It is important for me to consistently drive value for my clients, particularly in our rapidly evolving world”- Bukola Bankole

Bukola, our Millennial feature, is a Partner at The New Practice (TNP), an Andersen Global collaborating law firm in Lagos, Nigeria. She leads the firm’s Corporate Finance, Capital Markets and Technology Teams. Her extensive and proven wealth of experience in advising on financing and investment deals cuts across various industries in multiple jurisdictions and aids her ability to provide industry-specific expertise in multiple aspects of commercial transactions at all times. This helps to give her clients the assurance that she is a revenue enabler and adds value to their bottom line.

As a solution-oriented adviser, she advises a range of financial institutions and investment firms, including private equity fund managers, venture capitalists, and banks; she also advises governments, private and publicly quoted companies, family offices and individuals. She has a strong commitment to promoting investment in Africa and has facilitated the entry of international companies into the continent, finding them the most suitable local partners. Bukola is currently the 1st Vice Chairman of the Mergers, Acquisitions and Corporate Reorganisations (MACR) Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association Section on Business Law (NBA-SBL).

1.What makes Legal Practice exciting for Bukola?

RESULTS! She enjoys being able to do things every day that significantly and positively impact people, businesses, and their bottom line. Bukola likes her role as a trusted advisor and knowing people trust her enough to help guide them, is thrilling for her.

She has spent much of her career working on private equity and venture capital deals focused on diverse industries. Bukola loves this space because it provides an opportunity for founders to interact with institutional capital for the first time. For her, it is fulfilling watching start-ups that she has advised from the ground up, blossom into thriving businesses. Getting a front-row seat to new technology, initiatives, and innovative disruptions makes it all so exciting for Bukola.

“It is important for me to consistently drive value for my clients, particularly in our rapidly evolving world” Bukola notes.

Working on various cross border deals and having the opportunity to partner with such relentless individuals and help their businesses continue to thrive also makes legal practice exciting for her.

If it has taught her anything, it is that there are many paths to success and there isn’t any prototype for success with the practice of law which makes for some unique and exciting interactions.

2.What is her philosophy of Impacting the Nation through the Practice of Law?

The concept of the rights and obligations of citizens are built around the law, Bukola notes. She also understands that the practice of law has promoted the jurisprudence of human rights and benefits, either through advocacy or through the institution of actions against the status quo. Bukola believes the law should be used as a tool for social engineering to change societal attitudes on issues such as gender equality, race, religion and fundamental freedoms.

Bukola Bankole

Bukola Bankole: Africa’s Legal Millennial

3.What is the Next Big Thing Bukola is Working On?

Bukola was recently named as one of the 100 recipients of the 2021 Royal African Young Leadership Forum (RAYLF) award, which is dedicated to enhancing, and celebrating entrepreneurship, leadership, academic excellence, and tech ingenuities that are deep-rooted in Africa’s young population.

This is particularly exciting for her because she and her team have outlined some great initiatives aimed at empowering the African youth. In this regard, she can contribute her quota, knowing they can help them build exciting things and build the Nigeria which is habitable, Nigeria for posterity.

4.What does She consider as Millennials’ greatest strength?

“Millennials possess a lot of strengths and characteristics that are unique in comparison to the Baby Boomers and the Traditionalists, our greatest strength would have to be our ability to see through generational insincerity”, Bukola emphasises.

She also notes that millennials are the most tech-enabled generation. Bukola understands that technology, the internet, and everything that associates with it came into eclectic use on millennial’s watch; for her, millennials watched it transition from Nintendo to Sega to mobile phones to smartphones, to drones to electric cars, and bloom into what it is today. For her, the generation before millennials were so focused on work as they did not pay attention to what was happening. She is of the opinion that millennials have factored tech into growth and have made it a part of them. Bukola questions the fact that there has not been a millennial who isn’t tech-savvy. She emphasises that millennials continue to explore the potential of technology and push the boundaries towards further development and ingenuity.

5.Who in the Profession does she look up to and what is she currently reading?

Bukola is in awe of two great Amazons in this industry, real trailblazers, she notes. They are Dr. Myma Belo-Osagie and Mrs. Kofo Dosekun. She notes that Dr. Belo-Osagie established a thriving law firm, Udo-Udoma and Belo-Osagie (UUBO), along with Sen. Udo Udoma) in a male-dominated industry. For Bukola, Dr. Belo-Osagie did not just succeed at it, she has excelled. Bukola also notes that as of today, Dr. Belo-Osagie has more or less retired and is lending her own back to UUBO as Of-Counsel. As for Mrs. Dosekun, Bukola notes she started from a banking career with Citibank and  is now the Chairperson of Aluko & Oyebode’s Board of Partners, a top tier law firm in Nigeria. For Bukola, these ladies have proven that dedication and a dint of hard work can get one to the top!

And of course, there is her girl crush, Folake Adebowale. Bukola notes,

“she makes rising to the top look easy but can see the level of dedication she has put into her career. These are my champions! They have paved the way and continue to play a very pivotal role in shaping my career. Without knowing it, they support my growth, with their determination, their passion for excellence and how deliberate they are.”

She is currently reading Aigboje Aig-Imokhuede’s book, ‘Leaving the Tarmac’. One of her major takeaways so far would be leveraging excellence to create a sustainable business, building, winning teams and operating successfully in emerging markets.

The PALM considers Bukola Bankole a legal millennial who has shown exceptional radiance in the field of legal practice.

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