Leading international law firm, Addleshaw Goddard’s Africa Business Group will be presenting the ‘Investment Potential of Africa’ at the Africa Business Forum in Dubai on 17 Oct 2015. Addleshaw Goddard have for many years advised multinational companies such as Diageo, British American Tobacco and Britvic on their African requirements. Addleshaw Goddard partner with local firms across Africa and invest heavily in those relationships to deliver services which combine international standards and unique insights into local operations. Addleshaw Goddard is part of the Sub-Saharan Africa Task Force, a business-led initiative backed by UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, and are the only law firm among the UK businesses which comprise the Task Force.
The Dubai office of Addleshaw Goddard advises on M&A, joint ventures, infrastructure projects and financing structures (including Shari’a compliant structures) in Africa. Addleshaw Goddard has developed an award-winning app which provides guidance on the legal implications and regulations when engaging in business in Africa (please search “Doing Business in Africa” in the App Store to download for free).
Africa’s economy is experiencing its longest period of uninterrupted growth in over forty years. Whilst growth is inextricably linked to the continent’s enormous wealth of natural resources and global commodity prices, increased fiscal discipline, debt-relief programmes, fast-growing middle class populations and improved political stability have made this growth sustainable and attracted ever increasing levels of foreign direct investment.
However, as with many emerging markets, the risks involved can be considerable. There is a balancing act between adequate compliance, cultural sensitivity and doing business successfully and the assessment and management of these types of risks in a pragmatic and commercial manner is vital.
Addleshaw Goddard has a wealth of experience in Africa. For example:
Addleshaw Goddard regularly advise clients on joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions in the region: for example, the firm has recently acted for clients on corporate and commercial deals in Namibia, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Africa and across the whole SADC territory. Addleshaw Goddard work closely with its clients to assess risks (and impact), not least through its sector tailored due diligence process and corresponding warranty protections, with a specific and practical focus on compliance issues. The firm also advises on innovative financing structures with substantial experience of representing lenders, sponsors and borrowers on various types of finance and project development transactions across Africa.
Addleshaw Goddard has acted for a number of clients in disputes ranging from international arbitration to actions in the local courts. Addleshaw Goddard recent experience includes acting on litigious and regulatory matters (including two major ICC arbitrations) in Algeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, Equatorial Guinea and the Republic of Benin.
Risk and Compliance
Compliance is one of the major challenges to doing business in Africa. Addleshaw Goddard provides its clients across the region with tailored advice which allows them to do business whilst managing the risks. The firm recently hosted seminars in Ghana and Nigeria providing guidance in relation to the UK Bribery Act 2010, in conjunction with the British High Commission, government representatives, local industry groups and its preferred firms in the region. Addleshaw Goddard regularly advise clients on risk and compliance related issues and remediation strategies.
Intellectual Property and Reputation Management
As with all emerging markets, protecting intellectual property and reputation management can be challenging. Addleshaw Goddard regularly acts for clients in registering, protecting and enforcing intellectual property. Addleshaw Goddard also acts for clients looking to protect their reputation. For example, in relation to a client bringing defamation proceedings in Kenya.
In market expertise
Addleshaw Goddard enjoy non-exclusive relationships with its preferred law firms across Africa. The firm invests heavily in those relationships and its clients benefit from integrated, collaborative relationships and a “one firm” approach to providing legal services. This means that it provides a joined up service and a “risk filter” for clients to help them make informed decisions and to mitigate risk proactively. The firm also has a significant amount of “on the ground” experience having spent time in market and through secondment programmes. This gives Addleshaw Goddard a great insight into local operations and business practices across Africa.
Key Africa Group Contacts at Addleshaw Goddard in Dubai
for Addleshaw Goddard (Middle East) LLP
for Addleshaw Goddard (Middle East) LLP
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For further information about Addleshaw Goddard in Africa, please see our credentials brochure.
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