One of Africa’s biggest law firms, the South-Africa based Bowmans has ended its synergy with Uganda -based top commercial law firm AF Mpanga Advocates.
The breakup of the relationship between the two law firms was announced by AF Mpanga Advocates in a statement posted on its new Twitter account and confirmed by one of the law firm’s partners; Mr. Ernest Wiltshire Kalibbala in a conversation with The Legal Reports about the development.
“ Following a mutual review of the firm’s relationship with the broader Bowmans group over the last few months, a joint decision was made for AF Mpanga Advocates and Bowmans to move forward as separate firms from the 1st March, 2023.”the Statement reads.
“ This means that AF Mpanga Advocates will operate as a separate entity from Bowmans while maintaining the close working relationship that has been developed over the past 10 years.”
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Indeed a rebrand has already been taken by AF Mpanga Advocates as can be discerned from the changes in logo and brand colours; dropping Bowmans blue colour, the African continent shaped like logo, as well as “ The Value of Knowing” tagline for the ambitious “exceeding the impossible” on top of a new website which seems to be under development.
The news of the separation between AF Mpanga and South Africa’s Bowmans comes days after Chambers and Partners, the global lawyer ranking firm lauded Bowmans’ extensive network of law firms on the continent as crucial for its top tier performance.
Under such synergies, law firms are able to boost their capacity to handle legal business in areas where they may not have a physical presence by leveraging their affiliations in those areas.
While acknowledging benefits of the synergy between AF Mpanga Advocates and Bowmans, Mr. Ernest Wiltshire Kalibbala pointed out his law firm’s stellar performance would not be affected by the separation after all it has been ranked in the best law firms in Uganda category (Band 1) for about 15 years – including before their relationship with Bowmans.
“ Our story started in 2003 with the dream to make a mark in the legal services sector in Uganda and beyond. AF Mpanga looks forward to continuing to provide exceptional legal services and building on that dream.” AF Mpanga said.
Benjamin is a Digital Legal News Journalist (trained by Reuters) and digital media enthusiast who founded The Legal Reports website in January, 2020 while a fourth year law student at Makerere University school of law.
Prior to that, Benjamin used to write amateur blogs and some of his legal commentaries were published by the Daily Monitor and Independent Magazine - both leading publications in Uganda. He covers lawyers, law students, judges, judiciary, courts, law schools, and law firms.