China Bridge & Honigman Strategic Collaboration Expands Service, Enhances Chinese Business Development

Dual focus to attract investment to SE Michigan region

Oct 20, 2010, 08:00 ET from China Bridge LLC

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Oct. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Detroit-based business law firm Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP (Honigman), and Ann Arbor-based China Bridge LLC, an international business consulting firm, today announced a collaborative business alliance that enhances the scope and depth of services for international business clients of both firms.  At the same time, their partnership will leverage and focus on enhancing efforts to attract new investment to the region.  

"We are delighted to announce this exciting partnership between our firms as it combines and leverages skill sets in international legal and business development that will give our clients the important edge they need -- whether they're doing business in China or the U.S.," said Robert B. Weiss, Partner and Chair; Commercial Law, Bankruptcy and Reorganization Department., Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP.

The alliance combines the legal depth, professional experience and business knowledge of both organizations; allowing them to provide clients with practical market entry information, step-by-step business planning, assistance with legal issues and international transactions, as well as other assistance needed to ensure success for Chinese firms seeking to enter the U.S., while also assisting U.S. businesses that are investing or expanding in China.  

Economic Growth in SE Michigan Region is a Key Objective

An equally important objective is to generate economic growth through foreign investment in the Southeast Michigan region.  Toward that end, China Bridge and Honigman will dedicate their efforts to encouraging Chinese businesses to expand in the U. S. and in particular, Michigan and the Detroit area.

"There is a lot of interest on the part of Chinese companies to establish operations in the U.S., especially in the automotive sector," said C. Peter Theut, President and Chief Executive Officer of China Bridge.  "There is also broad recognition of the considerable automotive engineering, design and other talent in this area, and we intend to leverage the region's assets in a way that attracts and facilitates Chinese investment in the U. S."

The combined capabilities of China Bridge and Honigman will help connect the two cultures, provide business knowledge of operations in both countries and provide clients with experienced counsel and direction on legal matters.  

Honigman Strength, Experience & Global Presence + China Bridge Expertise =     A Winning Combination

Honigman has a wide variety of experience in representing manufacturing companies and other commercial entities in complex commercial transactions both in the U. S. and cross border.   Weiss has been the firm's liaison partner with General Motors for more than 25 years and has assisted numerous Tier I and Tier II companies in the automotive industry.  

"Honigman's very strong international team combined with the considerable U.S. resources and in-country relationships of China Bridge, creates a  formidable organization with synergies and capabilities of significant benefit to clients, as well as the various entities involved in economic development and job creation in the region," Theut said.

Both Honigman and China Bridge have significant experience working with a range of U.S., Chinese and other international businesses.

The Honigman team recently represented a Chinese buyer of two operating divisions from a major U. S. Tier I supplier, encompassing operations in ten other countries, including Mexico, the U.K., Poland, India and China.  This constituted one of the largest acquisitions of a U.S. company by a China-based entity.

"We're delighted to have played a part in consummating this transaction for our client and we anticipate rising interest in similar transactions on the part of multi-national firms in the automotive and manufacturing sectors," Weiss said.  "In our experience, the insights and support that China Bridge brings to such transactions is essential to all parties' understanding and mutual success."  

In addition, Honigman has represented U.S. sellers in acquisitions by China-based companies.  Honigman has more than 60 years of experience in business law and can assist companies with numerous cross-border legal issues, including mergers and acquisitions, joint venture agreements, business immigration, financing, tax incentives, intellectual property protection, bankruptcy and reorganization.  

China Bridge's capabilities are based on a solid foundation of experience and success over many years.  Theut is a noted attorney and has more than 45 years of international business experience.  He has concentrated on China and U. S. cross-border business for the past 20 years.  Jerome Hill, China Bridge Partner, is also an attorney and serves as Senior Vice President.  Hill brings more than 20 years of experience working in China, is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and is especially well-versed in China/U. S. business and cultural matters.  Ms. Jennifer Feng-Smith, also a China Bridge Partner, is a native of China; speaks Mandarin, Taiwanese and English, assists the firm with business development and contract negotiations.  Ray Weidenfeller is a successful Grand Rapids businessman who owns and operates a number of manufacturing plants in China and Japan.  Weidenfeller is fluent in Japanese and is the Manager of the China Bridge office in the Grand Rapids area.

The China Bridge team of consultants and its service provider network assists in developing business plans and identifying strategic partners for labor, sales, development and marketing initiatives.  In addition to its strong contacts and government relations expertise in China and the U.S., the China Bridge team has many years of experience working directly with Chinese businesses and is well-versed in all aspects of Chinese culture.

About Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP

Honigman is a business law firm based in Michigan with an international practice.  Headquartered in Detroit with offices in Lansing, Bloomfield Hills, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo, the firm has attorneys practicing in more than 40 different areas of concentration. Honigman is a leading business law firm based in Michigan with an international practice.  Headquartered in Detroit with offices in Lansing, Oakland County, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo, the firm has attorneys practicing in more than 40 different areas of concentration.  Honigman's highly-credentialed attorneys and staff, along with its customer-service focus, provide clients in a wide variety of industries timely and cost-effective counsel.

About China Bridge

China Bridge is a strategic business growth and development company headquartered in Ann Arbor, Mich., and a subsidiary of Bridges International Network.  China Bridge is focused on helping clients bridge the cultural, business development and operational challenges that confront competitors in the global marketplace.  China Bridge works with U.S. companies currently doing business in China or with a strategic interest in expanding into the country, as well as with Chinese companies investing in or otherwise entering the U.S. markets.

SOURCE China Bridge LLC