TAO LAN is a partner in Sidley’s Mergers & Acquisitions practice and is based in the firm’s Beijing office.
Tao has advised a large number of multinational corporations in connection with their M&A activities in or involving China. His inbound practice covers a wide range of industrial sectors. In recent years, Tao’s practice has been increasingly focused on acting for Chinese companies on their outbound transactions.
Tao has been deeply involved as one of the key lawyers in advising the Chinese companies in some of the most significant outbound transactions in the oil and gas, mining, energy and infrastructure and financial services sectors in recent years. These transactions involve the acquisition of both private and public companies overseas that hold assets in South America, Africa, Central Asia and Southeast Asia.
Prior to joining Sidley, Tao was a partner at another prominent U.S. law firm and was also a partner at a leading Chinese law firm in Beijing. Tao is fluent in English and Mandarin.
Tao’s significant experience includes representing*:
- GE on the sale of its global home appliances business to Haier for $5.6 billion (including the previously proposed sale by GE of the same business to Electrolux which failed to close for antitrust reasons).
- An international PE fund on its investment into an offshore vehicle that in directly holds over 100 geothermal heating projects in China through Sino-foreign joint ventures in China.
- Chinese companies on multiple transactions involving participating the financing rounds of Uber by acquiring equity interests of Uber.
- A consortium of China Minmetals on its acquisition, through the Hong Kong listed arm of China Minmetals, of the Lasbambas Project from Glencore for over $7 billion.
- ICBC on its acquisition of 60% ownership of the London-based, global commodities trading business of Standard Bank for $680 million, which is the first of the type by Chinese financial institutions.
- ICBC on its acquisition of 20% of the shares of Bank SinoPac, a Taiwan bank, for approximately US$600 million, by way of subscription for new shares to be issued by way of private placement. This is the first acquisition of Taiwan bank by a mainland bank, which led to the Taiwan legislative change to the effect of loosening up the investment by mainland banks into Taiwan financial institutions.
- FL Partners and Sunseeker in connection with FL Partner’s sale of 91% of the Sunseeker shares to Wanda for approximately US$463 million. Sunseeker is one of the most famous luxury yacht brands in the world.
- A Chinese company on its large-scale integrated bauxite-alumina project in Guinea.
- CNPC’s joint acquisition with Kazakh state oil company Kazmunaigas to of JSC Mangistaumunaigas (MMG) for AUS$3.3 billion.
- CNPCI on its proposed acquisition of Verenex (a TSE listed company with oil and gas interests in Libya). The deal contemplates acquisition of 100% of the shares of Venex by way of takeover offer.
- CNOOC on its joint bid with Sinopec to acquire from Marathon a 20% participating interest in Block 32 in Angola.
- A Chinese company on its bid for acquisition of a European machine tool manufacturer with operations in eight jurisdictions.
- CNPC on the development of the Central Asia gas pipeline that starts at the border of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and ends in China.
- A Chinese export credit agency in connection with providing political insurance coverage to lenders in the Kazakhstan-China Crude Oil Pipeline project.
*includes matters worked on prior to joining Sidley.