Linklaters Zhao Sheng advises UBS AG to become the 51% shareholder of the first foreign-controlled securities company approved by the CSRC in China’s further opening-up

On 30 November 2018, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (the “CSRC”) released the news on its approval of the increase of shareholding of UBS AG in UBS Securities Co. Limited (“UBS Securities”) to 51%. This approval was granted to support the implementation of the overall plan to further open up the PRC securities industry introduced by the Central Committee of Communist Party of China and the PRC State Council. This is also the first CSRC approval for a foreign investor to become the controlling shareholder of a PRC securities company after the declaration of ‘Administrative Measures of Foreign Invested Securities Companies’, representing a milestone in the acceleration of opening-up process of the PRC financial market.

Linklaters Zhao Sheng acted as the sole legal counsel for UBS AG on its acquisition of 12.01% and 14% equity interests in UBS Securities, respectively held by China Guodian Capital Holdings Ltd. and COFCO Limited, and assisted in obtaining approval for the acquisition from the CSRC.

UBS Securities is the first fully licensed securities company with direct foreign investment in the PRC securities market. Linklaters Zhao Sheng has advised UBS AG on the initial establishment of UBS Securities, changes in shareholding and arrangements among shareholders.

This matter was led by Eric Liu, a corporate partner of Linklaters Zhao Sheng, and a merger & acquisition and financial regulatory specialist, who commented; “We are very honoured to represent UBS AG on the increase of shareholding in UBS Securities, making UBS Securities the first foreign-controlled securities company approved in the latest round of opening up in PRC financial market. This highlights leading experience of Linklaters Zhao Sheng in advising foreign companies on their investments into the financial institutions in the PRC. We will continue to support our clients and provide full and seamless legal services in the process of the continuous opening up of PRC financial market”.