(l-r) Host, broadcaster Leanne Manas; Standard Chartered Bank's Andrew Dixon-Smith, head of legal, international corporates, financial institutions and commercial banking, Africa and Middle East, and Tshifhe Ramabulana, senior legal adviser; Ezra Davids, chairman corporate/M&A, at award sponsor Bowmans; and Berna Oluka, legal counsel, Standard Chartered (l-r) Host, broadcaster Leanne Manas; Standard Chartered Bank’s Andrew Dixon-Smith, head of legal, international corporates, financial institutions and commercial banking, Africa and Middle East, and Tshifhe Ramabulana, senior legal adviser; Ezra Davids, chairman corporate/M&A, at award sponsor Bowmans; and Berna Oluka, legal counsel, Standard Chartered

Sponsored by Bowmans

Finalists: Anglo American Group Legal South Africa; Aspen Pharmacare (highly commended); Wholesale Lending Legal Team; Absa Bank; Woolworths

Standard Chartered Bank’s legal department won the Large Team of the Year award for its extensive coverage across the continent, providing support for the bank’s corporate, financial institutions and retail businesses.

The team manages transactions from inception to completion, typically on a deal-by-deal basis – external counsel is brought in as needed for advice on risk mitigation and product structures in the region. The majority of African deals are handled from their regional hubs (Johannesburg, Nairobi and Lagos) with support from individual countries in 15 markets on the continent (the department also forms part of the larger Africa and Middle East legal team).

Typical work includes putting forward lead lawyers for complex transactions, including multi-product and multi-jurisdiction deals, and collaborating with product-specialist lawyers. It is also responsible for raising awareness, controls and efficiencies around cross-border legal issues for client business in Africa, providing business legal advice on new products and initiatives, as well as handling restructuring and reputational matters on the continent.

“Our legal team in Africa advises on transactional matters and legal and regulatory hurdles in a sometimes challenging region, and is proactive and client focused,” said Stephen Priestley, regional head of corporate and institutional banking, Africa and Middle East.