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AZB, via Ashwath, bags close SBI relationship & mega-restructuring with SAM

“State Bank of India (SBI) has kick-started the formal process of merging associate banks and Bharatiya Mahila Bank, which would create a banking entity with total assets worth about Rs 29 lakh crore. The bank has appointed merchant bankers, valuation consultants and law firms to complete the process,” reported The Economic Times.

The transaction includes SBI absorbing five associate banks - State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Travancore, State Bank of Patiala, State Bank of Mysore and State Bank of Hyderabad - of which three are listed entities.

According to the Economic Times, AZB & Partners partner Ashwath Rau was advising SBI as transaction counsel. We understand that this included structuring and advising the six banks merging into SBI

The due diligence on the only bank that is not an SBI subsidiary - Bharatiya Mahila - was handled by Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas partner Sapan Gupta.

We understand from sources that the deal was won by AZB after Rau had joined the firm from Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas in June.

As reported on 4 July, Cyril Amarchand and Rau had represented SBI on setting up a payments bank, with Cyril Amarchand partner Indranath Bishnu continuing the deal after Rau’s departure.

On 11 July we reported that the $1.4bn Lafarge-Nirma sale had moved with Rau to AZB, despite having started out at Cyril Amarchand.

However, we understand from sources that this deal’s adviser appointments began after Rau had joined AZB

SBI has been a long-standing client of erstwhile Amarchand Mangaldas’ Mumbai office - which is now Cyril Amarchand - (such as Rau acting for SBI on a Rs 1.3 crore aquisition of the bank in 2013, or Amarchand Mumbai’s banking partner Amey Pathak acting">on a $300m loan for the bank), though other firms too have had close relationships with SBI

For instance, SBI had used [https://www.legallyindia.com/Deals-in-brief/deals-round-up used Majmudar & Partners on a loan in 2012, while AZB & Partners’ partner Bahram Vakil had for the Macquarie SBI joint venture in 2013 on a road project sale.

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