Full name – Olagoke Kuye
Organisation – Aluko & Oyebode
Area of Practice – Corporate Law
Years of Experience – 12 years
Olagoke has significant experience advising local and multinational clients across multiple sectors including oil and gas, real estate, project and infrastructure, financing, acquisition, regulatory compliance/government interface, technology, employment, corporate restructuring, and general corporate advisory. He has been recognized by the International Financial Law Review and The Legal 500 as a Rising Star for his work which includes advising a foreign payment service company in its equity investment valued at approx. USD 200 Million in a leading
Nigerian digital payment unicorn; as well as advising a Nigerian oil and gas company in
connection with an investment valued at approx. USD 100 Million for the conversion, installation and supply of a floating, production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel to be utilized for field operations in a petroleum mining lease.
Four Questions with Olagoke
What do you appreciate most about your work as a young lawyer?
Each transaction I advise on creates a vista for learning and knowledge. This is mostly so because, in spite of what one thinks one knows, the uniqueness in every client’s legal needs expands one’s understanding of the dynamics between law and business, where my practice area as a commercial advisor dovetail; and furthers one’s research into nuanced areas in order to provide distinct commercial solutions tailored to each client’s legal problems. There is also the advantage of acquiring a potpourri of legal knowledge and experience that comes with providing legal advice across multiple sectors which I find invaluable.
You were recently made a managing associate in your firm, what has your
experience been like climbing up the ladder, how can young lawyers better place
themselves for success?
I think it is important to treat each transaction, “low budget” or big ticket, with a similar amount of attention, detail and industry. Each work, done well, opens the door to more work – I like to focus on the blessing as it gives one the opportunity to grow from doing more. Someone said, put your head down, shut out the hum, roll up your sleeves, dig in and be available – every time. I have found this to be invaluable career advice. Being a successful lawyer transcends school grades. And it always helps to be consistent; to stay hungry and stay foolish.
What emerging areas of law would you say that young lawyers should begin to
There are a couple of emerging areas, but I would highlight two – fintech and infrastructure/construction. As fintech products and the target market increase, so will
investments in the sector. A young lawyer wants to acquire relevant knowledge within this area to
be positioned to provide advice to stakeholders. The same thing goes for infrastructure/construction as the government (and we are beginning to see the private sector too by way of public-private partnerships and tax incentives) continue to spend to bridge the infrastructural deficit. As city skylines multiply, so will the need for specialized legal advice to navigate issues in construction.
What one leader do you look up to and why?
I don’t have one leader as it has taken more villages than one to raise me. They seem to share
qualities I can summarize as follows: they handhold, let you go out on a limb – you will probably never learn to walk if you don’t falter first; bear you on their shoulders to see farther than you could on your own and speak for you behind closed doors. Some of them I read about; but in the end, they provide the right amount of guidance required to beat one’s own path.