Tech prospects

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The Science and Technology Innovation Board (STIB), China’s eagerly awaited new listing platform, has been placed on the fast track since the start of this year. About 100 companies have already filed their applications for initial public offerings on the STIB. The opening date has yet to be confirmed, but should be soon. Technified explores the changes that might be brought by the STIB. The new board is designed for technology companies, which are regarded by some as the most important pillar of a mature and successful securities market today. The pilot trial of the registration system is a key feature of the STIB, other than the current approval system for IPO applications in the A-share market. It is widely believed in industry circles that the ultimate implementation of the registration system is closely tied to the success or failure of the STIB.

prologueThe listing requirements are more relaxed. Loss-making companies, companies with variable interest entity (VIE)/red-chip structures, subsidiaries of listed companies, and enterprises with dual-class share arrangements are all permitted to list. However, the delisting system has at the same time been strengthened. “Relaxed entry and strict exit” can be used to summarize the regulatory philosophy of the STIB. People are waiting to see whether the new board will help produce world-class technology companies in China.

China’s enhancement of intellectual property (IP) protection has been the focus of media in the recent year, but how about overseas jurisdictions’ protection of the IP assets of Chinese outbound investors? This equally important question has not been discussed as frequently. The long game looks at this issue. Legal practitioners say that Chinese companies venturing overseas are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of protecting their IP in a competitive global economy. However, some experts have noticed that overseas Chinese investors may still lack local knowledge or experience in target jurisdictions, and may not have strategies effective enough for protecting their IP rights. Chinese investors should recognize that the short-term pain of formulating IP strategies will bring them long-term gains.

This issue will also feature separate interviews with two corporate counsel. Su Yanan, the legal director of Chinalife Capital, once worked as a partner at a leading PRC law firm. In Crossing the divide, Su talks about her understanding of the differences between being a corporate counsel and a law firm practitioner. She also shares her experience in managing a legal team and training team members. In Legal challenges in the internet age, Anna Xue, the IP director at the legal department of Perfect World, says different countries are fighting increasingly fiercely for legislative power in the online world. Privacy protection is a new field of heightened regulation, and involves legal compliance issues that an in-house counsel at an internet company faces almost in the entire process of his or her routine work. She shares her experience about how in-house counsel should improve their work to address issues involving data privacy.