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Amarchand Delhi partners Pankaj Agarwal, Karia to spearhead new Ahmedabad office ahead of sched

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Amarchand Mangaldas has launched its Ahmedabad practice, inaugurating its Prahladnagar office today, relocating corporate partner Pankaj Agarwal full-time and Delhi litigation head Tejas Karia to start a dispute resolution practice part-time.

The office opening is nearly two months ahead of schedule, with Legally India first having reported in February that Amarchand had opened in Chennai and would open offices in Ahmedabad by June as part of its aggressive 2017 expansion roadmap. Amarchand is understood to aim for an office in Pune by 2013.

Karia, who began his career with practicing in Gujarat for three years and has been at the firm for eight years now, told Legally India that he would divide his time between Delhi and Ahmedabad.

“We already had an office there before, and are having a new start. We are focusing on the corporate side, and litigation of course comes along with it. We expect a seminal growth in Gujarat, and an amazing opportunity to service clients here,” he said, adding that Amarchand already enjoyed a large client base in Gujarat.

The office: An Amarchand workplaceThe office: An Amarchand workplace Karia said he would facilitate the firm’s re-entry to his home-ground, having been born and brought up in Gujarat. He focuses on international and domestic commercial arbitrations, corporate litigations, information technology and real estate disputes, securities laws and general corporate advisory work.

Agarwal told Legally India that the previous Ahmedabad office five years ago was a pure litigation practice and he was enthusiastic about growing a full service firm in the state.

Agarwal has been with Amarchand for six years after a stint at J Sagar Associates (JSA) in 2006 and Luthra & Luthra between 2004 to 2005. He specialises in M&A, private equity, joint ventures, financing, and corporate advisory with special focus on real estate and private equity transactions.

He said in a press release that Gujarat lacked a “structured full-service corporate legal advisory firm” a niche into which Amarchand would aim to fit, buttressed by the rapid economic growth in the state.

The Ahmedabad office currently has six to seven qualified lawyers, said the press release, and would aim to grow to up to nine lawyers by the end of the first year of its operations, but Karia added that there was no specific recruitment plan for the office at present.

Amarchand now has eight offices and 555 lawyers, including 59 partners, across India, spanning New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Chennai.

Photo by Kirti Poddar

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1
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Like +4 Object -2 AAA 24 Apr 12, 15:05
The dragon is in the air now !!
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2
Like +7 Object -1 Lol 24 Apr 12, 15:07  interesting
A picture of Khandvi! Really LI!! :)
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3
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Like +6 Object -4 AMSAS watcher 24 Apr 12, 15:20
well with the Adani portfolio now in the bag, a pre-ponement was inevitable
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3.1
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Like +3 Object -3 The Observer 24 Apr 12, 15:58
Hahahahahahahaha. Good one.
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3.2
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Like +4 Object -3 anon 24 Apr 12, 16:46
No wonder, Adani's son is/will be Cyril's son-in-law :)
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3.2.1
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Like +3 Object -0 The Observer 25 Apr 12, 02:36
Subtlety my friend... subtlety...
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4
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Like +2 Object -1 BLR 24 Apr 12, 16:09
Khandvi!!! HAHAHA! It's like a home coming....Gujju Shroff's return to Amdavad :)
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5
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Like +1 Object -1 Anonymous 24 Apr 12, 17:05
Jokes aside, this is a good move. Gujarat has had very high industrial growth and therefore there is a solid potential client base (many of which are already AM's clients). Existing law firms there are nothing to write home about. Singhi & Co. watch out (just kidding)!!
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5.1
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Like +0 Object -0 skeptical 24 Apr 12, 17:30
The questions, is will AMSS make the same mistakes it made with Kolkata and Hyderabad, essentially setting up back offices for their Delhi and Mumbai operations since they made zero inroads into local clientele. The Ahmedabad market is not the same as Mumbai and the AMSS model of high rates and associate heaviness may face challenges
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5.1.1
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Like +0 Object -0 Anonymous 25 Apr 12, 16:01
@ skeptical, I agree but do not forget the success story in Bangalore. It is all about developing expertise in an office. However, think the mistake AM has made that they have shifted Delhi office partners while most of Gujarat clients are serviced out of Mumbai. Hope this will not lead to reinvention of the proverbial wheel.
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Like +0 Object -0 singhi 24 Apr 12, 19:58
Singhi & Co has good competitor now....
Welcome AMSS,,, to GUJ LAND
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Like +0 Object -0 napster 24 Apr 12, 23:13
A growing city like Ahmedabad has enough work to keep both AMSS and Singhi busy. No need to fight over clients. Although it will be interesting to see how it affects the work culture of other smaller family run law firms in Gujarat. Will freshers be treated better? Increase in salary for the bright ones?

And LI, Khandvi? Really? :D

I wish other national firms also come to Ahmedabad. Increase in competition will benefit fresh graduates and clients both.
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7.1
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Like +1 Object -0 The Observer 25 Apr 12, 02:35
@napster

There already is a national law firm in Ahemadabad. Don't forget - Wadia Ghandy has a strong Ahemadabad practice and presence as well.
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Like +1 Object -0 nostalgic 25 Apr 12, 14:57
no one may remember but AMSS used to have an Ahemdabad office before in the early 2000s.
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Like +1 Object -0 confused 25 Apr 12, 16:59
Is that a picture of an ACTUAL 'Amarchand workplace'? why, pray, is the desk tilting?

And that red and white...Oh my goodness, how tacky. Insert here that adage about money and taste.
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9.1
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Like +0 Object -0 DW 25 Apr 12, 19:39
Quoting confused:
Is that a picture of an ACTUAL 'Amarchand workplace'? why, pray, is the desk tilting?

And that red and white...Oh my goodness, how tacky. Insert here that adage about money and taste.


You are a girl, right? I am sure no guy would be interested in colour of the desk.
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9.1.1
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Like +0 Object -0 anon 25 Apr 12, 20:09
Quoting DW:
Quoting confused:
Is that a picture of an ACTUAL 'Amarchand workplace'? why, pray, is the desk tilting?

And that red and white...Oh my goodness, how tacky. Insert here that adage about money and taste.


You are a girl, right? I am sure no guy would be interested in colour of the desk.



Hahaha
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10
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Like +0 Object -0 Anon 25 Apr 12, 18:38
KARIA as a local will have an impact . Especially in litigation. But the other fello will not. He is a delhi boy who does not even speak the language. Though administratively delhi may develop it there is no doubt Cyril and his Mumbai team will have to sustain it . And once his daughter gets married and settles down she can sustain. The others are irrelevant.
They will have to figure out the fee levels which are very low. And can destroy their Mumbai rates. Not sure how smart the move really is unless they prove they can make money. Why did they shut down their office first time ? Has anything changed ?
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Like +2 Object -1 @Anon 25 Apr 12, 21:19
Leave poor Cyril's daughter alone. She still has a year more before she graduates from GLC, as well as her Solicitors exam. And it's not like she'll be running the Gujarat office as soon as she graduates.
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Like +1 Object -1 Anon 25 Apr 12, 18:41
The adani account is enough to sustain it provided they can work at Mumbai rates. Not otherwise. Cyrils daughter will have to be rainmaker ! Khandvi dhokla et al
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Like +0 Object -1 Anon 26 Apr 12, 08:04
Karias fly in fly out model is like a foreign firm! As a Gujarat based lawyer I don't think it's sustainable long term. If the long term model is Aggarwal who is not a Gujarati , amss will meet the same fate as before. Not very smart if the target is Gujarat clients Singhi is not losing any sleep !
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