Fieldfisher has launched a four-partner office in Shanghai and has plans to double its partner count there by June.
The firm’s China managing partner, Zhaofeng Zhou, said: “Shanghai is a truly global city and was the natural location for our next office. Growth is an important part of our plan in China and we expect a further four partners to join the Shanghai office by June.”
Zhou joined JS Partners as managing partner in July last year from Bird & Bird’s Beijing office.
Fieldfisher managing partner Michael Chissick added: “We’ve been working closely to ensure continued growth of the firm in China – and the opening of a Shanghai office is a natural next step.”
Fieldfisher corporate partner and competition law specialist Liang Xing will lead the office. Xing is joining the firm from Chinese firm MyLink, where he was a partner.
He is joined by patent litigation partner Rocky Wu, who previously worked for Chinese firm JT&N.
Two of the firm’s Beijing partners – tax partner Baoen Bai and corporate partner Ming Zhang – will transfer to Shanghai.
Two additional partners are set to join the new office in March, with another two arriving in June.
Three years ago, Fieldfisher secured a presence in Shanghai through a Swiss verein combination with three-partner firm Ryser & Associates. However, that tie-up has since ended.
Under the verein structure, Fieldfisher operates as a licensed Chinese law firm, with access to all aspects of Chinese legal practice. The setup was pioneered in 2012 by legacy King & Wood when it merged with Australian firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques. Last year, the same structure was used by Dentons when it merged with Beijing-based Dacheng.
Separately, it has emerged that Fieldfisher is in early discussions to hire partners in Olswang’s Munich office.
Source: Legal Week