Warburg Pincus China head David Li quits to form own company

David Li, the top China executive at Warburg Pincus LLC, has left the firm after 14 years to form his own company.

Li, who was based in Beijing and joined the private equity firm in 2002, will be replaced by Julian Cheng and Frank Wei, who will become co-heads of China, the company said in a statement Friday in response to a Bloomberg inquiry.

His departure comes less than two years after the firm made its largest single China investment, purchasing a stake in China Huarong Asset Management Co. in August 2014 for almost $700 million, people with knowledge of the matter said at the time. Li led the deal and became a director of the state-owned asset manager afterward.

Warburg Pincus has announced at least four deals in China since the Huarong stake purchase, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Before joining the private-equity firm, Li was an investment banker at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley. Li didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

Cheng, a Hong Kong-based managing director who specializes in technology, Internet and media investments in China, joined Warburg Pincus in 2000. Wei, who is based in Shanghai, started at the firm in 2002 and leads its China health-care and consumer investments.

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Bloomberg

Singapore Reporter/s

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.