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CAM, AZB delicately guide $1bn+ into India with American Towers' Viom buy, with Luthra on DD [UPDATE-1]

Delicate Italian tower
Delicate Italian tower

Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas acted for Viom Networks, a telecommunication infrastructure provider, along with its key and minority shareholders in relation to sale of its 51 percent shares to American Towers Corporation (ATC) for a total cash consideration of for Rs 7,635 crore (around $1.2bn).

ATC was advised by AZB & Partners partners Gautam Saha and Shuchi Sinha, and senior associate Swati Chauhan on the transaction, while Luthra & Luthra partner Kanchan Sinha acted on the initial due diligence for ATC.

Update 29 October 2015: Legally India has authoritatively confirmed from several independent sources that Luthra & Luthra only acted on the due diligence in 2014, AZB handled all transactional aspects, including FIPB and CCI approvals in 2015 when the deal restearted.

Clifford Chance acted for ATC in the US.

Cyril Amarchand partners Ashwath Rau, Nisha Kaur Uberoi and Indranil Deshmukh acted for Viom and its key and minority shareholders, with principal associate and partner designate Dhruv Singhal and associate Pranav Atit.

The key and minority shareholders of Viom advised by CAM include include Tata Sons, Tata Teleservices, IDFC Private Equity Fund III, Macquarie SBI Infrastructure Investments Pte Limited, SBI Macquarie Infrastructure Trust, SREI Infrastructure Finance Limited, Sunil Kanoria, IDFC Private Equity Fund II and GIC’s Indivest Pte Limited.

Nishith Desai Associates (NDA) partner Vaibhav Parikh acted for another shareholder, the Oman Investment Fund’s subsidiary Funderburk Lighthouse, while several shareholders were advised in-house.

Update: Agram Legal Consultants partner Vaishali Sharma and associate Natalee Nanda advised India Infrastructure fund, which is an arm of IDFC.

It is understood that the existence of so many current shareholders, of which most such as Kanoria, the Oman Investment Authority, Oman, GIC exiting, and only a few such as Tata, SBI Macquarie and IDFC staying on in the future JV with ATC made for a complex deal with many different drivers.

According to the deal signed on 21 October, the parties will merge ATC’s existing Indian portfolio of approximately 14,000 towers with Viom Networks Limited’s portfolio of 42,200 wireless communications towers and 200 indoor distributed antenna systems across India and ATC may acquire the remaining 49% ownership stake in Viom Networks.

Viom was valued at Rs 21,000 crore in the deal, reported Economic Times.

Photo by Saffron Blaze

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