26 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM a 7.8 percent loss despite having been oversubscribed three times and having strong domestic and international anchor investors. More moderate size IPOs came into the market, but reported higher listing gains and remain profitable even today. Tata Technologies reported the highest listing gain in 2023, at 162.6 percent. Smaller IPOs like Motisons Jewellers ($18 million), ideaForge ($68.5 million) and Utkarsh Small Finance Bank ($60 million) all reported listing gains close to 90 percent. “The IPO wave over the last twothree months of 2023 could possibly be explained as a meeting of minds - if the price and the sector was right, there were willing buyers as demonstrated by the number of IPOs that were oversubscribed. This trend is expected to continue,” Chandra explains. A good example is the governmentbacked renewable energy financier Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency, which went public with a $259 million IPO, led by Saraf & Partners. With an issue price of 32 rupees (40 cents), the share was oversubscribed 39 times and listed at 60 rupees, an 87.5 percent listing gain. This was despite being the fifth largest IPO in the country this year. The reduction in size and price did not affect law firm revenues, which continue to be buoyed by the sheer number of listings in the market. An Indian capital markets lawyer at a leading firm says that law firm revenues from listings are governed by the volume of work rather than the size. Moreover, representing an issuing company is more profitable than advising lead managers and exiting investors as billing, generally on an hourly mandate with caps, is higher when advising the company looking to go public, the lawyer explained. Of the 57 IPOs on the mainboards this year, Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas advised 11 issuer companies, including Nexus Select Trust REIT ($385 million), Tata Technologies ($366 million), Honasa Consumer ($205 million) and R R Kabel ($236 million), the most for a firm this year. Khaitan & Co. came in next, advising nine issuing companies, including JSW Infrastructure on their $342 million IPO. Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co, which advised Mankind Pharma on its record-setting IPO, advised a total of eight issuing companies on their listings. J. Sagar Associates advised six issuing companies including the $228 million Cello World IPO – one of the most profitable this year. Rounding out the top five was Crawford Bayley & Co, which advised four issuing companies. Alliance Law, S&R Associates and Trilegal advised three issuing companies each. CAM also did the most work with issuing companies when examined by value, advising on $1.9 billion worth of deals. Khaitan and SAM led IPOs worth $1.25 billion, while JSA advised issuing companies on IPOs valued at $664 million. Trilegal and S&R Associates guided IPOs worth just over $200 million each. In terms of advising lead managers, Sidley Austin has served as international counsel to most banks on IPOs, regularly advising Kotak Mahindra Capital, ICICI Securities, Citigroup, Axis Capital, JM Financial and IIFL securities. Bhargava INDIA REPORT “In 2023, India proved to be a bright spot in the IPO space while other jurisdictions continued to remain relatively subdued due to various global political and economic developments, including conflicts. The increased deal activity in India could be attributed to stability in government policies, increased participation by domestic investors, particularly from retail investors and deals being reasonably priced.” — Jabarati Chandra, S&R Associates Image: Towering Goals/