Naval focuses on both contentious and non-contentious matters. His prominent clients include Microsoft, Facebook, Monsanto, National Stock Exchange, Uber, VeriFone, DLF and Abbott.
On the cartel enforcement front, Naval is presently involved in advising several global manufacturers in relation to ongoing international cartel investigations in the auto components sector as well as several other bid rigging cases in different sectors involving government contracts. He is also involved in challenges before the Delhi High Court to the CCI’s investigation in several cases on account of due process and natural justice issues.
On the merger control front, Naval has successfully obtained merger clearances in several prominent cases including Avago’s acquisition of Broadcom, HP’s acquisition of Samsung’s printer business, the failed merger of Publicis and Omnicom as well as the conditional approval for Bayer AG’s acquisition of Monsanto Company, and the acquisition by PVR of DT Cinemas.
Who’s Who Legal has from 2017 to 2020, listed Naval as a global “Thought Leader” in competition law. Naval is also enlisted as the (first and) only Indian lawyer in Global Competition Review’s top “40 under 40” competition lawyers in the world survey published in 2015. In another feather in his cap, Naval’s article titled ‘The Curious Case of Compulsory Licensing in India’, won the award for the Best Article in the Business – Unilateral Conducts category, at the World Antitrust Writing Awards 2013.
Chambers & Partners 2020 acclaims Naval as “an extremely intelligent antitrust lawyer,” advises across a wide range of contentious and non-contentious competition issues, maintaining a strong focus on abuse of dominance and merger control issues affecting players in the disruptive industry sector. A client says of him: “He came up with a unique strategy, he made sure we were protected and we are now in a much better position than before.” According to Chambers & Partners 2019, Naval is valued by referees as a “very practical, commercially sound and solution-oriented business partner” who serves, not only as a “go-to person for any kind of dispute resolution issue,” but also as someone with whom to “discuss strategies in the competition space” more generally. Chambers & Partners 2017 describes Naval as a valuable adviser on abuse of dominance matters, as well as other competition law issues. One impressed source praises his excellent technical knowledge, saying: “For competition law globally, his conceptual understanding is very strong and he’s able to apply it appropriately before the CCI. He knows how the CCI thinks.” Sources quoted in Chambers and Partners 2016 rankings, describe Naval as “very knowledgeable, very well read and very smart” and who “expresses himself excellently”. According to Chambers and Partners Rankings 2015, clients value Naval as a “master strategist” and his “ability to think out of the box and find solutions by balancing the law and commercial considerations.” He has featured in The International Who’s Who Legal since 2012 who describe Naval as a “rising star in the antitrust field and merger control in particular”. They say he stands out for his “creative solutions and as a highly effective communicator”.
He has also authored the India chapters of the Global Antitrust and Competition Law Compliance Handbook (Oxford University Press), the Private Equity Antitrust (American Bar Association) and the Competition and Patent Law in the Pharmaceutical Sector (Kluwer Law International). Naval worked closely with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs and the Competition Commission of India in the finalisation of the Indian merger control regime. He is also the course director for Diploma on Competition Law at ILS Law College, Pune which he has been teaching since 2014.
He is qualified to practice in India, New York and England & Wales and India. Prior to joining the Firm, Naval was an Associate in the India Group at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, London for almost five years.
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