Suraj Nangia and M&A in India
Alumnus of Wharton School (General Management) and The Doon School (India’s top School), Business Advisor by profession, and mountaineer at heart, Suraj Nangia strongly believes in living life off the edge, he has climbed 4 out of the seven summits – Mt. Kilimanjaro (Africa), Mt. Elbrus (Europe), Mt. Aconcagua (South America), Mt. Kosciuszko (Australia) and Mt. Cook (New Zeeland).
A true sports enthusiast, he is national swimmer and participated in India’s Longest race (19 km) in 2001 and ranked 24/150, played state cricket and represented U-19 for Delhi, represented State U-15 & U-17 in Squash.
Salsa is the flavour of his life and lets him connect to his soul. He was a salsa dance instructor at Salsa India between 2007 and 2015, still manages to attend salsa nights to keep his feet moving.
He has all the prerequisite to be a successful entrepreneur – a risk taker, somebody who can persevere through all odds, one who has an in depth knowledge of the domain, somebody privy to the burning needs of an industry, one who constantly strives to achieve more.
Second in command of a 220 + professionals firm, Nangia & Co. LLP, a consultancy firm that offers 360 degree services to clients across verticals, helping its clients with India Entry Strategy, Handling complex international M&A Matters, corporate taxation, professional taxation, international taxation, indirect taxation, transfer pricing, litigation support, corporate governance, risk advisory, IFRS services, corporate financial advisory and audit& assurance. Apart from leading the Tax, Compliance and M&A practice, Suraj also handles all financial matters of the firm. Foreseeing the growth opportunity owing to ‘Start-up India’, he recently established a dedicated practice catering the start-ups in India.
His zeal to never stay static and to keep moving has hugely fuelled Nangia & Co.’s growth trajectory – be it in terms of expanding to new verticals or to keeping the cycle of learning running.
What is India’s M&A growth trajectory?
M&A is the path businesses take to achieve exponential and not just linear growth and therefore continues to generate interest. The Indian M&A landscape is no different. Mergers and acquisitions have become an integral part of the Indian economy and daily headlines. Based on macroeconomic indicators, India is on a growth trajectory, with the M&A trend likely to continue.
There has been a spate of high-profile transactions in India in the last few years, whether domestic or international, and both inbound and outbound. With the government continually working towards reforms on all fronts, be it in its regulatory policies to attract foreign investors, providing an impetus to the manufacturing sector with Make in India, improving India’s Ease of Doing Business rankings, or providing solace to the much-beleaguered infrastructure sector by paving the path for real estate investment trusts (REITs)/infrastructure investment trusts (InvITs), there is no looking back.
M&A deals are likely to be the favoured route for foreign direct investment flows into India in 2017, as market consolidation is expected in sectors facing a cash crunch such as e-commerce and telecommunications. The renewable energy sector is likely to see M&A deals, but it could also attract Greenfield investments. The new insolvency and bankruptcy regime will also facilitate the sale of distressed assets, and thereby a hike in M&A activity.
What about the tax concerns that new entrants will have?
Ever since the Vodafone tax litigation took the Indian M&A landscape by storm in 2007, tax aspects surrounding any M&As in India came to the forefront—so much so that corporates have now started taking tax insurance to insulate themselves from the uncertainties and vagaries of interpretation of Indian tax laws. Of course, while the government is making strides in trying to deliver the comfort of certainty to the investor community (by issuing clarifications on various aspects of indirect transfers), it is also tightening the screws on various fronts—the renegotiation of India’s tax treaties, the looming advent of General Anti Avoidance Rules (GAAR) in 2017 and the signing of Multilateral Instrument under Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project.
What differentiates Nangia & Co. from its competitors?
While other firms lay emphasis on the number of resources, Nangia & Co LLP from the very beginning had decided to remain a boutique firm so as to provide personalized and competent services to clients. Having been in the industry for over 35 years, the team still consists of about 220 people who work in close quarters with the rest of their teammates. This lends a sense of openness and ownership among all the resources. Another major factor is the competency of our people who keep themselves updated with the going ons of the industry and moving ahead with the times. There is a healthy mix of domain experts who bring to the table their own expertise which helps the firm impart 360 degree services across a section of verticals.