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Amarchand, int'l firms top QIP rankings H1 2009-10


Amarchand Mangaldas has acted on 70 per cent of qualified institutional placements (QIPs) in the first half of this financial year.

International firms, AZB & Partners, J Sagar Associates (JSA), Luthra & Luthra, S & R Associates and Crawford Bayley mopped up the rest.

According to Legally India research, Amarchand had an advisory role on 24 QIPs out of 34, followed by AZB & Partners with four transactions and J Sagar Associates, Luthra & Luthra, S&R Associates and Crawford Bayley taking roles on three QIPs each (see table).

Amarchand has acted as corporate counsel to 19 companies and as adviser to five banks.

Mumbai partner Yash Ashar and Bangalore partner Arjun Lall have been instrumental in numerous QIPs, acting for the companies in fundraisings such as that of Cipla (Rs 675 crore / $145m), GVK Power (Rs 2,500 crore / $540m), HDIL ($600m), Indiabulls Financial Services ($200m), LIC Housing Finance (Rs 658 crore), Network 18 Media (Rs 205 crore) and Unitech ($325m).

Amarchand advised the banks on QIPs such as that of Punj Lloyd ($140m) and HDFC (Rs 4,000 crore).

International firms Jones Day and Linklaters outpaced Indian firms in Legally India's QIP league table this half-year.

Jones Day racked up six QIP-related instructions for banks, exceeding even Amarchand's tally. Hong Kong-based partners Jeffrey Maddox and David Neuville head up the firm's India related capital markets work.

Linklaters Singapore and Hong Kong offices acted on five deals each, such as the HDFC, LIC Housing Finance and Unitech issues.

Its best friend Talwar Thakore & Associates and name partner Shobhan Thakore acted opposite Allen & Overy (A&O) for Axis Bank on its simultaneous issue of global depository receipts (GDR) and a QIP aggregating to Rs 3,455 crores ($720m).

AZB scored a total of four deals and recently also acted on the Rs 4,000 crore HDFC placement. Mumbai office partner Shameek Chaudhuri and Bangalore office partner Srinath Dasari head capital market transactions also included Bajaj Hindustan (Rs 723 crore) and Nagarjuna Construction (Rs 600 crore).

Clifford Chance and Dorsey & Whitney also won four instructions each. Clifford Chance Singapore capital markets partner Rahul Guptan, who had joined the firm from Amarchand last year, led on such mandates as the $550m Indiabulls issue.

JSA has reprised its role as a strong capital markets player, with senior partner Somasekhar Sundaresan and partners Nosh Modi and Vikram Raghani leading the firm’s practice. Their major transactions for the half year ending September 30, included Delta Corp (Rs 85 crore), Punj Lloyd ($140m) and PTC India ($105m).

Delhi-based firm S&R Associates has also been active and acted on Bajaj Hindustan (Rs 723 crore), Indusind Bank ($100m) and Lanco Infratech ($150m), with partner Sandip Bhagat leading the firm’s capital markets practice.

Luthra & Luthra have advised the bankers on three placements with partner Madhurima Mukherjee and Mumbai group head Manan Lahoty leading the firm's practice. Luthra & Luthra acted for the bankers on the placements of GVK Power (Rs 2500 crore), LIC Housing Finance (Rs 658 crore) and Shree Renuka Sugars.

Crawford Bayley has also remained a consistent performer in the capital markets field with partner Sanjay Asher leading on numerous transactions. The firm has advised on the QIPs of Emami (Rs 310 crore) and PSL (Rs 300 crore) among others.

International firms A&O and Latham & Watkins also handled three transactions each. A&O led the majority of its deals from Hong Kong and one from Singapore. Latham & Watkins preferred London as its base for two transactions and led one deal from Singapore.

So far this year, Indian companies have already raised $ 15 billion through various means including QIPs, which has substantially increased the workload of capital markets teams across India many of which are bolstering their strength with associate hires.

"[Capital markets] have certainly become much busier across all fronts, certainly IPOs and certainly on QIPs a lot," noted S&R Associates name partner Sandip Bhagat.

According to the information contained in the published QIP prospectus filings the only international – Indian best friends to have worked together were Trilegal and A&O on the Glenmark Pharmaceutical issue, with Trilegal partner Amit Tambe leading in India.

QIP legal advisers' league table 31 March - 1 October 2009

Firm Total mandates Company mandates Bank mandates
1 Amarchand Mangaldas 24 19 5
2 Jones Day 6 - 6
3 Linklaters 5 - 5
4= AZB & Partners 4 1 3
4= Clifford Chance 4 - 4
4= Dorsey & Whitney 4 - 4
7 J Sagar Associates 3 3 -
8= S&R Associates 3 2 1
8= Crawford Bayley 3 2 1
10= Luthra & Luthra 3 - 3
10= Allen & Overy 3 - 3
10= Latham & Watkins 3 - 3
13= Khaitan & Co 2 2 -
13= Skadden Arps 2 - 2
Source: Legally India analysis of 34 QIP draft and final prospectuses available from the National Stock Exchange of India, filed between 31 March 2009 and 1 October 2009. Only firms acting on more than one transaction were included.
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