Nishith Desai Associates
India-Focused Private Equity
Nishith Desai Associates
India-Focused Private Equity

19 April - 10 May​ 2022​






Akhil Awasthy

Managing Partner


Tata Capital Growth Fund


Akhil is the Managing Partner at Tata Capital Growth Fund. Akhil is actively involved in portfolio management through presence on Board and other committees. He is experienced across the financial services sector - private equity, asset management and corporate banking.

Akhil was one of the founding members of Barings India Private Equity and was involved in all stages of the private equity lifecycle - creating an investment proposition, fund raising, investment and successful divestment. Akhil was also a founding member of India's first private sector mutual fund ITI Pioneer AMC (now Franklin Templeton) where he was responsible for pharmaceutical, software and automobile sectors. Prior to entering the investment business, Akhil worked in corporate banking with ANZ Grindlays Bank.



Ashish Kabra

Leader, International Dispute Resolution & Investigations Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Ashish is a leader in the International Dispute Resolution & Investigations Practice and heads the Singapore office of Nishith Desai Associates, Singapore. He focuses on commercial litigation, international arbitration and white-collar crimes. He is a registered foreign lawyer with the Legal Services Regulatory Authority, Singapore and the Singapore International Commercial Court.

He is an honorary overseas member of the Commercial Bar Association (England & Wales) and member of the Inter-Pacific Bar Association. Ashish is also a leader in the Corporate Transactions Group and is regularly called upon to troubleshoot sensitive issues emanating from complex investment structures and emerging investment products. He has advised on and lead several sensitive and contentious transactions.



Arvind Mathur

Mentor & Advisor


Nishith Desai Associates


Arvind is a pioneer of private equity and venture capital in the Asia-Pacific region. While at the Asian Development Bank, he helped bring major institutional investors to Asia including CalPERS, CDPQ, AMP and several American and Japanese insurance companies in private equity fund structures.

He has over 25 years' global experience in private equity, venture capital, IPOs, mergers & acquisitions and investments. He led a team of multinational professionals in managing a portfolio of direct investments and over 30 private equity and venture capital funds at the Asian Development Bank. He has exposure to investments in many Asian countries, besides India and China. He engineered several exits.



Ashish Sodhani

Leader, International Tax Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Ashish is a leader of the International Tax practice group at the multi-skilled and strategy driven international law firm, Nishith Desai Associates. He focuses on cross border tax and corporate structuring transactions including tax litigation. He regularly advises clients on various cross border issues relating to tax treaty interpretation, capital gains, applicability of minimum alternate tax, indirect transfer tax issues. He has also acted and advised on several cross-border mergers and acquisitions and has significant experience on private equity investments. He regularly advises foreign education institutions, EdTech companies, pharmaceutical companies, not-for-profits on Indian tax and exchange control laws.

He has also been involved in regularly advising the gaming industry, BPOs, healthcare and IT/ITES with respect to issues on withholding tax, goods and service tax.



Basava Rao

Leader, Corporate M&A


Nishith Desai Associates




Darius Pandole

Managing Director & CEO


JM Financial Ltd.


Darius Pandole is the Managing Director & CEO of the Private Equity Fund Management business of the Group.

Darius brings with him around 28 years of private equity investing experience in India. He previously worked with New Silk Route Advisors Private Limited where he worked as a Partner / Executive Director. His prior stints have been with IDFC Private Equity, IndAsia Fund Advisors, Indocean Venture Advisors and Duke’s Ltd.

His qualifications include a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago, and a Bachelors of Arts (BA - Economics) from Harvard University.



Dr. Dhruv Sanghavi

Leader, International Tax and International Tax Litigation Practice


Nishith Desai Associates (Netherlands)


Dr. Dhruv Sanghavi leads the International Tax and International Tax litigation practices at Nishith Desai Associates from the Netherlands. His areas of expertise are international tax laws, international tax litigation, and international tax policy. Apart from being a practicing lawyer, he is also a thought leader in the area of international tax. He has written and edited several journal articles, cases and a monograph— “Structural Issues in the Income Tax Treaty Network – Towards a Coherent Solution.”



D Muthukumaran

ex-Chief Financial Officer


Renew Power


Muthukumaran was the ReNew India’s Chief Financial Officer since August 2019.He was responsible for executing ReNew India’s inorganic and organic growth, working closely with business and functional leaders. Mr. Muthukumaran spearheaded ReNew India’s finance, audit, tax, legal, risk compliance, mergers and acquisitions integration, business support and corporate governance operations.

Prior to joining ReNew India, he worked at Aditya Birla Group for 17 years where he held various leadership positions, including the Head of Corporate Finance and Corporate Strategy for Aditya Birla Group, and the Chief Executive Officer of Aditya Birla PE Advisors Private Limited. Mr. Muthukumaran also held various positions in the investment banking sector investment banking and an accounting firm where he headed debt and equity transactions. Throughout his career he focused in corporate finance as well as accounting and reporting including mergers, acquisitions, fund raising, structured finance, leverage buyouts, regulatory and tax structuring. He is a Chartered Accountant, Cost & Works Accountant and also holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce from the University of Madras, Chennai India.



George Anthraper

Managing Director


DC Advisory


George is part of DC Advisory India, where he covers the IT services and enterprise software sectors. George was one of the co-founders of the India practice and is based in Bangalore, bringing more than 15 years of investment banking experience to the firm.



Harshal Kamdar



Sequoia Capital


Harshal Kamdar is a CA and is part of the high-energy, high-performance, infectiously positive team of Sequoia and its family of founders

As the CFO for SEA & India Harshal helps startups with restructuring, regulations and tax across jurisdictions, transactions including M&A, IPO and other financial matters.



Huzefa Tavawalla

Leader, TMT and Disruptive Technologies Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Huzefa Tavawalla heads the Bangalore office along with the Disruptive Technologies Practice at NDA. He is also a techo enthusiast and has worked on several matters relating Drones, RPAS, Artificial Intelligence, Driverless Cars, AR/VR etc. He was also appointed as a task force committee member set up by the Indian Government to establish the legislative drone road map for India.

Huzefa has also been at the forefront of outbound and global M&A’s in particular project management for large cross border acquisitions. Further, he continues to advise on several cutting edge, complex and cross-border TMT matters.



Harshita Srivastava

Leader, M&A and Private Equity Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Harshita Srivastava is a Leader at the M&A and Private Equity Practice at the multi-skilled, research and strategy driven international law firm, Nishith Desai Associates. She also heads the VC Investment & Startup Practice at Nishith Desai Associates.

She has led numerous cross border transactions in India, Singapore and the United States. She advises strategic acquirers and Private Equity funds on legal and tax aspects of cross border deals with a special focus on business transfers. She has also been part of the SEBI Committee instituted for the setup of the Innovators Growth Platform (listing platform) for startups in India. She is also recognized as an Expert in Residence by the Startup Europe India Network. She is an active member of TiE, Mumbai and has been mentoring entrepreneurs in association thereof.



Ipsita Agarwalla

Senior Member, International Tax Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Ipsita Agarwalla is a senior Member in the International Tax Practice at Nishith Desai Associates. She is experienced in advising on domestic and cross border M&A transactions and restructurings, private equity transactions and digital taxation. She is also a member of the Funds Practice at Nishith Desai Associates where she advices on funds structuring and documentation of funds.She also writes regularly on contemporary international tax issues and has been involved with several initiatives within the firm, particularly for taxation of financial transactions and digital taxation.



Joanne Murphy

Managing Director, Asia Pacific




Joanne has been based in Asia, predominately in Hong Kong, for over 20 years. During her tenure she has held a number of senior management positions, leading sales, business development, marketing, and CRM divisions and has both built and managed large and effective regionally-located teams.

Joanne has worked for Morgan Stanley, HSBC and Deutsche Bank covering intermediary, buy and sell side roles and held an entrepreneurial position at Triple A Partners. She now focuses on the education environment. All these roles have had a consistent focus on the Alternative Investment industry.



Karan Trehan

President & Director


European Sustainable Growth Acquisition Corp


Mr. Trehan has been in the international finance for over four decades with careers at The World Bank, Goldman Sachs and Alliance Bernstein (CEO of International).

Served as Managing Partner/General Partner of alternative asset management firms engaged in private equity and hedge fund investing. Served on the boards of several investment funds.

He graduated with an MBA from IMD, Switzerland and has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Delhi University, India.



Nandini Pathak

Leader, Investment Funds Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Nandini Pathak is a Leader in the Investment Funds practice at Nishith Desai Associates. With a strong focus on VC / PE funds, she has advised several international and domestic clients on legal, regulatory and tax issues, fund governance and fund economics best practices and negotiations with various participants at the fund formation stage.

She frequently interacts with the securities regulator and custodians. Her expertise includes tax efficient structuring for India focused funds as well as investor negotiations. With her practice base on the fund formation side, she also regularly advises clients on the regulatory front including securities laws and exchange control laws.



Nishchal Joshipura

Leader, Private Equity and M&A Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Nishchal Joshipura heads the Private Equity and M&A practice at Nishith Desai Associates. He is a Lawyer, Chartered Accountant and MBA. He has lead several high profile deals in M&A and Private Equity space in India and set up various Indian focused funds. He advises strategic acquirers and Private Equity funds on legal and tax aspects of cross border deals in listed and unlisted space with a special focus on control deals.

He has designed and implemented some of the most innovative structures for M&A and Private Equity deals in India and his structures have been consistently recognized as most innovative by Financial Times of London and RSG. He also specializes in advising both offshore and domestic LPs and GPs on fund formation and has set up multiple funds across various asset classes such as private equity, distressed, venture capital, infrastructure, real estate, hedge funds, etc.



Nishith Desai

Founder and Managing Partner


Nishith Desai Associates


Nishith Desai is the Founder of the research & strategy driven international law firm, Nishith Desai Associates ranked amongst the Asia-Pacific’s Most Innovative Law Firms by Financial Times.

Nishith’s interest span a wide spectrum of law, society and ethics. He is a renowned International lawyer, author, lecturer, researcher and a thought leader. Nishith himself is regarded as the ‘Father of International Tax’ in India and is a ‘true pioneer’ in the field of International Tax Law.

He was also a director on the board of Singapore International Arbitration Centre (2011-2019). Soon after India opened its economy to the outside world in 1991, Nishith pioneered the roots of asset management industry in India.

He established the first five India Focused Funds He played a seminal role in structuring several private equity funds in addition to structuring several domestic venture capital funds. Nishith has driven the conceptualization and creation of Imaginarium AliGunjan a state-of-the-art research facility that stands as an ode to ‘Blue Sky Thinking,’ near Mumbai.



Parul Jain

Parul Jain

Leader, International Tax and Fund Formation Practices


Nishith Desai Associates


Parul co-heads the International Tax and Fund Formation Practices at Nishith Desai Associates. She focuses on international taxation, cross border transactions and fund formation practice areas including cross border investments and group reorganization strategies, M&A transactions and venture capital / private equity funding structures. Parul is particularly adept in advising on cross border issues arising from investments into India.

She has represented several prominent private equities, venture capital, growth and angel funds in setting up their onshore and offshore fund structures including assisting them with negotiations with LPs. She has also worked with technology companies in advising them on matters involving digital taxation. This apart, she is a regular speaker at domestic and international seminars and actively contributes to various international publications. She also formed part of a four-member committee which advised SEBI on changes to be brought to Angel Fund Regulations in India.




Pratibha Jain

Head of Strategy and Group General Counsel


Everstone Group


Ms. Pratibha Jain is the Head of Strategy and Group General Counsel at Everstone Group. Prior to Everstone, Pratibha was a Partner at Nishith Desai Associates where she founded their New Delhi office, and lead their Funds and Regulatory practice. She brings with her a breadth of international and Indian experience having worked with Sullivan & Cromwell in New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong, with Skadden Arps Slate, Meagher and Flom LLP in Hong Kong and Goldman Sachs in Mumbai.

She’s an alumnus of Harvard Law School, Oxford University and Delhi University.

She has worked on some of the most challenging projects in financial services and regulatory sector globally and in India, including representing Ministry of Finance in setting up of National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) and designing USD 1.3 billion special ‘window for funding stalled affordable and middle income housing projects’ as an AIF fund (SWAMIH), listing of companies on US exchanges, representing private equity investors in some of the biggest investments into India such as Mubadala’s investment in Reliance Jio and reliance Ventures, Softbank’s in its investment of USD 1.4 billion in PayTM, , representing investors for facilitating listing of stock exchanges in India including BSE, IEX and NSE, representing investors in investigations by the Enforcement Directorate, Central Bureau of Investigation and Reserve Bank of India.

She enjoys working and writing on public policy issues and is regularly quoted in news on various public policy issues. She sits on various important committees including IVCA Executive Committee, FICCI Capital Markets Committee, CII Financial Markets Committee and Policy Committee of Ananta Centre.

She is a Fellow of the Seventh Generation Class of Ananta Aspen’s Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship and member of Aspen Global Leadership Network. She received the “Woman Lawyer of the Year Award 2019” by Business World magazine. Recently, she has been recognized as a Top Individual Lawyer by Forbes Legal Power list 2020.



Raakhee Kulkarni

Senior Vice President & Head - ESG


GEF Capital Partners


Raakhee Kulkarni is currently working as Vice President & Head – Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) at GEF Capital Partners and is based in Mumbai. Prior to GEF, she was employed with ERM India for a span of 13 years and was leading the Transaction Services Practice. Raakhee has close to 20 years of combined experience largely within the consulting sphere and for the past two years in the private equity industry. Her experience involves projects in the sustainability domain covering environmental, health and safety. Her core competencies include transaction associated due diligence, liability assessment, compliance auditing and environmental risk assessment.



Ratnadeep Roychowdhury

Leader, Private Equity & M&A Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Ratnadeep is a leader in the Private Equity & M&A Practice at Nishith Desai Associates. He has over 13 years of experience as a commercial lawyer, primarily with top law firms and in the last 3 years with one of India’s leading private equity firms. He brings a unique mix of transactional experience and expertise in leading high profile, high stakes corporate litigation. Having previously been a partner in one of India’s leading law firms, his work included managing multi-layered teams for execution, client acquisitions and deepening the domain expertise of the firm.

As the general counsel of a private equity fund his work focused on closely supporting investment professionals to efficiently and safely deploy capital, while ensuring overall management of legal risk (both investment specific and franchise level).



Rutvik Doshi

Managing Director and General Partner


Inventus Capital Partners


Rutvik Doshi is the Managing Director and General Partner at Inventus Capital India. Rutvik has participated in India’s fast emerging internet ecosystem since 2007, first with Google where he launched several products including Voice Search, Google Mobile App, SMS Channels and managed Google News globally, and most recently as the CEO of ecommerce startup Taggle in Bangalore. Before Google he spent 6 years in the U.S. building internet management software for CA Technologies and a startup. Rutvik holds a B.Tech from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur and an MBA from INSEAD, France. He also holds 6 patents.



Sahil Kanuga

Leader, International Dispute Resolution & Investigations Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Sahil Kanuga is leader in the International Dispute Resolution & Investigations Practice at research and strategy driven international law firm, Nishith Desai Associates.

Known for his analytical and meticulous approach aimed to reach his clients' goal, Sahil has worked on an array of complex matters including Indian and international arbitrations. He aggressively tackles the challenges presented by each case - legal, financial, or otherwise and has advised on corporate and commercial laws, civil and constitutional matters and criminal offences. He has also negotiated private equity and joint venture transactions. A focused problem-solver, Sahil understands that business goals shape legal strategies.



Shagoofa Rashid Khan

Group General Counsel & Head Corporate Affairs


National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF)


Shagoofa has over two decades of experience in private equity, acquisitions, joint ventures and strategic initiatives, corporate and commercial laws, compliance and ethics advisory, audit and finance roles. In her career span of over 24 years, she was an in-house counsel for 10 years with leading Indian corporate houses. At NIIF, she is the Group General Counsel and Head of Corporate Affairs and is based out of the Mumbai office.

Prior to joining NIIF, Shagoofa was a Partner with Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas (CAM). At CAM, she headed the Investments Funds practice and specialised in Private Equity investment advisory for infrastructure, real estate, and financial services sectors. She has advised global and domestic fund houses in structuring and setting up of their cross border as well as domestic funds, including combination structures and fund of funds. She has advised large institutional investors (including pension funds and sovereign funds) on their strategic and platform investments in India. She has also played an active role on the policy advocacy front by being part of committees constituted by the regulators, providing support to industry associations, and assisting clients on representations to Government ministries and regulatory bodies. Before CAM, Shagoofa was in-house counsel with IDFC Alternatives, Group Legal Team of Tata Sons and Kotak Investment Advisors Limited. She started her law career with Nishith Desai Associates as part of the funds and international tax practices.

She holds a Bachelor in Law (LL.B) from University of Mumbai. She is a Fellow Member with the Institute of Chartered Accountant of India and has completed the Company Secretarial program with the Institute of Company Secretaries of India.

Shagoofa has been recognised under the “India’s Top 100 Women in Finance, 2020” list by AIWMI and under “Top 20 Emerging Legal Leaders, India” by RSG Emerging Leaders 2019. She has been recognised as “Distinguished Practitioner” and “Leading Lawyer”, for multiple years, by AsiaLaw Leading Lawyers rankings and Legal 500 rankings, respectively.



Shanu Sherwani



Antwort Capital


Shanu is a board member and executive in several Luxembourg based ManCo, AIFM and PERE Funds. He is a Partner at Antwort Capital and has over 20 years’ experience in private markets and AIFs. Shanu is specialized in private equity, mergers & acquisitions and corporate finance. He has worked for KPMG Corporate Finance, Head of M&A and Business development at Post Group, as well Head of Investor Relations and Business Development at Threestones Capital and Castik Capital. He currently advises several top quartile PERE funds and is a regular columnist on private markets in leading Luxembourg financial publications.

He holds a Masters degree in International Management and Corporate Finance from ICHEC brussels business school and post graduate degrees in Private Markets and Private Equity from University of Oxford and Imperial College of London. Shanu recently completed a post graduate degree in alternative investments at Harvard Business School.



Sumit Sen





Sumit joined the Actis Long Life Infrastructure team in 2017 and is responsible for Actis’ infrastructure activities in India and South East Asia. He has over 20 years’ experience across accounting, investment banking and investing in energy, infrastructure and other sectors.

Prior to joining Actis, Sumit worked for 13 years at Goldman Sachs (GS), most recently as Executive Director in the GS Principal Investment Area (PIA) where he was responsible for investments across sectors with a specific focus on energy, infrastructure, TMT and healthcare. Whilst at PIA, Sumit was a key member of the team that led the investment in Renew Power, one of the largest Indian renewable companies.



TC Meenakshisundaram

Vice Chairman


Chiratae Partners


TC Meenakshisundaram (TCM) is the Founder and Vice Chairman of Chiratae Ventures India Advisors. He has over 38 years of industry experience, including 18+ years of venture experience. He serves on the Boards of Lenskart, AgroStar, Vayana,, Metadome, Bounce, HUVIAiR, and Pando amongst others.

TCM is well respected and regarded by the Indian VC/PE ecosystem as a pioneer. In the past fifteen years, TCM has led many initiatives to success in investments, exits, firm building, finance and legal, amongst others. TCM has also led the Fintech Sector, contributed and led Fundraising, including opening new investor platforms such as Rupee Capital, DFIs and Insurance companies partnerships and, in more recent past, taking the portfolio to scale and IPO.

Earlier, as part of Walden International’s team, he was involved with investments in Mindtree, Venture Infotek and Jobstreet. Before Chiratae Ventures, TCM served as Chief Financial Officer and President – Corporate Services at Venture Infotek, a leading payment processing company in India. Before Walden International, he has worked for 14 years at Wipro, where he last served as General Manager – eCommerce Division.



Udai Dhawan

Founding Partner, Head of India


Affirma Capital


Udai Dhawan is a Founding Partner and Head of India Private Equity at Affirma Capital, and is based in Mumbai.

Prior to Affirma Capital, Udai was Managing Director and Head of India for Standard Chartered Private Equity (SCPE). Having joined SCPE in 2008, Udai was responsible for building the India franchise and was involved with several of the fund’s investments including Cafe’ Coffee Day, Endurance, Fortis Healthcare, GMR Airports, Interglobe, Northern Arc Capital, Prime Focus, Prodapt, Redington, Sterlite Powergrid, Travel Boutique Online, Tirupati Medicare and Varun Beverages.

Prior to SCPE, Udai worked for over a decade in corporate investing, M&A and corporate finance, across India and the United States with JP Morgan, Sabre Inc., Kotak Mahindra Capital and Arthur Andersen. Udai has 24 years of financial services experience, and has also previously served on the Executive Committee of the IVCA, India’s premier private equity industry body.

Udai has an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and is also a chartered accountant from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India



Vaibhav Parikh

Leader, M&A and PE and Technology-Media-Telecom Practice


Nishith Desai Associates


Vaibhav Parikh heads the U.S office of research and strategy driven international law firm, Nishith Desai Associates. Based in the New York office, he also leads the practice areas of Technology, Telecom, Mergers and Acquisitions, Private Equity, etc. For over two decades, Vaibhav has been advising major MNCs on Corporate & Securities laws, and Structuring of Inbound / Outbound Investments, Private Equity Investments, IP laws and Exchange Control Law, tying in his expertise in advising several private equity players and venture capitalists navigate their way to successful investments. He has also assisted several companies in facilitating cross border M&A transactions.

He has consistently been engaged in advising several top end Technology and Telecom companies. Vaibhav has often played the role of key advisory to leading Cryptocurrency exchanges in India and continues to do so. Several leading financial publications often turn to him for his valuable insights on the subject. Over the years, Vaibhav has also been advising several leading Indian e-commerce companies in their operations from a legal and regulatory standpoint and has facilitated some of India’s largest e-commerce transactions.







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