Angola

Reviews

Practice area

IFLR1000 Reviews

Overview

Solicitors governing body: Ordem dos Advogados de Angola

IFLR1000 ranking categories for this jurisdiction:

Financial and corporate; Project development

Jurisdiction overview

As with other lusophone countries, the former Portuguese colony of Angola historically had a legal system based on the civil law system of the colonial home country. Following its independence in 1975 the law was amended in a piecemeal fashion, yet similarities remain. Combined with linguistic and cultural ties, these similarities have seen the jurisdiction’s legal market develop with the significant influence of Portuguese firms.

Recent oil discoveries have seen a boom in the legal market in recent years, and while an attractive environment for investment, the market remains difficult for foreign firms to practice in. Regulations are in place that restrict foreign lawyers from practicing in Angola, and while foreign firms are permitted to form associations with local outfits - who tend to work under the auspices of their parent firms - they are not able to adopt their name or branding. 

The domestic market is dominated by associate firms: Fátima Freitas Advogados is associated with Miranda, and FBL Advogados with Abreu Advogados. Other Portuguese firms with active associations include AVM, F Castelo Branco & Associados, PLMJ, Morais Leitão Galvão Teles Soares da Silva & Associados, ABBC and MC&A. The cross-border work is widely handled by Portuguese lawyers, while their domestic counterparts use local expertise to handle the day-to-day operations of larger projects. As a result of this, many local lawyers are trained and educated in Lisbon before taking up positions in Luanda.

The legal market in Angola is also closely tied with that of Mozambique, as well as other PALOP jurisdictions São Tomé and Príncipe, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea and Cape Verde. 

Financial and corporate
ADCA - Advogados Carvalho & Associados

ADCA - Advogados Carvalho & Associados is the local office of a Portuguese firm which fairly recently merged with DLA Piper. The firm is active across the financial and corporate areas. 

During the research period the firm worked on acquisitions, financings, restructurings and project development advising lenders, borrowers and developers. It worked in sectors including real estate, consumer goods, oil and gas, infrastructure and pharmaceuticals.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•Ginga Shopping Mall 

•Laborex restructuring 

ALC Advogados

ALC Advogados is the local arm of Portuguese firm Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva & Associados . It is active across the financial and corporate and project development areas and has expertise assisting international clients investing into Angola.

During the research period the firm advised lenders, borrowers and acquirers on restructurings, financings and acquisitions. The firm worked for a real estate company on a new investment, assisted an insurance company on the acquisition of equity in a local insurance broker, and advised a global shipping company on its restructuring. 

Client feedback

"The firm has good knowledge of the local environment and great availability." - M&A

"The firm has a diligent and knowledgeable team, able to understand our requirements and imperatives and drive a transaction to conclusion. It has the ability to work internationally and had some flexibility for the transaction." - Project development

"The firm has a professional attitude, provides personal support and is good at problem solving." - Restructuring and insolvency

"The firm has been providing valuable work (from legal opinions to advices and drafting of legal documents) and is always meeting our demands. One of the firm's strenghts is the chance to communicate in Italian with a proficient Angolan lawyer with an European background." - Restructuring and insolvency

"In overall it is a very professional company with strengths related to their answer level and knowledge of local laws. The attention to customers is also a strong point, so very customer oriented. No weakness to point." - Project development 

"The service provided is excellent, with full availability by lawyers. The fact that it is a company with presence in several countries and with professionals specialised in all areas of law, makes the advice fully effective." - Project development  

BCSA – Advogados

BCSA - Advogados works in partnership with Portuguese firm PLMJ, and is active in the financial and corporate and project development areas. 

During the research period the firm worked for joint ventures partners and project developers in the real estate, infrastructure, health and mining sectors.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•Kimang mine

•Kora joint venture

•NBC Medical joint venture 

Eduardo Vera-Cruz

Eduardo Vera-Cruz operates in association with Portuguese firm FCB Sociedade de Advogados and is active across the financial and corporate space.

During the research period the firm advised acquirers, lenders and financial advisors on matters related to the financial services, agriculture and health sectors.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•Ministry of Defence $100 million financing

•Globaltec acquisition of Angolan agriculture company 

•Angolan government export financing for three hospitals

Fátima Freitas Advogados

Fátima Freitas Advogados is a member of the Miranda Alliance and works in the financial and corporate and project development areas.

During the research period the firm advised lenders on facility agreements to public entities, worked on refinancings by local companies, and advised on a sale in the oil and gas sector.

Raposo Bernardo

Raposo Bernardo is a Portuguese firm with a local office in Angola, which is mainly active in banking, M&A and projects work.

During the research period the firm’s work in the banking area included advising lenders on loans and project finance deals.

In M&A the firm worked mainly for buyers on deals in the energy and telecommunications sectors. 

In projects the firm has been active advising project companies and sponsors on the development of energy and infrastructure projects.  

RLA - Sociedade de Advogados

RLA - Sociedade de Advogados is a member of VdA Legal Partners and is active across financial and corporate and project development work.

During the research period the firm advised sponsors of energy projects, issuers on bond sales, and debtors on restructuring.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•Luanda refinery

•De Beers Group restructuring

•Sonadrill joint venture

 

Client feedback

"Excellent legal work." - Project development

"The firm is reactive and has a good knowledge of the Angolan environment and legal issues." - Project development

"The firm is very efficient in terms of time, quality of the work produced and it is very business oriented. It focuses on clients' needs." - Restructuring and insolvency

"The firm provided explanations with clarity, speed in its response and efficiency in every step of our work together. It provided excellent support." - Restructuring and insolvency

"Jose Miguel Oliveira of VdA is our go to person for legal advice in Angola. He is proactive, has in-depth knowledge and shows tireless efforts when representing his clients." - Restructuring and insolvency

"The firm has deep knowledge on the legislation and regulations. It has a good interaction with local authorities and a solid team to support clients. The firm is business focused and it is able to provide creative solutions." - Investment funds