Banking, finance and capital markets in Kenya

Anjarwalla & Khanna

Anjarwalla & Khanna is a recognised leader in banking, finance and capital markets across the board. It consistently lands large, headline engagements, including high-value financings and capital markets offerings. The firm represents an impressive array of Kenyan, regional and international bank lenders along with a number of corporate and private equity clients. Akash Devani and Sonal Sejpal are at the forefront of the banking and finance segment, while Mona Doshi is another experienced specialist, who is also the acknowledged leader in Islamic finance in Kenya. Amyn Mussa is an outstanding project finance expert.

Practice head(s):

Sonal Sejpal; Akash Devani

Other key lawyers:

Mona Doshi; Amyn Mussa; Anne Muruka

Key clients

National Government of Kenya

Ecobank Kenya

KCB Bank Kenya

Diamond Trust Bank Kenya

Standard Chartered Bank (Dubai)

Standard Chartered Bank Kenya

Bank of Africa Kenya

Facility for Energy Inclusion Off-Grid Energy Access Fund

Colchis Capital Management

United States International Development Finance Corporation (DFC)

AfricInvest Capital Partners

Citibank

I&M Bank

Stanbic Bank Kenya

Janus Continental Group

Mare Nostrum

Equity Bank

Alliance One

Work highlights

  • Acted for the Government of Kenya through the Department of National Treasury and Planning, on the issuance of a $2.1bn international sovereign bond.
  • Advised Ecobank Kenya on the financing of a $121m medium-term facility to Grain Bulk Handlers.
  • Advised Equity Bank Kenya and Equity Bank Uganda on the $70m financing to Mahathi Infra.

Bowmans

Bowmans is frequently cited as a market leader in banking, finance and capital markets. It has certainly set the pace in capital markets, fintech, structured trade and commodities finance, and project finance, though its extensive and rounded abilities should not be overlooked. The firm represents numerous big-name lenders, corporate borrowers and private equity houses. Banking and finance head Cornelius Kigera is noted for acting for major Kenyan lenders on big-ticket financings. The highly rated Paras Shah is a leader in capital markets issuances, structured lending, and trade and commodities finance. Dominic Indokhomi is another key partner for real estate financings, financial regulatory matters and the broader finance sphere.

Practice head(s):

Cornelius Kigera

Other key lawyers:

Paras Shah; Dominic Indokhomi

Testimonials

‘Bowmans has a team ably led by Dominic Indokhomi that is very knowledgeable in banking and finance regulations in both Kenya and the rest of East Africa.’

‘Dominic Indohkomi is a versatile, strong, knowledgeable partner that has helped us navigate banking and finance regulations in the region.’

Key clients

The African Development Bank

Nedbank Limited

US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC)

The Standard Bank of South Africa, Citibank, and Standard Chartered Bank

Wilmington Trust (London)

The Standard Bank of South Africa and Stanbic Bank Kenya

SBM Bank (Kenya)

ABSA Bank Kenya

Actis

Lendables

Watu Credit

NCBA Bank Group

KCB Group (Kenya Commercial Bank Group)

Safaricom

Branch

Africa Agriculture and Trade Investment Fund

Work highlights

  • Acted as counsel to African Development Bank on the provision of a line of credit and subordinated loan facilities by African Development Bank to Diamond Trust Bank Kenya.
  • Advised Nedbank on a real estate financing to Two Rivers Development secured by a charge over immovable property and assignment of receivables and corporate guarantees provided by Centum Investment and Centum Development.
  • Acted as lead counsel on a $10.5m financing in which a technology-enabled funding provider advanced a secured-term loan facility to Solar Panda Kenya.

Dentons Hamilton Harrison & Mathews

Dentons Hamilton Harrison & Mathews is a leader in banking, finance and capital markets, with particular experience in corporate finance, project finance and bank M&A; this includes a number of cross-border deals such as advising an Egyptian private sector bank on its acquisition of a 51% stake in Mayfair Bank, a tier III Kenyan bank. The Nairobi team advises a large number of local and international lenders, along with a range of prominent corporate borrowers. Andrew MugambiRichard Omwela and the up-and-coming Sigee Koech are established names in the capital markets field, and Adil Khawaja and Lorna Mainnah are noted for real estate finance.

Practice head(s):

Richard Omwela

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Mugambi; Sigee Koech; Adil Khawaja; Lorna Mainnah

Key clients

I&M Bank

ABSA Bank Kenya

JPMorgan Chase Bank

NCBA Bank Kenya

Talanton Impact Fund

Kenya Bankers Association

Bank of Africa Kenya

Work highlights

  • Advised an Egyptian private-sector bank on its acquisition of 51% of the shareholding of Mayfair Bank, a tier III Kenyan bank.
  • Acted as the legal advisers to I&M Bank on the financing of a leading steel manufacturer in the East African region.
  • Acted for the Kenya Banker’s Association in a judicial review matter challenging the exercise of administrative powers requiring the simultaneous payment of Stamp Duty and Capital Gains Tax by a bank enforcing the chargee’s statutory power for sale.

Iseme, Kamau & Maema Advocates

Iseme, Kamau & Maema Advocates has achieved further prominence in the market thanks to its close links to a range of lenders (including multiple panel appointments) and its notable expertise in syndicated lending, project finance, real estate finance, and refinancings. The firm is part of DLA Piper's Africa network and frequently works alongside the global firm on cross-border financings. Anne Kinyanjui and James Kamau are big names for energy and infrastructure finance, and Norah Mutuku brings further senior-level financing expertise. Former Bowmans partner Kamami Christine Michira joined the firm in December 2020 to reinforce its capital markets expertise.

Practice head(s):

Anne Kinyanjui

Other key lawyers:

James Kamau; Norah Mutuku 

Testimonials

‘The team is versatile and quick to provide solutions to some of the challenges we may have in structuring security documents. The diversity and experience of the partners and their ability to work together in assisting clients resolve issues, is one of the attractive aspects of this law firm. Their ability to communicate quickly and effectively sets them apart from other law firms that take time to respond to issues raised.’

‘You can always trust the work output that comes out of IKM Advocates. I have never had occasion to question their advice. The fact that they are a full-service law firm, which can assist us on a spectrum of work from banking and commercial, to litigation, employment and IP work is a huge advantage.’

Anne Kinyanjui is experienced, versatile, able to come up with quick solutions to security structures that are out of the ordinary.

Norah Mutuku is pleasant, efficient, knows her work and areas of expertise inside-out.

Key clients

Absa Bank Kenya

Bank of Africa Kenya

Commercial Bank of Africa

East African Breweries

Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (TDB)

Ecobank Kenya

Equity Bank (Kenya)

Guaranty Trust Bank (Kenya)

Gulf African Bank

HFC

International Finance Corporation (IFC)

I&M Bank

KCB Bank Kenya

NCBA Bank Kenya

Overseas Private Investment Corporation

Radiant Energy Limited

Standard Chartered Bank Kenya

SBM Bank (Kenya)

Stanbic Bank Kenya

Sidian Bank

The Co-operative Bank of Kenya

Victoria Commercial Bank

Walker Kontos Advocates

Walker Kontos Advocates has deep traditions in banking and finance. It continues to represent an impressive number of local and international banks, along with a sizeable tranche of development finance institutions (DFIs), such as International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). The firm has further leveraged its alliance with Norton Rose Fulbright, affording it greater international credibility and a flow of cross-border engagements. Aside from debt finance, the firm has a fine record in capital markets issuances, including both equity and debt offerings. Michael Kontos is a key name, with Deepen Shah providing further senior-level expertise in project finance, syndicated lending and DFI financings. Peter Mwangi is a leading figure in insolvency and restructurings.

Practice head(s):

Alexandra Kontos; Michael Kontos; Peter Mwangi; Deepen Shah

Key clients

International Finance Corporation

Overseas Private Investment Corporation

Consolidated Bank of Kenya

SBM Bank (Mauritius)

Société de Promotion et de Participation Coopération Economique (PROPARCO)

Standard Bank Group (Standard Bank of South Africa, Stanbic Bank Kenya)

The Trade and Development Bank

Coöperatieve Rabobank

Citibank

Bank of Africa Group

Absa Bank Kenya

I&M Bank

Standard Chartered Bank

KCB Bank Kenya

NCBA Bank Kenya

Jamii Bora Bank

Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO)

European Investment Bank

Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG)

GuarantCo

Work highlights

  • Advised International Finance Corporation, Société De Promotion Et De Participation Pour La Coopération Économique, KCB Bank Kenya  and Barclays Bank of Kenya on a $78m loan facility to National Cement Company and National Cement Company Uganda.
  • Advised PricewaterhouseCoopers on the sale of the business and assets of ARM Cement (under administration) and its subsidiaries in Kenya and Tanzania to National Cement Company.
  • Advised European Investment Bank, Cordiant Emerging Loan Fund IV and Allianz EM Loans on the creation of common security in connection with facilities of $32m granted to Bandwith and Cloud Services Group, for the partial financing of a fibre optic roll out across Central and Eastern Africa.

CMS Daly Inamdar Advocates

CMS Daly Inamdar Advocates bolstered its wider banking and finance practice with the hire of aviation finance specialist Hanee Khan from Iseme, Kamau & Maema Advocates. The firm now represents some of the largest and most active lenders in Kenya.  Julius Wako is an experienced figure in syndicated lending, project finance and real estate finance.

Practice head(s):

Julius Wako; Nishit Maru

Other key lawyers:

Stella Situma; Hanee Khan

ENSafrica

ENSafrica's nascent Nairobi office forms part of a growing network of Africa offices launched by the South Africa-headquartered firm. The office's banking and finance team is best known for project finance in the energy and renewables segment, though with additional expertise in trade and commodities finance, asset finance, general banking, capital markets, structured finance and securitisation. Binti Shah is a recognised leader in banking and finance.

Practice head(s):

Binti Shah

Key clients

Agri Commodities and Finance

Minet Kenya Insurance Brokers

Twiga Foods

Stanbic Bank Kenya

Rand Merchant Bank

Societe Generale

Investec Bank

AFD

Frontclear Management

Rand Merchant Bank

SBG Securities

Stanbic Bank Kenya

Proparco

Work highlights

  • Advised Agri Commodities and Finance on trade commodities facilities provided to steelmakers, guaranteed by Steelmakers International and various shareholders.
  • Advised Twiga Foods on negotiating a convertible loan note from TLCom, conversion of the loan note to equity at the Mauritius level with a view to a subsequent $26m investment by Goldman Sachs into Twiga Mauritius.
  • Advised Minet Kenya Insurance Broker on the provision of a Comprehensive Teachers’ Medical Insurance Cover, Group Life Insurance (including Last Expense) and Benefits for all Teachers and their Dependents between The Teachers Service Commission and Minet Kenya Insurance Brokers  (as lead broker).

Kaplan & Stratton Advocates

Kaplan & Stratton Advocates remains prominent in syndicated lending, aviation finance, project finance and bond issuances. The firm has strong links to DFIs and commercial lenders. A significant component of the practice is currently the financing of renewable energy projects. Debt restructurings and refinancings are another major element. Ruth Kirunga has a rapidly emerging reputation and experienced figure Oliver Fowler is a consultant to the firm.

Practice head(s):

Ruth Kirunga

Other key lawyers:

Oliver Fowler

Key clients

IFC

Stanbic Bank Kenya

Export Import Bank of China

African Export-Import Bank

Agence Française de Développement

Nordic Aviation Capital

GECAS

Nedbank

Standard Chartered Bank

European Investment Bank

Work highlights

  • Advised EIB and FMO on their $53m loan to Selenkei Investment and a $53m loan to Cedate for the development of two 40MW solar power generation projects in Kenya.
  • Advised Alten Energias Renovables on one of the largest solar power projects in Kenya and East Africa.
  • Advised various lenders on the restructuring of debt due by The Company for Habitat and Housing in Africa (Shelter-Afrique) to various lenders.

Mboya Wangong'u & Waiyaki Advocates

Mboya Wangong'u & Waiyaki Advocates has a particularly strong record in equity and debt capital markets offerings; this includes initial public offerings, rights issues and medium-term note (MTN) progammes.  It is equally noted for structured products and has extensive experience in infrastructure and energy project financings, along with public private partnerships (PPPs). Godwin Wangong’uGladys Mboya and Peter Waiyaki are all experienced in the broader banking, finance and capital markets sphere.

Practice head(s):

Gladys Mboya 

Other key lawyers:

Godwin Wangong’u; Peter Waiyaki 

Key clients

The National Treasury of Kenya

Africa Integras Kenya

Thika Way Investments

Export-Import Bank of China

African Development Bank Group

Housing Finance Development and Investment

Trapos

Work highlights

  • The establishment of a liquidity facility (The Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company- KMRC) to address inherent financing challenges and unlock liquidity for affordable housing in Kenya.
  • Advised on the structuring of asset-backed securities for Kenya Electricity Generating Company.
  • Advised Export-Import Bank of China on a loan to the government for three major infrastructure projects namely Nairobi- Naivasha SGR Project, the Garissa Kenya photovoltaic power station project and the development of Kiramenu Dam.

MMAN Advocates

MMAN Advocates is best known for its experience and expertise in aviation finance, in large part thanks to the presence of Suzanne Muthaura. This includes asset-backed securitisations and finance leases. The wider firm has a strong record in mainstream corporate finance and project finance. Nyawira Kirubi leads the banking and finance and real estate departments, while Waringa Njonjo is an experienced corporate and banking lawyer.

Practice head(s):

Nyawira Kirubi

Other key lawyers:

Nyawira Kirubi; Waringa Njonjo

Key clients

Ascent Capital

Textron Financial Corporation

Africair Aviation Leasing

The Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank

Work highlights

  • Advised BOC Aviation on all Kenya-related aspects of an asset-backed securitisation transaction involving the $548m issue of notes backed by 17 aircraft sold by BOC Aviation to the issuer group.
  • Advised on the finance lease for the acquisition of one Cessna Grand Caravan 208B aircraft by a Kenyan aircraft operator.
  • Advised on the finance lease for the acquisition of one Cessna Grand Caravan 208B aircraft by a Kenyan aircraft operator.

MMC ASAFO

MMC ASAFO's impressive senior team has landed a wide-ranging list of significant engagements, notably in the restructuring, corporate lending and capital markets segments. The firm has advised Equity Bank, KCB Bank Kenya and other major financial institutions on a series of notable financings and restructurings. Njoroge Nani Mungai is noted for capital markets offerings and Esther Njiru-Omulele  is recognised for capital markets and corporate lending. Mombasa-based Isaiah Mungai Kamau is also rated.

Practice head(s):

Esther Omulele; Isaiah Mungai Kamau

Other key lawyers:

Njoroge Nani Mungai; Isaiah Mungai Kamau

Testimonials

‘The firm is professionally qualified with experience and knowledge in structuring and issuing of project bonds. The practice is unique because it has a team with significant industry expertise in various sectors including energy, tax, banking, and regulatory work, and capital raising. The firm is involved in the biggest deals in the market. ’

‘The individuals have the ability to draft well-rounded legal opinions of any kind, and ensure that transactions are consistent with the applicable laws and regulations.’

‘The team is able to effectively map out strengths, opportunities, weaknesses, whereby they are able to chart out the strengths in a deal, and also know how to tackle weaknesses that might show up.’

Key clients

Homeboyz Entertainment

HF Group

Kenya Electricity Generating Company

Equity Bank (Kenya)

KCB Bank Kenya

The Co-operative Bank of Kenya

DIB Bank Kenya

Credit Bank

SBM Bank (Kenya)

Gulf African Bank

Work highlights

  • Advised HF Group on the restructuring of debt owed by its subsidiary HF Development & Investment.
  • Advised Homeboyz Entertainment on its intended listing on the Nairobi Securities Exchange.
  • Advised Equity Bank (Kenya) and Equity Bank on a syndicated finance involving multiple banking facilities advanced to a group of companies specialising in mining, processing and export of precious stones in the Republic of Tanzania.

Oraro & Company Advocates

Oraro & Company Advocates has deep connections to the finance sector, including in traditional lending and insolvency matters, along with compliance and banking disputes. Pamella Ager leads the banking and finance, and real estate departments; she is particularly noted for real estate finance. Nelly Gitau provides further expertise in corporate lending and project finance.

Practice head(s):

George Oraro SC; Pamella Ager

Other key lawyers:

Nelly Gitau

Key clients

Diamond Trust Bank

Absa Bank Kenya

Guaranty Trust Bank (Kenya)

Work highlights

  • Advised DTB in taking over transaction facilities granted by other banks to a company and a cooperative society.
  • Advised Absa Bank Kenya on a financing transaction involving two hoteliers.
  • Advised GT Bank on a financing transaction involving a property developer.

TripleOKlaw Advocates

TripleOKlaw Advocates has a fine record in the banking, finance and capital markets segment. It acts for a range of banks, borrowers and issuers on significant transactions and compliance programmes. It has landed a series of impressive engagements in the banking space, including corporate governance audits. It has also gained recognition for its work in capital markets-related issues connected to the launch of real estate investment trusts (REITs). Financial institutions M&A is another forte. Jinaro Kibet leads the department, while Stephen Mallowah is a key name for project finance and PPPs.

Practice head(s):

Jinaro Kibet; Stephen Mallowah

Testimonials

‘The firm has a reputation for conscientiousness and attention to detail, which is necessary in high value and/or high risk matters. The firm takes the time to understand our transactions so as to see how best to add value to them.’

‘The firm as a whole is very cohesive and knowledgeable in how to handle the instructions. They all display the same high level of conscientiousness and attention to detail which is the firm.’

‘They have a very diverse mix of services and in-house skills to deliver to a very high standard in Kenya.’

‘In the projects we have engaged them on, their response times are exceptional. We can ask them to meet an impossible deadline and they will deliver without question.’

‘The quality of the work and, in particular, the advice that is given through the process is very practical, solutions based and with well thought out explanations.’

Key clients

The National Treasury

Trademark East Africa

Acorn Holdings

ABSA Bank Kenya

Metropolitan Canon Life Assurance

Stanbic Bank Kenya

Credit Suisse

Imperial Healthcare East Africa

Siginon Group

SBM Bank Kenya