Foreign Direct Investment

Why Cooley

A growing number of jurisdictions around the world have adopted new regulations on foreign investment. These rules vary significantly across jurisdictions and are constantly evolving. Some foreign investment regimes require a mandatory notification, whereas others rely on voluntary communications and the use of “call-in” powers. Governments are continuing to expand the range of sectors within scope, resulting in more transactions subject to regulatory scrutiny. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 has also accelerated this process, as governments have sought to introduce measures to protect national companies and critical assets from being the subject of potential foreign takeovers.

In light of this global trend, companies and investors are strongly advised to consider all potential foreign investment regimes at the inception of a transaction. Cooley’s foreign direct investment team routinely advises clients on potential foreign investment risks, developing strategies to mitigate risks. The team draws on the extensive experience of its leading global antitrust practice, which has developed strong relations with experienced local counsel and national regulators across the globe to provide truly global solutions to our clients. The team also collaborates closely with Cooley’s national security practice, which helps US and foreign companies navigate complex issues related to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).

Areas of Practice

The group advises clients in all stages of the transaction including:

  • Structuring transactions and deal planning
  • Negotiating contractual terms to mitigate risk exposure
  • Conducting detailed diligence and analysis of potential risks
  • Preparing relevant cross-border notifications
  • Engaging with relevant regulators to ensure timely filings and approvals
  • Assisting clients with any compliance requirements

Representative Matters

  • Notifying a national regulator in respect of the acquisition of a minority stake of a company active in a sensitive sector
  • Advising an international client on the global risks associated with the set-up of a joint venture with a major Asian investor in the artificial intelligence and pharmaceutical industry
  • Advising a multinational client on the foreign investment risks of a transaction involving a major online platform operator