Chinese Law Firm Establishes an Outpost in Los Angeles


Posted date: 10/22/2007
Chinese Law Firm Establishes an Outpost in Los Angeles

INTERNATIONAL: Alpha & Leader wants to better compete for trade business.


Chinese law firm Alpha & Leader has set up shop in Los Angeles.

The new outpost is a sign of the increasing amount of legal activity resulting from trade between China and the United States.

More than a dozen large American law firms have offices in China, including L.A.-based Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP and Latham & Watkins LLP. There are more than 150 foreign law firms with an office in China. And while far fewer Chinese law firms have come to the United States, Alpha & Leader is not the first to set up shop in America. For example, China’s King & Wood has had an office in San Francisco since 2001.

Alpha & Leader has itself had a presence, of sorts, in America since 2003 with an affiliated law firm called the USA China Law Group. But more recently, the firm decided to establish a full-fledged office to better compete for legal business related to Sino-American trade.

Malibu-based attorney Robert Allan will oversee Alpha & Leader’s efforts here, while maintaining his own separate practice.

Alpha & Leader will provide a bridge to firms and mid-sized businesses that want to do business in China, Allan said.

According to Sunny Lin, a China-based attorney with Alpha & Leader, it is the leading law firm when it comes to non-performing loan transactions, a primary vehicle for investing in China. Non-performing loans are those made by state-owned banks to state-owned companies, a way of business life in Beijing.

If a company wants to buy assets in China, the acquisition of those assets is typically accomplished by acquiring a non-performing loan portfolio, Lin said.
In addition to Allan, two other attorneys associated with the firm are based in the Los Angeles office.

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