Former legal director starts ‘GC for hire’ firm

Surabhi Agarwal

Surabhi Agarwal, the founder of litigation firm Parikh & Parikh Agarwal in Gurugram, has launched Global General Counsel to provide general counsel services to mid-sized companies.

With more than two decades of experience in the legal profession, Agarwal was previously regional general counsel (legal director) for Southeast Asia at AkzoNobel, a Fortune 500 Dutch multinational, until April 2020. She was also previously India general counsel of Heidelberg Cement, a Fortune 500 German multinational.

“I am aware of no other GC firm of this kind in India that offers world-class fractional general counsel services, at least none with the kind of deep cross-border experience that we have,” said Agarwal, adding that fractional refers to the hiring of a seasoned GC at a fraction of the cost.

“We provide business partnering and strategic insights equivalent to an internal GC of international standards, which leads to improved quality of legal function, even as [overall legal] costs go down.”

Global General Counsel currently comprises three attorneys, including Agarwal, and one non-attorney. It also has a vast network of experts and counsel in India and abroad.

Apart from mid-sized companies operating in India or Southeast Asia without a GC, the firm will assist Indian companies seeking legal support globally, and foreign companies keen on doing businesses in India or Southeast Asian countries. It also aims to assist GCs from large corporate houses who wish to benchmark with global best practices, or need legal expertise in important projects.