CNBC TV18's 'The Firm' is Indian television's only show that covers corporate law, M&A, financial regulation, tax and audit matters.
The show was born in early 2008, of the belief that as India globalised, operating issues of law and tax would become core to corporate strategy. Already 2006 and 2007 had proved that India INC had tremendous appetite to go global. Billion dollar acquisitions, with targets operating across several jurisdictions...managing regulatory and tax risks had moved from being the burden of an under-populated in-house legal team to the offices of the CEO and CFO. And so we believed, 'The Firm', by exploring cross border M&A rules, tax policies, financing structures etc, would surely find an audience.
By late 2008 we had expanded our coverage to include bankruptcy filings, MTM accounting and changing international financial regulations. Since then our brief has only expanded. By 2009 it included the several important domestic commercial laws that were being, written, re-written or tweaked.
The Competition Act, The LLP Bill, The Companies Bill, The Direct Tax Code, GST, IFRS, Takeover Regulations...'The Firm' has devoted substantial time and effort in analysing and debating these impending legislative and regulatory changes.
The battle against tax havens, the confusion regarding GDR voting rights, the invalidity of ROFRs, the validity of negative rights...we've examined several legal grey areas.
When news of the Satyam fraud broke...'The Firm' spoke to scores of Independent Directors and Auditors to better understand their roles, responsibilities and liabilities. Corporate Governance is a pet topic on the show and we try hard to keep India Inc. abreast of governance trends across the world.
Ranbaxy-Daiichi, Bharti-MTN, Reliance-MTN, Bharati-ABG-Great Offshore, Inox-Fame-Reliance Media Works and Bhart-Zain...every big deal has had our undivided attention.
Transfer-pricing, Withholding tax, Anti-Avoidance and the famous Vodafone case...we've spent hours informing audiences of the tax road blocks awaiting them.
AS 11, ICAI's shortcomings, Loss Accounting, the transition to IFRS...accounting issues too have been front and center.
Last year, 'The Firm' presented it's first special series: 'Rules Of The M&A Game' - a 5 part series with 11 guests debating the changes needed to India's Takeover Code. Later in the same year, we created yet another special series- 'Business Sutra' - on Leadership & Governance.
Over the three years of its existence, India's finest legal, tax and financial minds have been guests of 'The Firm'. Law firms such as Amarchand Mangaldas, AZB & Partners, Khaitan & Co, Luthra & Luthra & Trilegal have shared expert opinions with us. As have illustrious counsel such as Amit Desai, Aspi Chinoy & Harish Salve. CFOs and in-house counsels from the houses of Tata and Birla, Infosys, L&T, HUL, Godrej Essar are also frequently on the show, sharing their wealth of experience. And not to forget - tax/audit/consulting firms, including the Big 4 firms, are frequent guests.
We've often reached out to the best international opinions from Linklaters, Shearman & Sterling, Cravath Swaine & Moore, Wachtell Lipton, Simpson Thacher, Goodwin Procter, DLA Piper, drawing upon their expertise to keep abreast of global trends.
The views of this collective have helped focus our debates and, we'd like to believe, also shaped regulation & law. An endeavour we hope to be in pursuit of for a very long time.
To get in touch with us, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org