Walker J. Wallace
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Walker J. Wallace is managing partner of O’Melveny’s Shanghai office and a leader of the firm’s China practice. He has extensive experience in international transactions and has worked with clients on a wide range of projects across Asia, from multi-nationals seeking to invest in China, to private equity funds buying assets in Southeast Asia and elsewhere.
Walker is especially sought after for his rich experience and success in helping clients negotiate the complexities of investing and structuring business operations in China. Over the years, this has included transactions spanning a wide range of industries, including consumer products, energy, healthcare, telecoms, real estate, software, media and entertainment and retail.
Before moving to Shanghai in 1997, Walker practiced in New York for several years. He previously served as legal advisor to The Board of Governors and as Chairman of the Legal Committee of The American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai. He has written extensively on issues of Chinese law and practice, including “Onshore Financial Investing in China” and “Enforcement on Defaulted Loans and Mortgages of Real Property under Chinese Law.”
Walker was named by Chambers Asia 2023 under the categories “China, Corporate/M&A” and “China, Private Equity: Buyouts (International Firms)” and by Chambers Global 2023 in “The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business” under the Corporate/M&A category for the China region. He is recognized by 2023 Asia-Pacific Legal 500 as a “Hall of Fame” lawyer for Corporate M&A, and Private Equity Lawyer in China. In the new 2022 IFLR1000 rankings, Walker received special recognition as a “Highly Regarded” in the Mergers and Acquisitions and Private Equity categories.
- Mandarin Chinese
Honors & Awards
- Recognized by Chambers Asia-Pacific for Corporate/M&A: China-based (International Firms) (2008-2023) & Private Equity: Buyouts & Venture Capital Investment (International Firms) (2008-2023)
- Recognized by Chambers Global 2020-2023 in the Corporate/M&A category for the China region
- Asia-Pacific Legal 500 (2021-2023): Hall of Fame lawyer for the categories of M&A and Private Equity in China
- Asia-Pacific Legal 500 (2008-2020): Leading Individual lawyer for the categories of M&A and Private Equity in China
- Recognized by IFLR1000 as a "Leading Lawyer" (2022) and "Highly Regarded" (2018-2022) in Mergers & Acquisitions and Private Equity
- New York
- Columbia University, J.D., 1995: Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar
- Williams College, B.A., 1990: cum laude
- Numerous M&A transactions involving Chinese assets, including sale of a leading Chinese Vitamin C producer, auction of a Chinese banking subsidiary by an international conglomerate, spin-offs by multinationals of Chinese divisions and purchase of automotive financial leasing company.
- Numerous joint ventures between US tech companies and Chinese State-owned enterprises involving satellites, networking hardware, and telephony
- Restructurings of distressed companies, including China-focused companies with failed variable interest entities
- Negotiating the form contract used for import of all Hollywood revenue-sharing films into China
- Extensive work with private equity and venture capital funds on investments, dispositions and restructurings in China, including investment and subsequent restructuring of a leading Chinese coal bed methane company, investment in the largest out-of-home advertising company and investment in a leading Chinese company operating for-profit universities
- Structuring and negotiating RMB-denominated investment by Chinese domestic funds into offshore companies
- Representing numerous companies to negotiate equity, mezzanine and debt financings in China
- Numerous real estate transactions in China, including financings, long-term development partnerships for greenfield projects, and the acquisition and disposal of commercial and residential buildings by international financial institutions in China
- Numerous transactions involving overseas investment by Chinese companies, including sale of US analog chip company to consortium of Chinese buyers and financing of Chinese iron sands project in Indonesia
- Formation of small loan companies and other alternative investment structures for investing in distressed assets in China and taking collateral interests
- Market entry strategy, licensing arrangements and financings for film & television, gaming and Internet companies in China, including formation of joint ventures for distribution, production and exhibition of film and television properties and negotiating licensing arrangements for gaming properties
- Inversions and financings of numerous Chinese domestic companies in preparation for offshore listing
- Market entry strategy, financings and joint ventures for new energy companies expanding to China
- Market entry strategy and investment by life sciences funds into Chinese drug discovery and medical device opportunities, including numerous financings of drug discovery companies that have subsequently gone public
- Purchase of non-performing loan portfolios from Chinese banks