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CAM’s Nisha Uberoi, with 51% merger-control ‘market share’, joined AZB today (after 70+ days’ notice)

AZB now with two competition partners
AZB now with two competition partners

Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas (CAM) Mumbai competition partner Nisha Kaur Uberoi, who resigned on 22 May 2016, has joined AZB & Partners today after a notice period of over 9 weeks, confirmed AZB Mumbai managing partner Zia Mody when contacted.

She had joined what was then Amarchand Mangaldas in 2002 from NLSIU Bangalore, and completed an LLM from National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2005.

Her joining will boost AZB’s competition practice in Mumbai, with the firm’s competition team having been led by partner Samir Gandhi in Delhi since 2012 when he joined from Economic Laws Practice (ELP).

Update: In an AZB press release, co-founding partners Zia Mody, Ajay Bahl and Bahram Vakil commented: “Having Nisha come on board as co-head will even further accelerate and deepen our existing top tier position in this practice and we hope tosoon put blue water between us and the rest of the market.”

Competition co-head Gandhi said: “We welcome Nisha on board and are very much looking forward to taking the practice from strength to strength.”

Uberoi commented in the statement: “I am absolutely delighted to join AZB I look forward to working with the team.”

According to the release:

Nisha comes to AZB & Partners with significant experience, having obtained a very significant number ofmerger control clearances in India (over 175 of the 340 odd merger notifications).

Her significant mergercontrol clearances include the Etihad/Jet transaction, the Kotak Mahindra / ING USD 2.4 billion mergerand UntraTech/Jaypee cement assets in Gujarat and MP

She has advised on Phase II investigations inIndia, including Sun Pharmaceuticals/Ranbaxy USD 4 billion merger and Lafarge/Holcim Euro 41 billionmerger, which included divestitures.

Currently, Nisha is advising LafargeHolcim in relation to the sale ofthe entire shareholding of Lafarge India Limited. Nisha also represents clients in cartel matters and inabuse of dominance proceedings and appears at the CCI and COMPAT regularly.

Since Uberoi’s resignation, CAM has shored up its competition practice by promoting Bharat Budholia and hiring Khaitan & Co competition principal associate Anshuman Sakle as partners.

Contractually, CAM could have enforced a notice period of up to three months for non-equity partners such as Uberoi, and six months for equity partners.

However, CAM equity partner Ashwath Rau, with non-equity partners Anu Tiwari and Dhruv Singhal were released for AZB on 2 June, only around six weeks after their resignation following a deal arranged for releasing early AZB Delhi senior partner Percy Billimoria.

On the flipside, Rau team-member and non-equity partner Ganesh Rao also saw a longer notice period of two months and one week, similar to Uberoi’s, in order to hand over matters before joining AZB

2014 saw the longest notice period from erstwhile Amarchand Mangaldas’ Mumbai office, where Abhimanyu Bhattacharya joined Khaitan & Co four months after giving notice (though initial statements indicated he would have to serve the full six month notice period.

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