Hong Kong SFC Imposes HK$27 mln Fine for Sponsor Due Diligence Failures
Published 18 Jun, 2019
Please sign in to view members only features
Julia is the founding partner of Charltons, an internationally recognised Hong Kong-based boutique corporate finance law firm established in 1998. Headquartered in Hong Kong, Charltons has representative offices in Beijing and Shanghai. Charltons is one of the few Hong Kong law firms with an office presence in Yangon, Myanmar. Julia was admitted as a solicitor in England & Wales in 1985 and has practised as a solicitor in Hong Kong since 1987. She is an experienced practitioner in the field of corporate finance, including mergers and acquisitions, private equity investment, securities, derivatives, funds restructuring and regulatory issues. Julia has extensive experience of working with PRC clients and is a Mandarin speaker.
Charltons initiated and coordinated a major project involving over 20 law firms, 40 investment banks and two 'Big Four' accounting firms to produce the Sponsor Due Diligence Guidelines, first published in September 2013, updated in 2016 and currently being updated for a 2018 edition.
Julia was a long-standing member of the Listing Committee of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong from 2012 to 2018. She is currently a member of the Takeovers Panel and the Takeovers Appeals Panel of the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission, a member of the Investigation Panel A of the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants, a senior fellow of the Hong Kong Securities Institute, and a member of the Company Law Committee of the Hong Kong Law Society. She is the current President of International Women’s Forum Hong Kong and is a Chairperson of the Eurocham Financial Services Business Council. Julia has been named a Hong Kong American Chamber of Commerce / South China Morning Post Woman of Influence.
Julia has founded and maintains two charitable organisations. The Asia Education Foundation provides scholarship funds to improve the lives of talented and hardworking, yet underprivileged students, by providing them with scholarship funds to be put towards university education. AEF is currently focused on China, a country where not all outstanding students can afford to attend university. The second charity, The Asia Environmental Foundation, aims to increase public awareness about environmental protection and conservation by providing funding to organise, plan, formulate, promote and implement programmes, activities or schemes for the purpose of environmental protection and conservation, and carries out disaster relief and recovery work.
Charltons is a boutique Hong Kong corporate finance law firm with branch offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Yangon, Myanmar. The firm's practice covers capital markets, M&A, regulatory and securities work, natural resources law, corporate and commercial, private equity and funds, corporate restructuring and offshore and China funds. Charltons, as a boutique law firm, has currently around twenty professionals within the firm complemented by a dedicated support team. The firm values team spirit and encourages active participation and day-to-day communication we sharing the experience and insights and the free flow of information and know-how.
Charltons is committed to retain female talent in the legal profession. This commitment was recognised at the 2012, 2013 and 2017 Euromoney Legal Media Group’s Asia Women in Business Law Awards.
Charltons has a track record of over 17 years representing major multinational clients on complex cross border transactions as well as domestic transactions. The firm is experienced in advising local and international companies, controlling shareholders, sponsors and underwriters on initial public offerings on both the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited and the GEM market. Charltons is also well recognised for its work advising companies on the legal requirements and implications of their capital raising on listing and we provide ongoing advice to listed companies regarding their compliance with continuing obligations under the Hong Kong Listing Rules.
In recent years, Charltons has earned a reputation for the focused advice provided to both listed and non-listed mineral companies with global operations. Charltons advises on Hong Kong natural resources law and our natural resource practice has grown on the strength of China’s demand for capital and overseas acquisitions in the mineral sector. The firm has extensive experience in assisting junior and mid-cap mineral companies raising capital in Hong Kong and China. The firm has participated in dozens of cross border M&A transactions in the mineral sector, often with a lead coordinating role, and has been involved in mineral investment projects in Myanmar.
The firm advises on Hong Kong M&A law and cross-border M&A transactions, including public takeovers, corporate restructurings and joint ventures. Charltons frequently acts as lead counsel coordinating teams of lawyers in overseas jurisdictions to achieve practical and integrated solutions for our clients and has particular experience in bridging the cultural divide that can exist between Chinese and Western counterparts in complex cross-border M&A transactions.
Charltons has considerable experience advising on the formation and management of offshore, Hong Kong and China investment funds. The firm works with clients to design and develop creative and flexible structures that maximise fund raising opportunities under the prevailing legal and regulatory regimes in Hong Kong, PRC and other relevant jurisdictions.
In September 2013, Charltons initiated and coordinated a major project involving over 20 law firms, 50 investment banks and two ‘big 4’ accounting firms to produce the 720+ page Sponsor Due Diligence Guidelines ((WWW.DUEDILIGENCEGUIDELINES.COM)). The Guidelines are being updated in 2018 and are available online for in English and Chinese.
Charltons has a substantial pro bono practice establishing and advising Hong Kong based charities and foundations. The firm is strongly committed to the concept that it has the responsibility to give back to the community through the provision of pro-bono work to those in need. Over the years, Charltons has focused on providing free legal services to charitable organisations as well as participating in their ongoing management and fundraising events from time to time.
One way Charltons incorporates pro bono work into its suite of legal services is by partnering with clients with their own social and charitable initiatives on a no fee basis. Partnering with clients in this manner means all those involved can draw on one another’s unique skills, experience and ideas.
Charltons has a strong track record of direct involvement in charitable work. The firm’s lawyers cooperated with individuals and organisations and has had the satisfaction of seeing those initiatives grow to achieve their charitable goals. Charltons assisted in the formation of Asia Education Foundation Limited, Asia Environmental Foundation Limited, Village People Project Limited and Society for Children’s Welfare Limited and we provide ongoing secretarial services to charities. Charltons has been involved with a number of environmental initiatives including the production of the Green Office Guidelines for SMEs.
Charltons was awarded 'Boutique Firm of the Year' by Asian Legal Business for the years 2002, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016, and was awarded ‘Boutique Transactional Law Firm of the Year’ in 2017.
Charltons was named Hong Kong’s top Independent Law Firm in the Euromoney Legal Media Asia Women in Business Law Awards 2012 and 2013, and has been named Hong Kong’s Best National Firm for Work-Life Balance in 2017.
Charltons was awarded Corporate Finance Law Firm of the Year in Hong Kong’ by Corporate INTL Magazine Global Awards 2014.
Charltons was awarded “Equity Market Deal of the Year” 2011 by Asian Legal Business for advising on the listing of AIA Group Ltd. on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong.
Published 18 Jun, 2019
Published 17 Jun, 2019
Published 10 Jun, 2019
Published 07 May, 2019
Published 12 Apr, 2019