The AFLA 2019
In June 2019, Legal Week (a weekly British magazine for business lawyers, launched in 1999) published a call for applications from Africa’s legal community for entry into the 2019 African Legal Awards (AFLA). Seizing this opportunity, Crownel Co. Ltd immediately submitted an application for entry and we were thrilled to receive notification a month later (17 July 2019) of our nomination under the category of Alternative Service Provider of the year 2019 in the AFLA which were slated for 6 September 2019 in Johannesburg, South Africa. The 2019 AFLA set out to recognise exceptional achievement from within Africa’s legal community and there were 26 categories to choose from for both private law firms and in-house legal departments respectively.
Our specific category which happended to be a newly introduced one, was open to Alternative Service Providers that have at least one office in Sub-Saharan Africa. Entrants for this category were not only required to be leaders in their chosen markets, but also explicitly demonstrate having made significant progress over the past 12-18 months. The chosen eligibility criteria for this category were the legal expertise and innovation, strategic vision, business winning, client care (including measures relating to efficiency and cost effectiveness of service delivery), employee development, sustainable improvement in financial improvements in financial performance and a commitment to corporate social responsibility. Overall, over 2000 applications were considered for the 2019 AFLA and only 185 nominees were shortlisted.
The applications were assessed by an independent panel of judges comprising senior in-house lawyers and corporate counsel from an array of leading companies including: the High Court of South Africa, Canadian Corporate Counsel Association, Corporate Counsel Association of South Africa, Singapore Corporate Counsel Association, Nedbank, Road Accident Fund, CSIR, Tiger Brands, AfriGroup Holdings, SA Development Finance, In-House Lawyers Association of New Zealand, Connect Financial Solutions, HKA, Steinmuller Africa, BT Global Services, Sun International, Association francaise des juristes d’enterprise and Commerce and Industry Group UK.
The Crownel Co. Team met and interacted with various Lead Counsel from firms in attendance at the event including but not limited to; Ms. Anne Kiunuhe of Anjarwalla & Khanna (a member of the Africa Legal Network which also comprises some firms from Uganda), Mr. Heinrich Valentine of MVMT Attorneys, Mr. Kenneth Muhangi of KTA Advocates and Ms. Delia McArthur of LAW FOR ALL who has expressed interest in working with us on future projects.