Banking SUBPRACTICES

Acquisition Finance

With our extensive experience, we can guide our clients through financing transactions involving the acquisition of high profile assets — even in difficult business terrains, such as Nigeria. Our team regularly acts as lead counsel for sophisticated financial sponsors and corporate borrowers and provides legal advice on numerous large, syndicated acquisition financings. We regularly receive accolades and awards for our leadership in innovative and high-profile transactions.

Recent experience:

  • We advised a syndicate of Nigerian and international lenders in connection with the extension of US$2 billion credit facilities to an indigenous oil and gas exploration company in connection with the acquisition of oil and gas assets
  • We advised Standard Bank and JP Morgan Limited in connection with the provision of aggregate bridge facilities of US$765 million to Heritage Oil PLC and Shoreline Natural Resources Limited for the acquisition of a 45 per cent participating interest in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 30
  • We are currently advising one of the world’s largest reinsurers with over USD 200 billion in assets on its proposed acquisition of an equity stake in a leading Nigerian insurance company
  • We advised Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC, Standard Bank London and First City Monument Bank PLC in connection with the provision of a USD 230 million facility to First Hydrocarbon Nigeria Company 26 Limited, for the acquisition and development of OML 26
Aircraft Leasing and Financing

From the leasing and acquisition of aircrafts, to assisting with the establishment of an aviation and fuel services hub for West Africa in Nigeria, we are actively involved in the Nigerian and international aviation industries.

Our cross-practice and expert team is a huge asset to our clients and provides specialist legal advice to aviation industry leaders, as well as financial institutions and companies involved in asset and corporate financing in the aviation industry.

Recent Experience:

  • We advised Access Bank Plc in connection with a USD 5.6 billion credit facility provided to TAK Aviation Limited for the acquisition of an aircraft
  • We acted as adviser to Access Bank Plc in respect of a loan facility of USD 5 million provided to Oilserv Limited for the acquisition of an aircraft
  • We represented CHC Helicopters in terminating its joint venture with Aero Contractors Company of Nigeria Limited and advised on the restructuring of arrangements between CHC and Aero
  • We advised a foremost Nigerian merchant bank in connection with a ₦100 million credit facility provided to a West African airline
Bilateral and Syndicated Lending

We have a strong reputation for proactively identifying our client’s needs and objectives. We are commercially oriented and close transactions that are both efficient and cost-effective. We provide business-oriented advice, including creative and practical solutions to meet our client’s needs.

Our team of experienced lawyers has consistently represented financial institutions and borrowers in a broad spectrum of domestic and cross-border syndicated and bilateral loan transactions. Our clients included a consortium of lenders in the largest oil and gas divestment in Nigeria, including major investors in loan assets.

Recent Experience:

  • We advised Shell Western Supply and Trading Limited and Guaranty Trust Bank Plc in connection with the USD 270 million facility granted to Amni International Petroleum Development Company Limited
  • We advised a syndicate of lenders, over seven years, in connection with the provision of USD 455 million to Accugas Limited
Consumer Finance

Consumer financial services, including mobile money, have emerged as the backbone for entrepreneurship, job creation and economic growth in Nigeria. Nigeria’s consumer population is growing and the country is strengthening its laws, and the regulatory landscape is changing constantly. We understand that our clients need to stay current on legal and regulatory requisites to enable them to develop new products and services; and investment opportunities.

Our unparalleled experience allows us to effectively guide a wide range of clients including depository institutions, financial institutions and fintech companies to effectively tackle current challenges and address emerging risks.

We advise and render opinions to a wide range of Nigerian and international financial entities on financial products.

Derivatives

With the continued growth of a budding derivatives market in Nigeria, our clients, including Nigerian and offshore companies and financial institutions, are facing a slew of regulatory activities because of their regular engagement in derivatives transactions. We continue to work with our clients on a global level, and collaboratively among our practice groups, including commodities, banking, insolvency, securities and litigation.

Our multidisciplinary approach addresses the transactional and regulatory requirements of the market, to the advantage of our clients.

We regularly provide advice on the structuring of various types of derivative transactions (E.g. swaps, futures and forwards), the ISDA agreement, close-out netting and set-off provisions as well as tax and insolvency issues concerning derivatives transactions in Nigeria.

Islamic Finance

A growing number of our clients are beginning to offer Sharia-compliant banking products or require their financings and investments to comply with Islamic Sharia principles. Our lawyers are experienced in Islamic financing techniques and product development, and formulate and realise solutions for transactions which require adherence to the principles of Islam.

With the implementation of a legal and regulatory framework to enable and encourage the use of Islamic banking offerings to contribute to growth and infrastructure investments in Nigeria, we are excited to share our expertise in this flourishing market sector with new and existing clients.

With the increased activity in the issuance of Sukuk bonds in recent times, our lawyers are positioned to provide requisite legal advice on structuring and other matters in relation to Sukuk transactions.

Leveraged Finance

We are known for collaborating with clients and, efficient and strategic representation on significant and complex transactions.

We represent financial institutions and borrowers in sophisticated transactions involving the use of credit, including leveraged buyouts (LBOs) and other leveraged and acquisition financings.

Our experience working with both Nigerian and international clients enabled us to develop our unique understanding of the banking industry, including but not limited to project/infrastructure finance; asset-based finance; construction finance; off-balance sheet and equipment lease transactions; debt advisory and rescheduling; local and offshore secured and syndicated loan transactions and guarantees; structured trade finance; foreign exchange regulations and hedging mechanisms.

Our experienced lawyers have in-depth knowledge and experience of structuring multi-layered financings.

Infrastructure and Project Finance

We partner with clients in their bid to bridge the huge infrastructure gap in Nigeria and advise on the establishment and/or financing of economically impactful projects, such as the construction of road networks; development of oil fields and fertiliser plants; and the roll-out of a telecommunications company’s network and expansion plans in Africa.

Recent Experience:

  • We advised a foreign lender concerning providing facility to a local borrower for the financing of a fertiliser plant in Nigeria
  • We advised one of the major shareholders in Lekki Concession Company (LCC) in connection with the Lagos State Government’s NGN 15 billion buyout of the Eti-Osa Lekki-Epe Expressway concession rights and toll revenue benefits held by LCC
  • We acted as counsel to the sponsors, NNPC and Mobil Producing Unlimited, in the NGL II Project financing of which US$1.275 billion was raised
  • We advised the borrower and sponsor in connection with the provision of up to USD 800 million facility granted to Indorama Eleme Fertilizer and Chemicals Limited by a syndicate of commercial banks and Development Finance Institutions including the Africa Development Bank for the construction of a methanol and fertilizer plant in Rivers State
  • We advised syndicated lenders in connection with the provision of US$315 million facility granted to a group of borrowers for the restructuring of the shareholding in the parent company of the borrowers
Real Estate Finance

We have advised private and institutional investors, property owners, developers and financiers on the financing of various real estate projects ranging from golf, residential and commercial estates to large shopping malls and commercial buildings. We have experience navigating critical issues in the real estate sector regarding providing clarity, strategies and a roadmap to complicated land issues especially title related challenges and the financing of the relevant project.

Recent Experience:

  • We acted as legal advisors to Stanbic IBTC in its provision of a US$25 million loan facility to First Festival Mall Limited for the construction of a shopping mall in Festac Town, Lagos
  • We advised a multinational bank in connection with financing provided to the cooperative society of an international oil company for the development and construction of buildings in Lagos
  • We advised 9B Fabac Close Development Limited in its US$27.5 million capital raise to construct the world’s tallest residential concrete tower apartment block, Ramzi Towers, located in Victoria Island, Lagos
Securitisations

We are an industry leader in securitised lending agreements, with over 25 years of experience representing clients connected with mortgage-backed and asset-backed securities offerings and other structured financings. Our burgeoning practice area has grown beyond traditional asset classes and includes an array of emerging and niche asset classes, including telecommunications, equipment leases, commercial loans, aviation leases, construction, and franchise receivables.

Our lawyers bring their expertise and experience to bear in every transaction we are involved with and offer creative, responsive and efficient solutions to issues arising on transactions.

Shipping/Vessel Financing

We offer expert advice to lenders, investors and lessors on vessel financing transactions. Our advice covers issues of charter documentation and the purchase, sale and registration of vessels.

Recent Experience:

  • We are advising a leading financial institution on a US$10 million facility provided to a leading shipping company for the acquisition of a vessel
  • We are advising a foremost financial institution in respect of a US$55 million facility to a major energy company as well as the registration of a mortgage over the borrower’s vessel
  • We advised a syndicate of Nigerian and foreign financial institutions in connection with mortgaged-backed financing provided to a shipping company
  • We advised Access Bank PLC on a USD 10 million credit facility granted to Oil and Industrial Services Limited to purchase three vessels
Structured Trade Finance

Nigeria like most emerging market countries has a complex and at times challenging regulatory market, including trade and customs rules and regulations that provide challenges to both international lenders and commodity trading companies. Our structured trade finance team provides practical and up-to-date regulatory-compliant solutions that provide such companies a wide range of alternative finance options and offer protection for all parties in such transactions.

Our specialists in commodities trading and international finance work hand-in-hand with our clients, including top trading companies, producers and lenders, to meet and exceed commercial objectives, including cross-border transactions and time-sensitive applications.

Contact

Kofo Dosekun

Managing Partner

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