Yi Zhang is a partner in Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s Beijing and Hong Kong offices, where he conducts a wide-ranging China-focused practice.
Mr. Zhang has over 20 years’ experience with China-related work, including investment funds, foreign direct investment, outbound investment, mergers and acquisitions, private equity and venture capital, real estate and distressed asset transactions, and large-scale project development and infrastructure work. His clients have included multinational companies, regional developers, PRC companies, commercial and investment banks and international private equity funds.
Mr. Zhang’s project experience includes power plants, liquefied natural gas receiving terminals, and greenfield developments and acquisitions in various other industries, such as petrochemicals, mining, real estate and renewable energy. Mr. Zhang also has advised on infrastructure projects in the United States, Korea, Thailand, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, in addition to China.
Mr. Zhang’s China investment experience covers the entire range of investment options, including both equity (common and preferred) and debt (senior, mezzanine, convertible and acquisition financing), and both onshore and offshore structures. He has extensive expertise with the issues encountered by foreign investors investing into China.
In recent years, Mr. Zhang has also advised on the formation of private equity funds and has represented Chinese clients on their outbound investments.
Mr. Zhang gained his J.D. from the University of Michigan in 1993 and his M.A. from the University of Virginia in 1986. In addition, he obtained his B.A. from Shanghai International Studies University in 1982 and studied at De Montfort University (1979-1981) and University of West London (1978-1979). He is admitted to practice in New York and Hong Kong, and has native fluency in Mandarin. Prior to joining Gibson Dunn, Mr. Zhang was the head of the Hong Kong office of another large international firm.
Illustrative clients he has represented include:
- A number of international power companies in connection with power projects in Asia, including the 2×125 MW Jiaozuo project for AES and the 2×300 MW Wenzhou project for Sithe.
- A number of multinational companies in connection with their greenfield and M&A transactions in China, including Alcoa, BP, Dow and GE.
- A number of private equity funds and investment banks in connection with their investments in China, including Carlyle, Darby, Deutsche Bank, Goldman, JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley and Temasek.
- A number of international clients in real estate transactions in China, including representing the strategic investors in the over USD1.5 billion pre-IPO financing for Evergrande.
- Arizona State University in research and development activities in China.
- Assa Abloy in acquisition of locks companies in China.
- BrightSource Energy in an EPC joint venture with Shanghai Electric and in investments in solar thermal power plants in China.
- China Development Bank in a US$1.5 billion financing for the acquisition by a Chinese company of a European company.
- D. E. Shaw in a number of transactions in China, including financial institutions, real estate and education.
- The Export-Import Bank of China in connection with the formation of the close to USD1 billion China-ASEAN Investment Cooperation Fund.
- GIC as seller in an offshore company with operating assets in China.
- Guangdong Dapeng LNG Company (China’s first LNG receiving terminal) in connection with its long term gas sales contracts with downstream customers and tolling agreements (with total value in excess of US$25 billion).
- Guohua involving real estate acquisition and financing transactions in China.
- A Macquarie portfolio company in an investment in a waste water treatment plant in China.
- Pacoma in a financing transaction with a PRC PE fund.
- A PRC chemical company in a proposed development of a fertilizer plant in the U.S.
- Right Won Management Limited in the sale of shares in Yida China Holdings, an operator of business parks in China, to Jiayou (International) Investment Limited, an investment firm.
- Tishman Speyer Properties in connection with a real estate project in Shanghai.
- Unitas in connection with its China investments.
- Universal in joint investments in movies with a PRC film company.
- A water company in an equity financing from an international infrastructure fund relating to a waste water treatment plant in China.
- A water company in an equity financing from an international infrastructure fund relating to water plants in China.
- A water company in a bid to purchase an equity stake in a waste water treatment company in China.
- Yida in over 10 real estate projects in China, including joint development of residential projects with international real estate funds and sovereign wealth funds and offshore financings.