Hogan Lovells relaunches in Johannesburg, South Africa

Johannesburg, 1 November 2019 – After six years in South Africa, global law firm Hogan Lovells launches its new fully-integrated office in Johannesburg today.

Comprising five partners and a team of lawyers, the new office will provide advice on corporate, finance and regulatory matters. The team will also be closely aligned to the global competition, restructuring, commercial, mining and life sciences practices at Hogan Lovells.

The new office will include an all-female senior corporate team who are able to provide end-to-end deal support and regularly work on cross-border transactions with the firm's London, U.S and Asia offices.

The partners joining the firm as part of the new arrangement in Johannesburg are: Wessel Badenhorst, who will serve as Office Managing Partner, Vivien Chaplin, Laurie Hammond, Lesley Morphet and Kevin Pietersen. Charles Marais and Rachel Kelly will also join as counsel. The new, ambitious team also intends to grow the office in response to client needs.

The new office will continue to advise multinational clients investing and trading in and out of South Africa and the wider African continent.

Wessel Badenhorst said: “We remain committed to developing our global business in Africa and maintaining an on-the-ground presence in Johannesburg that fully coordinates with our other key hubs around the world."

Andrew Skipper, Head of the firm's Africa practice, added: "Clients have reacted positively to our new arrangements in Johannesburg and see this as reconfirmation of our strong commitment to the country and the continent as a whole."

The firm began its involvement in South Africa in 2013 with a combination with Routledge Modise, which adopted the Hogan Lovells South Africa name, but remained operationally and financially separate.

The firm will continue to operate one of its key global business services centers in Johannesburg, a wholly owned Hogan Lovells operation that includes a number of core business services support teams, such as marketing, HR, finance, conflicts and IT support.

Meet our partners:

Wessel Badenhorst

Wessel is the office managing partner for our new Johannesburg office. He is the go-to person for clients that face a variety of commercial and operational challenges in the mining sector and has over 20 years' experience in operational mining transactions, restructuring and disposal of distressed mining and smelter operations, health and safety, mining labour law, mining and mineral dispute resolution, and environmental law pertaining to the mining industry.

Vivien Chaplin

Vivien is a leading corporate lawyer specialising in mergers and acquisitions, employee share schemes, and black economic empowerment transactions. Her experience includes advising on public and private acquisitions and disposals, restructuring transactions, corporate governance and compliance with the Companies Act, 2008. She has led transactions across a multitude of sectors, with a particular focus on the mining and aviation industries.

Laurie Hammond

Laurie focuses on cross-border transactions in Africa, with an emphasis on structured trade, commodities and export finance. She has a broad range of experience advising clients across the commodity value chain, acting for lenders and borrowers in a variety of sectors from agriculture, mining, energy and natural resources to logistics and infrastructure, structuring bankable deals and advising on legal and regulatory risk for domestic and multinational clients. Laurie has worked in the London and South African markets and is both an admitted solicitor and an attorney.

Lesley Morphet

Lesley is a leading competition lawyer in South Africa and advises on all aspects of competition law, including merger notifications, leniency applications, exemption applications, managing dawn raids and compliance. Drawing on her extensive experience in this field, clients can rest assured they are in capable hands when it comes to both merger and prohibited practice work, including cartel investigations. Having been involved in many multi-jurisdictional mergers in Africa, she has considerable knowledge of the competition laws of many African countries.

Kevin Pietersen

Kevin has diverse corporate, commercial and litigation experience with a focus on mining and natural resources. He has acted for a wide range of leading South African and international organizations with regard to mergers and acquisitions, business structuring, projects and operational matters and South African regulatory compliance issues. He also represents clients in mining related disputes and litigation proceedings in various forums in South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.


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