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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance

Ivory Coast and OHADA zone

Our OHADA - Francophone Sub-Saharan Africa practice provides legal advice across Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Republic of Congo, Senegal and Togo.

Our multi-disciplinary practice brings together lawyers from different practice groups and offices, particularly London and Paris. Our lawyers are fluent in both English and French.

We have been at the forefront of developing and implementing the OHADA law in major secured financings in several OHADA Member countries. In recognition of our OHADA law expertise, we were asked by the World Bank and the OHADA Authorities to help prepare an analytical report with proposals for the reform of the OHADA Uniform Act on Security (the revised act came into effect in May 2011).

Our clients include African and international corporations, investors, commercial lenders, export credit agencies, development agencies and governments, domestic and international private equity funds.

We boast a wealth of on the ground experience, delivering international market practice in the regional business environment.

Our expertise across the region covers a variety of industries (banking, energy and natural resources, infrastructure, private equity, telecoms) and the full range of legal services (from project finance to capital markets, lending, private equity and corporate/M&A, dispute resolution):

  • Project Finance: we pride ourselves on having acted on landmark projects in the region such as the Azito and Ciprel Power plants in Côte d’Ivoire, the Kribi power plant in Cameroon, the extension of the Dakar toll road in Senegal, the Chad-Cameroon petroleum and pipeline project, the Cap des Biches power plant in Senegal, the financing for the construction and operation of a container terminal in the port of Lomé
  • Corporate: our recent highlights include advising Actis on the sale and transfer of Globeleq Africa to a consortium formed by Norfund and CDC (including assets in Cameroon and Côte d’Ivoire), advising on the USD$1.35 billion acquisition of Caracal Energy Inc., a company focused on oil and gas exploration, development and production activities in the Republic of Chad, advising Carrefour on its joint venture arrangements with CFAO for the development and operation of retail activities in Senegal, Cameroon, Congo, Ivory Coast, DRC, Gabon, Nigeria and Ghana
  • Capital Markets: recently advised on the two sovereign debt issuances by the Republic of Gabon and the Republic of Cameroon
  • Lending: we advise numerous clients on loan facilities

We have excellent and long standing relationships with all of the leading law firms in the region. In September 2013, we launched the Clifford Chance Africa Academy ("CCAA"), which provides a structured training programme that is accessible for all our relationship African counsel. Regional law firms took part in the sessions we organised in Côte d'Ivoire, Cameroon and Senegal.

Recent highlights

Publications

Awards and milestones

  • Regional Law Firm of the Year: Francophone Africa 2021 - Chambers Africa Awards
  • Editor’s Choice Africa Award 2020 - Atinkou CCGT, Côte d'Ivoire - IJ Global Awards
  • African Power Deal of the Year 2020 - Azito Phase IV Project, Côte d'Ivoire - IJ Global Awards
  • African Transport Deal of the Year 2019 - New Owendo International Port PPP, Gabon - IJ Global Awards
  • African Oil & Gas Deal of the Year 2019 - Gimi floating LNG vessel project, Senegal and Mauritania – IJ Global Awards
  • African LNG Deal of the Year for 2019 - Gimi floating LNG vessel project – Senegal and Mauritania PFI Awards
  • Global Multilateral Deal of the Year 2018 – Nachtigal Hydro Project, Cameroon – PFI Awards 
  • African Power Deal of the Year 2018 – Nachtigal Hydro Project, Cameroon – IJ Global Awards
  • African Wind Deal of the Year 2018 – Taiba N'Diaye, Senegal – IJ Global Awards
  • African M&A Deal of the Year 2018 - AIIM acquisition of SEGAP stake - IJ Global Awards

Recent assignments

Directory and client comments

  • "This firm is well versed in advising on corporate matters and projects in Cameroon and throughout the region, with valued contributions from its Paris, London and Washington, DC offices." Noted for its energy sector presence, sources describe the team as "very professional, reactive, and swift in response," and highlight its "experience in infrastructure project financing."
    Cameroon – General Business Law (Expertise Based Abroad) – Chambers Global 2021
  • Highly group revered for its expertise in OHADA law. Frequently called upon by international banks and investors to assist with project financing in the power, oil and gas and infrastructure sectors. Strong track record of experience advising on lending, high-profile corporate and securities matters. Regularly handles joint venture formations and acquisitions. Clients benefit from its bench of specialists based in Paris, London and Casablanca. Source says: "Clients appreciate the firm's commitment to and understanding of the African environment."  
    Corporate/Commercial: OHADA Specialists – Chambers Global 2020
  • This highly rated international firm possesses strong expertise in corporate and commercial matters in Cameroon. Its Paris and London offices regularly advise on high-profile infrastructure and project finance matters. It also handles corporate transactions arising in the mining and oil and gas sectors. Sources consider the team to be "number one in terms of international firms in Cameroon." 
    Cameroon – General Business Law (Expertise Based Abroad) – Chambers Global 2020
  • Highly rated group renowned for its expertise in OHADA law. Frequently called upon by international banks and investors to assist with project financing in the power, oil and gas and infrastructure sectors. Has standout experience in corporate and securities matters and regularly handles joint venture formations and acquisitions. Clients benefit from its strong bench of specialists based in Paris, London and Casablanca. Commentators praise the firm's "very strong project finance team" and particularly highlight its robust lender-side practice.
    Corporate/Commercial: OHADA Specialists – Chambers Global 2019

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