The international law firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy advised Haichang Holdings Ltd. (“Haichang”) in the approximately US$316 million global offering and initial public offering of its shares on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange – the first global offering by a theme park operator in Hong Kong.
Dalian based Haichang is a leading developer and operator of theme parks and ancillary commercial properties in China and is the largest marine theme park operator in China in terms of admission attendance in 2012. Haichang currently operates six marine theme parks in Dalian, Qingdao, Tianjin, Yantai, Wuhan and Chengdu with a focus on polar animals. As part of the corporate reorganization, Haichang will complete the acquisitions of two additional theme parks in Dalian and Chongqing (the “Additional Theme Parks”) by the end of 2014. Haichang’s marine theme parks and the Additional Theme Parks together hosted more than 9.4 million visitors in 2012, and was ranked the second largest theme park operator in China and one of the top ten theme park operators worldwide. Haichang will use part of the proceeds of the IPO on the development of the Shanghai Haichang Polar Ocean World and Sanya Haitang Bay Dream World.
BNP Paribas Securities (Asia) Limited and Merrill Lynch Far East Limited acted as the joint sponsors of this IPO.
Head of the Hong Kong law practice at Milbank, Dieter Yih, commented, “We have been associated with Haichang for a number of years and have helped them with previous fund-raisings. We are very pleased to have been able to witness the growth of Haichang and excited to have been involved in the IPO of the first ever theme park operator in Hong Kong. It is a milestone – for China, Hong Kong and our firm.”
Milbank acted as the Hong Kong and U.S. counsel to Haichang. The Hong Kong team, led by partner Dieter Yih, was assisted by Asian counsel Mandy Wong and associate Kate Lee. The U.S. team was led by partner Joshua M. Zimmerman with senior associate Jessica Zhou and associate Jason Frank.
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