Kem Ihenacho

Primary tabs


Kem Ihenacho is partner at the London office of US law firm Latham & Watkins and Co-Chair of its Africa Practice. Previously, he was a partner and co-head of the Africa practice at Magic Circle law firm Clifford Chance for seven years before taking up his current post in 2014.


Kem's expertise is in private equity and Mergers and Acquisitions, advising private equity and venture capital investors, financial institutions and companies on Mergers and Acquisitions, fund-raisings and disposals in the UK and internationally, including Nigeria. He has an impressive global client list and has been involved in successive deals each worth several hundreds of millions of pounds.


Kem was named by The Lawyer magazine in the Hot 100 lawyers of 2015 and in the Powerlist, which profiles Britain’s 100 most influential people of African or African Caribbean heritage. He is on the advisory board of Rare Recruitment and a director of International Lawyers for Africa (ILFA). He sits on the Legal and Regulatory Councils of both the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association and the African Private Equity and Venture Capital Association.


He was born in Birmingham in 1972 and grew up in Nigeria until he was 11 years old, when his family came back to the UK. He read Law at Cardiff University, graduating in 1995, and gained a Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice from Cardiff Law School in 1996. He trained at the Cardiff and London offices of Morgan Bruce (now Morgan Cole), including a stint on secondment at ICI Paints and a short secondment following qualification with the technology-focussed US firm Brobeck Hale & Dorr. Kem qualified as a solicitor in 1998 and joined Clifford Chance’s Corporate Department as an associate the following year. He became a partner at Clifford Chance in 2007.


When interviewed by BLD, Kem was asked why he had chosen a career in law. He replied: “I grew up in Nigeria in an environment where if you were fortunate enough to go on to university and you had good enough grades there was an expectation that you would study medicine or law or architecture - a vocational degree. That definitely had an influence on me. I also had a number of lawyers in the family and from speaking to them, and having done some work experience, it seemed like an interesting, rewarding and demanding career. I think I made the right choice.” 






See Also: 
BLD Power List section.