Z. Julie Gao
Ms. Z. Julie Gao is widely recognized as one of Asia’s preeminent corporate attorneys. Ms. Gao has advised companies in mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, private placements, regulatory compliance, strategic investments, offerings of equity, convertible notes and debt securities, MBOs, PIPE transactions, anti-takeover measures, going-private transactions and crisis management. Ms. Gao has advised recognized private equity funds in their investment transactions. She is a member of Skadden’s Policy Committee, the firm’s highest governing body, and is also head of the firm’s China practice.

Bio

Ms. Gao has been recognized by various prestigious legal publications. The American Lawyer named Ms. Gao as one of the 45 under 45 outstanding women lawyers, and The Asian Lawyer, one of its sister publications, honored her as an All-Star lawyer in Telecommunications, Media and Technology and as Asia M&A Lawyer of the Year. She also repeatedly has been selected for inclusion in Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business.

Ms. Gao has advised on the IPOs and/or other capital markets transactions of nearly 50 China-based companies in a variety of industries, including the following:

  • Internet and Internet Infrastructure: 58.com, Autohome, Baidu, Bitauto, Cheetah Mobile, ChinaCache, China Online Education, Ctrip.com, Dangdang, JD.com, Jumei, Leju, Meitu, Momo, Perfect World, Renren, Sina, Tuniu, Vipshop, Weibo, Yirendai, Youku, YY and Zhaopin.
  • Technology and Media: AutoNavi, AirMedia, NQ Mobile, RDA Microelectronics, Sina, Weibo, Bona Film (representing the underwriters) and Phoenix New Media (representing the underwriters).
  • Consumer, Retail and Other Services: Ctrip, Country Style Cooking, Dangdang, E-House, JD.com, Jumei, Jupai, Homeinns, Noah, Tuniu, Vipshop, Yirendai, Zhaopin and ZTO Express.
  • Education: China Online Education, New Oriental Education, TAL Education, Tarena and China Distance Education (representing the underwriters).
  • Health Care: ShangPharma and China Cord Blood Corporation (representing the proposed underwriters).
  • Renewable Energy: Daqo New Energy Corp, Gushan Environmental Energy Ltd. (representing the underwriters) and China Hydroelectric Corporation (representing the proposed underwriters).

Ms. Gao’s representative M&A and private equity experience includes the following:

  • Didi Chuxing in its acquisition of Uber China and in its merger with Kuaidi Taxi;
  • Ctrip.com International, Ltd. in its acquisition of a significant stake in Qunar from Qunar’s controlling shareholder Baidu, acquisition of a significant stake in eLong from eLong’s controlling shareholder Expedia, and strategic partnership with and issuance of convertible bonds to Priceline, valued at over $10 billion in total;
  • 58.com Inc. and other purchasers in their acquisition of Ganji.com, and 58.com in its PIPE issuance of shares and convertible bonds to Tencent, valued at over $10 billion in total;
  • Dianping Holdings Ltd. in its strategic transaction with Meituan Corporation and the combined company Internet Plus Holdings’ subsequent financing, valued at over $18 billion in total;
  • Youku Tudou Inc. in its $5.6 billion change of control cash transaction with Alibaba, $1.1 billion merger with Tudou and $1.22 billion PIPE issuance of shares to Alibaba and Yunfeng Capital;
  • Baidu, Inc. in many transactions, including its investment in Uber and its acquisition of Nuomi;
  • JD.com in a series of transactions with Tencent valued at $5.2 billion, including JD.com’s acquisition of e-commerce businesses and assets from Tencent;
  • LeEco Holdings Ltd. in its pending $2 billion cash acquisition of Vizio;
  • special committee of the board of directors of Perfect World Co., Ltd. and Qihoo 360 Technology Co. Ltd. in Perfect World’s $1.1 billion and Qihoo’s $9.3 billion going-private transactions, respectively;
  • BTG Hotels and the buyer consortium in their $1.1 billion taking-private transaction involving Homeinns Group;
  • Bitauto Holdings Limited in its $1.55 billion equity issuance to JD.com and Tencent, its strategic transaction with AutoTrader, and its subsidiary Yixin Capital’s $500 million equity and strategic transactions with a consortium including Baidu, JD.com and Tencent;
  • SINA Corporation and Weibo Corporation in connection with the sale of certain Weibo shares to Alibaba;
  • UCWeb Inc., AdChina Ltd. and their respective shareholders in their trade sale transactions with Alibaba, valued at several billion dollars in total;
  • China Music Corporation in its merger with QQ Music, owned by Tencent Holdings Limited; Meilishuo in its merger with Mogujie;
  • CAR Inc. in its acquisition of Hertz China and issuance and sale of shares to Hertz Global;
  • private issuance and sale of equity interests by a number of companies, including Best Logistics, Dada, Internet Plus, Dianping, Fanli, Innolight, JD.com, Leju, TalkingData, Tarena, Tuniu, and 58Daojia, etc.;
  • the management of Bitauto, E-House, SINA, Tarena and Tuniu in their respective MBO transactions; and
  • recognized private equity funds, including Hillhouse Capital, Hony Capital, New Horizon Capital, SAIF Partners and Sequoia Capital China, in their investment and disposition transactions.

Ms. Gao practiced in the Los Angeles office of another major global law firm from 1998 to 2004. Prior to her law firm career, Ms. Gao served as an extern law clerk to the Hon. A. Wallace Tashima of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in 1998.

Credentials

Education

  • J.D., University of California, Los Angeles
  • M.A., University of Alabama
  • LL.B., Peking University

Admissions

  • California

Z. Julie Gao

Partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, Corporate
julie.gao@skadden.com