ESTABLISHED IN 1911
Total number of professionals: 800+ (175+ partners and directors)
Principal office: Mumbai
Other offices: Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, Noida, and Singapore
Key practice areas
A full-service legal practice in the truest sense, with tier-1 capabilities across all core practice areas with niche capabilities traditionally not found in Indian law firms and an in-depth sector-specific expertise. From banking to taxation, mergers to dispute resolution and even new age and emerging sectors such as health and education technology, clean energy and data privacy, Khaitan & Co has robust capabilities across practices.
• Pan-India strategic and solution-oriented legal support across industries; international presence with a new office in Singapore
• Responsive and relationship-driven approach on critical issues along the business life cycle
• Ability to represent and advise a variety of clients, including leading business houses, multinational corporations, first-time entrants in the Indian market, global investors, financial institutions governments and international law firms
• Decades of experience with Indian regulators, judicial and quasi-judicial fora
• Involvement in most marquee commercial transactions and legal cases in the country
Independent intelligence on this law firm
The following information is sourced directly from India Business Law Journal and/or Law.asia and is not part of the directory listing provided by the law firm.
Jagannadha Rao, group head of legal, contracts and secretarial at Sterling & Wilson Renewable Energy, acknowledges the firm’s strengths across practice areas from corporate matters to intellectual property (IP), securities law, litigation and more. “[It is] long established and maintains a good working culture as well,” he says. “This firm has a brilliant team of lawyers for capital markets work”.
Nipun Gupta, joint leader of the India strategy group at Bird & Bird, praises Khaitan & Co for “very deep experience” in the pharmaceutical and life sciences space, the “breadth and depth” of its capital markets practice, a “consistent and strong team of litigators across cities”, and its “dedicated employment law specialists”.
Kabir Singh, a partner at Clifford Chance in Singapore, highlights the firm’s “depth of legal expertise, breadth of talent across practice areas, and excellent client management”, particularly on arbitration, indirect tax, labour and employment, and restructuring and insolvency matters.
Khozem Mirza, president of the Aditya Birla Group, appreciates the firm’s “professional and prompt advice”, while Bobby Majumder, a partner and co-head of the India practice at Reed Smith, says the firm has “excellent lawyers, commercially savvy and providing value for service”.
“Their service and knowledge are superb,” adds Robert Appelbaum, a partner at Webber Wentzel. “They are extremely collaborative and work alongside rather than trying to grab the mandate.”
Another client describes Khaitan & Co’s Rabindra Jhunjhunwala as “very clever” with the ability to “understand the need for speed and transparency”.
“Not only do we get wise guidance, but also hand-holding for each case and all procedural issues,” says Utpal Bhattacharyya, president for regulatory affairs and corporate services at RP Sanjiv Goenka Group, who uses Khaitan & Co for its energy projects and infrastructure expertise. He commends managing partner Haigreve Khaitan for facilitating “extremely cordial relations with a human touch, which is rare in today’s business world”.
Rakesh Bhartia, CEO of India Glycols, reports that the competition and antitrust team at Khaitan & Co is exceptional. He commends the team for providing “practical strategies that are not short-sighted but come out of deep understanding of issues that could protect the business interests from unforeseen threats in the long run”.
He also commends partner Manas Chaudhuri for “getting his strategies right every time”, and partner Sagardeep Rathi, whom he describes as a “confident and new-age, sharp lawyer with incisive thoughts on complex legal problems.
“Even on the most vexed legal issues we have found their advice to be top-rate, practical and timely,” says Bhartia, who used the firm’s expertise to successfully establish the existence of a cartel of sugar mills.
“We have a longstanding association with Khaitan and have been extremely satisfied with the services provided by the firm,” says Aakansha Bhambani, special projects – legal at Reliance Jio Infocomm. The firm’s data privacy experts, says Bhambani, are “well equipped to handle complex data privacy-related problems” and are “methodical in their approach to assignments, proactive in responding to queries and efficient with their time”.
She singles out partner Supratim Chakraborty, whom she says “is not just an outstanding lawyer” but also “meticulously looks into the entire business idea behind each assignment and provides solutions which are legally tenable and commercially viable”.
Ashika Daga, senior executive, legal, at Vikram Solar, similarly used the data privacy expertise at Khaitan & Co. She reports that the company had sought out a few other law firms but had been unconvinced of their competence, but Khaitan & Co had exceeded expectations.
“Khaitan and Co is extremely structured in its approach to assignments and proactive in responding to our queries,” says Daga. She strongly recommends Chakraborty, who has “a sound knowledge not only of the relevant legal framework but in also giving practical knowledge”, and is always available.
“The advice received from Khaitan is precise, practical and technically sound,” says Anish Bhatnagar, India general counsel at BT India and CBS, commenting on advice provided by the firm’s technology, media and telecommunications practice. He adds, “The fact that the partner [Harsh Walia] understands technology and IT business goes a long way in getting relevant and practical advice”.
“The firm’s approach towards work and clients has been proactive and exceeds expectations,” says Sachin Kalra, head of legal at Bharti AXA Life Insurance.
Suyash Valanju at Novartis commends the IP practice at Khaitan & Co for its “dexterous negotiation” that resulted in the successful conclusion of a specific matter. He recommends counsel Shailendra Bhandare and associate partner Nishad Nadkarni, for facilitating “outcome-based decision making”.
Commenting on Khaitan & Co’s competition and antitrust practice, Rajagopal Venkatakrishnan, senior vice president legal at Reliance Industries, says it is “one of the best in the country”. Singling out partner Avaantika Kakkar, he says the firm “helped some of our key initiatives during the year 2016-17 covering strategic purchase of assets and action against cartelization and abuse of dominance”.
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