Why Big Law is Betting Big on Africa


Jean-Claude Petilon, as co-head of McDermott’s Africa practice, said, “We’re a firm that doesn’t have to go to local counsel for questions,” because of strong working relationships and a good knowledge of local law. “When I first started working in Africa, the law wasn’t very well defined,” Mr. Petilon noted, with most work “done by agreements – establishment conventions.” But now, he added, countries have much stronger laws in such areas as natural resources and telecom.