The person or institutions underwriting a public issue of shares or debentures are called underwriters. Underwriters may be individuals, partnership firms or joint stock companies.
As per SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE BOARD OF INDIA (UNDERWRITERS) REGULATIONS, 1993, person who engages in the business of underwriting of an issue of securities of a body corporate is known as underwriter;
An agreement with or without conditions to subscribe to the securities of a body corporate when the existing shareholders of such body corporate or the public do not subscribe to the securities offered to them is known as an underwriting agreement.
No person shall act as an underwriter unless he holds a certificate granted by the board under these regulations. Every stockbroker or merchant banker holding a valid certificate of registration shall be entitled to act as an underwriter without obtaining a separate certificate under these regulations.