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AZB tops Q3 IPO league table over Luthra; Amarchand still ahead in year to-date (2010-11 financial year)

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Exclusive: AZB & Partners has topped Legally India’s 2010-2011 quarterly initial public offering (IPO) league table taking it to second place in the financial year IPO rankings to date behind Amarchand Mangaldas and overtaking Luthra & Luthra, which did not file any IPOs in the last quarter. Luthra nevertheless remained in third place with nine IPOs filed in the 2010-11 financial year, as Khaitan & Co and Crawford Bayley & Co both caught up after both doubled their IPO tallies in the last quarter to eight.

The listings

AZB had a role on most of the prominent IPOs filed this quarter including state-owned Power Grid Corporation of India’s (Rs 8,400 crore) follow-on offer that had part-disinvestment and part-fresh infusion components. On this issue AZB represented the underwriters alongside O’Melveny & Myers LLP as international counsel while Amarchand and Dorsey & Whitney advised Power Grid.

Other AZB mandates include TATA Autocomp Systems ($ 167.4m) and PTC India Financial Services (Rs 600-700 crore) from the company’s side and Reid & Taylor ($ 200-250m), VRL Logistics (Rs 2.35 crore) and Claris Lifesciences (Rs 300 crore).

Tata conglomerate auto-parts maker Tata Autocomp’s IPO also had S&R Associates and Clifford Chance representing the domestic and international underwriters respectively.

PTC India Financial Services whose parent body funds power projects in India took the help of Delhi-based law firm Dhir & Dhir Associates and AZB leading as corporate counsels along with Khaitan & Co and DLA Piper giving domestic and foreign legal advice to merchant bankers respectively.

On Reid & Taylor, VRL Logistics and Claris, apart from AZB for domestic underwriters, Amarchand, Trilegal and Rajani Associates respectively were appointed as legal counsel to the companies. nternational firm and Trilegal’s best friend Allen & Overy acted on behalf of investment bankers on non-Indian laws.

Amarchand’s Mumbai office advised on the state-run Shipping Corporation of India’s Rs 582 crore worth of public offering with O’Melveny & Myers LLP acting for the investment banks.

Amarchand also advised one of India's leading print media businesses Lokmat Media in filings its DHRP as legal counsel to the company while Khaitan & Co and White & Case were hired by domestic and international underwriters on the issue.

AZB emerged as the big winner in the third quarter, however, climbing the rankings to second place with 12 mandates. This compares well to the same nine months in 2009-10 where AZB was in a distant fifth position with only six mandates to its name.

AZB advised on a total of six IPOs, on two of which the firm was corporate counsel while advising underwriters four times.

“We’ve been able to understand the concerns of the banks as well as those of the company’s and that gives us a competitive advantage from the perspective of the work the firm has done,” claimed AZB capital markets partner Shameek Chaudhuri.

“IPO filings have been taking place but because of the PSU disinvestments people have been a little wary of investing in a regular public offering compared to buying-out shares in a PSU,” he added.

The Hindu reported: “The comparative figure for 2009 was Rs 8,816 crore through two IPOs. In addition, two public sector banks raised Rs 796 crore. As such, over 72 per cent of the year's total mobilisation was accounted for by public sector undertakings (PSUs). Three IPOs and six FPOs, through disinvestment of Rs 42,056 crore and fresh capital raising of Rs 6,951 crore, collectively realised Rs 49,007 crore.”

Amarchand maintained its overall lead with 23 mandates between the months of April 2010 to 31 December 2010, having filed five in the last quarter.

Amarchand Delhi capital markets partner Prashant Gupta said: “It’s been a bit of a slow quarter in terms of IPO filings. The capital markets in general last year were dominated by PSU disinvestments and quite a few government entities completed their IPOs and FPOs.

“On Coal India, as you know, we had advised the underwriters, it took a lot of time and manpower to complete the transaction. Coal India is a large company and the IPO required significant investment of manpower to conduct proper due diligence on behalf of the underwriters.”

Coal India was the largest-ever IPO in India to raise Rs15,199 crore, which accounted for 22 per cent of the year's total funds raised through that route, according to the Indian Express: “The year was dominated by large issues; there were as many as 13 issues of over Rs 1,000 crore each compared to five in the preceding year, accounting for over 80 per cent of the year's mobilisation.”

Luthra & Luthra capital markets partner Madhurima Mukherjee, who had advised the listing company on the Coal India IPO, said that the last quarter had been unlucky for the firm which nevertheless clung on in third place of the rankings with nine IPOs.

“Filings just haven’t happened, it’s the luck of the draw really,” said Mukherjee. “We are busy and are doing a lot of deals, which is good, but those transactions just haven’t filed documents for whatever commercial reasons.”

Mumbai-based firm Kanga & Co with three mandates entered the league table for the first time this financial year and more than half-a-dozen local law firms were hired by smaller and medium-sized corporations on their IPOs this quarter.

International help

Jones Day, which was in first position amongst international firms with seven mandates in the same period in 2009-10, too remained inactive with zero mandates this quarter.

Jones Day was overtaken in the top spot this year by DLA Piper with eight mandates, which was nowhere in the league tables only last year.

A new entrant this quarter was O’Melveny & Myers, which outperformed competitors after notching up two mandates while other foreign firms such as Clifford Chance, White & Case, Allen & Overy and Dorsey & Whitney managed to bag only one IPO mandate each.

Market sentiments

According to industry experts in 2010 the entire corpus of funds generated from capital markets transactions in public equity by far surpassed the capital raised in 2009 and 2008.

The markets witnessed a record total of Rs 69,192 crore worth of fund mobilisation and a large part of which came from a focussed share divestment of public sector units (PSUs) by the Government, reported the Hindu newspaper.

Indian domestic law firm IPO mandates Q1-Q3 2010-11

Rank

Q1-Q3 2010-11

Rank

Q1-Q3 2009-10

Firm

Total mandates

Q1-Q3
2010-11

(& Q3 mandates only)

Company mandates

Q1-Q3
2010-11

(& Q3 only)

Bank mandates

Q1-Q3 2010-11

(& Q3 only)

Previous year

2009-10 Q1-Q3

Total mandates

1 1 Amarchand Mangaldas 23 (5) 16 (4) 7 (1) 28
2 5 AZB & Partners 12 (6) 8 (2) 4 (4) 6
3 2 Luthra & Luthra 9 (-) 5 (-) 4 (-) 11
4 4 Crawford Bayley & Co. 8 (4) 9 (4) - 6
5 3 Khaitan & Co 8 (4) 5 (2) 3 (2) 10
6 - Zenith India Lawyers 5 (-) 5 (-) - -
7 6 S&R Associates 5 (1) 2 3 (1) 6
8 8 Kanga & Co 3 (3) 3
8 7 Rajani Associates 3 (1) 3 (1) - 3
8 9 Vaish Associates Advocates 3 (1) 3 (1) - 2
11 - Trilegal 3 (1) - 3 (1) -
12 - ALMT Legal 2 (-) 2 - -
12 - Alliance Corporate Lawyers 2 (-) 2 - -
12 - Dua Associates 2 (-) 1 1 -
12 9 J Sagar Associates 2 (-) 1 1 2

Source Legally India

International firm IPO mandates Q1-Q3 2010-11

Rank
(H1
2010-11)

Rank
(H1
2009-10)

Firm

Total mandates

Q1-Q3
2010-11

(& Q3 mandates only)

Previous year

2009-10
Q1-Q3

Total mandates

1 - DLA Piper Singapore Pte. Ltd. 8 (1) -
2 1 Jones Day 5 (-) 7
2 2 Dorsey & Whitney LLP 5 (1) 6
4 3 Clifford Chance CC Asia Limited 4 (1) 5
5 6 Ashurst 2 (-) 2
5 5 Linklaters 2 (-) 3
5 - O’Melveny Myers 2 (2) -

Source Legally India

Methodology: legal advisers to all draft prospectuses filed with SEBI in the period 1 April – 31 December 2010 (first to third quarter of 2010-11 financial year). Ranked by total mandates, followed by company mandates, listing all firms that advised on more than two IPOs.

Read the first half 2010-11 IPO rankings.

Compare to the rankings over the same three-quarter period in 2009-10.

Read the full 2009-10 financial year QIP rankings for more top capital markets firms.

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