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Amarchand to split in two firms on 1 April (but ET rumours of Bharucha-Shardul tie-up almost certainly false)

Split: Inevitable
Split: Inevitable

Amarchand Mangaldas Delhi and Mumbai regions, managed by brothers Shardul and Cyril Shroff respectively, have areed to split into two firms by 1 April 2015, confirmed three independent sources to Legally India, as first reported by the Economic Times today.

Cyril Shroff’s side of the firm, which includes the Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad offices, is currently planned to be called Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, according to an authoritative source close to Amarchand Mumbai. The Delhi region includes Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Gurgaon.

Legally India had reported on 22 December 2014 that Amarchand Delhi was in early-stage talks with lawyers in Bangalore and Mumbai to open offices there, in mutual anticipation of a break-up of the firm in the ongoing mediation between the brothers.

In late November a source close to Mumbai had said that the mediation was almost certain to be moving towards a break-up.

Bharucha & Partners managing partner MP Bharucha categorically denied to Legally India the ET’s report that cited a “person with knowledge of the split” saying that Amarchand Delhi “may partner with” Bharucha & Partners “on an ‘arm’s length’ relationship” to start a Mumbai office.

Bharucha said that he had also "categorically denied any relationship, actual or potential" to an ET assistant editor about a tie-up with Amarchand Delhi before publication of the story.

A second authoritative Delhi source also denied any Bharucha-Amarchand tie-up and that there was any truth to the ET’s report that Delhi partner Naval Chopra “will possibly relocate to Mumbai to take charge of the new setup”.

Bharucha & Partners has been representing Amarchand Delhi in the Bombay high court case against his brother Cyril and other Mumbai-based equity partners of the firm. In the 18 November 2014 Bombay high court hearing, Shardul’s counsel P Chidambaram read out parts of the will of the late mother Bharati Shroff, who was the single-largest equity holder in the firm, and who had allegedly disinherited Cyril and his side of the family completely.

In court on 18 November both sides agreed to continue their mediation over the future ownership of the firm and whether Bharati’s equity stake could be willed or whether they were subject to restrictions in a family agreement that envisaged equal division of the firm’s equity between the brothers.

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