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Amarchand, JSA and Mallesons structure $3bn fund

Amarchand Mangaldas, J Sagar Associates (JSA) and Australian firm Mallesons Stephen Jacques have advised on the Macqaurie-SBI Infrastructure Fund, which is slated to be the biggest fund investing in the Indian infrastructure sector to date.

The joint venture fund involves India's largest lender and public sector bank State Bank of India (SBI) and the global investment bank Macquarie Group.

Amarchand Mangaldas Mumbai partner Ashwath Rau led the team for SBI with principal associate Vandana Pai. The firm advised the bank on all aspects, including international and domestic fund structures.

JSA Mumbai partner Dina Wadia led the domestic team for Macquarie, assisted by senior associate Jay Gandhi. The firm advised on the structure of the domestic fund as well as on Indian laws and regulations.

Mallesons acted as the international counsel for Macquarie and advised on the international fund structure, with Australia-based partner John Sullivan and senior associate Natalie Kurdian leading the team.

Tax consultancy firm KPMG provided advice on tax related aspects to Macquarie.

SBI and Macquarie will each hold 45 per cent of the shareholding in the joint venture entity, with the Wold Bank's private financing arm International Finance Corporation (IFC) holding the remaining 10 per cent stake as a minority shareholder and cornerstone investor.

SBI, Macquarie and IFC have committed $150 million each, to bring the sponsor commitments to a total of US$ 450 million.

The fund involves a complex structure with foreign institutions investing through the international fund, while Indian domestic institutions will invest through the SBI-Macquarie Infrastructure Trust, which is a domestic entity.

The fund has raised $1.037bn since launching in April 2009 from national and international markets and will continue to raise capital throughout 2009.

Its final capital is anticipated to be between $2bn and $3bn, making it the biggest fund to invest solely in the Indian infrastructure sector.

The fund is expected to invest in both greenfield and pre-established operating traditional infrastructure projects in sectors such as roads and highways, sea ports, airports, power plants, natural gas and telecommunications.

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