Firm Profile > G. Elias & Co > Lagos, Nigeria

G. Elias & Co

Dispute resolution Tier 1

The litigation team at G. Elias & Co has extensive experience of representing individual clients, and local and multinational companies, in commercial, financial and tax disputes at all court levels in Nigeria. The practice also has a strong track record defending multinational corporations in product liability cases. Employment disputes are another key area of specialisation. Gbolahan Elias is the chair of the practice. Senior associates Okechukwu Okoro and Steve Arubike are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Real estate and construction Tier 1

G. Elias & Co has a strong profile among foreign and Nigerian investors, as well as developers. Its work spans all sub-sectors of the real estate industry, including retail, offices, hospitality, logistics and residential. The team assists clients with asset acquisitions and disposals, finance transactions, concession agreements and zoning and regulatory matters, among others. On the contentious side, the firm also fields a strong team of litigators with experience of acting for real estate developers in commercial, contractual and construction-related disputes. Managing partner Gbolahan Elias works with Fred Onuobia and Lynda Chinweokwu.

Banking, finance and capital markets Tier 2

G. Elias & Co has extensive experience of handling project finance, share and asset acquisition finance and refinancing transactions. It is notably active in the telecoms, hospitality, energy (including oil and gas) and transport sectors. The firm also advises both domestic and international financial institutions on novel hedging arrangements, repurchase transactions, securities lending, forward sales, swaps and other derivatives transactions. Founding partner Gbolahan Elias and Fred Onuobia are the lead partners. Nosakhare Aguebor departed for an in-house position at Africa Finance.

Energy and natural resources Tier 2

G. Elias & Co advises developers, private equity fund managers, landowners, equity investors and lenders. Its work covers acquisitions and disposals of real estate properties and portfolios of assets, as well as strategic minority equity stakes and controlling interests. In addition, the team is experienced in leases, regulatory issues and permits, re-zoning, compulsory acquisitions and excisions. Managing partner Fred Onuobia is the main contact.

Practice head(s):

Shipping and transport Tier 2

G. Elias & Co predominantly advises on aircraft finance transactions and leasings, regulatory issues and contracts for the transport, warehousing and handling of goods by rail, road, air and sea. It also handles contentious maritime matters and commercial disputes in the transportation sector. Fidelis Adewole is the key contact.

Practice head(s):

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 3

At G. Elias & Co, the corporate and commercial team is particularly active in M&A related to the banking, insurance, transport, energy and telecoms industries. Its experience includes advising on acquisitions of issuing houses, savings and loan companies, microfinance banks and registrars, and on insurance industry mergers. Gbolahan EliasFred Onuobia and Fidelis Adewole are recommended.

The firm: G. Elias & Co (the “firm”) was founded in 1994 and have become one of Nigeria’s leading business law firms. The firm has always had an international outlook, a reputation for, and an outstanding record of, carrying out critical, innovative and complex work to the highest standards. The firm has advised and represented its clients on several of the most significant recent developments in Nigerian business law practice.

The firm is organized as seven practices covering eight industry sectors. The practice groups are: dispute resolution; corporate (including mergers and acquisitions and private equity); banking; capital markets; tax; intellectual property; and employment. The eight sectors are: financial services, oil-and-gas; electric power; telecommunications, media and technology; agribusiness, food and healthcare; trade and industry; transport and logistics; and construction and real estate (“fast moving consumer goods” occur in several of these sectors).

There are clients of many nationalities and every size in these sectors. They range from foremost global multinational enterprises to a number of ambitious, home-grown fledglings, from government-controlled enterprises (we have advised on numerous privatizations) to companies controlled entirely by private sector actors.

The firm is a member of Africa Legal Network (ALN), an association of leading independent law firms founded and based in Africa. The firm is ISO 9001:2008 certified.

Areas of practice: Banking: The firm advises international financiers, investors and sponsors on financing petroleum sector and public infrastructure and other projects and on structured trade finance transactions.

Contact: Fred Onuobia; tel: +234 1 460 7890; email:

Corporate: The firm advises on foreign investment and on corporate re-organisations as well as on the merger, sales and acquisitions of entire businesses or of significant minority stakes in businesses.

Contact: Gbolahan Elias, SAN; tel: +234 1 460 7890;

Intellectual property: The firm advises owners on registering intellectual property rights, on licensing those rights and on enforcing them in the event of infringement.

Contact: Fred Onuobia; tel: +234 1 460 7890; email:

Litigation and arbitration: The firm handles litigation and arbitration for foreign banks, manufacturers, oil companies and others in a wide variety of business disputes against private individuals, business entities and governmental bodies.

Contact: Gbolahan Elias, SAN; tel: +234 1 460 7890;

Tax: The firm advises on seeking tax exemptions, on structuring transactions with a view to achieving tax-efficiency and represents clients in tax audits and investigations, administrative hearings and litigation.

Contact: Fidelis Adewole; tel: +234 1 460 7890;

Capital markets: The firm also advises on both debt ans equity private ans placement and public offerings.

Contact: Segun Omoregie; tel: +234 1 460 7890;

Department Name Email Telephone
Corporate Gbolahan Elias
Corporate Fidelis Adewole
Banking Fred Onuobia
Banking Oluwatoyin Nathaniel
Capital markets Segun Omoregie
Capital markets Nosakhare Aguebor
Disputes Gbolahan Elias
Disputes Fidelis Adewole
Employment Fred Onuobia
Employment Okechukwu Okoro
Intellectual property Fred Onuobia
Intellectual property Oluwayemisi Falade
Tax Fidelis Adewole
Tax Stephen Arubike
Oil and gas Fred Onuobia
Oil and gas Oluwatoyin Nathaniel
Electric power Gbolahan Elias
Electric power Okechukwu Okoro
Trade and industry Segun Omoregie
Trade and industry Fidelis Adewole
Financial services Segun Omoregie
Financial services Oluwatoyin Nathaniel
Telecommunications, media and technology Fred Onuobia
Telecommunications, media and technology Stephen Arubike
Construction and real estate Gbolahan Elias
Construction and real estate Lynda Chinweokwu
Transport and logistics Fred Onuobia
Transport and logistics Oluwatoyin Nathaniel
Number of lawyers : 31
African Legal Network (ALN)

CLIENT: FSDH Merchant Bank Limited
COMPANY/FIRM: FSDH Merchant Bank Limited
TESTIMONIAL: We are satisfied with the top-quality services provided to us by G. Elias & Co. We will recommend    G. Elias & Co for work should and when opportunities present themselves.

CLIENT: First Bank of Nigeria Limited
COMPANY/FIRM: First Bank of Nigeria Limited
TESTIMONIAL: The services provided by G. Elias & Co was very effective and efficiently delivered. The advice and legal documentation were up to our expectation.

CLIENT: United Capital Plc
COMPANY/FIRM: United Capital Plc
TESTIMONIAL: G. Elias & Co is professional and committed to assigned tasks.

CLIENT: Transcorp Plc
COMPANY/FIRM: Transcorp Plc
TESTIMONIAL: G. Elias & Co displayed a high level of professionalism and commitment throughout the duration of our transaction. Such level of commitment and professionalism cut across every member of the firm that participated in the project. We will not hesitate to refer the firm to someone else that may require its legal services.

CLIENT: ACI Worldwide
TESTIMONIAL: G. Elias & Co. delivered excellent service.

We are dedicated to encouraging supportive and inclusive culture amongst our workforce. We believe that it is in our best interest to promote diversity and gender equality in the workplace. Our internal policies are designed to foster a workplace that promotes diversity, positivity and instils a “can-do” attitude in our personnel irrespective of their background or characteristics.

This diversity statement reinforces our commitment to enshrining equality and fairness in our work attitudes and to treat everyone equally irrespective of age, gender, race or belief.

We ensure that the selection of candidates for employment, promotion and training are merit-based. We recognise that the uniqueness of each individual largely determines their approach to work and the overall value they contribute to the organisation. We provide equal opportunity for our employees and encourage them to develop their full potential and utilise their unique talents. Hence, we do not place hard limits on the creativity of our employees in their drive to add value to the organisation.

We are therefore committed to creating an environment that (a) promotes dignity and respect for every employee, (b) does not tolerate any form of intimidation, bullying, or harassment, (c) provides training, development, and progression opportunities to all staff, (d) promotes equality in the workplace, which we believe is good management practice and makes sound business sense, (e) reviews all our employment practices and procedures so that fairness is maintained at all times, and (f) encourages anyone who feels they may have been subject to discrimination to raise their concerns so that those concerns are adequately investigated and where appropriate corrective measures applied.

To accommodate changing dynamics in our business practice and environment, we treat our diversity statement as a living document – constantly making revisions and monitoring its effectiveness as required.

We have for nearly two decades had an international outlook and a reputation for, and an outstanding record of, carrying out critical, innovative and complex work to the highest standards of excellence.


1. We are experienced in working with foreign clients of every size in a wide range of practices and sectors and on assignments of every complexity, magnitude and novelty. We have well in excess of 100 foreign clients and the largest single national block of these are clients whose ultimate parent headquarters are located in the USA (“USA Clients”). We have at least one Fortune 100 USA Client, and at least two USA Clients outside the Fortune 100, in every one of our eight practice and sector groups: disputes; energy; projects; corporate; finance; tax; commercial; and New Economy (by which we mean media, entertainment, telecommunications, technology, and “Fintech”).

2. We are members of Africa’s leading collective of business law firms, the Africa Legal Network. This is an alliance of leading independent top-tier law firms in Africa. The firms are located in sixteen countries and four major regional economic groupings – EAC, ECOWAS, SADC, and COMESA – with a combined population of 700 million people. ALN also works closely with affiliates in the United Arab Emirates and Mauritius. ALN firms share common values, standards, training, technology, branding and business development and are committed to working together to provide extensive coverage and on-the-ground experience. By leveraging the expertise and skills of each member firm, the group offers seamless delivery of legal, advisory and transactional services, with a focus on complex and multi-jurisdictional matters. By working closely together, ALN member firms regularly manage deals across jurisdictions using a “one-stop shop” approach.


3. We have strength and depth in all of our eight practice and sector groups. One of our senior partners is a New York qualified lawyer and has three years’ experience working as a regular associate in a premier New York Law firm. We are an independent business law practice led by a partnership into which associates who have served an “apprenticeship” with the firm may be admitted. Our lawyers are talented and motivated and undergo continuous training for them to become proficient, versatile and business-minded legal practitioners. Our lawyers also attend both publicly-available and bespoke courses led by professional instructors from outside the firm both in Nigeria and abroad on other legal subjects and on non-law subjects such as basic accounting and investment banking. We strive to develop our associates such that each of them will become both a general strategic counsellor and a specialized expert in one or more area(s) of what we do. Every assignment that we take on is overseen by a partner who will be responsible for the quality of the service that we render and liaise regularly with the client on the progress of the work.