Cornelius Kimamo Kigera

Cornelius Kigera

Nairobi, Kenya: Coulson Harney LLP
T: +254 20 289 9000
  • Overview
  • Experience
  • Publications & Insights


Cornelius is a partner in our Nairobi office in the Banking and Finance Department.

Cornelius specialises in banking and finance, construction, property and conveyancing law and general corporate and commercial law.  He advises on large-scale transactions for a variety of clients across a range of sectors in Kenya. 

Cornelius has over 9 years’ post qualification experience.  He is an advocate of the High Court of Kenya and is a member of the Law Society of Kenya, the Institute of Certified Public Secretaries of Kenya and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (Kenya Branch).  He is also an associate of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (Kenya Branch), a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Public Secretary.

Cornelius holds a LLB degree from the University of Nairobi and has diplomas from the Kenya School of Law and the Institute for the Management of Information Systems. 

Specialist Services

Relevant Experience

  • Advising Standard Bank of South Africa Limited (and other lenders) in respect of credit facilities to be made available to a telecommunications group with operations in Kenya for a sum of USD 270 million.
  • Advised Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) in connection with the restructuring of facilities of up to USD million advanced to ARM Cement Limited under a convertible subordinated secured term loan facility agreement. The principal amount of the restructured facility USD 36 million.
  • Advised UAP Holdings Limited (UAP) in relation to a term loan facility from Nedbank Limited (acting through its Corporate and Investment Banking division) (Nedbank) for USD 35 million.
  • Advised the Wananchi Group of companies in Kenya in relation to a loan facility of USD 72 million from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), an agency of the United States of America.
  • Advised Banque Cantonale De Geneve in relation to a loan facility of USD 15 million to Kenol Kobil Limited.
  • Advised Kenya Commercial Bank Limited in relation to a KES 5 billion facility to County Government of Nairobi.
  • Provided advice to Kenya Petroleum Refineries Limited on a financing transaction from Standard Chartered Bank Kenya Limited to the tune of USD 250 million.
  • Advising several commercial banks on preparation and perfection of securities. Some of these banks include Kenya Commercial Bank, NIC Bank Limited, CfC Stanbic Bank Limited, Equity Bank Limited, Bank of Africa, UBA Bank Limited, GT Bank Limited.
  • Advised developers, Hello Properties Limited and Lagoon Developments Limited, on project structuring and transaction documentation for the Mandharini development and sale of 130 homes on 150 acres of land in Kilifi. The development received international acclaim and won the international development award for the best residential development in Africa.
  • Advised PwC on the then proposed acquisition of a building in Nairobi that was to house their regional offices; deal value of KES 2 billion.
  • Acted for PwC on a financing transaction from Standard Chartered Bank to the tune USD 17.9 million.
  • Acted as Kenya counsel to ED & F Mann Holdings Limited on its exit from the Dormans Group; a well-established coffee business in East Africa.
  • Acted for Kenya Petroleum Refineries Limited in obtaining project finance from Barclays Bank of Kenya Limited for the purpose of upgrading its Mombasa petroleum refinery; deal value of USD 13.5 million.
  • Acted for Kenya Petroleum Refineries Limited on a financing transaction from UBA Kenya Bank Limited to the tune of USD 150 million.
  • Acted for Equity Bank on a financing transaction to Riverside Mews Limited to the tune of USD 5.5 million.
  • Acted for East African Breweries in its sale of a piece of land for the sum of KES 650 million.
  • Acted for British-American Asset Managers Limited in their acquisition of a piece of land worth USD 4.6 million.
  • Advised Actis on the purchase of prime real estate in Nairobi for the purpose of developing a residential cum commercial estate; deal value of KES 1.2 billion.
  • Advised Actis on the project structuring and transaction documentation for the proposed development of a residential cum commercial estate in Ruaraka, Nairobi. Actis proposed to develop 600 units as part of this project.
  • Advised the client, Buffalo Malls Limited, on project structuring and transaction documentation for the development of a shopping mall in Naivasha, Kenya. The transaction involved a joint venture between the land owner and the developer where we drafted and negotiated a joint venture agreement, drafted and negotiated the terms of a long term lease with an anchor tenant – (one of Kenya’s) leading supermarket chains.
  • Advised Norfund on the transaction documentation for the financing of a power project in Kenya coupled with an equity interest; deal value of USD 15 million.
  • Acted for PSP Homes on the sale of a piece of land for the sum of KES 450 million.
  • Represented KTGA in deliberations with the Ministry of Lands and the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution on the introduction of new Land laws and the proposing of amendments to the draft bills.
  • Advised Musiara Limited on the protection of its property rights within the Maasai Mara Conservancy, in relation to the parcel of land on which it established the world famous Little Governors Camp.


  • Chambers and Partners ranked Cornelius in Band 4 in the Banking and Finance category in Kenya in 2023 and as Up and Coming 2022 in the same category. In 2023, Cornelius was also ranked as Up and Coming in the Real Estate category in Kenya.
  • IFLR1000’s Financial and Corporate Guide rated Cornelius as Highly regarded for his work in the Banking category, specifically within the Real Estate, Construction and materials sectors for two consecutive years (2021 and 2022) and prior to that, as a Rising Star for four consecutive years (2016 to 2020) in the same category.
  • Legal 500 ranked Cornelius as a Leading Individual for Banking, Finance and Capital Markets and  Real Estate and Construction in Kenya for 2023. In 2017, Legal500 listed Cornelius as a Recommend Lawyer for both Real Estate and Construction and Banking, Finance and Capital Markets.

“Cornelius Kigera is solution-oriented and always finds a way out of complex situations.”

“He is very commercial.” – Chambers and Partners, 2023

‘Cornelius Kigera and John Kihia are my go-to lawyers as they always work to the highest standard, deliver on time despite the size of a transaction. Cornelius has a thorough understanding of our business, its requirements, and its challenges, we are confident whenever we work with him. John has been very present and supportive whenever he is called upon.’

‘Cornelius Kigera is accessible and excellent in supporting our customers and the Bank.’

– Legal 500, 2023


‘Cornelius Kigera, who is the head of the banking and finance group, has in-depth knowledge of corporate finance.’

‘I have worked with Cornelius Kigera, a hands-on partner leading a dynamic team. He is a very knowledgeable lawyer in matters of banking and finance, always responsive and understands our legal needs.’

‘Evans Monari, Senior Associate George Ndungu and Partner Cornelius Kigera, in particular, have been exceptional. As a team or one-on-one, they present commitment, diligence and skill that any client requires from their counsel, no matter the nature of the case.’ – Legal 500, 2022

“Cornelius Kigera is a solution-oriented lawyer with strong attention to detail.”

“He is a very knowledgeable lawyer who is always responsive and understands my legal needs.” – Chambers and Partners, 2022

Publications & Insights