Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Leading African law firm Bowmans has appointed Zwide Mhlongo and Njabulo Hlophe as partners in its Johannesburg office. Mhlongo joins the firm’s General Finance Practice, while Hlophe joins its Corporate/M&A Practice.

Bowmans’ banking and finance and corporate/M&A expertise is recognised across the continent.

The firm’s chairman and senior partner, Ezra Davids, says: ‘Zwide and Njabulo have skill sets that will add further depth to Bowmans’ banking and finance law and corporate/M&A law offerings respectively.’

Mhlongo specialises in banking and finance law. His expertise spans preference share funding, assets and leveraged finance, aircraft finance, real estate finance, recoveries, debt restructuring and general finance. He practised banking and finance law at a top South African law firm before going in-house. Most recently, he held senior in-house positions at Liberty Finance (as Head of Legal & Senior Counsel) followed by some time at Woolworths (as General Counsel).

Hlophe specialises in corporate M&A (public and private) and capital markets. Save for a year at Kirkland & Ellis in New York as part of the African Legal Fellows Programme run by the Cyrus R. Vance Centre for International Justice, Hlophe has spent his entire career with a leading local law firm.

Mhlongo has an LLB from the University of the Witwatersrand and has completed the Management Development Programme at Stellenbosch University. Hlophe has an LLB (cum laude) from the University of the Witwatersrand and completed two courses in Advanced Company Law, also at the University of the Witwatersrand.

Davids says that Mhlongo’s combination of experience in private legal practice and as in-house counsel, coupled with leadership capabilities, will be an asset to Bowmans and its clients, while Hlophe’s experience will be a valuable addition to the firm’s Corporate/M&A team, particularly in the current buoyant market conditions.

In addition to his legal talents, Mhlongo has a strong sense of social responsibility and manages a five-a-side soccer team, Football Flava, consisting mainly of players from disadvantaged backgrounds. The team has represented South Africa at eight international world cups.

Hlophe is also a sportsman having been part of the Western Province hockey team for six years and serving as its captain for three years.

Davids concludes, ‘Zwide is especially passionate about developing and mentoring young finance lawyers, while Njabulo has invested a considerable amount of time in pro bono work and community outreach activities. We are delighted to welcome them both to the Bowmans team.’