Firm Profile > Walker Kontos Advocates > Nairobi, Kenya

Walker Kontos Advocates
HAKIKA HOUSE, BISHOPS ROAD
PO BOX 60680 - 00200
NAIROBI
Kenya

Banking, finance and capital markets Tier 1

Walker Kontos Advocates has maintained activity levels through a series of engagements in distressed debt and insolvency. It advised Stanbic Bank Kenya on the proposed term loan and working capital facilities for Kenafric Industries. It remains a market leader in debt capital markets transactions. Michael Kontos and Deepen Shah have excellent reputations.

Privatisation and projects Tier 1

Walker Kontos Advocates has been at the forefront of the renewable energy sector for some time. Active in both the project development and project finance spaces, it has further developed its standing in infrastructure finance, especially roads, and in the burgeoning PPP environment, particularly in accommodations. It advised Stanbic Bank Kenya on the financing of Lots 3 and 32 of Phase 1A of the Kenya Roads Programme. It is also building a presence in off-grid power solutions, including captive solar and wind projects. The firm benefits from its outstanding connections to international lenders, including major development finance institutions, including International Finance Corporation. Michael Kontos has an outstanding reputation, as does Peter M Mwangi, Diana Situma and Rahma Karanja.

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 2

Walker Kontos Advocates has an outstanding record in strategic and private equity M&A. The firm has an especially impressive history in financial institutions transactions and deals in other highly regulated sectors. It advised SBM Bank (Kenya) on its acquisition of certain assets and liabilities from Chase Bank (Kenya), this was the first receivership transaction to occur under the Kenya Deposit Insurance Act. The firm is also making an impression in renewable energy sector investments and in distressed M&A. Michael Kontos is a market leader in big-ticket M&A, while Deepen Shah and Peter M Mwangi provide further senior expertise.

Real estate and construction Tier 2

Walker Kontos Advocates has deep traditions in the real estate sector and maintains a strong understanding of land regulations and the legislative environment. It advised the World Bank on a comprehensive legal review of the legal and regulatory framework for the launch of the Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company. It is notable for its advisory and structuring experience, and is now exploiting this expertise in a number of secondary market deals. Peter M Mwangi is hugely experienced.

Dispute resolution Tier 3

Walker Kontos Advocates has acted in some of the biggest insolvency cases of recent years and has earned roles on a series of arbitration-related court proceedings. The team acted for Equity Bank in a breach of contract claim against the County Government of Narok. Gregory Karungo and Paul Ogunde are the key partners.

The firm: Walker Kontos was founded in 1988 by Peter Walker and Alexandra Kontos. Today, the firm has grown to comprise nine partners, 12 associates, five legal assistants, and over 35 support staff offering expert legal advice and support services to businesses, corporate entities, banks and financial institutions (including microfinance institutions), governments, multinationals, state corporations, diplomatic missions, NGOs, development agencies, and private clients.

The firm’s focus lies in corporate and commercial law in Kenya and the region with particular emphasis on M&A, capital markets, corporate and project finance, energy, banking and securitisation, company law, privatisation, conveyancing, and property law and infrastructure. The dedicated litigation team handles commercial litigation, corporate recovery and ADR matters.

In 2016, Walker Kontos entered into a strategic alliance with global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, with whom it has forged a strong mutual understanding and working relationship. They share the firm’s vision for growth and – with more than 3,800 lawyers and a presence in more than 50 cities across the world – have a verifiable reputation as a global leader in legal services. Operating in Burundi, Morocco, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe, they also have one of the largest legal footprints in Africa.

Areas of practice: Banking, finance and securitisations: as counsel to a number of commercial banks and mortgage finance institutions, the firm advises on various aspects relating to their day-to-day activities, new and upcoming banking legislation and prudential regulations as well as taking a proactive approach in a dynamic and evolving sector. The firm also advises development finance institutions (including IFC, EIB, DEG, FMO and PROPARCO) on various local and cross-border corporate and project finance transactions, syndications and debt restructuring transactions which require harmonisation as a result of multi-jurisdictional conflicts. Recently, the firm acted for Stanbic Bank Kenya Limited in connection with the proposed term loan and working capital facilities for the aggregate sum of US$25m to  a company in the manufacturing (confectionery) sector and guaranteed by a related company.

The firm also acted for Standard Chartered Bank Limited in relation to the US$35m loan facility granted, in relation to the purchase of a  mall in Uganda, to a subsidiary to be incorporated in Uganda for that purpose and secured by a mix of English, Ugandan and Kenyan law security created by the sponsors and related parties.

Mergers and acquisitions: the firm advises on a number of M&A transactions, both as counsel to the vendor and the purchaser. Its M&A work extends to advising on joint ventures, partnerships, management buy-outs and equity participations. The firm has acted in most of the recent M&As involving banks and financial institutions in Kenya.

The firm recently advised SBM Bank (Kenya) Limited in the acquisition of certain assets and the assumption of certain liabilities from and of Chase Bank (Kenya) Limited (In Receivership). The deal was innovative as it was the first receivership transaction to occur under the Kenya Deposit Insurance Act.  Accordingly, it was necessary to find ways to navigate around gaps in the legislation to allow the deal to occur.  We also acted for Prime Bank Limited (PBL) in the equity investment by AfricInvest Fund III LLC and Catalyst Fund II LP in consideration of shares in PBL.

Capital markets: the firm advises a wide client base including commercial banks and corporates on initial public offerings, rights issues, note and bond programmes including cross-listings on the five regional stock exchanges. The firm has acted for several commercial banks in their rights issue, IPOs and cross-listings.  We advised Kenya Electricity Generating Company Limited in its KES 28bn rights issue as well as in the subscription of its untaken shares following the rights issue by Public Investment Corporation SOC Ltd.

Energy: the firm has acted in recent ground-breaking transactions in the energy (renewable and traditional) and infrastructure sectors. It advises on all facets typical to transactions in these sectors such as applicable regulations, government support, direct agreements, EPC contracts and all local law security documents. On the sponsor side, the firm guides its clients on all set-up and regulatory matters and helps them to navigate the complexities of Kenyan land law. Michael Kontos and Rahma Karanja are currently advising clients in the development of a 40MW solar PV power project and the development of a 50MW wind farm project.

Real estate/conveyancing: in addition to acting for banks and financial institutions in securities over real property, the firm advises real estate developers on projects from inception to third party sales. Its experience is diverse and includes complex leasing and management structures for the development of residential estates and apartments as well as industrial estates, business parks and shopping malls. One of the Firm’s partners has been appointed to various task forces on land law, including most recently on the gazetted Regulations under the Land Act and the Land Registration Act. The firm is also currently advising Prabhaki Developers in connection with the development of an industrial park comprising 23 warehouses.

Corporate, commercial and company law: in this capacity, the firm is called upon to advise on a wide range of matters which affects clients’ day-to-day business. These are as varied as incorporation and start-up, joint ventures, corporate and management structuring, share issues, employment law, licensing and regulatory matters, financing, product development, environmental compliance matters and sales and acquisitions.

Corporate recovery and litigation: the firm’s litigation team primarily focuses on corporate recovery, employment, and insurance matters where principal clients include most of the commercial banks in Kenya and insurance companies. It has acted for client banks and receivers not only in debt collection and in the realisation of securities, but also in examining and putting together viable pre-receivership alternatives. The firm has also prosecuted and defended insurance claims including workmen’s compensation, employer liability and running down matters.

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking and finance Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Banking and finance Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Banking and finance Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Banking and Finance Peter Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Mergers and acquisitions Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Mergers and acquisitions Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Mergers and acquisitions Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Mergers and acquisitions Diana N Situma dsituma@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Mergers and acquisitions Martha Muturi mgitonga@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Capital markets Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Capital markets Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Capital markets Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Capital markets Diana N Situma dsituma@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Energy Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Energy Rahma W Karanja rkaranja@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Energy Diana Situma dsituma@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Energy Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Real estate Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Real estate Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Real Estate Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Real Estate Martha Muturi mgitonga@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Private Equity Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Private Equity Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Private Equity Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Litigation, arbitration and ADR Gregory Karungo Ngethe gkarungo@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Litigation, arbitration and ADR Paul Ogunde pogunde@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Insolvency and restructuring Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Insolvency and restructuring Paul Ogunde pogunde@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Project finance Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Project finance Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Project finance Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Project finance Diana Situma dsituma@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Corporate, commercial and company law Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Corporate, commercial and company law Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Corporate, commercial and company law Peter Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Corporate, commercial and company law Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Corporate, commercial and company law Diana Situma dsituma@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Corporate, commercial and company law Rahma Karanja rkaranja@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Corporate, commercial and company law Martha Muturi mgitonga@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Privitisation Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Privitisation Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Employment and ESOPS Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Employment and ESOPS Gregory Karungo Ngethe gkarungo@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Intellectual property Rahma W Karanja rkaranja@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Intellectual property Gregory Karungo Ngethe gkarungo@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Regulatory and law reform Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Regulatory and law reform Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Regulatory and law reform Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Regulatory and law reform Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Insurance Alexandra Kontos akontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2719787
Insurance Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Insurance Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Aviation Deepen N Shah dshah@walkerkontos.com +254 20 27130323-6
Aviation Michael Kontos mkontos@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718431
Government, diplomatic missions and NGOs Peter M Mwangi pmwangi@walkerkontos.com +254 20 2718430
Photo Name Position Profile
Mrs Martha Gitonga Muturi  photo Mrs Martha Gitonga Muturi
Ms Rahma Karanja  photo Ms Rahma Karanja
Mr Gregory Karungo  photo Mr Gregory Karungo
Mrs Alexandra Kontos  photo Mrs Alexandra Kontos
Mr Michael Kontos  photo Mr Michael Kontos
Mr Peter M Mwangi  photo Mr Peter M Mwangi
Mr Paul Ogunde  photo Mr Paul Ogunde
Mr Deepen Shah  photo Mr Deepen Shah
Miss Diana Situma  photo Miss Diana Situma
Number of partners : 9
Number of associates : 12
Amharic
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Loan Markets Association
strategic alliance with Norton Rose Fullbright