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Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Capital markets
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1
    • Yash Ashar - Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas
    • Sanjay Asher - Crawford Bayley & Co
    • Rajesh Begur - ARA Law
    • Sandip Bhagat - S&R Associates
    • Apurva Diwanji - Desai & Diwanji
    • Aliff Fazelbhoy - ALMT Legal
    • Prashant Gupta - Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co
    • Ravi Kulkarni - Khaitan & Co.
    • Manan Lahoty - Luthra & Luthra Law Offices
    • Prem Rajani - Rajani Associates
    • Mohit Saraf - Luthra & Luthra Law Offices
    • Cyril Shroff - Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas
    • Shardul Shroff - Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co
    • Shobhan Thakore - Talwar Thakore & Associates

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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AZB & Partners is ‘well-equipped to handle the full scope of domestic and international capital markets transactions’, advising a wide spectrum of clients on a mix of debt and equity offerings including IPOs, Masala bonds and non-convertible debentures and warrants. Recent highlights include advising issuer BSE on its high-value IPO, the first IPO listed by a stock exchange in India, and acting for a number of underwriters including Axis Capital, Citigroup, HDFC Bank and Morgan Stanley India on the IPO of RBL Bank. New Delhi-based Madhurima Mukherjee advises on initial and follow-on public offerings, debt issuances and institutional placements, and Mumbai-based Varoon Chandra has notable expertise in foreign currency convertible bonds. Endurance Technologies, Barclays and Everstone Capital are also key clients.

At Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, notable highlights included advising ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company on the INR61m IPO of I-Pru Life, the first IPO of an insurance company in India. The team also assisted India Grid Trust with the structuring and regulatory issues associated with its INR23m IPO, and advised ReNew Power Ventures on a high-yield bond structure. Key practitioners include Arjun Lall, who advises a range of private equity funds including Warburg Pincus, Sequoia Capital and One Equity Partners; Mumbai-based Gaurav Gupte, who handles domestic and international offerings made by Indian companies; and Gokul Rajan, who has notable expertise in matters spanning the US and Singapore. Yash Ashar is also a name to note.

J Sagar Associates’ ‘excellent’ capital markets practice covers the full spectrum of matters including initial and follow-on public offerings, rights issues, institutional placements and private placements of bonds. The team also advises stock brokers, mutual funds, underwriters and venture capital funds, among other clients, on the full scope of regulatory and statutory compliance issues, and on registrations with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). In a recent highlight, the team advised IRB Infrastructure on the formation and registration of the IRB InvIT Fund, India’s first infrastructure investment trust. The firm also acted as domestic legal counsel to a number of underwriters including Axis Capital, ICICI Securities and IIFL Holdings on the INR4bn IPO of Quess Corp. Dina Wadia, Vikram Raghani and Rohitashwa Prasad are the key names to note.

Khaitan & Co. has significant capabilities in equity, debt, derivatives and securitisation, and has recently advised on a broad spectrum of marquee transactions across all areas. Notable examples include advising Mahanagar Gas on its IPO with an aggregate value of INR10m, where Gail (India) and BG Asia Pacific were the selling shareholders; acting for Hindalco Industries on its qualified institutional placement of 176 million equity shares; and advising Music Broadcast on its INR5m IPO. The firm also retains a solid client base of lenders and investors, and recently advised International Finance Corporation (IFC) on its INR6k crore Maharaja bond programme, which is listed on the NSE in India. Sudhir Bassi and Nikhilesh Panchal, who has notable cross-border expertise, are the key names.

Luthra & Luthra Law Offices covers the full spectrum of domestic and international offerings, advising on a mix of IPOs, high-yield bonds, share buy-backs and rights offerings, among other matters. Clients include a mix of leading businesses, investment banks and private equity investors, and the firm has also built up a solid client base of underwriters and selling shareholders. In a recent highlight, the team acted for Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and ICICI Securities in a block trade of equity shares between Larsen & Toubro and ITC. Other work included advising a number of underwriters on the $285m IPO of Avenue Supermarts, and assisting Barclays, Citigroup, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse with the issue of senior notes totalling $500m in value. The department is jointly headed by Mohit Saraf and Manan Lahoty.

Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co has ‘a hands-on approach, a great attitude to problem solving’ and ‘excellent knowledge of the capital markets regulatory framework in India’. The team advises issuers and investment banks on the full gamut of debt and equity offerings, and has a strong track record in international matters, most notably in US-listed offerings made by Indian companies. Recent work includes advising the seller’s brokers on the offering of equity shares in NBCC (India), and acting for Yes Bank on its $761m qualified institutional placement of shares. On the debt offerings side, the team advised Zuari Cement on the issue of INR5m worth of masala bonds. Prashant Gupta heads the practice, and chairman Shardul Shroff is also a leading figure.

Talwar Thakore & Associates is adept at handling domestic and international offerings, and has a particular focus on structured high-yield transactions. The team has advised on a number of masala bond matters over the last year, in international capital markets and as private placements, and also retains a buoyant equity practice, advising clients including Morgan Stanley and Standard Chartered Bank. Work highlights included advising JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America Merrill Lynch, among others, as placement agents for masala bonds issued by ReNew Power Ventures, and acting for Fullerton India Credit Company on the issuance of senior secured notes of an aggregate amount of INR5bn. The practice is jointly headed by Kunal Thakore and Rahul Gulati. Sonali Mahapatra is the key figure in the debt capital markets space.

The ‘robust’ capital markets practice at ALMT Legal acts for a mix of corporates and banks, advising on disclosure and corporate governance matters along with transactional structuring, IPOs and follow-on offerings, buy-backs and takeovers of listed companies. Recent work included advising Canara Bank on the issue of INR11m worth of equity shares; acting as sole legal counsel for State Bank of India on the issue of Tier 1 bonds; and advising Apex Frozen Foods on its public issue of equity shares for the setting up of a new shrimp processing unit. Practice head S R Arun has substantial experience handling stock exchange and capital markets matters across India, and Rajat Bopaiah specialises in public offerings in India and abroad, advising various companies on international markets such as the AIM, LuxSE, Nasdaq and the Australian Stock Exchange.

Dhir & Dhir Associates provides ‘excellent’ advice to public and private companies on takeovers, public offerings, private placements and other SEBI-related issues, and also assists clients with restructuring, due diligence and corporate governance matters. The team is especially noted for its expertise in debt capital markets and the buyback of securities, and has solid experience in compliance matters such as continuous disclosure, listing criteria and regulatory filings. The firm recently advised National Aluminium Company on its INR3000 crore buyback of equity shares, and acted for Manganese Ore India, an ore mining company in Nagpur, on its high-value buyback of 21% of its equity shares. The team also handled major buybacks for clients including Bharat Electronics, Gujarat Ambuja Exports and NHPC, a category-I enterprise of the government of India. The practice is headed by Girish Rawat, who specialises in banking, finance and capital markets matters.

Juris Corp advises on IPOs, rights issues, block trades and institutional placements, alongside domestic and international bond issues. The team also has notable expertise in real estate investment trusts, as well as asset-backed securities and alternative investment fund activities. Practice head Shan Bottlewalla has substantial cross-border expertise, advising foreign banks and entities on various financial services and products in India.

At Rajani Associates, recent highlights include advising Stifel Nicolaus Europe as sole book runner and lead manager on Sintex Industries’ issue of foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCBs), where the total value was $110m. Other work includes acting for UPL on the issue of two equity shares to the global depository receipts (GDR) holders of Advanta, and advising Websol Energy System on its issue of FCCBs as part of its restructuring. Prem Rajani heads the department, and Sangeeta Lakhi is the other key practitioner. Asian Oilfield Services is also a client.

Trilegal’s client roster includes a range of prominent Indian and international companies along with underwriters, foreign institutional investors, venture capital firms and asset management companies, and the team advises on the full range of offerings including IPOs, FCCBs and GDRs. Recent work includes advising a number of banks and securities companies on Motherson Sumi Systems’ qualified institutional placement, and acting for Citigroup as underwriter on a $127m block trade of equity shares by GS Mace Holdings. Bhakta Patnaik heads the practice, and has extensive experience in structured finance transactions and debt issuances. Srinivas Parthasarathy is the other key figure.

Corporate and transactional specialist ARA Law acts for a number of Fortune 500 companies, and also advises a range of investment funds on issues associated with investment transactions. The team recently assisted a client with various issues surrounding a potential IPO; acted for an asset management company on the structuring of an investment scheme, and the review and modification of a portfolio-management services agreement; and advised the same client on its potential provision of indemnity to a mutual fund scheme. Managing partner Rajesh Begur heads the private equity and venture capital practice, and has substantial expertise across types of debt and equity offerings.

Bharucha & Partners has solid capabilities across the full gamut of debt and equity capital markets matters, advising on IPOs, share issuances, private placements and debentures. The team acts primarily for issuers, but is increasingly building up a strong client base of banks and underwriters; key clients on the issuer side include Intellect Design Arena, Snowman Logistics and Adlabs Entertainment, and Axis Bank is a notable name on the underwriter side. Recent work included advising Inga Capital Private and Investec Capital Services (India) on the high-value IPO of Bharat Road Network, a state highway developer and operator, and acting for Intellect Design Arena on its proposed rights issue. Alka Bharucha heads the department, and Vishnu Dutt is the other name to note.

Desai & Diwanji has strong local regulatory knowledge, and is well equipped to advise on the full spectrum of securitisation matters. The team retains a strong base of banking and underwriter clients, with RBS and JP Morgan key names. Apurva Diwanji is the leading figure, and has significant expertise in venture capital, start-ups and private equity transactions, domestically and at a cross-border level.

Finsec Law Advisors regularly advises clients on cross-border securities matters, and has substantial expertise in handling the regulatory issues governing Indian capital markets. In a recent highlight, the team advised the Financial Planning Standards Board India on various regulatory issues concerning the setting up of a self-regulatory organisation for mutual fund distributors, and regularly acts for the MCX Stock Exchange on regulatory and litigation matters arising from public shareholding, takeovers, stamp duty and corporation by-laws, as well as on fraud and anti-money laundering measures. Founding partner Sandeep Parekh has a strong breadth of securities law experience, focusing on securities and investment regulations and corporate governance, and Anil Choudhary acts for a number of corporate houses and investment banks on a range of capital markets transactions.

Gagrats counts a number of high-profile publicly listed companies as clients, and the team regularly advises on a vast range of IPOs, rights and preferential issues, qualified institutional placements and FCCBs, among other offerings. The firm recently acted as counsel to Godavari Biorefineries in proceedings before SEBI regarding an issue of shares to an unregistered trust, which was alleged to be a collective investment scheme, and advised Indian airline Jet Airways on compliance matters pertaining to SEBI insider trading regulations. The team also has strong expertise in exit structuring, and recently acted for the minority shareholders of Crest Premedia Solutions on its exit from Crest, a matter handled by way of a share buyback. Managing partner Rustam Gagrat is the key name to note.

MDP & Partners handles the full spectrum of capital markets offerings, its key areas of activity including IPOs, rights issuances, FCCBs and qualified institutional placements. The firm has a strong banking and underwriter client base, with key clients including Allahabad Bank, Punjab National Bank and Standard Chartered Bank. Notable names on the issuer side include Kalpataru and Life Insurance Corporation of India. Managing partner Nishit Dhruva heads the department.

Majmudar & Partners handles a mix of transactional, regulatory and advisory work, and regularly liaises with SEBI along with Indian stock exchanges and market intermediaries. Highlights included advising Utkarsh Global Holdings on the sale of its stake in Excel to Sumitomo Chemical, a matter involving complex Indian securities law elements. Managing partner Akil Hirani heads the team, where Rukshad Davar is also a name to note.

S&R Associates advises on the full spectrum of debt and equity offerings; key areas of expertise include IPOs and follow-on public offerings, debt and FCCB matters, REITS, rights issues and other business trust-related issues. Sandip Bhagat is the key name to note along with Jabarati Chandra.

Advaita Legal recently advised Bibby Financial Services on its proposed exit from a factoring business in India, a matter involving shareholder agreement reviews, and assisting Asiya Capital Investments Company with various regulatory issues. Atul Dua and Amit Mehta are the names to note.

Dave & Girish & Co is noted for its expertise in bond issuances, due diligence, private equity deals and public offerings. The group is regularly instructed by private sector banks, foreign banks and non-banking financial corporations, and maintains a solid reputation in agreement negotiations and document drafting. Girish Dave is the key practitioner.

Suhail Nathani is the key individual at Economic Laws Practice, which has substantial expertise in debt and equity offerings, rights issues and securities-related regulatory matters. The team is also notably strong on trade remedial matters, and regularly advises on market access and free trade agreements.

Kanga & Company Advocates and Solicitors acts for issuers in the pharmaceutical, engineering, construction and food and beverage sectors, among others, and also has a strong client base of securities brokers, banks and non-banking financial companies. The team recently acted for Bharat Wire Ropes on its $11m IPO, and also advised Advanced Enzyme Technologies on an IPO which raised approximately $64m. The practice is headed by Chetan Thakkar, who has significant equity expertise.

Nishith Desai Associates is recognised for its expertise in new and innovative deal structures, and retains a strong transactional and private equity practice. The firm regularly advises domestic and international clients on capital raising activities in the debt and equity space, and its key clients include Rohatyn Group, BlackRock and Flipkart. Nishith Desai heads the practice.

At P.H. Bathiya & Associates, highlights have included advising Shemaroo Entertainment on its IPO; acting for Suzlon Energy on its open offer for a 26% equity stake in its business; and assisting Zenotech Laboratories with its open offer to shareholders, triggered as a result of an indirect acquisition by Sun. The group also advises on debentures issues, open offers and rights issues. The team is headed by Pankaj Bathiya.

Wadia Ghandy & Co has a strong international base, providing securitisation expertise on the full gamut of debt and equity offerings. Ashish Ahuja is the name to note. Clients have included Hero Investments and Bahadur Chand Investments.

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India

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