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Punuka Attorneys & Solicitors - Firm Profile

 

Punuka Attorneys & Solicitors 
Size of Organization: 23
Year Established: 1947
Main Office: Lagos, Nigeria

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PUNUKA Attorneys & Solicitors was originally founded in 1947 by late Justice Chike Idigbe, JSC. Today, the firm has offices in Lagos, Abuja and Asaba and affiliations with law firms in major cities around the world.

The Firm is a fully integrated and multi dimensional law practice, with Four (4) Partners and over twenty (20) Associates providing legal services to a highly diversified client base.

Our Vision: "to provide Solutions to clients needs with an absolute commitment to excellence"

The firm is a full service business law practice providing quality legal services in a variety of areas but in a specialized manner. Our expertise covers the spectrum of Maritime Law, Aviation & Admiralty, Commercial & Civil Litigation, Insolvency and Business Restructuring, Arbitration & ADR, Corporate and Commercial Law, Banking, Capital Market and Project Finance, Energy & Natural Resources Law, PPPs, Intellectual Property Law, amongst others.

A good understanding of our clients' legal needs and continuous investments in the training of our people and in leading-edge communications and IT technology guarantee the quality of our professional services as specialist skills from the firm's highly qualified lawyers and from it's broad network of first-rate legal professional contacts around the world are deployed where required.

We believe that our clients are entitled to highly personalised and quality legal services and our common success is hinged on our ability to develop mutually beneficial, long-term working relationships and our ability to provide expert advice in key areas of law. Every assignment is handled by a team of highly experienced lawyers. Clients are informed of progress throughout the transactions.

We have specialist skills in all areas of law and act as transaction lawyers for clients engaged in maritime, aviation & admiralty, capital market transactions, property/probate transactions, dispute resolution (litigation, Arbitration & ADR), mergers & acquisition, private equity transactions, securitization, cross-border trade & investment, company mergers & takeovers, due diligence, insolvency advisory, debt recovery and business restructuring amongst other services. Our practice extends to servicing corporate entities, multinational corporations, high net worth individuals, government/regulatory authorities including the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), NCAA, FAAN, as well as National Pensions Commission (PENCOM). We had also advised and represented the apex bank, CBN as well as other banks and financial institutions, players in the oil & gas sector as well as multinationals on both contentious and non contentious matters at trial and appellate courts.

The firm is a member of the Business Recovery and Insolvency Practitioners Association of Nigeria (BRIPAN, with its Managing Partner Chief Anthony Idigbe SAN, serving as the current President of the said association. Also, we are affiliated to a network of international firms and experts in related fields of law whose services will be readily available where necessary for accomplishment of assigned tasks. In particular, members of the firm are members of INSOL, the International voice of business restructuring and insolvency practice.

PUNUKA is a member of Capital Market Solicitors Association (CMSA) and our Managing Partner, the founding Chairman of the association. Our Managing Partner is also an active member of the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators, an independent not-for-profit professional membership association that supports international energy negotiators around the world and enhances their effectiveness and professionalism in the international energy community.

The firm is also a member of Lawyers Associated Worldwide (LAW), a global network of over 110 independent law firms located in more than 170 major commercial centres around the world. The state of reciprocity is such that we are able to extend to our clients the benefits of our accumulated goodwill to assist them whenever their cross border transactions touch on those jurisdictions where our correspondents and member firms operate.

Punaka is able to leverage on its contracts and correspondent relations with a network of international law firms. Some of the relationships are described as follows:

A member of Lawyers Associated Worldwide (LAW)

A member of International Trademark Association

A member of African Lawyers Association

A member of Capital Markets Association (CMSA)

Members of the firm also belong to one or more of the following bodies: NBA, IBA, CBSA, BRIPAN, INSOL, AIPN, BIIBL, CIA (UK), etc.

Transactions of the Firm

Represented a client in the oil & gas sector in an arbitration involving damage of the company's oil barge

Currently represents a client in a matter involving litigation over seizure of the company's vessel

We are counsel to Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in some matters involving litigation

Solicitors to a United States based Aviation company in a debt recovery matter

Represented PENCOM in some matters relating to litigation. Also offers advisory/consultancy services to the Commission from time to time.

Our Managing Partner was engaged as expert witness for NDIC on a winding up petition and a sale of property matter. This is aside other legal services we offer to the commission.

Retained as external solicitors to National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) in litigious matters

Currently represents Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on both contentious and non contentious matters including legal opinions and litigations resulting from capital market transactions

Represented CBN in a litigation matter

Provided consultancy and advisory services under the Legal Advisory Partnership (LAP), a consortium of local and foreign firms that advised the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) under a programme funded by the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID)

Counsel to the world's largest pharmaceutical manufacturing company, Pfizer Inc. in the Kano Clinical Trial case

Advising a renowned aviation company on litigation and other regulatory matters arising from the crash of its aircraft in 2005.

Involved in due diligence on successor companies unbundled out of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) during the attempted privatisation programme of the power sector by the Federal Government through BPE between 2006 and 2007.

As Legal advisers to the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), we initiated most of the provisions on competition in the Investments and Securities Act 2007 and have been advisers to the SEC on the implementation of its competition enforcement powers under the ISA 2007 and the Rules and Regulations of SEC made pursuant to the ISA

Advising various private companies and individuals on product liability and consumer relations

Acted as Principal Legal Adviser to an engineering company in the negotiation, drafting and execution of the Memorandum of Understanding between the company and its foreign partners toward the local fabrication of equipment (piles and buoy) for the Shell Bonga project.

Transaction Counsel to an insurance company in the divestment of shares of the holding company

Legal Adviser to foreign investor from Switzerland in its foreign direct investment in Nigeria

Legal Advisers to a Construction Company in its direct investment in Nigeria

Joint Solicitors to reputable Nigerian banks in their Rights Issue and Public Offer

Solicitors to a renowned Nigerian insurance company in its Rights Issue and Public Offer.

Joint Solicitors to reputable Nigerian banks in their Rights Issue and Public Offer

Retained as external solicitors to an oil servicing company on a debt recovery matter

Advised the National Pension Commission in the restructuring and revision of its disciplinary interventionist powers to be compliant with due process guarantees of the Nigerian Constitution.

Advised and represented a reputable insurance company in a debt recovery matter

Advising and representing banks, private companies and high net worth individuals in insolvency matters and loan recovery

Legal Advisers to an International oil servicing company in a recovery and subsequently, insolvency matter

Solicitors to a foreign company in a matter bordering on insolvency and restructuring

Our Managing Partner was appointed Receiver Manager over Folio Communications in the debt recovery matter between the defunct Hallmark Bank and Daily Times Nigeria

Legal Advisers to plastic manufacturing company in its merger process

Legal Advisers to a company in its acquisition of 49% stake in another company

Solicitors to a major oil marketing company in its bid for the acquisition of a 60% stake in a major player in the upstream sector.

External counsel to several Government agencies

Joint Solicitors to an insurance company in its merger with two other companies

Advised a telecoms company in the private placement of the company

Advised an international telecoms management company on its management takeover of a major private telecom operator in Nigeria

Legal Advisers to an insurance company in its merger with its subsidiary company.

Legal Advisers to a bank in the restructuring of subsidiaries within its group.

Solicitors to the Scheme of Arrangement between a group of companies.

Counsel to an oil marketing company in its several suits

Advising both corporate and individual clients- on regulatory issues amongst so many others.

Advised a private telecom operator during its acquisition by a South African telecom operator

Perfecting of Legal Mortgage in favour of a Bank Plc to secure its exposures

Carried out due diligence on target companies in many of the above M&A transactions

We handled perfection of titles for a range of properties acquired by a plastic manufacturing company from another company

Legal Advisers to a bank in the restructuring of subsidiaries within its group

We were Solicitors to a bank in the acquisition of an insurance company

We were solicitors to a bank in their 2007 capital raising by way of public offer

We were counsel to a bank in respect of their post merger issues with another bank

We were Solicitors to bank in the divestment of their shares in an insurance company

We were solicitors to some banks on various matters bordering on debt recovery, legal opinion/consultancy, insolvency issues with respect to the banks' customers, amongst others

Between 1999 and 2006, we acted for several leading Nigerian Banks and financial institutions (that were in existence at that time) such as Diamond Bank Plc, Citizens International Bank, Magnum Trust Bank, Hallmark Bank, Royal Exchange Assurance Nigeria in their public offers.

Provided Legal Advisory services and also acted as general coordinator of a merger transaction between a group of Nigerian companies. We were responsible for advising on the legal aspects of the transaction and coordinating the activities of other members of the team (Financial Advisers and Accountants

Currently acting as legal advisers to a foreign company from Switzerland in its foreign direct investment in Nigeria

We have prepared Legal Opinions and rendered advisory services to foreign firms like Alstom Holdings, Hogan Lovells LP and Baker & Mackenzie on investments and acquisitions involving assets or companies in Nigeria

We carried out due diligence on target companies in many M&A transactions and other forms of investment transactions

Solicitors to a renowned Nigerian insurance company in its Rights Issue and Public Offer.

Transaction Counsel in the development and Construction of a multi million Naira telecommunications modern call center now in Delta State

Publications of the Firm

We have contributed to various international and local publications or fora on including Global Legal group International Comparative Legal Guide to Merger Control

"Legal Issues in Mergers and Acquisitions" being paper represented at a 2-day workshop titled Baking Consolidation through Mergers and Acquisitions: Developing Competitive Advantage on the 30th day of November 2004 and the Lagoon Restaurant, Lagos organized by SEC and CBN.

"Initiation of Proceedings before the Investments and Securities Tribunal" being paper represented at a seminar organized by the Centre for Law and Development Studies on the 29th day of April 2003 at Eko Hotel Limited.

"Conducting a case at the Investments ad Securities Tribunal" being paper represented one day Workshop on the Investments and Securities Tribunal and Investors Protection on the 16th of June 2004 at SEC Conference Room of the Lagos Zonal Office jointly organized by SEC and CMSA.

"The Regulation of Competition through Merger Control: Case under the Investments and Securities Act 2007" presented at the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Section on Business Law (SBL) conference, April 16, 2009 at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, Nigeria; available at www.globalcompetitionforum.org (Africa, Nigeria); also published in the Guardian Newspaper of 21, 28 April, 2009.

"A Review of Merger Control under Nigeria's Proposed Competition Law," Published in the Journal of Law and Investment 2007, Vol. 1.

Appraisal of Mandatory Takeover Offers under the Investments and Securities Act 2007" (with Anthony Idigbe SAN), Guardian 9, December 2008.


Statement of Practice Summary:
Dispute Resolution (Litigation, Arbitration, ADR); Corporate and Commercial Law; Energy & Natural Resources; Banking, Capital Markets and Project Finance; Regulatory Commission, Constitutional Matters, Advisory Services.