The opening of a new Paris office will allow an established team of Ghanaian lawyers to target more European and international work.
A team of Ghanaian lawyers have opened new firm Lem&Co in Paris and relocated to the French capital, to be closer to European and international clients.
The firm was founded and opened in Paris in March, but has retained an Accra office. It is led by founding partner Laurence Elong Mbassi, with senior associate Rosemary Owusu and associate Miriam Afenyo, as well as support staff.
The three lawyers have spent the past few years working together at GFA Consulting, an Accra-based corporate finance boutique where Mbassi founded the tax and legal team in 2015 and was joined by Owusu and Afenyo in 2017 and 2020, respectively. With the launch of Lem&Co, the team has spun out into a new firm to grow its services to international clients, but has retained a continuing alliance with GFA.
The firm’s practice areas are focused on corporate and tax work, including tax litigation and arbitration, and audit.
Mbassi was an associate with Baker McKenzie in France, then spent nearly five years as a tax lawyer with EY, before returning to private practice as of counsel, and then joining GFA.
Owusu previously worked for Ghanaian firm Sam Okudzeto & Associates and as an adjudicator for the United Kingdom’s Financial Ombudsman Service.
In 2021, Lem & Co’s work included advising cement manufacturer CBI Ghana on its sale by Lafarge Africa, a subsidiary of Swiss building materials group Holcim Group; and advising French-headquartered international investor I&P Développement on the sale of Beninese mining company Normat.
In February, Africa-focused firm Asafo & Co hired an experienced in-house lawyer to its Paris office, anticipating a boom in African securitisation work, while earlier in the year Pinsent Masons hired two lawyers with experience of West and Central African energy work, relocating them to Paris.
Late last year Nigerian law firm Olaniwun Ajayi opened an office in London, hiring three partners including experienced partner Howard Barrie, formerly of Dentons and Eversheds Sutherland.
In June 2021, a new law firm launched covering the Moroccan, Algerian, Ivory Coast and Guinean markets, while earlier this year regional firm Bennani & Associés opened an office in Democratic Republic of Congo.