Corporate law firm AZB & Partners has been the most active legal advisor for both private equity and M&A deals in 2010, while Ernst & Young was the most active transaction advisor, says a research study.

“AZB advised a total of 90 transactions during the period. Ernst & Young, which advised a total of 34 qualifying transactions, topped the League Tables as the Most Active Transaction Advisor (both PE and M&A) for the year,” Venture Intelligence said in a statement.

During 2010, private equity firms invested USD 7.97 billion in Indian companies, almost double than that of the previous year.

The ranking is based on the volume of PE and M&A transactions advised by the transaction and legal advisory firms during the year, the study said.

Among PE transactions, AZB acted as a legal advisor in 43 deals worth over USD 2.2 billion during 2010, including SBI-Macquarie’s USD 304 million investment in Viom Networks.

Other legal advisors who advised a significant number of PE transactions during 2010 include ALMT Legal (19), Indus Law (19), DSK Legal (15), Tatva Legal (15), Amarchand & Mangaldas (13).

During the year Ernst & Young has been the transaction advisor for 8 PE deals worth USD 318 million, including Bain Capital and TPG Growth’s USD 86 million investment in Lilliput Kidswear and Warburg Pincus’ USD 85 million investment in Metropolis Healthcare.

Other transaction advisors who advised a significant number of PE deals during 2010 include Avendus (6), Intellecap (6), MAPE (6), Veda Corporate Advisors (6) followed by Edelweiss Capital , Grameen Capital and o3 Capital with 5 deals each.

As far as deals in the merger and acquisition space, India Inc announced M&A deals worth a record USD 55 billion in 2010, including a record number of billion-dollar transactions.

Among M&A transactions, AZB advised 47 deals worth almost USD 22.5 billion during the period, including the Bharti’s acquisition of Zain’s African operations, Vedanta Resources’ acquisition of Cairn India and Jindal Steel’s acquisition of Oman based Shahdeed Iron & Steel.

Ernst & Young advised 26 M&A deals worth almost USD 18 billion during the period, including GTL’s acquisition of Aircel’s tower business, Kalanidhi Maran’s bid for SpiceJet and Bharti’s acquisition of Zain’s African operations.

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