Linklaters advises China Aoyuan Group on the successful restructuring of its US$7.3bn offshore debt

Linklaters advises China Aoyuan Group Limited (Aoyuan) on the successful restructuring of its approximately US$7.3bn offshore debt. Aoyuan is a leading commercial and residential property developer listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, with operations spanning the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and four major regions in mainland China. 

The restructuring, involving a variety of notes and offshore debts with diverse structures, was implemented through an innovative dual and parallel scheme approach. Upon receiving the support from the creditors and following the sanction of the China Aoyuan Schemes and the Add Hero Schemes by the courts of Hong Kong SAR, the Cayman Islands, and the British Virgin Islands, the restructuring effective date occurred on 20 March 2024. This offshore debt restructuring will improve Aoyuan’s balance sheet, alleviate its debt pressure, and help restore its capital market reputation and investor confidence. 
The Linklaters cross-practice, cross-jurisdictional team assisted Aoyuan to resolve legal challenges in the restructuring in an efficient and innovative manner, leading to the successful offshore debt restructuring.

The Linklaters team, consisting of over 70 members across Hong Kong SAR, Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore, London and New York offices, was led by Asia Managing Partner William Liu, restructuring & Insolvency partners Andrew Payne and Christopher Hunker, litigation, arbitration & investigation partner Denise Fung, capital markets partner Taiki Ki, and banking partner Maggie Ng, supported by counsel Christian Felton, Bernard Ng, Shan Jiang, Diantha Ho and Mark Dawson, as well as solicitors Kenneth Kong, Wendy Ding, Shuopeng Yin (Senior US Associate), Elio Cunico and Vivien Li.

Linklaters’ Asia Managing Partner William Liu commented:

“The transaction has showcased our unique and world-class capabilities across restructuring & insolvency, capital markets, global loans, corporate compliance and litigation, arbitration & investigations. As part of the restructuring, we also advised Aoyuan on the implementation of an interim standstill which helped to rebuild trust with creditors and the resumption of trading of its equity stock, and we successfully defended Aoyuan in multiple proceedings including a challenge of the scheme itself.”