Femi Olubanwo is a partner at Banwo & Ighodalo, one of the leading full-service law firms in Nigeria. He graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) honours degree from the University of Lagos in 1981 and was admitted to the Nigerian Bar in 1982.
After a short stint with the Lagos State Ministry of Justice, he joined the Lagos commercial law firm of Chris O. Okunowo & Co in September 1983. In February 1991, he co-established the law firm, Banwo & Ighodalo, as a Partnership. The firm has since grown from two Partners and one Associate to today’s nearly 60 lawyers including 7 Partners. A full service firm, Banwo & Ighodalo is well known for its many high profile transactions in its specialized areas of Capital Markets, Financing, Project Finance, Mergers & Acquisitions and Energy.
The Firm’s other practice areas include investment, corporate and commercial, mining, telecommunications, information technology, intellectual property, privatisation, real estate, banking, shipping and international trade, labour and employment laws.
Femi practices largely in Capital Markets, Investments, Banking and Corporate Finance, Project Finance, Mining and Intellectual Property. He is especially versed in Project and Corporate Finance and has been engaged in a very wide variety of in-country and international Financing transactions over the last 25 years. He has led or participated in many of the Firm’s important financing transactions.
He is often cited as one of the Leading Lawyers in the world, particularly in the areas of Banking, Finance and Mining by many international legal publications such as Chambers Global, Who’s Who Legal and the IFLR 1000.
Femi has published and presented papers on different topics in his areas of practice.
He has also been active in the public sector where he has served the Government of Nigeria in several economic sector reform committees. He was appointed a member of the Bureau of Public Enterprises’ Solid Minerals Sector Steering Committee (2000) by the National Council on Privatisation, the apex body charged with responsibility for the implementation of the Nigerian government’s privatisation and commercialisation programme. The committee was to formulate sector reform proposals for the sustainable development of the solid minerals sector. He was the chairman of the legal and regulatory framework subcommittee. He was reappointed into the reconstituted committee in 2005 and participated actively in the review of different drafts of the bill that led to the promulgation of a new mining code, the Minerals and Mining Act 2007.
Femi was also resource person for the legal and regulatory framework subcommittee of the Presidential Committee on Solid Minerals Development (2002). The committee produced the seven-year (from 2003 to 2009) strategic action plan for Solid Minerals Development in Nigeria. In addition, Femi was a member of the Presidential Technical Committee on the Development of Coal Production in Nigeria (2003) whose mandate was to resuscitate the commercial production of coal.
He has also served as Chairman of a Committee established by the Ministry of Finance to formulate and draft a Code of Governance/Ethics for Capital Market Regulators.
Femi’s parents were both teachers and the passion for education runs through his veins as well. He serves as a member of the Board of Governors of two highly reputable educational institutions as well as a Foundation for the education of brilliant but indigent scholars.
He is a director of many companies operating in diverse sectors of the Nigerian economy.