Hall Of Fame

Corporate and M&A in Sri Lanka

D. L. & F. De Saram

The corporate and M&A offering at D. L. & F. De Saram has impressive capabilities in handling complex high-value and high-profile transactions, often spanning multiple jurisdictions. Managing partner Savantha De Saram heads up the team alongside Aloka Nandasena, who is well-regarded for her ‘astute understanding of the law, industry and regulatory trends’. Hansi AbayaratneInshira Hanifa and associate Ushara Ratnayake are standout names in the practice, as is consultant counsel Ramesh Perera.

Practice head(s):

Savantha De Saram; Aloka Nandasena

Other key lawyers:

Hansi Abayaratne; Inshira Hanifa; Ushura Ratnayake; Ramesh Perera


‘Good quality and delivery.’

‘D.L. & F. De Saram focuses on providing bespoke and innovative solutions to the commercial needs of their clients.’

”The firm has an extremely competent legal team, and has developed a reputation for providing punctual and cutting-edge legal advice.’

‘Aloka Nandasena has an astute understanding of the law, industry and regulatory trends, which makes her advice well-rounded and relevant. She has always been extremely responsive, solution-oriented and has the highest regard for the timelines involved in any transaction she is involved in.’

Key clients

Bharti Airtel Limited

CG Capital Partners Global Pte. Ltd

ODF Pte. Ltd


Soundmouse Limited

Hg Capital

Kanrich Finance Limited

D P Logistics (Private) Limited

Wilbur Ellis Holdings, Inc.

Sojitz Corporation

GlaxoSmithKline plc

MullenLowe (Private) Limited

Rentokil Initial, UK

Aman Group

Hemas Pharmaceuticals (Private) Limited

Fortis Healthcare International Pte Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Bharti Airtel Limited on the transfer of a 100% stake in its local subsidiary Airtel Lanka (Private) Limited to Dialog Axiata, in consideration of being issued shares of Dialog.
  • Advising CG Capital Partners Global Pte. Ltd on the proposed acquisition of Culture Financial Holdings Ltd of Cayman Islands from TPG.
  • Advised ODF Pte. Ltd on the setting up of a duty-free mall in the Colombo International Financial Centre within the area of Colombo Port City Special Economic Zone, being one of the first projects of its kind within the CPC SEZ.

F. J. & G. De Saram

F. J. & G. De Saram‘s team is well regarded for its strength in advising on a wide range of corporate and commercial law matters. Ayomi Aluwihare has a strong track record in handling the gamut of corporate and commercial work, and Anjali Fernando is particularly experienced in assisting with joint ventures and projects involving the mining, hospitality and leisure sectors. Buwaneka Basnayake regularly acts for local clients in this arena. M&A and employment expert Shehara Varia, data protection specialist Shanaka Gunasekara and Himali Mudadeniya are also key names to note.

Practice head(s):

Ayomi Aluwihare; Shehara Varia; Anjali Fernando; Himali Mudadeniya; Buwaneka Basnayake; Shanaka Gunasekara


‘Thinks outside the box, and always willing to assist to make the deal a success.’

‘Shehara Varia has strong attention to detail and is meticulous in her work.’

‘The team has a very strong understanding of local law and regulatory requirements. Capital markets is a particular strength.’

‘Ayomi Aluwihare and Buwaneka Basnayake have a very strong understanding of local law and regulatory requirements, particularly in the area of capital markets.’

‘Their availability, promptness in response and innovative solutions put F. J. & G. De Saram ahead of other firms. They have a strong team which possesses an in-depth knowledge in capital markets which allows them to provide better solutions and recommendations which enable transition closures.’

‘Shanaka Gunasekara provides an exceptional service in delivering legal assessments. His pragmatic approach in addressing any legal concern has made out lives much easier.’

‘Buwaneka has been our go-to person for all corporate transactions and opinions. His knowledge and application of the law is exceptional, and he is able to provide legally sound, workable, business-friendly solutions whenever we have hit a snag in any transaction. Buwaneka is also completely reliable on agreed deadlines.’

Key clients

Asia Development Bank

Reliance Retail Ventures Limited

Colombo Stock Exchange

Dialog Axiata PLC

Hela Clothing Group of Companies

Eversheds (UK)


DLA Piper (Singapore)

Pearson Lanka (Private) Limited

Jun He

TMI Associates

The Colombo Port City Economic Commission

ING Hubs Sri Lanka

Sunshine Holdings PLC

Melsta Technologies(Pvt)Ltd

Unilever Sri Lanka Limited

Ekaterra Ceylon (Private) Limited

EY GBS (India) LLP

Jetwing Hotels Ltd

Work highlights

  • Assisted a client with identifying, designing and developing a policy plan and strategy for the Colombo Port City to develop a leading economic zone both within the region and globally.
  • Advised a company on the acquisition of a solar power sector entity.
  • Advised the client on the set up of nature trails in Sri Lanka via a legal memorandum.

Julius & Creasy

Corporate law specialists Amila Fernando and Anandhiy Gunawardhana co-head the practice at Julius & Creasy. The team has a particularly strong reputation for advising on the gamut of corporate and M&A matters, in both domestic and international contexts. The group's workload includes assisting with the regulatory and due diligence aspects of key transactions, fundraising matters, and agreements. The department is also noted for its expertise in handling transactions involving insurance and reinsurance companies. Shane Silva is well versed in advising on corporate restructurings. Diluka Rodrigo is another key name to note.

Practice head(s):

Amila Fernando; Anandhiy Gunawardhana

Other key lawyers:

Diluka Rodrigo; Shane Silva

Key clients

Hamblin Watsa Investment Counsel Ltd

Curtin University

Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC

Sika Lanka (Private) Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Hamblin Watsa Investment Counsel Ltd on its investment in John Keells Holdings PLC by way of a private placement.
  • Advised Curtin University on a possible rebranding of its services in Sri Lanka via the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology.
  • Advised the Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC on a multi-million debenture issuance.

Tiruchelvam Associates

The ‘precise and professional’ corporate and M&A team at Tiruchelvam Associates is well known for its strength in handling prominent, high-value commercial agreements, often multi-jurisdictional in nature. The group is also well versed in advising on joint venture agreements, restructurings and investments, large-scale project development matters, and share sales and purchases. At the practice’s helm are corporate and real estate specialist Asanka AbeysekeraLaila Nasry, a key contact for commercial transactions, and Nirosha Peiris.

Practice head(s):

Asanka Abeysekera; Laila Nasry; Nirosha Peiris

Other key lawyers:

Adheeba Ilyas


‘The team from Tiruchelvam Associates have always conducted themselves in a very professional manner.’

‘Nirosha Peiris has been available for any advice we may need. Her professionalism has been excellent.’

‘The team has shown their extensive knowledge in company law and regulations and ability to deliver quality services.’

‘Professional, timely and attentive.’

‘Asanka Abeyasekera has had excellent knowledge of our organization from its inception. Laila Nasry is highly professional.’

‘The team is extremely knowledgeable but they will still do their research and release the most accurate information only.’

‘Tiruchelvam Associates provides high-quality legal services at reasonable fees.’

‘The team were very knowledgeable and explained the process and timeline we needed to follow very articulately. Overall, it is a very professional practice who we were at ease working with from the other side of the world.’

Key clients

Galadari Hotels (Lanka) PLC

Labpath Solutions (Private) Limited

Tourism Industry Skills Council

Helios Ventures

Sarvodaya Group

Global Payments Asia-Pacific Limited/ Global Payments Inc.

Novo Nordisk A/S

Galadari Brothers LLC

Heineken Lanka Limited

Cisco Systems Management B.V.


Applexus Technologies Inc.

Dahnay Logistics Private Limited

Fujiwara Co. Ltd

Fujisun (Pvt) Ltd


Japan Gateway (Private) Limited

Liaison office of Mitsui & Co., Ltd.|in Colombo

Medecins Sans Frontieres (Msf)|South Asia (Guarantee) Limited

RWB Chartered Accountants, UK

Care Station

A H International Lanka (Pvt) Ltd

Thirugnanam Mohan

Business Enterprise and Employment Support for Women in South Asia Network Limited

Work highlights

  • Assisted Labpath Solutions (Private) Limited with the importation and distribution of a medical device, including the drafting of the distribution and sub-distribution agreements.
  • Advised the Tourism Industry Skills Council on the Sri Lanka Skills Expo 2023.
  • Advised Galadari Hotels (Lanka) PLC on all corporate legal and governance matters regarding a proposed project with a multinational hospitality entity.


The practice at Varners has a strong reputation for its experience in assisting such clients as the Colombo Port City Economic Commission with a broad range of corporate and commercial matters, including large-scale transactions. The client base spans a range of sectors, including construction, hospitality, energy, and shipping. Key areas of work for the group include the restructuring of corporate entities, M&A mandates, due diligence, takeovers, and large-scale project finance matters at both domestic and international level. The vastly experienced Raj Selvaskandan and Mahinda Haradasa are the practice leads. Senior associate Krishanth Rajasooriyar is a key name.

Practice head(s):

Raj Selvaskandan; Mahinda Haradasa

Other key lawyers:

Krishanth Rajasooriyar


‘Prompt responses and attention to detail.’

‘Always provides feedback in a prompt manner.’

‘Varners provides a very professional and a complete legal service when it comes to M&A. They also go the extra mile to provide additional advice on negotiations with their prior experience and knowledge of the optimal structure and strategies. This has been extremely helpful to us.’

‘Raj Selvaskandan is noteworthy for his experience, knowledge, negotiation skills, attention to detail and commitment.’

‘Krishanth Rajasooriya shows great knowledge, thoroughness and commitment.’

Key clients

BCD Travels



LAUGFS Holdings Limited


Sino Lanka Hotels

Colombo Port City Economic Commission

Bank of China

Heritage Partners

Heritage Partners‘ corporate and commercial practice has particular strengths in advising on the acquisition of high-value assets, restructuring loans and businesses, and joint ventures. Cross-jurisdictional work is a prominent area of instruction for the group, which acts for clients in a range of sectors including education, technology, hospitality, and mining. Practice head Arittha R. Wikramanayake is a highly regarded practitioner in the corporate arena. Savini Tissera has noteworthy expertise in transactional matters.

Practice head(s):

Arittha R. Wikramanayake

Other key lawyers:

Savini Tissera


‘A team of commercial solution providers who use their knowledge of different asset classes in a diligent, timely and succinct way.’

‘Wide experience and local, as well as international, knowledge.’

‘Their industry-specific knowledge and expertise is useful.’

Key clients

Colombo Stock Exchange

CIC Holdings PLC

JAT Holdings PLC

Diesel and Motor Engineering PLC

MAS Capital (Private) Limited

Janashakthi Limited

BOV Capital PTE LTD.

nVentures Growth Fund PTE LTD.

Bluestone Capital (Private) Limited

Lankan Angel Network

Ideal Automobile (Private) Limited

The Kandy Hotels 1938 PLC

Work highlights

  • Advising Janashakthi Limited on the proposed sale and divestiture of a 33% stake in First Capital Holdings PLC to People’s Leasing and Finance PLC for LKR 4.9bn.
  • Advised a client on the sale of a 25% stake in a company for LKR3.4bn.
  • Advised MAS Capital (Private) Limited on its acquisition of assets of Bam Knitting (Private) Limited via a joint venture.

Nithya Partners

The practice at Nithya Partners is well known for advising clients from the banking, financial services and consumer goods sectors, among others, on the full array of corporate work. Regulatory matters, corporate restructurings and transfers of ownership are prominent in the team's workload. The group's corporate expertise also dovetails with its strength in assisting clients with shareholders' rights issues, IPOs, and acquisitions of shares. Naomal Goonewardena heads up the cohort alongside M&A expert Nirusha Ratnatunga.

Practice head(s):

Naomal Goonewardena; Nirusha Ratnatunga


‘Naomal Goonewardena has a strong dual legal and accounting background.’

‘A professional and knowledgeable team.’

‘Their exceptional commercial knowledge gives Nithya Partners an edge over other firms.’

‘They are a strong team of people who possess an in-depth knowledge in capital markets, which allows them to provide better solutions and recommendations to close transactions.’

‘An evident in-depth knowledge of commercial and financial aspects of capital markets.’

‘Nithya Partners’ team is very practical in giving solutions to the business community. They are technically sound and specialised.’

‘Naomal Goonewardena has thorough knowledge and competency. He is one of the most reasonable lawyers, plus he has a sound background in finance and taxation work.’

Key clients

Diesel & Motor Engineering Company PLC

CT CLSA Holdings (Private) Limited

New Anthoney’s Farms (Private) Limited

Sunshine Holdings PLC

Ironwood Investments (Private) Limited


LB Finance PLC

UB Finance PLC

Work highlights

  • Assisted DFCC Bank PLC with a rights issuance valued at LKR6bn.
  • Assisted Bartleet Capital (Private) Limited and Bartleet Transcapital Limited with an amalgamation.
  • Advised investment manager CT CLSA Holdings Limited on its acquisition of Guardian Acuity Asset Management (Private) Limited, another licensed investment manager.

Sudath Perera Associates

Sudath Perera Associates‘knowledgeable, proactive and responsive’ corporate and M&A team has particular strength in handling significant mergers and acquisitions. Additionally, the cohort advises on large-scale corporate restructurings and reorganisations and joint venture agreements, often involving multiple jurisdictions. The ‘consummate professional’ Dushyantha Perera leads the practice, a key member of which is Hafsa Ifthikar, who is particularly experienced handling compliance and regulatory work.

Practice head(s):

Dushyantha Perera

Other key lawyers:

Hafsa Ifthikar


‘They are problem-solvers.’

‘Dushyantha Perera is a consummate professional – he has, time and time again, demonstrated his legal knowledge and commercial awareness. He identifies issues quickly and presents solutions promptly.’

Key clients


Chevron Lubricants Lanka PLC

Toyota Lanka (Pvt) Ltd

Fonterra Brands Lanka (Private) Limited

Unifeeder FZCO

Nippon Paints Sri Lanka


Samsung India Electronics Private Limited

JK Apparel Ltd

Takeda Pharmaceuticals

Work highlights

  • Advised Direct Source Seafood USA, as Sri Lankan legal counsel, on its strategic partnership with Taprobane Seafoods Sri Lanka for the production, marketing and sale of Sri Lankan seafood in the US.
  • Advised JK Apparel Manufacturing Ltd on a corporate restructuring and asset divestiture exercise relating to its various apparel manufacturing and export operations in Sri Lanka.
  • Advised Lankalia (Pvt) Ltd on its acquisition of a 80% stake in Peacock Beach Hotel & Spa, in a transaction valued at over LKR1.25bn.


LegalBase‘s ‘sharp and proactive’ corporate and M&A team is led by the ‘outstanding’ Ali Tyebkhan. The practice is well versed in handling instructions from national and international clients across a wide range of sectors, as well as advising on the day-to-day contractual and due diligence side of corporate and commercial work. Legal director Natasha Burhan is a key figure in the group.

Practice head(s):

Ali Tyebkhan

Other key lawyers:

Natasha Burhan


‘LegalBase is excellent. The team has deep domain knowledge and expertise.’

‘They are particularly strong and effective in handling complex and sophisticated matters. This is coupled with practicality and their commercial, forward-thinking solutions to any issues we have to deal with.’

‘The team is formed of highly skilled professionals with deep experience in the multiple practice areas we require.’

Key clients

Edible Arrangements

M Advocates


The Smarty Train Limited

Marvel Limited

Avasam Limited

GMG Middle East Services

Role Models

Seamlessly Limited


K10 Apprenticeships Limited

Broker Back Office Limited

Eswaran Brothers

Mithril Asset Management


George Petch International UK

W Food Group Pty Ltd


Ebusiness Guru Limited

Takeaway Packaging Supplies Ltd

Bake N More Factory LLC

Sea House Food Stuff LLC

Work highlights

  • Providing ongoing assistance to ADG in connection with a number of corporate and transactional matters.
  • Assisting GMG with a range of corporate, commercial and M&A matters.
  • Advising K10 on a wide range of day-to-day corporate and commercial work, including contractual arrangements.