US firm Debevoise & Plimpton has hired a new corporate partner to strengthen its transactional capabilities in Asia.

William Chua joins the firm from Sullivan & Cromwell where he had been partner for 13 years and previously led the firm’s Beijing office.

Michael Blair, presiding partner at Debevoise, said of the hire: "We are steadily building on our market-leading capabilities in the region. William brings us deep transactional experience in Asia combined with the cultural background and language abilities that our clients need."

The firm has built itself a leading private equity funds practice in the region and the new recruit intends to reinforce its growing strategic M&A practice in financial services and other sectors.

Dual-qualified in Hong Kong and New York, Chua advises on M&A deals throughout Asia, with experience extending across private equity and strategic deals including takeovers, leveraged buyouts, going private transactions, divestitures and spinoffs.

He is also active in finance and capital markets, including debt and borrower-focused acquisition and leveraged finance, and IPOs. Last year, Chua acted for underwriters such as Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Securities and Citigroup Global Markets on the $25 billion NYSE listing of Alibaba Group Holding, and then advised the same underwriters on Alibaba’s $8 billion corporate bond issue. He also acted for Li Ka-shing’s utility company Power Assets Holdings on its $3.6 billion Hong Kong IPO.

The global firm with New York roots now has 22 lawyers in Hong Kong, including five partners. Worldwide, it has 650 lawyers across eight offices, including Hong Kong and Shanghai.