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Trilegal, Covington on first Indian AIM float this year

Covington & Burling and Trilegal have co-operated on the IPO of Indian Energy on London's Alternative Investment Market (AIM), which is only the fourth successful listing this year on the London Stock Exchange-owned smaller market.

Covington & Burling and Trilegal have both jointly advised Indian Energy in a relationship pre-dating Trilegal's tie-up with Allen & Overy in early 2008.

Trilegal is Indian Energy's main local counsel, handling all of their domestic projects and energy work.

The Trilegal team was led by corporate partner Anand Prasad and project partner Akshay Jaitly. Banking partner Ameya Khandge, senior associate Yogesh Singh and Shailendra Singh also assisted on the deal.

Covington London corporate partner Simon Amies led the UK-based team for Indian Energy. "I know that there has certainly been interest in the UK in investing in Indian power-related projects," he said but added: "I would say it was hard to get the deal closed given the timing and the movement of the equity markets."

Jaitly said: "The listing and trading of IEL's shares on the AIM is particularly satisfying as we have been involved with the company since its incorporation and have seen it through various highs and lows. The vision of the promoters has been vindicated and we are honoured to have been part of the team."

Dorsey & Whitney London corporate head Mike Taylor acted for Arden Partners, which was the nominated adviser (Nomad) to Indian Energy.

Nomads are a requirement on AIM listings, acting as the placing agents and underwriters to issues. They are responsible for ensuring that the company complies with regulations and that AIM investors are not disadvantaged by the lower disclosure requirements of the market.

Amies said that the Nomad thought the Indian Energy deal would be successful because they had recently advised on a well-received secondary AIM fundraisings for KSK Energy Ventures and Hardy Oil and Gas.

Indian Energy listed yesterday and raised £9.75m (Rs 77 crores). According to news wire Reuters, the company aims to move to the the main list of the London Stock Exchange and "potentially seek some form of dual listing in Mumbai".

The Covington London team also included corporate associates James Baillieu and Richard Holden, and trainee Tom Goodman. Of counsel Guy Dingley and associate Ed Dearing advised on tax, and of counsel Peter Cooke advised on employment elements of the transaction.

The Trilegal's team also included associates Dishi Garg, Rajesh Pathania, Anuja Tiwari, Nupur Joshi and Vardaan Ahluwalia.

According to data from UK accountancy firm Grant Thornton, Indian AIM-listed companies had outperformed the markets this year.

The firm's India index, which monitors the performance of Indian stocks, had risen 72 per cent between April and July of this year. The London Stock Exchange's index of 100 larges companies, FTSE 100, only grew by 7 per cent over the same period, while valuations for AIM's largest 100 companies increased by 34 per cent.

However, after a flurry of Indian AIM listings before the global economic downturn, new listings on AIM have almost disappeared.

Photo by Ryan McD

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