(L-R) Poppy Kgwadi, Lulama Selele and Nkazimulo Moyeni, Norton Rose Fulbright; and Ivor Polo, Investec

Finalists: AB & David; Baker McKenzie; Bowmans; ENSafrica (Highly Commended); GLA – Gabinete Legal Angola (PLMJ Network); Norton Rose Fulbright; Webber Wentzel; White & Case.

Allen & Overy was unveiled as the Banking, Finance and Restructuring Team of the Year for advising Africa Finance Corporation and Harith General Partners on an Africa-focused special purpose vehicle (SPV) that will own, operate, develop and manage power assets on the continent. Codenamed Project Edison, the joint venture will transfer and merge assets from each party into the SPV, creating one of the largest pan-African energy companies, capable of generating 1,575 megawatts of power.

That meant undertaking due diligence on seven power projects spread across six African jurisdictions, drafting agreements, and providing tax and regulatory advice. Allen & Overy’s team was led by partners Khurshid Fazel in Johannesburg and John Geraghty in London, with support from its Saudi Arabia office. The transaction required deft project management skills given the number of assets, jurisdictions and law firms involved, not to mention a thorough understanding of the power sector and the technologies being used. The firm was able to build on existing relationships with legal counsels in the jurisdictions where the power projects were located to provide pertinent local advice, as well as integrating insights from a broad range of experts across various disciplines.

“Intricate project, specific skill and expertise displayed,” a judge noted.

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