Davis Polk and Skadden act on strategic investment by Chinese internet giant Tencent

Davis Polk & Wardwell and Chinese firm Han Kun have advised Chinese internet giant Tencent on its strategic partnership with online retailer JD.com.

Shenzhen-headquartered Tencent has agreed to pay $215m (£130m) for a 15 per cent stake in JD.com, which is planning to launch an IPO in the US that could raise $1.5bn. It is a significant deal reflecting China’s fast growing eCommerce, mobile and internet industries.

Tencent sought out regular adviser Davis Polk & Wardwell as its international counsel, with Hong Kong corporate partner Kirtee Kapoor leading the team. Hong Kong corporate partners Paul Chow and Miranda So were also part of the deal team.

Beijing-based Han Kun, fielding founding partner Charles Li, advised Tencent on PRC law.

Beijing-headquartered JD.com, which operates one of China’s largest online shipping sites Jingdong Mall, has recently filed a prospectus with the US Securities & Exchange Commission for an IPO. In this transaction, JD.com was advised by Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and Zhong Lun on US and PRC law respectively. Both firms are also acting as the issuer’s counsel for its proposed IPO.

Skadden’s team was led by Hong Kong corporate partners Julie Gao and Jonathan Stone. Zhong Lun’s team consists of corporate partners Wu Peng and Scott Yu in Beijing and Anthony Zhao and Jia Haibo in Shanghai.

Also as part of the strategic partnership deal, JD.com will acquire 100 per cent interests in Tencent’s QQ Wanggou B2C and PaiPai C2C marketplace businesses, logistics personnel and assets, as well as a minority stake in Tencent online retail service Yixun.

Davis Polk and Chinese firm Commerce & Finance are also involved in JD.com’s proposed IPO, advising the underwriters BofA Merrill Lynch and UBS Securities.

To find out more about Tencent’s legal department and general counsel, read our recent in-house interview: Tencent GC: Chatty man.