20 July 2018

King & Wood Mallesons Advises Lime on Its US$300 Million Series C Financing, and Helps Build a New Unicorn Company

On July 3, 2018, King & Wood Mallesons (“KWM”) advised Neutron Holding, Inc. (“Lime”), a well-known bike sharing company in the U.S., on its successful completion of Series C financing.  The preferred equity financing raised approximately US$300 million.  Lime, which has only been established for one year, reached a notable milestone after this round of financing, with its valuation reached US$1.1 billion, and Lime has since become a new unicorn company.

Lime is the first and the only bike sharing company operating pedal bikes, e-bikes and e-scooters, and it is the largest dockless bike-sharing operator in the U.S.  Since its launch in June 2017, Lime has developed rapidly.  Lime is currently serving over 90 markets in the U.S. and Europe, working with over 70 cities and partnering with over 20 campuses across the U.S., 60% of which has granted Lime the right of exclusive operation.

The lead investor of this round of financing was GV, and the other major investors include Alphabet, IVP, Atomico and Fidelity, etc.  Lime’s existing investors Andreessen Horowitz and Coatue Management also participated in the financing.  The new funds gives Lime the ability to expand its operations globally, develop new technologies and products for consumers and build out its infrastructure and team.

This transaction is a typical Silicon Valley venture capital financing transaction.  As the counsel to Lime, KWM led the design of the transaction structure, the design of the respective rights and obligations for Series C preferred shareholders, drafted all the documents in connection with this transaction, and negotiated respective terms and conditions on behalf of throughout the process.  KWM also assisted Lime in processing the HSR fillings.  KWM played a key role in facilitating and ensuring the timely closing of Lime’s Series C round of financing, leveraging its legal expertise and resources in both China and the U.S. within a short period of time.  The project was led by partner Rocky Lee and Yuji Sun, and the team including Alex Wang, Lynn Yang, Andrew Liu, Teddy Zhao and David Cui.

In this transaction, KWM acted as counsel to Lime, meanwhile Fenwick & West LLP acted as counsel to lead investor GV. At the same time, Cooley LLP was legal counsel to Andreessen Horowitz and Gunderson Dettmer Stough Franklin Villeneuve Franklin & Hachigian, LLP was legal counsel to Coatue Management.

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