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Bankruptcy Proceedings to Leave the Wallets of Consultants Fatter

The Economic Times |

12 July 2017

TURNING AROUND `DIRTY' DOZEN Expecting booming business, many cos plan to raise team strength in next few months

As banks try to recover cash from companies that defaulted on loans, top consulting partners and lawyers helping with the insolvency proceedings may end up earning as much as some Indian CEOs do.

Big consulting firms -PwC, Deloitte, KPMG, EY, Grant Thornton, BDO and A&M -and lawyers working with them are set to make about  200 crore from the 12 insolvency proceedings that are being seen as the starting template for the potentially 8lakh-crore recovery exercise in the stretched banking system.

“Most consultants are still at the price-discovery stage but are charging about 1 crore to 1.25 crore for a period of six to nine months. Actual costs incurred during the process and lawyers' fees are over and above consulting fees,“ said a person close to the development.

According to the data compiled by ET Intelligence Group, only about 15 CEOs or promoters of the top 100 listed Indian companies (BSE 100) earn more than 1.25 crore a month or 15 crore a year in salaries. Sanjiv Puri of ITC earned about 1.7 crore last year, Chanda D Kochhar of ICICI earned 7.85 crore, Saugata Gupta of Marico earned 8.21 crore, and Sanjeev Sharma of ABB India earned 3.99 crore a year.`


However, the fee is not just for one person but for the whole team that is working on the insolvency assignment, said a senior partner working with one of the consultancies. Many consultants are now looking to increase their team sizes as well. Firms are also looking to hire anywhere around 500 executives in the next couple of months. The consultancies have also tied up with the law firms like CAM, SAM and AZB, who would charge over and above consultants' fees.

“The scope of work includes taking over the operations and responsibility of running the company and select key management. Thereafter, information is provided and bids would be invited to be analysed and presented to the committee of creditors,“ said Abizer Diwanji, the national leader for Restructuring Services, EY India.

EY has a 96-member team in its restructuring and turnaround practice and is looking to take the number of about 200 in the coming months.

PwC, which would be working for Electrosteel Steels and Era Infra & Engineering, is looking to hire an additional 100 people in next few months.


“We have roped in sectoral experts from across our advisory verticals to work with the restructuring and turnaround team and we are continuing to ramp up,“ said Sanjeev Krishan, deals and private equity leader, PwC India.

While the bigger players are looking to increase the team size, other firms are looking to focus their resources. BDO India, which would help reorganise Jyoti Structures, Bhushan Power and Steel and ABG Shipyard, has asked team members from across verticals to help with the insolvency proceedings.

“We have a 100-member team that would be working on three projects where we are involved. Senior partners and executives from risk advisory , diligence, assurance and transaction would work closely with our team to bring resolution for these stressed corporates,“ said Sundaresh Bhat, Partner, Business Re-structuring Services, BDO India. BDO has got the mandate to act as the resolution professional for Jyoti Structures, Bhushan Power and Steel and ABG Shipyard.

Industry experts say that in some cases, some of the firms are also charging very low fees. “In at least one or two cases, firms are charging anywhere around 25 lakh per month,“ said a person close to the development.

The 12 defaulters include Monnet Ispat, Jyoti Structures, Electrosteels, Amtek Auto, Essar Steel, Bhushan Steel, Bhushan Power and Steel, Jaypee Infratech, Lanco Infratech, ABG Shipyard, Alok Industries, and Era Infra & Engineering.