A seasoned international PE/VC and investment funds/asset management attorney, James has been active in this field for over 17 years and is among the few most senior Chinese investment funds/investment management attorneys in China. James represents a large number of international and PRC PE/VC funds, hedge funds, trust companies, broker/dealers, futures companies, insurance companies and other asset managers in the design and implementation of various offshore and onshore fund and asset management products and is also active in PE/VC transactions, mergers and acquisitions and capital markets fields. A former Partner (Investment Funds) in the New York headquarters and Shanghai office of one of the largest law firms in the U.S, James worked at three leading international law firms (Clifford Chance, Kirkland & Ellis and Greenberg Traurig) in the U.S. (New York, Chicago, Atlanta) and China offices for 9 years and was one of the very few Chinese who ever made partner in the US headquarters of a large international law firm. James has been consistently recognized by leading global legal directories such as Chambers, IFLR 1000 and Legalband as a leading authority on Investment Funds and Venture Capital (Tier 1). He was named as market leader for investment funds in China by the London-based Legal Media Group’s 2015-2019 Global Expert Guides for Banking, Finance and Transactional Law. In September 2019, Jingtian & Gongcheng with which James is affiliated won the Investment Funds Team of the Year Award by China Law & Practice under the leading international legal publisher ALM Group, the owner of The American Lawyer, The Asian Lawyer and LegalWeek.
In the Investment Funds/Asset Management field, James represented many international and domestic fund clients and asset managers in raising over 1,200 private RMB, USD and hybrid funds and asset management schemes involving capital in excess of RMB 400 billion or US$60 billion equivalent, covering fund types such as PE/VC funds, hedge funds, real estate funds, M&A funds, film & entertainment funds, sports funds, infrastructure funds, and funds of funds and legal forms such as corporate funds, contractual funds, trust funds, asset management scheme funds, FIVCIEs and hybrid funds combining the above. James’ clients include some of the largest asset management companies in the world, leading global and domestic hedge fund, leading global and domestic PE/VC firms, first tier angel investment funds. James is particularly known for his ability to work in the most cutting-edge, innovative and pilot type funds as well as cross-border funds. He represented close to 20 PE/VC firms (out of a total of 40 or so approved QFLP funds to date) in forming QFLP pilot funds in Shanghai as well as the first RMB QFLP pilot fund in Shanghai. James has also worked on the first QDIE fund on the market in Shenzhen, acted for a number of clients in forming QFLP pilot funds in Shenzhen, Tianjin and Chongqing, QDLP pilot funds in Tianjin, Shanghai and Qingdao, as well as the only pilot fund with special approval by the People’s Bank of China to use RMB for direct outbound equity, debt or project investment, global asset managers. James is also active in the formation and operation of QFII funds, international and domestic PE and hedge fund sponsors in setting up QDII funds, as well as private fund managers in their New Third Board listing.
In addition to his GP representation, James also represents a large number of LPs of various types (including insurance companies, public companies, state-owned enterprises, asset/wealth management firms) in investing in various funds in and outside of China. James is also intimately familiar with internal economic and governance arrangements at the GP/management company level, having been deeply involved in the design and implementation of such arrangements for many leading international as well as domestic fund clients.
James also represents many PE/VC firms, asset managers and companies in investment and financing transactions, New Third Board listing and domestic/overseas IPO, domestic and cross-border M&A, foreign direct investment (FDI), privatization of overseas listed Chinese companies and “red-chip” return transactions.
James serves as a member of the expert review committee for both the QFLP Pilot Program and QDLP Pilot Program in Shanghai and is frequently consulted by Asset Management Association of China (AMAC) on private fund regulation issues. James’ experience also includes providing training sessions on investing in offshore funds to business and legal teams at China’s sovereign wealth fund, China Investment Corporation (CIC). A frequent speaker on China and international private equity, asset management and cross-border investment conferences and is widely published in major finance publications such as Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, China Business News and 21st Century Business Herald, James has been quoted frequently in main stream finance and legal media such as Financial Times, Asia Venture Capital Journal (AVCJ), Caijing Magazine, Asia Legal Business (ALB), China Business Law Journal, China Law & Practice, Economic Information Daily, China Economic Times, Private Equity Insider, Top Capital and Venture China. James also serves as a Director of the Center for China and Globalization, a leading non-government think tank in China.
Outside of the professional arena, James enjoys travel, movie, reading and sports.
James received his Juris Doctor (J.D.) from Columbia Law School in the U.S. and his LL.B. and B.A. in German from Peking University in China. He also studied international and private equity taxation in the LL.M. program at New York University School of Law, the leading tax law institute in the U.S. James is also a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA).
Qualified in the State of New York
Special Administration Region of Hong Kong (expected)
Mandarin Chinese, English, German and Cantonese (fluent)