Corporate Law Firms in Nigeria rake in billions of Naira every year in advisory services to both local and foreign clients. Their services are sought regularly from investors, fund managers, fund raisers, corporates, countries etc. looking to close out one deal or the other. A Law firm can sometimes represent two different clients on the same deal employing what they often call a “Chinese wall”.
Legal Finders Who is Who Legal a website owned by Law Business Research an independent London-based publishing group, which provides research, analysis and reports on the international legal services marketplace, released a list of 15 top Banking & Finance Lawyers in Nigeria who they considered “Leading Lights” in the country.
- Udo Udoma & Belo-Osagie has three lawyers in this chapter, including the “eminent” Yinka Edu. She specialises in advising on issues relating to the Nigerian bond market and on compliance issues and is praised for her “intelligence and creativity”. Managing partner Dan Agbor is a “true authority” on finance matters, having advised on a number of market-leading transactions including Nigeria’s earliest global depositary receipt programme. Aniekan Ukpanah co-heads the banking and finance team and boasts a “wealth of expertise” in the structuring and financing of projects in a variety of industries.
- Olaniwun Ajayi garners two inclusions this year. Tominiyi Owolabi is “one of the best lawyers in the market” and is lauded for his “technical expertise” and “business acumen”. Wolemi Esan is a “real specialist” in the financing and development of power projects. His recent experience includes advising on the US$150 million Merrill Lynch/Solar Gardens real estate financing and the US$90 million Merrill Lynch total return swap.
- Aluko & Oyebode’s Kofo Dosekun advises on a range of lending and commercial transactions as well as acting as counsel to a number of offshore lenders in relation to oil exploration and production matters. She is highly rated for her “dedication and commitment”. Clients “wouldn’t hesitate to recommend” Oghogho Makinde thanks to her “impressive” practice encompassing complex commercial transactions, restructurings and divestitures.
- At Banwo & Ighodalo “stands out” for his capabilities in the banking sector. He specialises in domestic and international financing related transactions. heads the firm’s corporate finance group and is praised for her “close attention to detail” by clients.
- Abdulai Taiwo & Co is home to the “exceptional” Alayo Ogunbiyi who is “counsel of choice” for a number of national and international clients. Ladi Taiwo is a “senior figure” in the Nigerian market, and is praised for his “incredible amount of industry knowledge”.
- At AÉLEX Lawrence Fubara Anga represents major state owned and private oil and gas production companies. He is praised for his “thorough understanding of the complexities involved in financing these transactions”.
- B Ayorinde & Co’s Bolaji Ayorinde SAN is a “fantastic help” to financial institutions thanks to his “first-class commercial and financial knowledge”.
- James Okoh at Oditah is well known for his “world-class litigation skills” and has extensive experience acting for international and domestic clients.
- Giwa-Osagie & Company’s Osayaba Giwa-Osagie is a “leading light” in the market and comes highly recommended for his wide-ranging financial litigation experience.