STL and UC Berkeley Law Co-Host International Forum on Legal and Funding Issues for Successful Startups
As part of the 10th anniversary celebrations for Peking University’s School of Transnational Law (STL), a Sino-American Expert Forum on “Legal and Funding Issues for Successful Startups” was held in Shenzhen on Sunday December 2nd. The full-day program was organized by STL in partnership with University of California Berkeley Law School’s Berkeley Center for Law and Technology (BCLT). Speakers and panelists included world-leading academics, lawyers, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs.
The forum was officially held in the auditorium of Peking University HSBC Business School. Philip McConnaughay, Dean and Professor of STL, briefly reviewed the history of STL’s establishment and the progress which STL made during the past ten years. Wu Yundong, Chancellor of Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School and Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences, emphasized the importance of startups and extended his sincere welcome to foreign experts. Erwin Chemerinsky, Jesse H. Choper Distinguished Professor of Berkeley Law, spoke highly of the forum and the rich discussions that took place between Chinese and American experts and scholars.
The first session was on “Entity Formation and Early Financing” and was moderated by Adam Sterling, Executive Director of Berkeley Center for Law and Business. The session began with David Thomas, Vice President of Industry Research and Analysis of Biotechnology Innovation Organization delivering his lecture on the special issues in biotechnology. Subsequently, Lin Lin, Assistant Professor of Law and Finance of National University Singapore lectured on private equity and crowd-sourced funding in China and Asia. Lastly, Liu Fang, Partner of Broad & Bright, as an expert in Corporate law in China and the United States, provided the Chinese perspective on the matter.
Before proceeding to the second session, Lu Shan, the Deputy Director of the Shenzhen United Propert and Share Rights Exchange, gave a very interesting talk on venture capital. The second session was on “Regulatory and Trade Issues”. Mark Cohen, Senior Fellow and Director of Berkeley Center for Law and Technology, lectured from the perspective of patent protection and mentioned the recent trade dispute between China and the US.
Under the theme of “Advanced Financing”, the third session was moderated by STL Professor Sang Yop Kang. Adam Sterling, the executive director of the Berkeley Center for Law and Business, launched the discussion by providing a general overview of the issue. He was followed by Professor Kang who presented unique insights on corporate governance and control issues. Finally, Ling Tong, a lawyer with FangDa, closed the session by providing the Chinese perspective on the matter.
The fourth session was moderated by Robert Merges, the Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosata Professor of Law and Director of Berkeley Center for Law and Technology of Berkeley Law. Speakers in this session reflected on the varies means through which startups’ new ideas are protected. Li K, General Manager of Chinese Academy of Sciences Intellectual Property Investment Company, delved into the issue of IP investment. While Jeff Cao, Senior Researcher of Tencent Research Institute, and LI Binxin, Partner of Baker McKenzie/Fenxun complicated the discussion by providing varying Chinese perspectives. They affirmed the importance of innovation for startups and proposed constructive suggestions in fostering and protecting those ideas.
Subsequently, a very inspiring keynote speech on startups was delivered by Dong Shaoling, who is the CEO of RabbitPre and was named Forbes “Top 30 Under 30” in 2017.
Finally, the event ended after the fifth session on “Employee Issues” with inspiring talks by Robert Merges, the Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosata Professor of Law and Director of Berkeley Center for Law and Technology of Berkeley Law and Zhu Shaobin, Partner of Morgan Lewis, as they shared their experiences in human resource management.
With more than 1000 people from all over the world registering to attend, the Forum was designed to foster a rich and creative discussion on the rapidly evolving field of startups in Shenzhen and Greater Bay Area.
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