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Kenya and East Africa


Our East Africa practice provides legal advice across Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania, The Seychelles and Uganda.

Our team has genuine on the ground experience in advising international and regional-based businesses on market leading transactions across the East Africa region.

Through our work across a range of sectors for corporates, financial institutions, private equity houses and Governments we have the legal expertise, industry knowledge and local know-how to advise on your mandates across East Africa.

Integrated East Africa Team

Our international team of Clifford Chance lawyers regularly work on market leading matters in the region, are familiar with the local legal and business environment and are able to use that experience to quickly identify issues and design effective solutions for clients. The team includes lawyers who are qualified or have worked in the region.

Working with African Counsel

We work with and have excellent and long standing relationships with the leading law firms in each East African jurisdiction. We have delivered eight Clifford Chance Africa Academy training sessions in the region since 2013 sharing insights and discussing best practice with over 100 regional lawyers.

Offering Full Service Capability

Our East Africa team have specialist knowledge across a variety of industries including financial services, energy and infrastructure, telecoms, real estate and transportation. The integrated team advise across a range of legal services (from project finance to capital markets, bank and other lending, private equity and corporate/M&A and dispute resolution).

Committed to the Region

We are providing funding and legal assistance to a number of pro-bono projects across the region. Our East Africa team are also working with Governments and national organisations to develop regulations and training programmes which are intended to attract further investment into the region.

Risk and Raising Capital in East Africa

In February 2017, our East Africa practice held a successful conference on "Risk and Raising Capital in East Africa" in Nairobi.

The future for international trade (including the UK's relationship with East Africa post-Brexit), the challenges that East African banks and corporates face in trying to successfully raise capital and the impact that developing business/compliance risks are having were just some of the engaging topics that were covered during the conference.

The publication Risk and Raising Capital in East Africa explores some of the key themes discussed during the conference.

Recent highlights

Awards and milestones

  • African Power deal of the Year 2017 - Hakan Peat-Fired - IJ Global Awards
  • EMEA Deal of the Year 2015 – Kenya Airways – Trade Finance
  • Debt Deal of the Year 2015 – Ethiopian Railways Corporation Financing – African Banker
  • African ECA Deal of the Year 2015 – Ethiopian Railways Corporation Financing – TXF
  • Africa Power Deal of the Year 2011 – Lake Kivu methane gas extraction, Rwanda – Project Finance Magazine
  • Sub-Saharan African Bond of the Year 2011 – PTA Bank EMTN, Kenya – The Banker's Awards

Recent assignments


Directory listings and client comments

  • Formidable East Africa practice group with a strong team comprising regional experts and locally qualified lawyers. Routinely acts for leading multinationals on significant corporate mandates, as well as representing banks and institutional investors in their Kenyan operations. Further noted for its projects, banking and finance and private equity expertise. Market commentators regard Clifford Chance as "the most active of all international firms doing M&A deals in East Africa." Interviewees acknowledge the team's impressive local knowledge, adding: "They're particularly good on the private equity side and do a lot of deals in the region." London-based Nicholas Hughes is co-head of Clifford Chance's East Africa practice and a key client contact.
    Kenya – Corporate/Commercial (Expertise based abroad) – Chambers Global 2018
  • This firm's globally recognised brand helps facilitate a range of complex cross-border transactions. It offers clients in Rwanda exceptional expertise across a range of sectors key to the region, including energy, infrastructure and mining, and frequently acts on behalf of international organisations seeking to invest in the country. Based in London, Jeremy Connick is the primary contact for this practice.
    Rwanda (Expertise Based Abroad) – Chambers Global 2018
  • "This global law firm has significant experience in the Kenyan market and maintains close contact with local firms. It is instructed on a range of matters in the corporate sector and beyond, including investments, project financing, joint ventures and arbitration. Clients benefit from the diverse team of lawyers, including several London-based lawyers qualified in both Kenya and England and Wales. London-based Nicholas Hughes is head of Clifford Chance's East Africa practice and key client contact."
    Kenya – Corporate/Commercial (Expertise based abroad) – Chambers Global 2017
  • "Well-recognised global firm that continues to demonstrate strength in Rwanda. The core practice of this magic circle firm focuses on representing international conglomerates and funds on inward investments into the country. It has experience operating on energy, mining, TMT and infrastructure projects. London-based Jeremy Connick remains a key contact for clients."
    Rwanda (Desks Based Abroad) – Chambers Global 2017