New Perspectives on Cross-border M&A in China | Duke Kunshan University

New Perspectives on Cross-border M&A in China

April 27, 2015

KUNSHAN, April 26, 2015 – Senior business leaders and scholars from around the world convened April 25 and 26 at Duke Kunshan University in Kunshan, China, for the Duke International Finance Forum. With a focus on cross-border mergers and acquisitions the forum featured business, finance, law and government leaders in conversation regarding how to successfully make strategic investments into and out of China, and how current success factors might change in the era of the “new normal.” The Duke International Finance Forum was jointly organized by Duke Kunshan University, Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and Duke Law School.

The first day of the conference provided a forum for scholars and researchers to discuss the latest academic research on private equity, international investment, corporate finance and the Chinese economy. Faculty from Duke University, Tsinghua University and other institutions led the academic sessions, including “cross-border leveraged buyouts,” “state capitalism versus private enterprise,” and “modern portfolio theory with illiquid assets.”

Keynote speeches by David Rubenstein, co-founder and co-CEO, of The Carlyle Group; Dhanin Chearavanont, chairman, C.P. Group; and Gao Xiqing, professor, School of Law, Tsinghua University and former vice chairman and president, China Investment Corporation, framed the second day of the forum. Leaders from China Investment Corporation, Tencent, Fosun, Shenzhen Capital Group, BYD, MOFCOM and international law firms participated in discussions of the regulatory environment, the “consumption economy” and the role of innovation in technology and finance.

“As China is entering a phase of fundamental change, we have created a high-level platform for practitioners and academics to jointly discuss and debate China’s new role in the international financial markets,” said Liu Jingnan, chancellor of Duke Kunshan University. “The forum underscored the extent to which China has become interconnected in the world of global business in recent years. From an academic perspective, the forum provided unique insights to inspire new and deeper research and collaboration in the future.”

“Fuqua has been observing and studying the maturation of China’s corporate landscape closely,” said David Robinson, J. Rex Fuqua distinguished professor of international management at Duke’s Fuqua School or Business. “With an increasing number of high profile cross-border merger and acquisition activities involving Chinese companies, it is important to foster greater understanding and shared best practices in this arena.”

John M. de Figueiredo, Edward and Ellen Marie Schwarzman Professor of Law at Duke Law School, added “Outbound investment will likely accelerate in the coming years, and is already challenging the current regulatory environment, especially within China. While multinational corporations have traditionally targeted Chinese enterprises, today we heard from highly regarded mergers and acquisitions practitioners and legal experts on how Chinese companies are defining strategy within the current framework and how an evolving regulatory framework is supporting the needs for their global business strategy and expansion.”

 “Duke Kunshan University is quickly becoming a recognized center of global scholarship and research excellence in China and the forum is a wonderful example of the support DKU is receiving from all levels of academia, business and regulators. We appreciate and are inspired by the level of support our partners have given us,” said DKU Executive Vice Chancellor Mary Brown Bullock.

Opening Keynote: David Rubenstein

Panel #1: When Chinese Money Invests Abroad: Legal, Regulatory, Cultural & Political Challenges

Mid-day Keynote: Dhanin Chearavanont

Panel #2: China’s Growing Middle Class: Investment opportunities generated by the “consumption economy”

Panel #3 The Role of Innovation: How innovation in technology and finance can accelerate outbound and inbound investment in China

Afternoon Keynote: Guo Guangchang

Closing Keynote: Gao Xiqing

About the Organizers of the Duke International Financial Forum

Duke Kunshan University (DKU)

Duke Kunshan University (DKU) is a partnership of Duke University and Wuhan University to create a world-class liberal arts and research university offering a range of academic programs for students from China and throughout the world. A non-profit, joint-venture institution, DKU was granted accreditation approval by China’s Ministry of Education in September 2013 and welcomed its inaugural class of students in August 2014. Current and planned academic programs and research centers are designed to address China’s and the world’s most pressing challenges. The DKU Conference Center hosts executive education and other non-degree programs for professionals business and other fields. DKU is governed by an independent Board of Trustees and operates under a set of guiding principles that are consistent with those of world-leading universities. A state-of-the art campus covers a 200-acre area in Kunshan's Yangcheng Lake Science and Technology Park. Located in close proximity to both Shanghai and Suzhou, and connected to both by high-speed rail, the city of Kunshan is a center for business and high-tech research and manufacturing, and has one of the fastest growing economies in China.

The Fuqua School of Business

In its relatively short history, The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, has established itself as one of the leading business schools in the world. As the #1 ranked U.S. business school by Bloomberg Businessweek in 2014, its faculty has been ranked #1 from 2008-2012. Fuqua offers world-class degree programs: Daytime MBA, Cross Continent MBA, Global Executive MBA, Weekend Executive MBA, Master of Management Studies and PhD program, with 12 concentrations and 2 certificates including one in Health Sector Management. To address tomorrow's business challenges, Fuqua has become the world's first legitimately global business school, based in the economic and cultural hubs of world regions: East Asia, India, Middle East, Russia and the CIS, Europe and South America.

Fuqua is deeply committed to East Asia. With its MMS:DKU program delivered in partnership with Duke Kunshan University, a regional office space in downtown Shanghai and an alumni presence throughout the region, Fuqua is an active and engaged member of this fast-growing and dynamic region.

Duke Law School

Duke Law School is an ambitious, forward-thinking and innovative institution whose mission is to prepare students for responsible and productive lives in the legal profession. As a community of scholars, the Law School also provides leadership at the national and international levels in efforts to improve the law and legal institutions through teaching, research and other forms of public service.

At Duke Law School, students and faculty experience academic rigor in an interdisciplinary environment where creativity and innovation rule. Bold, strategic expansions in faculty, clinics, interdisciplinary centers, law journals, public interest opportunities and high-tech facilities ensure that the Law School stays on the cutting edge of legal scholarship. The Duke Blueprint to LEAD is a powerful set of principles for leadership growth that informs the development of committed, ethical lawyers who are well-equipped for the 21st century.

2015 Duke International Finance Forum Partners & Sponsors: 


  • Tsinghua University School of Law; 
  • University of International Business and Economics School of Law;
  • The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants;
  • American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai;

Platinum Sponsor: 

  • Haiwen & Partners;

Gold Sponsors:

  • Samsung Asset Management Co., Ltd.;
  • Shenzhen Capital Group Co., Ltd.; 
  • AEGON-Industrial Fund Management; 
  • CITIC Securities Co., Ltd. (CITICS);