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DVC’s War Stories Taken from the Trade Mark & Restructuring Front Lines: Pick your Battles

18 Sept 2018

At a thought leadership event entitled “War Stories Taken from the Trade Mark & Restructuring Front Lines: Pick your Battles”  held in concert with the HKCCA, a group of in-house and general counsel from a spectrum of different industries converged at the Bankers Club on the evening of 13th September.

After introductory remarks by Andrew Olsen, CEO of HKCCA, the evening got off to a brisk start when DVC’s Winnie Tam SC, JP began the first part of the talk which focussed on the fine line between good and bad trade marks and bilingual trademarks as well as the tension between well-known fashion marks and their Chinese names. In an entertaining review of recent case law including the Hugo Boss and the TWG cases, Winnie emphasised the importance of registration trumping all else in the context of trademarks.

William Wong SC dived into the War of Jurisdictions homing in on recent developments in jurisdictional issues in corporate restructuring which was followed by a talk on Board Fights and Wars of control over Listed Companies. This topic was also discussed in detail at the Book Launch for the 2nd edition of Company Law: Powers & Accountability.”

He discussed battles in the boardroom and the rise of shareholder disputes in Hong Kong. And with a slew of new cases emanating from the HK Companies Court, he delved into recent developments on the appointment of provisional liquidators and the ramping up of their powers over the course of the last year. This included a significant change in the law following the China Solar case  enhancing the powers of provisional liquidators enabling them to carry out restructuring where they had originally been appointed for asset preservation.

Look-Chan Ho wrapped up the session by taking the audience through 3 key topics which included how a restructuring is normally carried out, the use of provisional liquidators in HK, and the international issues that are affecting the Hong Kong panorama. He noted that Hong Kong has no corporate rescue legislation unlike Singapore, and the US which makes use of Chapter 11 proceedings. He additionally observed that in Hong Kong we have the Companies Ordinance scheme of arrangement based on English law which is beneficial because it is a flexible tool that can cater to all forms of restructuring.

The evening was capped off by a casual networking cocktail where DVC’s members were able to mingle with in-house and general counsel.