David Chen


  • JD, Boston University, 2008
  • MA (International Relations), Boston University School of Law, 2008
  • LLM (Chinese Law), Tsinghua University Law School, 2008
  • BA (Business Economics, Sociology), University of California, Los Angeles, 2002


  • California, 2009
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • California Bar Association

David Chen


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David is an intellectual property transactions and data privacy counsel based in Ropes & Gray’s Shanghai office. His practice includes a broad range of intellectual property and general commercial matters, data protection and privacy, and IT. He advises global companies and private equity funds in mergers and acquisitions, foreign direct investments, and commercial transactions involving intellectual property assets. He focuses on licensing arrangements, joint ventures, partnerships, technology transfers, and R&D activities, and assisting clients in the evaluation, monetization, acquisition and disposal of IP assets. David also regularly advises clients on protecting their trademarks, patents, copyrights, trade secrets, and other intellectual property rights in China.

David regularly assists pharmaceutical, biotech, digital medicine, and medical device companies in their transactions encompassing the entire pharma, biologic, and medical device value chain, including on early-stage collaboration on drug discovery, in-licensing and out-licensing of drug candidates, CMO and CRO arrangements, supply and distribution, and promotion.

David also works with mobile apps, gaming, digital media, and data-driven companies on their transactions involving app, game, and content development and distribution and data sharing.

David has advised clients in the life science, mobile apps, gaming, digital medicine, chemical, education, consumer products, software, consumer electronics, auto, and telecommunications industries. He is a California native and has lived and practiced in China since 2009.


  • Advised a consortium of investors in a going-private transaction involving Shangpharma, one of the largest Chinese life sciences services providers.
  • Advised a consortium of investors in a going-private transaction involving Pactera, a leading Chinese software outsourcing service provider.
  • Advised one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies in negotiating the supply and distribution of drugs in China.
  • Advised a US biotech company on the in-licensing of certain drug assets for development and commercialization in China.
  • Advised on the establishment of a new biotech company to in-license and develop and commercialize certain drug assets in China.
  • Advised a children’s clothing brand on an exclusive license to a Chinese partner to operate retail stores in China.
  • Advised on the acquisition of a leading Chinese English language learning company.
  • Advised a global chemical fiber manufacturer on a USD1.3 billion greenfield investment project to design, build and construct a chemical fiber plant in Shanghai.
  • Advised a global industrial machinery manufacturer in structuring and negotiating several joint-ventures with several Chinese companies and a Japanese company, including conducting IP due diligence, drafting and negotiating confidentiality agreements and IP licenses, and designing and developing IP and document security policies and procedures.
  • Advised a global licensor of audio technology in negotiations with Chinese licensees, on patent exhaustion and anti-trust issues, and technology transfer to facilitate R&D activities in China.
  • Advised a global mobile devices manufacturer on import and export of encryption products, and conducting analyses of 56 patents in relation to the potential in-licensing of wireless network technology from a Chinese technology company. 


  • "Technology Transfer in China: Guidance for Businesses," China IPR SME Helpdesk
  • "Guide to Protecting Your Trade Secrets in China," China IPR SME Helpdesk
  • "Guide to Copyrights in China," China IPR SME Helpdesk
  • "Guide to IPR Protection in China for the Creative Industries," China IPR SME Helpdesk
  • "Managing IP Risk When Off-shoring Technology to China," International Outsourcing Law Guide, Global Business Magazine (March 2011)
  • "Interior Designs Protected as Copyrightable Works in China," IP Newsletter (October 2010), Hogan Lovells International LLP; also in Intellectual Property Forum, No. 83 J. IP Society of AU and NZ (December 2010)
  • "The Innovative Leap Forward: What Indigenous Innovation Means and What Foreign Businesses Can Expect," IAM Magazine
  • "Trade Secrets - Not to be Forgotten," IPR Newsletter (Winter 2009/10), China-Britain Business Council 


  • Webinar, "IPR Protection in China for European SMEs in Clean Technology Industries" (September 29, 2011)Webinar, "IPR Protection in China for EU SMEs: Focus on Creative Industries" (May 31, 2011)
  • Presenter, "Protect your Ideas, Product and Brand: Use Your Intellectual Property Rights," Dutch Design Workspace in Shanghai (September 7, 2011)
  • Presenter, "How to Conduct an IP Audit," FINCHI Innovation Center in Shanghai (September 8, 2011)
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