Press Release

Morrison & Foerster Wins Two Asian Legal Business Hong Kong Law Awards

Marcia Ellis receives the Dealmaker of the Year award, and MoFo is recognized as the Deal Firm of the Year for 2018

10 Sep 2018

HONG KONG (September 10, 2018) – Morrison & Foerster, a leading global law firm, received two of the highest honors given at the recently held Macallan Asian Legal Business (ALB) Hong Kong Law Awards ceremony. Now in its 17th year, these prestigious awards pay tribute to the outstanding performance of private practitioners and in-house teams from Hong Kong and the region. Marcia Ellis, co-head of Morrison & Foerster’s Asia private equity practice and a member of the firm’s global board of directors, was named Dealmaker of the Year. Morrison & Foerster also received recognition as Deal Firm of the Year.

Ms. Ellis has worked on some of the most complex M&A and PE transactions in the region, including Alibaba’s acquisition of a stake in Ant Financial, Ant Financial’s US$14 billion Series C fundraising, and SoftBank’s US$4.4 billion investment in WeWork. In the past 12 months alone, she has advised clients on deals aggregating value significantly in excess of US$60 billion. Ms. Ellis is known for being “technically very strong, like an encyclopedia" and also "very personable and a good person to have next to you in negotiations,” according to Chambers 2018. In addition to her work with clients, Ms. Ellis plays a significant role in supporting female lawyers both within the firm and externally, providing vital support to women’s programs at MoFo in Asia and mentoring young lawyers at the firm as well as through the mentor program of The Women’s Foundation.

“I am honored to have been chosen as Dealmaker of the Year, and recognize that I would not have received this award without the support of the best M&A team in the market,” said Ms. Ellis. “I cannot say enough about the tremendous job that our team does in structuring and executing complex transactions for our very demanding clients.”

In addition to Ms. Ellis’s individual honor, Morrison & Foerster was named Deal Firm of the Year for its leading role in a number of the region’s most prominent deals, including those that Ms. Ellis worked on. MoFo’s China M&A practice combines senior PRC regulatory expertise with international deal execution capabilities, and includes a highly skilled team with significant PRC-related cross-border deal experience. Notably from the past year, MoFo’s Hong Kong M&A team also worked with the firm’s Singapore team to represent GLP Pte. Ltd. in its US$11.64 billion privatization, which was reported to be the largest-ever private equity buyout of an Asian company by enterprise value; and, most recently, the Hong Kong team advised Trusted Doctors (Xingren) in its strategic merger agreement with Tencent Doctorwork.

“We are honored to have been recognized by Asian Legal Business,” said Timothy Blakely, managing partner of MoFo’s Hong Kong office. “These awards come at a time when our Hong Kong office is celebrating its 35th anniversary, reaffirming the strength of the corporate practice we have built here and reinforcing our position as a go-to firm for the region’s largest deals. I am proud of the incredible legal talent in MoFo’s Hong Kong office and want to especially congratulate Marcia Ellis on her well-deserved recognition.”

Altogether, MoFo was shortlisted for eight ALB Hong Kong Law Awards, including:

  • Dealmaker of the Year: Marcia Ellis
  • Woman Lawyer of the Year: Marcia Ellis
  • Deal Firm of the Year
  • Investment Funds Law Firm of the Year
  • Technology, Media and Telecommunications Law Firm of the Year
  • M&A Deal of the Year (Premium): Alibaba’s acquisition of a stake in Ant Financial
  • M&A Deal of the Year (Premium): GLP’s privatisation
  • M&A Deal of the Year (Midsize): SoftBank’s investment in WeWork


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