winners are DaHui Lawyers, Fangda Partners, Han Kun Law Offices, Lifang & Partners, and TransAsia Lawyers. The international winners are Bird & Bird, Morrison & Foerster, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.

DaHui Lawyers’ strength in the highly regulated TMT industry is in providing practical advice and highlighting key regulatory implications, trends and changes. The firm provided clients with services across a range of TMT sub-sectors including internet, IT/telecoms, mobile, publishing, new media, entertainment, sports, events, and exhibitions.

Some of the firm’s highly regarded TMT clients include: Reed Exhibitions, the world’s largest exhibitions company; CBS Interactive, the world’s largest vertical portal company; Elsevier, the world’s largest academic/science publishing company; Netflix, the leading US provider of streaming movies and TV series; as well as Alibaba, Samsung Electronics, and Huawei Technology.

“DaHui is prompt, professional and experienced in the TMT space in China,” says a senior director at a leading Chinese e-commerce company. “I recommend Richard Ma, the managing partner of DaHui, who is insightful, experienced and practical.”

Lifang & Partners also advised on some notable cases. The firm participated in Huawei’s accusation against Samsung for patent infringement. The firm represented Samsung’s defence. This eye-catching litigation involved dozens of patents, including a large number of standard essential patents, which will have a significant impact on wireless communications.

Lifang & Partners also participated in Microsoft’s case against their end users of large enterprises for copyright infringement. This series of influential cases promotes the process of using copyright software in China. The firm helped clients formulate scientific litigation strategies, collect and investigate evidence, and obtain satisfactory results after full cross-examinations and negotiations.

“Our company co-operated with Lifang for large-scale rights protection because of internet infringement,” says a leading information content provider in China. “The lawyers in Lifang have a high level of professional quality and ethics, and their rights protection work is very fruitful.” Xie Guanbin, a partner at Lifang, was recommended. “He gives high quality legal advice and has a high level of litigation skill and enterprise strategy,” says a client.

Morrison & Foerster’s TMT team has a client list including many industry-leading companies such as AccuWeather, Intel, Wal-Mart, VMware, SoftBank and Tencent.

Morrison & Foerster represented Walmart and its global e-commerce division in the formation of a strategic alliance with JD.com, China’s largest e-commerce company by revenue. The transaction included Walmart’s acquisition of approximately 5% of outstanding total shares of JD.com, worth about US$1.5 billion, and the transfer to JD.com of assets used to operate the Yihaodian website, Walmart’s Shanghai-based B2C online marketplace.

Morrison & Foerster also represented SoftBank in the sale of its controlling stake in Finnish gaming company Supercell to Chinese internet company Tencent at a value of US$8.6 billion.