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Consultancy BMR forges into M&A legal advice with Desai & Diwanji’s Amit Khansaheb

Butani: Expanding BMR's tentacles
Butani: Expanding BMR's tentacles
Desai & Diwanji Delhi partner Amit Khansaheb, who had been with the firm for 18 years, has joined BMR Legal – the legal services arm of consultancy firm BMR Advisors – as a partner in order to ramp up the firm’s M&A and private equity legal practice.

Khansaheb, who had set up Desai & Diwanji’s Delhi office, said: “For me it’s an exciting opportunity and I’ve been working with BMR for a number of years. It was basically an extremely smooth transition.

“I’ll be essentially integrating and establishing the corporate M&A and private equity legal business [at BMR] basically. A large part of my work in life has been in M&A and private equity.”

His joining will grow the size of BMR Legal’s partnership to five and several Desai & Diwanji associates are expected to join, although Khansaheb would not confirm the precise number. BMR Advisors chairman and co-founder Mukesh Butani continues as the law firm’s managing partner.

Khansaheb explained that while the firm was part of the BMR group, only lawyers were partners in BMR Legal. “We are a legally independent entity – I can’t actually join BMR Advisors,” he explained.

Managing partner Butani is qualified as a lawyer and accountant and set up BMR in 2004, after having been a partner at Big Four accountancy firms Ernst & Young and the now defunct Arthur Andersen. He started up BMR Legal nearly three years ago.

Butani was not reachable for comment at the time of going to press but in a press release issued to legal website Bar & Bench, which first reported the move, he said that having Khansaheb on board “will enable the firm to expand its tentacles, and deepen our capabilities to build a stronger franchise and expertise in our business dealings”.

BMR Advisors now has 28 partners and according to a press release, “BMR is a professional services firm offering a range of tax, M&A and risk advisory services for domestic and global businesses of all sizes”.

In July 2012, the Society of Indian Law Firms (SILF) resolved that many accountancy firms were providing legal advice to clients in violation of the Advocates Act and a Supreme Court’s decision on the practice of law in India by foreign firms.

In 2011 around 35 lawyers were based in Desai & Diwanji’s Gurgaon office, with the corporate practice headed up by Khansaheb and four associate partners, with one associate partner specialising in litigation from central Delhi.

Desai & Diwanji was not available for comment at the time of going to press.

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