Private equity attorney Marcia Ellis has joined Ropes & Gray as a partner based in Hong Kong. Ellis joins from D. E. Shaw & Co., where she was its Hong Kong-based chief legal officer for all of Asia. In her former role, Ellis assisted the firm with making, restructuring and exiting investments throughout Asia, including a number of investments in China and India.
Ropes & Gray today announced that Marcia Ellis, a leading private equity lawyer, is joining the firm as a partner based in Hong Kong. Her arrival provides even greater service to corporate clients in Asia following the recent addition of Michael Nicklin as a finance partner in Hong Kong.
Ms. Ellis comes to Ropes & Gray from D. E. Shaw & Co., where she was its Hong Kong-based chief legal officer for all of Asia. In that role, Ms. Ellis assisted various D. E. Shaw group entities in making, restructuring and exiting investments throughout Asia, including a number of large-scale and highly structured investments in China and India. Ms. Ellis has practiced in Asia since 1996 with a particular focus on mergers and acquisitions and leveraged transactions.
Prior to joining D. E. Shaw, Ms. Ellis was a partner at Morrison & Foerster in Hong Kong, where she advised clients on matters including debt financing, private equity transactions and complex mergers and acquisitions. She counted Morgan Stanley Principal Investments, Avenue Capital and RREEF (the real estate investment management business of Deutsche Bank’s asset management division) among her clients.
“Marcia Ellis’s legal skills, keen business sense and extraordinary knowledge of China’s economy, culture and language give Ropes & Gray clients a remarkable advantage in China and throughout Asia,” said Alison Bomberg, a partner in the firm’s Hong Kong office.
Some of Ms. Ellis’s notable matters include representing:
· The lead investor in connection with the US$3.4 billion consolidation of Jiangsu Zhongneng and HKSE-listed GCL-Poly Energy. This transaction was named the Asian Legal Business China 2009 M&A Deal of the Year.
· The lead investor in Glorious Properties in relation to the pre-IPO restructuring of Glorious Properties and its subsequent US$1.28 billion Hong Kong IPO. This transaction was named the Asian Legal Business China 2009 Real Estate Deal of the Year.
· The preferred shareholder in the purchase of The Center, a premium office tower located in Shanghai, from a subsidiary of Hutchison Whampoa Group and the financing of such purchase. This transaction was named the Asian Legal Business China 2008 Real Estate Deal of the Year.
Ms. Ellis has lived for many years in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan and is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and written Chinese.
The 2008 edition of Chambers Global stated Ms. Ellis had a loyal client base that commended “her communication skills and commercial perspective,” adding that she is set apart by “her ability to analyze issues, especially in the Chinese market.” She was also ranked in the top tier in Chambers Asia 2008 for private equity as well as telecommunications and broadcasting.
Ropes & Gray has a broad client base that includes seven of the 10 largest global funds (based on Private Equity International’s The PEI 300, 2010) and is ranked third in the number of private equity deals by Dow Jones 2010: Private Equity Analyst.
The firm has handled recent high-profile transactions, including representing:
· TPG Capital on its investment in China Vogue Casual wear;
· Bain Capital on its US$489 million sale of Feixiang Chemicals;
· Bain Capital on its US$1.1 billion acquisition of Bellsystem24, the leading call center operator in Japan, in a transaction named “Technology, Media and Telecommunications Deal of the Year” by Asian Legal Business;
· TPG Capital on its US$3 billion acquisition of J.Crew Group, Inc. and its US$1.6 billion acquisition of Ontex N.V.;
· Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe on its US$2.1 billion sale of U.S. Oncology Inc. and its US$1.3 billion sale of AGA Medical Holdings Inc.;
· Liberty Global and its group of companies on seven successful high yield offerings in London since November 2009; and
· Berkshire Partners US$1.1 billion acquisition of Skillsoft plc.