Headquartered in Mumbai, a full-service law firm providing strategic, innovative and wide-ranging legal solutions is Singh&Singh | Malhotra&Hegde, the brainchild of dynamic leader, Founder and Managing Partner of SSMH, Vanditta Malhotra Hegde. Vanditta, is a well-known name in various industries due to her work on key issues. The firm has established a reputation for delivery of quality legal advisory services in the fields of media & entertainment, marketing, advertising, pharmaceuticals and health care, information technology and internet, with expertise in the areas of intellectual property law, corporate law, competition law, sports law, real estate and employment & workplace law. Strategic and progressive advocacy is the hallmark of the firm.
Singh&Singh | Malhotra&Hedge, Attorneys was set up in 2014 through a collaboration with Delhi based Singh and Singh Law Firm LLP, a full-service law firm, founded by Maninder Singh and Prathiba M. Singh (now Hon'ble Justice Ms. Prathiba M. Singh). Since then, under Vanditta's leadership, SSMH has made rapid progress and is today a popular name that commands a high reputation by representing a wide range of clientele ranging from global players to emerging businesses advising on both litigation as well as non-litigation work. The firm enjoys being the first choice for some of the biggest multinational companies, business houses, hospitality companies, pharmaceutical & healthcare companies, production houses, film & entertainment industry stalwarts, broadcasting groups, internet companies, out of home advertisers, radio channels and media houses as well as many high net-worth individuals.
BEING AN ENTREPRENEUR
Vanditta has had an exciting journey since the inception of her career as she held various leadership roles in her career. What motivates her? Well, the strong leader believes, her work is her passion and whether in her earlier role as General Counsel at Radio Mirchi or as the Founder and Managing Partner at SSMH, she continues to deliver the best.
She added, "Being a successful entrepreneur is easy if you love what you do, the passion shows in your work and success follows."
A firm believer that legal and business go hand in hand, Vanditta has always strived to provide solutions based advisory to the clients both in-house and now through her law firm. She has had the opportunity to lead some of the most important copyright cases across India for radio, internet and Bollywood.
In her endeavour, Vanditta is supported at Singh&Singh | Malhotra&Hegde with a dynamic set of lawyers with new age enthusiasm and acumen.
Ravina Rajpal is a Partner at the law firm and has been a great partner in the journey thus far. Ravina actively advises on film production, distribution & exhibition work; copyright infringement and breach of confidence suits, real estate and is an experienced professional in dealing with litigation matters in numerous industries. Her strengths are advisory on the legal and commercial aspects of matters. She is a legal expert with a scientific and technological bent of mind which is critical for the new age businesses of today.
JOURNEY TO BECOMING A DYNAMIC LEADER
A commerce graduate from H.R. College and alumnus of Government Law College, Mumbai who began her career by practising law at one of India's prestigious law firms, Mulla & Mulla, Craigie, Blunt & Caroe, Solicitors and Advocates, Vanditta is an experienced and seasoned professional with more than 20 years of legal advisory and corporate leadership experience.
From being a founding member of the Global (Goa) IPR Protection Forum or serving on the board of a leading content producer in Bollywood to being an a prominent name in the Media and Entertainment industry to representing the Pharma Companies on advisory work on DPCO and NPPA related matters and regulatory compliances, Vanditta has been recognised as a dynamic leader due to her work in these industries.
She has an extensive in-house experience of over a decade with India's leading media conglomerate 'Times Group' where her last role was Senior Vice President and Head of Legal of ENIL and was responsible for legal affairs of numerous businesses at the Times Group such as Events, Movies, Out of Home, Internet and Radio.
OVERCOMING THE CHALLENGES
In her initiative to jump from an in-house role to starting a law firm, the decision was one of the most challenging for Vanditta. Having spent more than a decade of her life as an in-house legal counsel, she thought it was time to look at various other aspects of law and work with other industries too. What her decision meant was a lot more hours of hard work and toil.
She shared, "Starting a law firm makes you an entrepreneur and suddenly you have to be head chef, cook and butler all at once. It has been an amazing journey so far and I have my mentor Hon'ble Justice Ms. Prathiba M. Singh to thank for giving me the confidence to shift from an in-house role to that of a law firm managing partner. It's been over five years now and I didn't to look back."
BUILDING THE CLIENTELE
Over the years, Vanditta has to set up a brand that their clients rely on to help navigate the complex legal landscape, setting up systems & processes, documentation for numerous business agreements; procuring various licenses and permissions, negotiating royalties with intellectual property owners, offensive and defensive litigation, etc.
The SSMH team has made a special name in the space of intellectual property laws with their domain expertise and deep understanding of business by representing several renowned creators, producers, artists, directors and authors. They have successfully pioneered as one of the few law firms to service emerging sectors like music streaming broadcasting and publishing, radio, technology platforms, e-commerce, software development and other digital services.
LEADING THE TEAM
Spearheaded by the dynamic leader, Vanditta, the SSMH team is a diverse team inclusive of professionals backed with decades of experience along with budding legal practitioners. This allows the clients to get relevant and quality solutions with a perfect amalgam of deep expertise and simmering innovation. The team contributes to the clientele with the core values of offering domain expertise combined with innovative solution. With their nationwide network of local on-site associate firms, the clients are served across the country seamlessly.
AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION
SSMH specializes in prosecution and litigation in respect of laws relating to Intellectual Property Rights as well as non-litigation work which includes all aspects of media agreements and advisory opinions, the firm, currently represents various internet companies, music streaming companies, production houses, studios, radio companies, music publishers, technology platforms, technology companies in the space of e-commerce, individual artists and talent, content strategist and creative people with respect to protection of their IP rights in India and abroad and is now handling various complex issues concerning the Statutory Licensing (under Section 31D of the Copyright Act) for the internet and digital music industry.
They have been successfully guiding various artists and copyright creators concerning their rights and licensing and copyright societies like IPRS, ISRA etc. It is no surprise that the SSMH team has obtained favourable orders from the courts of India to let multiple OTT platforms stream and reproduce the repertoire of certain music labels wherein a voluntary agreement between the parties could not culminate due to a variety of reasons that were commercially unreasonable.
SSMH'S JOURNEY SO FAR AND FUTURE
"Currently, advising some of the biggest studios, internet companies, media groups, pharma and FMCG companies, etc. operating in India and internationally, our team tends to hold a prominent place in the market. I believe we will be expanding the areas of operations with steady growth in clientele and continue the journey" shared Vanditta.
WORD OF ADVICE TO THE READERS
"On the occasion of women's day, I would like to tell all the women to spread their wings and try to reach the sky, especially to all the women who aspire to be lawyers. Keep at it and be so outstandingly brilliant that you cannot be ignored. Build your support system; I have had a very supportive family. My father, husband, colleagues have been my support system just like my mother, sister and now daughter is." proudly shared Vanditta.
She further added, "I am often asked why women need to be treated differently at the workplace when they want equality. It is far tougher for women to break the glass ceiling at the workplace – traditional societal expectations & constrains are always a drag. Woman needs the work from home, she needs the maternity breaks, more so till paternity breaks become the norm. Let's change this world one woman at a time. Let's aim for a truly gender-neutral world."