Legal Counsel, Senior

Cape Town

Certification Function Responsibilities?
MiFID ll Knowledge and competency staff?
Contract Type:
Corporate Profile
We started in South Africa, in ’91. Back then, change was coming. Along with its challenges came the chance to invest in a better future. Our journey through that time taught us to recognise and embrace change and uncertainty. Change taught us to be bold. Resilient. Agile.

To believe that active investing can be a force for good.

Today, we manage R2.3 trillion for our clients globally. We still see the world from a different perspective. Whether it is the rise of the East or the rise of the machines, we’ll always seek to make the best of it. Best for our clients, best for our company, and the best for the world we live in. We are investing for a world of change.

We began as Investec Asset Management, a small start-up based in South Africa offering domestic investment strategies. In 2020, almost three decades of growth later, we de-merged from Investec Group to become Ninety One, an independent asset manager listed on the London and Johannesburg Stock Exchanges.

While our name may have changed, we’re still the same firm. We offer distinctive investment strategies spanning equities, fixed income, multi-asset, alternatives and sustainability to help institutional investors, those advising others and individuals navigate an ever-changing world. All of our employees have the opportunity to own part of the firm. We also have our founding leadership in place. Our distinctive owner culture allows us to commit to building a long-term, inter-generational business. It supports a business fully aligned with our clients’ long-term investment objectives.

*as at 31 March 2020

Ninety One is an equal opportunities employer. Our imperative is to attract and retain the best talent by providing a corporate environment where people from varying backgrounds can develop professionally and build a rewarding career.


Job Overview
This role requires a versatile senior transactional lawyer to support our unlisted credit funds within South Africa and across the African continent. The successful applicant will assume the lead legal role in respect of Ninety One’s privately negotiated unlisted credit transactions in South Africa and across the African continent, including restructures and workouts. This role will work with a Cape Town-based team to structure, negotiate, execute, manage and restructure complex domestic and cross-border investments


Key Responsibilities

Private markets investments:

·       Provide comprehensive legal advice and support in structuring, negotiating, executing and monitoring complex, privately negotiated credit transactions, including syndication and intercreditor issues, in South Africa and across the African continent for Ninety One on behalf of its funds and clients.

·       Lead debt restructures and negotiations for distressed investments, draft debt restructuring term sheets, prepare analyses of various scenarios for restructuring options and report to internal monitoring bodies.

·       Facilitate transaction execution by driving the legal process from inception at origination or syndication phase through to loan disbursement.



·       Working closely alongside investment professionals and other specialists within the organisation, provide legal advice and guidance through all stages of investment processes.

·       Appoint, manage and oversee external legal counsel (international and local) in respect of privately negotiated investments and restructures, and manage external legal costs.

·       Advise and assist with ongoing management of existing investments, including waivers and amendments, liaising with the transaction management team.

·       Manage legal and reputational risk in respect of privately negotiated investments.

·       Advise fund formation teams to ensure new funds are appropriately structured.

·       Ensure that internal policies and procedures are upheld and adhered to.

·       Draft and review non-disclosure agreements and other preliminary documentation.

·       Assist with miscellaneous internal business contracts and transactions from time to time


Candidate Requirements

Technical Knowledge and Experience:

·         Related tertiary legal qualification is essential.

·         Admission to practice in South Africa is preferred.

·         Candidate should be a versatile senior transactional lawyer with at least 7-10 years post-qualification experience in top tier law firms and/or financial services firms (preferably in private markets / alternative investments).

·         Experience in unlisted credit transactions is essential.

·         Experience managing complex cross-border legal transactions is preferred.

·         Proven deal structuring and negotiation skills.


System Skills:

·         Proficient in Microsoft Office.


Personal Attributes:

·         Excellent communication skills required, written and oral.

·         Must be able to use initiative (self-starter).

·         Must show confidence to be able to quickly build up and maintain effective working relationships.

·         Discretion and professionalism are paramount.

·         Must be organised, energetic and maintain a flexible approach to working both within a team and also on own initiative.

·         Must be proactive and have strong capacity for developing knowledge and skills.

·         Must be able to meet tight deadlines and deliver expected outcomes.

·         Proven ability to multi-task and cope with the needs of a fast-moving business.

·         Solutions driven approach with strong risk management skills.

·         Must have a keen interest in following the financial markets.


Risk and Compliance Responsibilities
Adhering to the Code of Ethics and related policies, including personal account dealing, gifts, market abuse, etc.
Ensuring Compliance training, declarations and relevant forms are completed on a timely basis
Ensuring that firm and client data and property, including IT data, are properly protected
Reporting any possible and actual breaches, errors, complaints or conduct issues.
Reporting any suspicion that a client, investor, or employee may be involved in money laundering, fraud or other crime such as market abuse