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Cyril Amarchand confirms: 2 Mumbai partners & Cyril, Vandana move to Delhi where 17 senior hires done, dozen in oven

Cyril Shroff, who will launch his take on Amarchand Mangaldas today with new partnership Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, has confirmed the lateral hires made so far and partner moves to Delhi, while revealing that he planned to spend around half his time in Delhi in the first 12 months of the office.

Shroff said: “Both Vandana and I are going to be there 2 or 3 days a week [on average] for at least 12 months. 50% of my time (will be) in Delhi. Some weeks which need me, some weeks which need Vandana.”

He added that two Mumbai partners – partner and Mumbai region tax head SR Patnaik and projects and regulatory partner Ramanuj Kumar – would relocate to his new Delhi office at the end of May. The Delhi office would open doors for business on 1 June.

Direct tax specialist Patnaik had joined Amarchand Mumbai from Luthra & Luthra Delhi in 2013, having practiced since 1994, including as a chartered accountant for Luthra & Luthra Chartered Accountants between 2000 and 2008.

Kumar is a projects lawyer who graduated from NLSIU Bangalore in 2004, holds a 2008 Harvard Law School LLM and was promoted to partner in Mumbai in 2013.

Some departments will be smaller - capital markets will be bigger practice over here in Mumbai but since we operate as one firm, it doesn't matter whether they're in Bombay or Delhi

For the first time, Shroff confirmed the accuracy of all of the partner or senior level hires reported by Legally India to date since March 2015, namely:

Shroff said that some “very senior people” had been hired in Delhi so far. “The (average) age group of partners in Delhi is about 8 to 10 years more senior to the ones in Bombay. Bombay are a lot of young partners – therefore I think there'll be some plus and minus – they'll be more mature, but at the same time they’ll have stronger views on things.”

12 more partners, aims for 90 lawyer headcount in Delhi

“There are about a further dozen (lateral hire partners) in the works,” he added.

These hires June or July of this year would take the new Delhi office up to a 28 to 30 partner-level headcount, alongside a 91 lawyer headcount (including partners), said Shroff.

The total headcount across all offices (including the “legacy Amarchand Mumbai region” and campus hires who will join in coming months), would be 589 to 590 fee-earners, including 91 partners nationally.

“The ones (lateral hires) already out in the open, they have already all met in a group and the chemistry was fabulous,” added Shroff. “We got all of them together (about 14 days ago) and had dinner and they got along like a house on fire…

“It’s not a work environment – but it’s a good start.”

Until the office was fully set up on 1 June, partners who had already started in Delhi would work from home.

In addition to several new partners who “come with a book which will travel with them”, said Shroff, more junior Delhi partners who were good at execution would also work on Mumbai-centric work.

“It's a misnomer to think if you are based in Delhi you should only work for Delhi clients. [We are] going to staff Delhi partners on Bombay matters and vice versa.”

“We want to function like a location agnostic firm,” said Shroff. “It's the opposite of what has been happening.”

Shardul Shroff is the brother of Cyril Shroff and the former co-managing partner of pre-break-up Amarchand Mangaldas alongside Cyril.

Shardul launched his new firm Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas yesterday.

Cyril Shroff was speaking as part of an in-depth 60 minute interview with Legally India on the firm’s strategy, other parts of which will be published in Mint tomorrow.

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