Shearman & Sterling, which last month lost much of its Hong Kong capital markets team, including two partners, to the Chinese firm Fangda Partners, has now lost an associate to another Chinese firm.
Stephen Luo has joined Jingtian & Gongcheng’s Hong Kong associate firm L&C Legal as a partner. Luo advises on securities offerings and mergers and acquisitions related to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Last year, he advised shareholders of Hong Kong-listed developer Future Land Development Holdings Ltd. on a $661 million take-private offer. In 2016, he represented the underwriters on power generator maker VPower Group International Holdings Ltd.’s $208 million Hong Kong listing.
Luo was part of a group at Shearman, led by Hong Kong partners Colin Law and Peter Chen, specializing in Hong Kong law corporate transactions work. Last month, The Asian Lawyer reported that Law’s team is in the process of leaving the U.S. firm to join the Hong Kong office of China’s Fangda Partners.
Luo’s departure follows that of Stella Yeung, another former Shearman & Sterling lawyer that has joined L&C Legal as a partner.
L&C Legal was launched in September by former Mayer Brown partners Elaine Lo and Nicholas Chan in association with Beijing-based Jingtian & Gongcheng; the firm is expected to fully merge with Jingtian’s Hong Kong office in early 2019.
Jingtian is one of several Chinese firms that have expanded into Hong Kong law practice this year, especially in the capital markets space. Earlier this year, Tian Yuan Law Firm launched its Hong Kong law practice by forming an association with another former Shearman associate, William Ji.