Rising Stars

Privatisation and projects in Kenya

Anjarwalla & Khanna

Anjarwalla & Khanna is a first port of call among clients for advice on large-scale projects, energy and infrastructure matters. The team, which is prominent in cross-border mandates, handles a full spectrum of work, including construction, finance transactions, M&A and dispute resolution. The department is increasingly active in renewable energy projects outside Kenya, including advising Berkeley Energy on a solar power complex in Madagascar. The firm continues to attract a mix of lender and developer engagements. Amyn Mussa leads the department, with support from key practitioners Ian Gaitta and Karim Lalji.

Practice head(s):

Amyn Mussa

Other key lawyers:

Ian Gaitta; Karim Lalji

Testimonials

‘This is a well rounded team that knows how to balance technical understanding and institutional sensitivity in structuring a solution that makes commercial and socially sustainable sense.’

‘They seem to understand that the advice we seek is to assist a business outcome and not simply achieve a book based benchmark. Flexible and adaptable.’

‘A&K has diverse team of highly competent legal and tax experts who offer world class legal support to their clients in relation to Project Finance. The firm has also embraced IT software known as Legatics which provides a plat form for tracking satisfaction of conditions precedent to financial close.’

‘Amyn Mussa has the ability to navigate through complex legal, commercial, practical and tax aspects of energy and large infrastructure projects and provide a solution that balances commercial interests of all parties involved in a transaction.’

Key clients

Berkeley Energy

Globeleq

El Sewedy Electric SAE

EH Venture Capital Rwanda

Kipeto Energy

Quantum Power East Africa

Japan Techno Co

Kenya Airways

Work highlights

  • Acting for Berkeley Energy, a renewable energy fund manager investing in Asian and African emerging markets, in connection with its investment in proposed energy storage facilities in Kenya and Malawi.
  • Advising Kipeto Energy, the second largest wind power facility in Kenya based at Kajiado, in connection with a host of issues post financial close, including advising on the structuring and setting up of a bird species conservancy, internal share transfers and matters relating to development and construction of the project and tax matters.
  • Acting for Quantum Power East Africa in connection with the development of a 30-35 MW modular geothermal power plant in Menengai, including drafting and negotiating a turnkey EPC construction contract and long-term spare parts and technical services agreement between the client and Marubeni.

Dentons Hamilton Harrison & Mathews

Dentons Hamilton Harrison & Mathews is at the forefront of the leading energy and infrastructure projects in Kenya, advising the likes of Kenya National Highways Authority, PricewaterhouseCoopers and World Bank. The department is noted for its ability to handle complex transactions and PPPs and is frequently engaged to advise government departments and international organisations. Andrew Mugambi is experienced in advising on PPP projects and drafting of project agreements. Peter Okaalet is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Richard Omwela

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Mugambi; Peter Okaalet; Daniel Wanjau Muriu

Key clients

China Road and Bridge Corporation

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC)

Government of Kenya

The National Roads Authorities in Kenya: Kenya National Highways Authority

Kenya Rural Roads Authority

Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA).

Work highlights

  • Acted as the Kenyan legal advisors of the private developer, China Road and Bridge Corporation, on the development, operation and maintenance of a dual carriageway with Class A standard that connects Mlolongo town with James Gichuru Road (the Nairobi Expressway).
  • Advised the various contracting authorities under the Road Annuity Programme on PPP Projects on the construction and rehabilitation of roads cutting across over 15 (of the 42) counties in Kenya.

Iseme, Kamau & Maema Advocates

Iseme, Kamau & Maema Advocates is highly regarded for its work on energy and projects matters across the continent, including matters in Kenya, Uganda and Somalia. The department is increasingly active in significant renewable energy projects and PPPs. Beatrice Nyabira, who heads the firm, has an excellent reputation in the energy sector. James Kamau is similarly a highly rated lawyer in the projects and privatisation field.

Practice head(s):

Beatrice Nyabira

Other key lawyers:

James Kamau; Christine Murangi; Cynthia Olotch; Eunice Mwikali

Testimonials

‘IKM Advocates’ strength lies in the high quality of its work, turnaround times and ability to serve the different players in the projects cycle. The firm has a brilliant projects and energy team comprising key sector experts, with the skills and experience that are needed to drive a project to close.’

‘They keep us updated on emerging trends in the energy sector that may have a current or potential impact on our project through their individualized alerts and thought-provoking articles in the local dailies.’

‘IKM’s team is competent, effective, reliable and available. Beatrice Nyabira, Cynthia Olotch, Christine Murangi and Eunice Mwikali have advised us on our project.’

‘Beatrice is very responsive and provides thorough and extensive advice. She digests complex legal issues and simplifies them for clients owing to her deep understanding of the subject. She is one of the star lawyers in the energy space.’

‘Cynthia is very experienced in energy projects. She provides advice that is clear and well organised.’

‘Christine has a very sharp mind and a deep understanding of energy projects.’

‘The IKM team provides practical and sophisticated advice in a timely manner based on deep sector experience that allows them to guide clients effectively.’

‘Beatrice Nyabira understands the needs of international clients looking to invest in Kenya and provides timely and practical advice.’

Key clients

African Development Bank

Botswana Oil Limited

United States International Development Finance Corporation

African Legal Support Facility

EPCO Builders

The Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund Ltd

Stanbic Bank Kenya Ltd

CDC Group Plc

Federal Government of Somalia

Malthe Winje Infrapower AS

Kenya Breweries Limited

Rareh Icon Solar Limited

Proparco

Unilever Kenya Limited

KTDA Power Company Limited

Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd

Japan Bank of International Cooperation

Selenkei Investments Limited and Cedate Limited No

World Bank

Work highlights

  • Acting for EPCO Builders Limited as the developer of over 5,000 affordable housing units under the Affordable Housing Program of the Government of Kenya.
  • Acting as international counsel to Botswana Oil Limited on the development of a bulk petroleum product storage terminal with a holding capacity of 171 million litres at Tshele Hills in Botswana which is being undertaken as a PPP.
  • Advising PwC, the receivers of Kinangop Wind Park Limited, the project SPV for a 60.8 MW wind power project.

Kaplan & Stratton Advocates

Kaplan & Stratton Advocates' practice covers various sectors in Kenya, including energy and transport. The team has a growing reputation for its ability to navigate complex PPP projects and recently advised the sponsors on one of the largest road transport infrastructure matters in East Africa, the Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit Highway. In the energy arena, the group has expertise in geothermal and solar power projects. Sam Wainaina has vast experience of infrastructure developments, while Kenneth Kamaitha is actively involved in local projects.

Practice head(s):

Sam Wainaina; Peter Hime

Other key lawyers:

Kenneth Kamaitha

Testimonials

‘Strong across the piece; give clear advice and are responsive.’

Key clients

European Investment Bank (EIB)

Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij Voor Ontwikkelingslanden N.V. (FMO)

Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG)

Agence Française de Développement (AFD)

International Finance Corporation (IFC)

The Export-Import Bank of China

PowerChina Group

Sinohydro Corporation

Vinci SA

Meridiam SAS

Stanbic Bank

Societe De Promotion et de Participation Pour la Cooperation Economique (Proparco)

Alten Energías Renovables

Work highlights

  • Advised Rift Valley Consortium on a PPP in Kenya for a project involving the widening, improvement, operation and maintenance of 245 Km of the Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit highway, a major transport corridor for Kenya and the East Africa region.
  • Advised Olsuswa Energy Limited in setting up the Olsuswa Geothermal Project, one of the few private initiatives for geothermal power generation in Kenya.
  • Advised Sinohydro Corporation Limited on a PPP – rehabilitation, upgrading, operation, and maintenance of the 66.5 Km Illasit-Njukini-Taveta road in Kenya as part of the first phase of Kenya’s 10,000 Km annuity road project.

Bowmans

Bowmans is increasingly active in matters associated with the world’s transition towards renewable energy. Its team is instructed by players in the entire commercial and industrial energy market, including equipment providers, developers, buyers and contractors. The department is also well-versed in oil and gas matters. Practice head Aleem Tharani has an excellent reputation in energy and road projects. Senior associate Edwin Baru is also a name to note.

Practice head(s):

Aleem Tharani

Other key lawyers:

Edwin Baru

Testimonials

‘Aleem Tharani is consistently exceptional.’

‘Edwin Baru is up and coming and very knowledgeable. Fast turnaround of questions and queries, always maintaining high standards of advice.’

‘Bowmans’ energy/infrastructure team has significantly strengthened since Aleem Tharani joined the firm. Bowmans now has a strong experience of the energy sector and can leverage great team members to offer high-quality services to its clients whilst keeping a commercial approach on the billing side.’

‘Aleem Tharani is doing an excellent job at Bowmans and brings a wealth of expertise to his clients, having worked on a large number of transactions in the energy/infrastructure sector over the last years. Not only is he very knowledgeable about the sector, but Aleem knows all the key stakeholders, is always available for his clients and is pragmatic/innovative in problem-solving.’

Key clients

Tullow Oil Plc, Total and Africa Oil

Frontier Energy II Alpha K/S

Frontier Energy II Beta K/S

Shandong Hi-Speed Group

Hass Infrastructure

GVR Infrastructure

Standard Bank of South Africa

Stanbic Bank Kenya Limited

Voltalia

Rumuruti Solar Generation Limited

Virunga Power Holdings

Proto Energy Limited

Globeleq Africa Limited

Windlab Developments Kenya Limited

Lake Turkana Wind Power

Zanren Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised the Kenya Joint Venture (led by Tullow, including Africa Oil and Total) on all its upstream and midstream aspects of the oil extraction by the Joint Venture from the Lokichar Basin in Northern Kenya.
  • Advised Globeleq Africa Limited on its acquisition of a 35 MW geothermal power plant located in the Menengai geothermal project area currently being developed by Quantum Power.
  • Acted as the lenders’ Kenyan law advisers on the financing of the Lot 15 and Lot 18. The project is being developed under the Kenya Roads Annuity Programme and involves Riamukurwe-Gatitu road in Nyeri County, Kanjuki-Mauktano road in Tharaka-Nithi and the Busia-Alupe bypass in Western Kenya.

Walker Kontos Advocates

Walker Kontos Advocates' projects and privatisation department has notable expertise in matters connected with the renewable energy sector, and it is equally strong acting for both sponsors and lenders. In addition, the firm is frequently involved in affordable housing and road infrastructure projects. Managing partner Michael Kontos has a wealth of experience in complex privatisation matters, while Peter M Mwangi and Deepen Shah provide regulatory advice in the context of major transactions.

Practice head(s):

Michael Kontos; Peter Muhiu Mwangi; Deepen Shah; Diana Situma; Martha Gitonga-Muturi

Testimonials

‘Very experienced, very up to date with the relevant laws and highly competent.’

‘Michael Kontos is experienced, very knowledgeable and practical. He is helpful and always available to answer questions and give advice.’

Key clients

International Finance Corporation

Overseas Private Investment Corporation

Consolidated Bank of Kenya Limited

SBM Bank (Mauritius) Limited

Coöperatieve Rabobank U.A.

Société de Promotion et de Participation Coopération Economique (PROPARCO)

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

Bank of Africa Group

Absa Bank Kenya Plc

Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden N. V. (FMO)

I&M Bank Limited

Citibank N.A.

The Trade and Development Bank

Standard Chartered Bank Limited

KCB Bank Kenya Limited

Jamii Bora Bank Limited

European Investment Bank

Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG)

GuarantCo

Norsad Finance Limited

CDC Group Plc

SANAD Fund for MSME

NCBA Bank Kenya Plc

Prime Bank Limited

Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company (KMRC)

World Bank Group

Saracota Enterprises Limited

Hajar Services Limited

Nedbank NA

Symbiotics SICAV (Lux)

SICAV-SIF

FirstRand Bank Limited

AKA European Export and Trade Bank

Global Partnerships Social Investment 5.0

Access to Clean Power Fund S.A.

Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Bonds S.A.

Cordiant Emerging Loan Fund IV

Allianz EM Loans S.C.S.

Panari Group

Global Climate Partnership Fund S.A.

Work highlights

  • Advised the project lenders in respect of loan facilities to be provided to a special purpose vehicle incorporated by the Rift Valley Connect in connection with the Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit Highway PPP Project.
  • Acted as Kenyan counsel to The Standard Bank of South Africa Limited and Stanbic Bank Kenya Limited as well as various DFIs including Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund and Deutsche Investitions-Und Entwicklungsgesellschaft Mph, the lenders in a project development transaction.
  • Advised the World Bank Group on carrying out a comprehensive legal review and study on the legal and regulatory framework for the setting and implementation of the Naivasha Affordable Housing Project.

ENSafrica

ENSafrica is increasingly active in the privatisation and projects space, advising on a number of project development transactions. The firm is notably involved in renewable energy matters in the hydro, wind and solar sectors. Nigel Shaw, who heads the energy and infrastructure practice, works with project finance expert Binti Shah. Amar Grewal-Thethy is also a key practitioner in the team.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Shaw

Other key lawyers:

Binti Shah; Amar Grewal-Thethy

Testimonials

‘ENS are a fairly new team however you would not know it; they have the right people with the right expertise and knowledge and are able to keep up with changing times. They have adopted relevant and useful technology in the delivery of their services which is highly appreciated as it has eased ways of doing business.’

‘Binti and her team remain a market leader not only by continued demonstration of undisputable expertise but also in the effort demonstrated in structuring and administering complex transactions.’

Key clients

Proparco

World Bank for the benefit of the Government of Kenya (Ministry of Energy)

Work highlights

  • Advised Proparco on the lending of two senior secured loans (divided into two $12.5m tranches) to finance Seed Co Group’s international expansion via a loan to Seed Co Zambia and the development of Seed Co Zimbabwe.
  • Advised World Bank on the legal, regulatory and institutional aspects of the solar and wind energy sector in Kenya in light of a proposed policy shift from a feed-in-tariff model to a renewable energy (solar and wind) auction model in Kenya.

MMAN Advocates

MMAN Advocates acts for key stakeholders across a variety of sectors, including construction, infrastructure, mining and public-private partnerships. The team often advises sponsors, developers and investors. Practice head Waringa Njonjo and Suzanne Muthaura are key contacts.

Practice head(s):

Waringa Njonjo

Other key lawyers:

Suzanne Muthaura; Carole Ayugi; Judy Kabubu; Monica Engola

MMC ASAFO

MMC ASAFO‘s projects and privatisation team is active in matters involving the education, health, housing, infrastructure and manufacturing sectors in Kenya. The firm has significant experience in acting for public entities on PPP programs. Esther Njiru-Omulele has expertise in transactional matters. Njoroge Nani Mungai has advised local and international developers on energy projects.

Practice head(s):

Esther Njiru-Omulele; Njoroge Nani Mungai

Key clients

United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO)

Bamburi Cement Limited

Student Factory Limited

Kenya Railways Corporation

Project Implementation Unit (PIU) of the National Treasury

Public Private Partnerships Unit (PPP Unit) of the National Treasury

The Government of Kenya through the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing & Urban Development

Project Implementation Unit (PIU) of the National Treasury

Public Private Partnerships Unit (PPP Unit) of the National Treasury

Kenya Wine Agency Limited (KWAL)

Work highlights

  • Advising the United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Officem(FCDO) with respect to the redevelopment of the Nairobi Central Railway Station and its surrounding areas into an iconic, multimodal, transit oriented urban development to be known as the Nairobi Railway City.
  • Advising Bamburi Cement Limited in an ongoing project involving the setting up of a solar photovoltaic power plant for generation of electricity to power certain operations at its Mombasa and Nairobi plants.
  • Acting for the Public Private Partnerships Unit of the Kenyan National Treasury, as part of the Genesis Analytics Pty-led consortium, on the development, operation and maintenance of a total of 34,900 bed-capacity students’ hostels to be undertaken by Moi University, University of Embu, South Eastern Kenya University, Kenya Technical Trainers College and Egerton University under a public private partnership (PPP) model.

Oraro & Company Advocates

Oraro & Company Advocates has a full-service projects and infrastructure team, advising on financing, contracts, public procurement and project structuring. The firm is involved in several cross-border mandates with clients from both Kenya and other global markets. George Oraro SC, Jacob Ochieng and Cindy Oraro are the main contacts.

Practice head(s):

George Oraro SC; Jacob Ochieng; Cindy Oraro

Testimonials

‘Relative to other firms in the market, Oraro does an excellent job collaborating across practice disciplines. They seem to have smaller staffing on matters, which seems to allow for greater collaboration among their subject matter experts. This allows them to provide comprehensive expert support in a very expedient manner.’

Key clients

China National Petroleum Corporation

Tata Chemicals Magadi Limited

Netherlands Water Partnership and Cardano Development Services

Sinohydro Corporation (K) Limited

Cytonn Investments Management PLC

Work highlights

  • Advising on a proposed $1.8 billion project to develop up to 350 MW of a geothermal power plant.
  • Negotiating with regulators on behalf of Tata Chemicals Magadi Limited and advising on the impact of Kenya’s overhauled mining law regime on the validity of mining leases.
  • Advising Netherlands Water Partnership and Cardano Development Services on the establishment of the Kenya Pooled Water Fund.