Firm Profile > Webber Wentzel > Johannesburg, South Africa

Webber Wentzel
South Africa

Banking and finance Tier 1

Webber Wentzel has a broad-based financing, DCM and finance regulatory practice and has deepened its credentials in cross-border financings. Kathy ShepherdMuhammad Sader, Mark Kyle, English law-qualified Ryan Nelson and asset finance specialist Scott Edmundson  are highly rated. Johann Scholtz is recommended for bank regulatory matters and Karen Couzyn is a leader in DCM, structured finance and securitisation work. Khurshid Fazel, a recognised leader in preference share fundings, joined from Allen & Overy (South Africa) LLP to reinforce the senior bench. Johan de Lange left the firm to join Prime Kapital Development in Romania.

Practice head(s):

Muhammad Sader; Brian Dennehy


You only get excellent customer-orientated service. They go out of their way to meet your deadlines and make sure they fully understand the task at hand.

The team’s capabilities cover the full banking and finance law spectrum.

Exceptional service, professionalism and a commercial approach make for a team which is difficult to rival in the local market.

Karen Couzyn’s depth of experience in debt capital markets are complemented by her impressive turnaround times and availability. She is the go to attorney for debt capital markets work.

Mark Kyle deploys his hands-on banking experience in combination with deep technical know how to deliver technically sound, commercially appropriate advice in a professional manner.

Key clients

Rand Merchant Bank

Absa Bank

The Standard Bank of South Africa


Murray & Roberts

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 1

Webber Wentzel frequently lands many of the headline and transformational deals in the market, whether it be strategic M&A or private equity transactions. Major corporate restructurings and high-value listings also form a significant part of the practice. Sally Hutton is a recognised leader in private equity transactions, while also serving as the firm's managing partner. Similarly, Christo Els is senior partner and a consistent force in big-ticket M&A. Colin du Toit and Gareth Driver are also outstanding individuals, while Jesse Watson is emerging as a future leader in major ECM and M&A deals. Warren DrueMark Phillips, Safiyya Patel and Ziyanda Ntshona are also rated. Cape Town partner Adam Ismail has also led a number of the firm's major transaction engagements.

Practice head(s):

Safiyya Patel


Webber Wentzel is outstanding and is head and shoulders above its peers particularly when dealing with the most complex and fundamentally transformational transactions.’

A dynamic, young team that is commercial and practical, and consistently delivers beyond expectations.

It is outstanding, proactive, commercially insightful and has unmatched levels of commitment.

Sally Hutton is top of the pile. Big private equity firms want her on their deals.

Jesse Watson combines exceptional intellect with deep knowledge of his subject, a down to earth and practical problem solving ability, a charming disposition and a work ethic like none other. Jesse is our chosen go to person under all circumstances.

Warren Drue goes above and beyond the call of duty for clients. He is a strong negotiator, very commercial and practical.

Key clients

CSH Group

Naspers Group

African Rainbow Capital

Paycorp Group

Telkom S

Liberty Two Degrees

Mondi Group

Southern Pharma

Multi-Choice Group

Anglo American

Competition Tier 1

Webber Wentzel has impressed in big-ticket mergers, competition-related damages claims, market investigations and other prohibited practice engagements. It has a number of very senior practitioners within the team. Martin Versfeld is highly rated for prohibited practices and litigation, while Desmond Rudman, Robert Wilson and Daryl Dingley are also senior names. Burton Phillips is an emerging talent.

Practice head(s):

Daryl Dingley


The team is always available, very easy to communicate with and always patient in answering questions and explaining complex concepts.

The team is very professional, knowledgeable and results orientated.

The team has incredibly diverse knowledge and capabilities. They also have extensive cross-border knowledge.

Desmond Rudman has vast experience in competition law spanning over a large range of sectors.

Martin Versfeld is key in pulling the different skills together to make a strong team.

We use the services of Robert Wilson because of his absolute excellence, deep knowledge and understanding of his area of expertise. Robert is easily accessible, always very helpful and intellectually of the highest standard.

Burton Phillips clearly had a mastery of the file, was highly organised and drove the engagement.

Key clients

Uber South Africa Technology

JP Morgan

Standard Chartered

Bank of America


Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group

Dispute resolution Tier 1

Webber Wentzel is a recognised leader in South Africa and is increasingly active in Africa-wide disputes, including international arbitrations. The firm has gained considerable recognition for its work in public law and judicial review cases, international arbitration and class actions. Trevor Versfeld and Stuart McCafferty consistently impress with Nick Alp noted for class actions. Kathryn Gawith is rated for professional liability, while Vlad Movshovich is a key name for commercial litigation and international arbitration. Priyesh Daya leads the dispute resolution practice and Sarah McKenzie is another name to note. Julian Jones joined from Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr in 2020.

Practice head(s):

Priyesh Daya


Diligent advice that is appropriately delivered on time and on point. The team is knowledgeable, reputable, responsive, attentive, has industry experts and a willingness to go the extra mile.

Priyesh Daya, partner, solution seeker taking into account value for money of the service, development of juniors. Garth Duncan, Senior Associate, practical, get rid of non issues, mentoring of juniors, value for money service.’

Vlad Movshovich is very competent, brilliant and a very difficult opponent.

Sarah McKenzie is amazing in terms of her client front-facing and her great advice.

Key clients

MTN Group


Tobacco Institute of South Africa

Grancy Property

Versatex Trading 500

Employment Tier 1

Webber Wentzel has an immensely experienced employment team with an extensive record in various industries, most notably in the mining sector. Johan Olivier, Nick Robb, Pamela Stein and Lizle Louw are among the most experienced employment specialists in the market, Louw joined the firm in January 2019 from ENSafrica. At senior associate level, Jessica Braum and Nivaani Moodley are the key names.

Practice head(s):

Johan Olivier


They are knowledgeable and experienced in the field. They have depth in employment law. Their response turnaround is excellent.

Key clients

Rustenburg Platinum Mines

Royal Bafokeng Platinum

Northam Platinum

The South African Airways Pilots Association

SPP Pumps

Investment funds Tier 1

Webber Wentzel is the market leader in South Africa thanks to its exceptional expertise in fund structuring and tax expertise. The team is building its presence in Africa-focused funds and for first-time fund managers. Nicole Paige is highly regarded and is supported by key names Michael Denenga and Ashford Nyatsumba.

Practice head(s):

Nicole Paige

Key clients

African Infrastructure Investment Managers

African Rainbow Capital

The Carlyle Group

Ethos Private Equity

South Suez Africa Fund

Mining Tier 1

Webber Wentzel has a strong track record in the mining sector with outstanding credentials in M&A, regulatory and employment issues, among others. The firm has successfully made inroads into the wider Africa market, including mining projects and M&A. Bruce Dickinson is a leader in mining M&A, backed ably by Alison Mills, and Manus Booysen is at the forefront of mining law matters. Jonathan Veeran is also rated for regulatory issues. Rita Spalding and health and safety specialist Kate Collier are also rated.

Practice head(s):

Bruce Dickinson


This practice arguably has the most in-depth knowledge and most years of combined experience in mining and mineral law and practice in South Africa. Their technical knowledge of the law in this practice area is unsurpassed. They combine these skills with good old-fashioned values of integrity, hard work and client service. This is a first-class mining law practice.

Alison Mills is consistently a safe pair of hands for complex transactions. I have worked with her for more than a decade now and have yet to see her drop a ball.

Bruce Dickinson and the team are exceptional. They are responsive, knowledgeable and creative problem solvers and always fully committed to your matter. You are are made to feel as though you are the only client.

Both Alison Mills and Bruce Dickinson have also proven to be fantastic project managers, which can be invaluable for an often capacity constrained in-house counsel.

Manus Booysen is an old school lawyer who devotes enormous amounts of time and energy to understanding his clients needs and finding the best solutions. His knowledge of his field is unsurpassed in the industry, and clients can expect the highest quality advice from him.

Rita Spalding is a savvy and dedicated commercial lawyer. She is great with clients and delivers work of exceptional quality within a short turn-around time. It is always a pleasure to deal with her.

Key clients

Anglo American Group

Palabora Mining Company


De Beers

Rio Tinto



Harmony Gold Mining Company

Exxaro Resources


Projects and infrastructure Tier 1

Webber Wentzel has an established presence in South Africa and Africa-wide projects, this position being further reinforced by the return of Jason van der Poel to the firm from Allen & Overy (South Africa) LLP. The team has gained further traction in small-scale embedded generation projects. Alexandra Cluver leads the team, which also includes Alessandra Pardini, who is commended for EPC and O&M documentation expertise, and Alexandra Felekis.

Practice head(s):

Alexandra Cluver


Webber’s projects practice is top in South Africa. It is responsive, insightful and with a countrywide knowledge set that is second to none.

One of the top project finance teams located on the African continent. It is strong in power and infrastructure.

The team has very strong project finance experience, including on the finance documents side as well as on the EPC and O&M side. The team is very well experienced and understands the complexities and nuances of project finance and this instills confidence.

Alexandra Cluver is a top finance partner working in project finance on the African continent. She is young but comes out on top with excellent commercial judgement.

Alessandra Pardini and her team bring a commercial thinking to project documentation and are able to find unique and workable solutions to legal agreements without losing legal substance.’

Alessandra Pardini is accessible and able to openly raise concerns on project documentation very early in a project. She brings a commercial approach and seeks the fine line between ensuring her client is well protected, but also enabling the project to reach financial close.

Key clients




Black Rhino Group

Globeleq Advisors

Shipping and transport Tier 1

Webber Wentzel has a fully rounded practice covering key transportation sectors, with further ports and logistics expertise. Along with a mainstream shipping practice, the firm is at the forefront of aviation and rail. Maritime specialists Gavin Fitzmaurice, Patrick Holloway and Andre Bowley are highly rated, as is asset finance expert Scott Edmundson.

Practice head(s):

Andre Bowley, Gavin Fitzmaurice and Patrick Holloway


They have a broad spectrum of experience and knowledge in admiralty law.’

I found the team to be practical and user friendly.’

They have an excellent can do attitude, are good lawyers and find creative solutions if required.

Gavin Fitzmaurice is my go to lawyer in most cases. He is extremely easy to work with, providing clear and comprehensive advice. He is tenacious and a winner.

Patrick Holloway is a first rate operator and very good lawyer.

Andre Bowley has a wealth of legal knowledge and practical solutions.’

Andre Bowley is excellent, very proactive and easy to deal with and also comes up with solutions that work.’

Key clients

The Navigators Group

PICC Property and Casualty Company

Skuld P&I Club

Hellenic Bank

Robben Island Museum

Tax Tier 1

Webber Wentzel's sizeable tax practice has achieved even greater prominence in private equity, cross-border M&A, distressed transactions, restructurings, disputes and transfer pricing. Brian Dennehy continues to impress in the private equity field with senior figure Anne Bennett at the forefront of international tax issues. Graham Viljoen is also highly rated for M&A and private equity fund structuring, while Nina Keyser in Cape Town is a leader in tax disputes.

Practice head(s):

Brian Dennehy; Graham Viljoen

Key clients

African Rainbow Capital



Old Mutual

Actis Private Equity

Ethos Private Equity

Intellectual property Tier 2

Webber Wentzel remains noted for commercial and transactional work. Thanks to the firm's illustrious standing in South Africa and the solid reputation of the IP team, it has been able to attract a range of big-name clients and some illustrious engagements. Cape Town-based Leanne Mostert leads the team, which includes Bernadette Versfeld in Johannesburg.

Practice head(s):

Leanne Mostert


The IP team is very diverse with skill-sets ranging from technology to trade marks. They have traditionally upheld international standards of service delivery, but their association with Linklaters serves to further strengthen their international service delivery standards for clients.

In the field of trade marks, they have shown adeptness and the cool heads of experienced practitioners.

Bernadette Versfeld is proactive, very responsive, knowledgeable and clear in her communications. She is certainly my go to IP attorney in South Africa.

Key clients

Southern Pharma

The South African Institute of Architects


Autozone Holdings

Anglo American

Budweiser Budvar

Real estate Tier 2

Webber Wentzel has a fine record in high-value asset acquisitions and disposals, along with the key real estate aspects of big-ticket corporate transactions and restructurings. Sulani Jooste leads the team from Cape Town, where Zunaid Rawoot  is also rated. Mark McIntosh is a key name in Johannesburg.

Practice head(s):

Sulani Jooste


Knowledge and experience is beyond questions. The team understands our requirements and is fully committed to meeting and exceeding expectations.

We are appreciative that the team has the knowledge, expertise and skills to operate in a dual environment being the public sector as well as the private sector.

Sulani Jooste is approachable, she together with her team knows what is expected. Matters are attended to speedily and professionally.

Zunaid Rawoot and his team are always available and offer us customised solutions. Zunaid is flexible and offers custom purpose contracts.

Zunaid Rawoot is professional and turns around our requests in good time. He is agile in providing support and advice for our business.’

Key clients

Anglo Operations


Absa Bank


Investec Bank

Xtraprops 66

Start Trust

FirstRand Bank

Construction Tier 3

Webber Wentzel is primarily focused on the South Africa market though with a significant portion of Africa-wide engagements. The team is actively involved in major infrastructure builds and big-ticket disputes. Alessandra Pardini and Megan Jarvis are rated for EPC and transactional matters. Tyron Theessen, who has recently promoted to the partnership, has achieved considerable market recognition, while Priyesh Daya is experienced in major construction disputes.

Practice head(s):

Robert Appelbaum; Priyesh Daya


A good client support orientated firm.’

Priyesh Daya a practical outcome based lawyer.

Tyron Theessen is a really good lawyer. He’s transparent and is not afraid to discuss the issues with you. I enjoy working with him.

Key clients

Astron Energy




EOH Industrial Technologies

Mota-Engil Engenharia e Construcao

The firm:  With over 150 years of experience and industry knowledge, Webber Wentzel is the leading full-service law firm on the African continent. They combine the collective knowledge and experience of their firm to provide clients with seamless, tailored and commercially-minded business solutions within record times.

They value excellence and innovation and work with their clients to help them achieve success in whatever they do. Their passion to help their clients achieve their goals shows in the quality of the delivery of their service. They aim to add value in everything they do and to be the trusted adviser to their clients.

Their alliance with Linklaters and deep relationships with outstanding law firms across Africa provide clients with the best expertise wherever they do business.

They believe in making a positive contribution to the communities in which they work and  are proud to call themselves home to one of South Africa’s most long-standing, dedicated pro-bono practices. They are committed to promoting access to justice for all South Africans, upholding the Constitution and protecting the rule of law. Their Corporate Social Investment initiatives also focus on supporting initiatives and projects that promote access to justice, education and access to education and socio-economic development.

As a firm, they are committed to transformation and diversity.  They are an accredited Level 2 broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) contributor and are engaged in a number of initiatives aimed at driving transformation and inclusivity within their organisation, the legal sector and society.

Department Name Email Telephone
Administrative law Glenn Penfold +27115305220
Banking and finance Muhammad Sader +27115305269
Business rescue and restructuring Khurshid Fazel +27115305587
Capital markets Jesse Watson +27115305811
Competition Daryl Dingley +27115305285
Corporate/M&A Safiyya Patel +27115305853
Corporate investigations Nick Alp +27115305339
Dispute resolution Priyesh Daya +27115305358
Employment Johan Olivier +27115305194
Intellectual property Leanne Mostert +27214317344
International arbitration Nick Alp +27115305339
Investment funds Nicole Paige +27115305857
IT and telecommunications Peter Grealy +27115305218
Media and broadcasting Peter Grealy +27115305218
Private equity Nicole Paige +27115305857
Projects Alexandra Cluver +27214317379
Real estate Sulani Jooste +27214317184
Regulatory (including financial) Johan Henning +27115305385
Tax Brian Dennehy +27115305998
Transfer pricing Anne Bennett +27115305886
Photo Name Position Profile
Mr Brett Abraham  photo Mr Brett Abraham
 Nick Alp photo Nick Alp
Mr Robert Appelbaum  photo Mr Robert Appelbaum
 Desiree Bayman photo Desiree Bayman
 Anne Bennett photo Anne Bennett
Ms Tamryn Blackbeard  photo Ms Tamryn Blackbeard
Ms Ashleigh Blair  photo Ms Ashleigh Blair
Mr Andre Bowley  photo Mr Andre Bowley
 Jessica Braum photo Jessica Braum
Ms Madelein Burger  photo Ms Madelein Burger
Ms Mehnaaz Bux  photo Ms Mehnaaz Bux
Mr Rashaad Carrim  photo Mr Rashaad Carrim
Ms Tahera Cassim  photo Ms Tahera Cassim
 Alexandra Cluver photo Alexandra Cluver
Ms Carla Collett  photo Ms Carla Collett
Mr Kenneth Coster  photo Mr Kenneth Coster
 Karen Couzyn photo Karen Couzyn
Mr Dylan Cron  photo Mr Dylan Cron
Mr Haydn Davies  photo Mr Haydn Davies
Mr Priyesh Daya  photo Mr Priyesh Daya
Ms Pooja Dela  photo Ms Pooja Dela
 Michael Denenga photo Michael Denenga
Mr Brian Dennehy  photo Mr Brian Dennehy
Mr Bruce Dickinson  photo Mr Bruce Dickinson
 Gareth Driver photo Gareth Driver
 Warren Drue photo Warren Drue
 Colin Du Toit photo Colin Du Toit
 Scott Edmundson photo Scott Edmundson
Ms Kirsten Eiser photo Ms Kirsten Eiser
Ms Khurshid Fazel  photo Ms Khurshid Fazel
Ms Alexandra Felekis  photo Ms Alexandra Felekis
Mr Gavin Fitzmaurice  photo Mr Gavin Fitzmaurice
Mr Jon Forman  photo Mr Jon Forman
 Kathryn Gawith photo Kathryn Gawith
Mr Matthew Gibson  photo Mr Matthew Gibson
Mr Peter Grealy  photo Mr Peter Grealy
Mr Seraj Haroun  photo Mr Seraj Haroun
Ms Jacqui Harvey  photo Ms Jacqui Harvey
Mr Moray Hathorn  photo Mr Moray Hathorn
Mr Johan Henning  photo Mr Johan Henning
Mr Kevin Hillis  photo Mr Kevin Hillis
Ms Ziningi Hlophe  photo Ms Ziningi Hlophe
Mr Christopher Holfeld  photo Mr Christopher Holfeld
Ms Sally Hutton  photo Ms Sally Hutton
 Megan Jarvis photo Megan Jarvis
Ms Carey-Anne Jennings  photo Ms Carey-Anne Jennings
Mr Julian Jones  photo Mr Julian Jones
 Charl Jonker photo Charl Jonker
Ms Merlita Kennedy  photo Ms Merlita Kennedy
 Nina Keyser photo Nina Keyser
Mr Mzukisi Kota  photo Mr Mzukisi Kota
Mr Cor Kraamwinkel  photo Mr Cor Kraamwinkel
Ms Janine Lamb  photo Ms Janine Lamb
 Lizle Louw photo Lizle Louw
Mr Mlu Mahlangu  photo Mr Mlu Mahlangu
Ms Venashrie Mannar  photo Ms Venashrie Mannar
Ms Lindi Marais  photo Ms Lindi Marais
Mr Thabang Masingi  photo Mr Thabang Masingi
 Mark McIntosh photo Mark McIntosh
Ms Sarah McKenzie  photo Ms Sarah McKenzie
Mr Craig Miller  photo Mr Craig Miller
Ms Alison Mills  photo Ms Alison Mills
Mr Dario Milo  photo Mr Dario Milo
Ms Nozipho Mngomezulu  photo Ms Nozipho Mngomezulu
Ms Mmadika Moloi  photo Ms Mmadika Moloi
 Leanne Mostert photo Leanne Mostert
 Vlad Movshovich photo Vlad Movshovich
Ms Gillian Niven  photo Ms Gillian Niven
 Ziyanda Ntshona photo Ziyanda Ntshona
Mr Mpumelelo Nxumalo  photo Mr Mpumelelo Nxumalo
Mr Ashford Nyatsumba  photo Mr Ashford Nyatsumba
Mr Leroux Odendaal  photo Mr Leroux Odendaal
 Johan Olivier photo Johan Olivier
Ms Nicole Paige  photo Ms Nicole Paige
 Alessandra Pardini photo Alessandra Pardini
Ms Annabel Parry  photo Ms Annabel Parry
Ms Safiyya Patel  photo Ms Safiyya Patel
Mr Glenn Penfold  photo Mr Glenn Penfold
 Eugene Phajane photo Eugene Phajane
 Mark Phillips photo Mark Phillips
Mr Burton Phillips  photo Mr Burton Phillips
Mr Dhevarsha Ramjettan  photo Mr Dhevarsha Ramjettan
Mr Garyn Rapson  photo Mr Garyn Rapson
Ms Shirleen Ritchie  photo Ms Shirleen Ritchie
 Nick Robb photo Nick Robb
 Desmond Rudman photo Desmond Rudman
Mr Ghassan Sader  photo Mr Ghassan Sader
Mr Muhammad Sader  photo Mr Muhammad Sader
 Johann Scholtz photo Johann Scholtz
 Kathy Shepherd photo Kathy Shepherd
Ms Angela Simpson  photo Ms Angela Simpson
Ms Prelisha Singh  photo Ms Prelisha Singh
Ms Neerasha Singh  photo Ms Neerasha Singh
Ms Nirvasha Singh  photo Ms Nirvasha Singh
Ms Sandra Sithole  photo Ms Sandra Sithole
 Rita Spalding photo Rita Spalding
 Pamela Stein photo Pamela Stein
Mr Michael Straeuli  photo Mr Michael Straeuli
Ms Lisa Swaine  photo Ms Lisa Swaine
Ms Zelda Swanepoel  photo Ms Zelda Swanepoel
Ms Asmita Thakor  photo Ms Asmita Thakor
 Tyron Theessen photo Tyron Theessen
Mr Thapelo Thekiso  photo Mr Thapelo Thekiso
Ms Caroline Theodosiou  photo Ms Caroline Theodosiou
Mr Raynold Tlhavani  photo Mr Raynold Tlhavani
Ms Gitte Truter  photo Ms Gitte Truter
 Shawn Van Der Meulen photo Shawn Van Der Meulen
 Jason Van Der Poel photo Jason Van Der Poel
Mr Chetan Vanmali  photo Mr Chetan Vanmali
 Jonathan Veeran photo Jonathan Veeran
 Martin Versfeld photo Martin Versfeld
 Bernadette Versfeld photo Bernadette Versfeld
 Trevor Versfeld photo Trevor Versfeld
 Graham Viljoen photo Graham Viljoen
Ms Erin Warmington  photo Ms Erin Warmington
Mr Jesse Watson  photo Mr Jesse Watson
 Robert Wilson photo Robert Wilson
Mr Martin Yudaken  photo Mr Martin Yudaken
Mr Leslie de Bruyn  photo Mr Leslie de Bruyn
Mr Dawid de Villiers  photo Mr Dawid de Villiers
Mr Hendrik du Preez  photo Mr Hendrik du Preez
Number of lawyers : 400+
Contacts : Christo Els (senior partner)
Contacts : Sally Hutton (managing partner)
Other offices : Cape Town

We believe that justice should be equal for all and, as a firm, we fight to protect human rights and safeguard the rule of law. In a country where the majority of our people face major economic and social challenges, it is important that the firm does what it can to assist in improving the lives of all South Africans. Our focus is on education, access to justice and economic development – whether it be through providing free legal services to various organisations and communities, or having a ‘hands on’ approach to develop communities through our CSI projects. We are involved in a number of initiatives that specifically advance black law professionals outside the firm including the Webber Wentzel Empowerment Trust which is an independent trust, established as one of our empowerment efforts with the mandate and objectives to provide sustainable opportunities for aspiring Black legal professionals. The firm also provides opportunities for our staff to participate in social, economic and environmental initiatives through our employee volunteerism program. We collaborate with government and private sector stakeholders to effect change within the wider legal profession. We are members of Business Leadership South Africa which focuses on advancing a modern, inclusive and growing economy; upholding the Constitution and protecting the integrity of the state; and demonstrating that business is a national asset central in addressing poverty, unemployment, economic injustice and workplace transformation. Being a responsible and contributing corporate citizen is a key component of our overall business strategy at Webber Wentzel and through our values we strive to develop a culture that celebrates diversity.