John Hartley

John Hartley

Of Counsel, Banking

John Hartley advises on banking matters for clients throughout Asia. He has advised borrowers, lenders and alternative capital providers on the structuring, negotiation and documentation of a number of significant groundbreaking deals in the region. This has included handling all aspects of debt finance, including syndicated lendings, tax-driven structures, leveraged acquisitions, securitizations, real estate financings, project financings and capital markets transactions.


Mr. Hartley also has counseled on a number of high-profile restructurings. Additionally, he has structured, negotiated and handled the documentation of a number of limited recourse projects in Asia, many of which were market “firsts.”

He joined Skadden in 2018 from another global law firm, where he was a senior of counsel. Prior to that, Mr. Hartley was a partner at another global law firm where he served as Asia head of banking, capital markets and restructuring for many years. He is regularly recognized by leading legal directories including Chambers Global, Chambers Asia Pacific, The Legal 500 Asia Pacific and IFLR1000.

Mr. Hartley has represented clients throughout the region since the 1990s. His experience (including prior to joining Skadden) includes representing:

  • Baidu, Inc. in its US$2 billion syndicated term and revolving credit facilities in 2016, and its US$3 billion syndicated term loan and revolving credit facilities in 2021;
  • BeiGene, Ltd. in a US$120 million acquisition facility and an US$80 million working capital facility from China Minsheng Banking Corp., Ltd. Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone Branch, and its subsequent amendment and restatement;
  • Lufax Holding Co. Ltd. in its US$1.19 billion three-year syndicated facility (with an accordion of up to US$310 million) borrowed by a Hong Kong subsidiary of Lufax and guaranteed by Lufax, as well as other bilateral facilities of the company;
  • the chairman (and his vehicle) of SINA Corporation, in its US$2.6 billion going-private acquisition of SINA. The Skadden financing team acted for the borrower on the offshore aspects of the US$1.33 billion acquisition financing provided by a syndicate of PRC banks led by China Minsheng Banking Corp., Ltd., Shanghai Branch;
  • Group Limited in its US$2 billion syndicated term loan facility (with an incremental facility of US$500 million) in 2019; its US$3 billion syndicated term and revolving loan facilities (with an incremental facility of US$500 million) in 2020; and its US$1.5 billion syndicated term loan facility in 2021. The three syndicated facilities were all arranged by different bank groups;
  • a major Chinese social network in a US$100 million facility from an international investment bank;
  • UBS Securities Pte. Ltd. in the KRW360 billion mezzanine financing of The Carlyle Group’s US$1.93 billion cash buyout of South Korean security business ADT Korea from Tyco International Ltd.;
  • the mandated lead arrangers on a two-stage US$4 billion financing for the successful privatization of Hong Kong-listed and the repurchase of half of Yahoo’s 40% stake in Alibaba Group Holdings. This transaction was the largest and most complex offshore China holdco financing at the time and the first to a Chinese internet company. Mr. Hartley also advised on the subsequent US$8 billion financing to Alibaba Group Holding Limited;
  • Deutsche Bank AG, HSBC and UBS in a facility of up to £543 million supporting Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing (HKEx) in its US$2.16 billion bid for the London Metals Exchange. The acquisition was HKEx’s first overseas acquisition;
  • the lenders in a JPY165 billion (approximately US$2 billion) syndicated bank loan to eAccess Ltd., a Japanese internet service provider and parent of mobile data company eMobile Ltd. This transaction was the first in the Japanese market to combine a syndicated loan with a simultaneous high-yield bond;
  • the mandated lead arrangers in the provision of debt financing of approximately US$280 million to Latch Holding (Labuan) Limited, a company formed at the direction of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts to acquire Unisteel Technology Limited, a Singapore-listed maker of disk-drive components, for US$578 million;
  • SoftBank, a leading Japanese technology and investment company, in its acquisition of Vodafone’s Japanese telephony operations, Vodafone K.K., for JPY1.8 trillion, including all financing aspects. This was the largest leveraged buyout in Asia at the time. Mr. Hartley also advised SoftBank on its landmark refinancing with a securitization package of JPY1.45 trillion, which was the world’s largest whole-business securitization; and
  • the underwriters in the US$12 billion acquisition financing loan for Pacific Century CyberWorks Limited to finance its takeover of Cable & Wireless HKT Limited.



  • Legal Practice Course, College of Law, Lancaster Gate, 1987
  • LL.B., University of Leeds, 1986


  • England & Wales
  • Hong Kong

John Hartley