Taking part in the conversation are Dr Tominiyi Owolabi, the firm’s new Managing Partner, alongside Wolemi Esan, the new Deputy Managing Partner and Konyin Ajayi, SAN, outgoing Managing Partner.
Olaniwun Ajayi LP has been in business for almost 60 years and, with more than 100 lawyers, is one of the most respected legal names in the west African country with offices in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt. The firm has vast experience in corporate and commercial work, as well as litigation and arbitration.
To open the interview, outgoing Managing Partner, Prof Ajayi, reflects on the firm’s history, which is a story that is also threaded through that of Nigeria’s legal system. He tells how its enigmatic and stylish founder, Sir. Olaniwun Ajayi, had been enormously proud to see the seed he planted blossom into a Baobab. Prof. Ajayi remembers an interview the late founder gave at 90-years-old when he marvelled at what the firm had become.
“And this Baobab (that he planted) is (now) providing shade for many, medicine for many and comfort for others. For some (it gives) flowers and some food to eat and protection from rain and sun and something to lean on, wood for fire, for combustion and energy…these are all the things this mighty tree stands for.”
“And, at the heart of it all, are still the people who make up the firm because it is they who have built it into an institution,” he says.
Incoming Managing Partner Dr Owolabi explains how the firm’s strategic direction will remain on the same path under his leadership as a full-service commercial law firm providing top quality legal support to clients on the contentious and non-contentious sides of legal practice.
“What will change is not the breadth of our practice but the depth of the service we provide for our clients,” he says.
As the new deputy Managing Partner Mr Esan says, clients and the firm’s team will remain at the core of the business.
“We do not see ourselves as external to the client but as part of their team …and we will continue to find ways to innovate and to build on this relationship. We will constantly be asking how to create a better future for our clients.”
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