Teams from Clifford Chance and Davis Polk & Wardwell have taken lead roles on Chinese medical technology company Ping An Healthcare and Technology’s US$1.12 billion IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
Shanghai-based Ping An’s stock debuted on 4 May, following the introduction of new rules that allow “pre-revenue” biotech companies from China, which do not meet traditional financial eligibility criteria, to list on the exchange as of 30 April.
According to HKEX chief executive Charles Li, these reforms are targeted to “make the Hong Kong market more relevant and even more competitive” as part of the process of becoming “a welcoming home for innovative companies”.
Ping An specialises in internet healthcare and, via its Good Doctor online platform, serves over 190 million registered users in mainland China.
The team from Clifford Chance was led by partners Amy Lo, Tim Wang and Fang Liu, who were supported by consultant Christine Xu.
“The IPO was technically very challenging and demanding and, in the end, we managed to come up with creative solutions acceptable to the company and the regulators,” Lo said in a statement.
“We are quite fortunate to be involved in this very first, landmark IPO following the introduction of the HKSE's game-changing regime for listing of 'New Economy Companies,'” Liu added.
Davis Polk partners Bonnie Chang and Li He provided advice to the joint global coordinators for the listing.
The Hong Kong Stock Exchange is currently in the process of forming a biotech advisory panel of industry experts to review listing applications from companies under the new regime. Such flotations are potentially risky as the companies will not always have generated the revenue or profit usually required to float.
These are new companies entering a burgeoning market and making offerings backed by underwriters who do not necessarily have experience in this field, Hong Kong bankers and analysts told the Financial Times.
In preparation for the listing, a team from DLA Piper provided the company with advice as it undertook a series of offshore and onshore reorganisations in late 2017, where investors agreed to restructure their direct shareholdings in the company.
Corporate partner James Chang, who led the DLA Piper team, said in a statement: "I am delighted to have advised our longstanding client Ping An Group on this landmark deal, which is set to be one of the most high-profile IPOs in Hong Kong this year.”
Counsel to Ping An
- Clifford Chance
Partners Amy Lo, Tim Wang and Fang Liu, consultant Christine Xu, senior associates Claire Cao and Lawrence Zhang, and associates Janet Tang, Samson Chan, Emma Bao, Hongzhou Chen and Jun Peng
- Davis Polk & Wardwell
Partners Bonnie Chan and Li He, counsel Yang Chu, registered foreign lawyer Xuelin Wang and associates Lillian Lian and Fei Kwok
Tax counsel Alon Gurfinkel and associate Veronica Orecharova in London
- DLA Piper
Partners James Chang, Luke Gannon and Roy Chan and associates Lily Li and Karen Cheng
Finance partner Matthias Schemuth
Securities partner Christina Loh