Slaughters puts emphasis on China after chief’s exit

Slaughter and May has rejigged its Greater China practice as veteran finance partner George Goulding retires.

Chris Saul
Chris Saul

Goulding is being replaced as resident Beijing partner by corporate ­partner Lisa Chung, a ­Mandarin-speaker who spent four years as a local partner in Hong Kong before joining the London equity in 2010.

Chung recently advised the Hong Kong Monetary Authority on the HK$100bn (£8.03bn) retail bond issue and Swire Pacific on a series of major deals.

Senior partner Chris Saul said: “Having got the foundations laid with George’s wisdom and experience, we’re driving further into the market. A lot of what the Beijing office is about is being close to our European best friend firms there and also Jun He [Law Offices], Haiwen [& Partners] and other leading local firms.”

Goulding, who set up the firm’s Tokyo office in the mid-1980s, moved to Hong Kong in September 2006 after spending more than a decade back in London, where he developed a ­Scandinavian practice.

Goulding also launched the firm’s office in Beijing three years ago (The Lawyer, 16 September 2008), in ­conjunction with De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek and Uría Menéndez.

As part of Slaughters’ Greater China shake-up, M&A partner Padraig Cronin has returned to ­London from Hong Kong after a five-year stint in Asia. He most recently advised Prudential on its $35.5bn (£22.23bn) merger with AIA Group. He has been replaced by David Watkins, who spent two years as a secondee at the Takeover Panel from 2006 to 2008.

Slaughters currently has seven partners based in Hong Kong.