Kem U. Ihenacho

  • Partner
  • 99 Bishopsgate
  • London EC2M 3XF
  • United Kingdom
  • T +44.20.7710.4560


Kem Ihenacho is the Global Vice Chair of the Private Equity Practice. He is an M&A lawyer with more than 20 years of experience, focusing on UK and international private equity, infrastructure, and M&A transactions.

Mr. Ihenacho is recognized as a leader in his field by numerous publications. He is listed in the 2015 Lawyer Magazine's Hot 100 list as a private equity star, and Chambers Global 2017 recognized him as an Africa Expert, stating: "He's highly commercial, very experienced and knows the markets inside out."

Mr. Ihenacho has sat on the legal advisory boards of various private equity industry bodies.


Mr. Ihenacho’s representative transactions include advising:

  • TPG’s global impact investing platform, The Rise Fund, on their US$200 million minority investment in the mobile money business of LSE premium listed company, Airtel Africa PLC 
  • TPG and other selling shareholders in relation to the sale of the Prezzo group, the Italian casual dining restaurants, to a subsidiary of Cain International
  • On its acquisition of Prometic Bioseparations, a company engaged in the research of bioseparations and subsidiary of Liminal BioSciences
  • On its €50 million investment in Univercells, an innovative bioprocessing provider focused on increasing the availability of affordable biologics to address global health challenges
Bay Grove Capital and its portfolio company Lineage Logistics
  • On the acquisition of Partner Logistics, a leading European automated warehouse business
  • On the acquisition of Yearsley Group, a leading UK temperature controlled logistics service provider and frozen food distributor
William Demant Invest A/S
  • In connection with its acquisition of Vision RT, a UK-based 3D surface imaging technology company developing products and solutions for surface guided radiation therapy
Leonard Green & Partners
  • On its acquisition of Pure Gym
  • CVC Capital Partners on the acquisition of 90.01% of Ethniki Insurance, Greece’s largest insurer, from the National Bank of Greece
  • CVC Capital Partners on the sale of a 30% stake in Domestic & General Group, a UK-based provider of warranty and product protection services, to Abu Dhabi Investment Authority
  • CVC Capital Partners’ Growth Fund on its strategic investment in OMADA A/S, a global leader of Identity Governance and Administration software and services
  • In connection with the £2.4 billion IPO of Avast, the world’s largest consumer antivirus software supplier, listed on the London Stock Exchange
  • Leading a consortium with Blackstone on the £2.96 billion offer for Paysafe Group plc   
  • CVC and portfolio company ASM on its joint venture with WPP and the Smollan Group
The Carlyle Group
  • In relation to its investment in Diamond Bank
TA Associates   
  • On its equity investment in Inspired Education, a UK-based provider of educational services
  • On the sale of a significant minority stake in Interswitch to Visa. Interswitch, headquartered in Nigeria, is one of the largest Africa-focused digital payments providers
Energy Capital Partners
  • In relation to the acquisition of UK thermal generation assets from Engie
  • In consortium with HgCapital, ICG, and Montagu Private Equity on its acquisition of a 40% stake in Visma
Onex Corporation
  • On its acquisition of Survitec Group
  • Onex and Survitec on the acquisition of Wilhelmsen Maritime Solutions
  • On the disposal of its insurance business in Southern Africa to Capital Works
Helios Investment Partners
  • Helios Investment Partners, TA Associates, and minority shareholders on the sale of a significant minority stake in Interswitch to Visa. Interswitch, headquartered in Nigeria, is one of the largest Africa-focused digital payments providers
  • On the acquisition of a minority interest in Interswitch
  • On its joint venture with Vitol on the acquisition of Oando’s downstream Business
  • In relation to its investment in Vivo Energy
  • On the acquisition of Axella (Oando Gas & Power)
  • On its investment in renewable energy business Starsight
  • Wagamama, Duke Street, Hutton Collins, and the other selling shareholders in connection with the acquisition by The Restaurant Group plc of Wagamama

Thought Leadership

  • Is Artificial Intelligence Set to Transform Private Equity Dealmaking?  -  June 25, 2019
  • Unlocking Value in Private Equity Transactions -  June 11, 2018
  • Private Equity and Privilege: Why Recent Legal Developments Matter to Buyout Firms -  July 21, 2017
  • Africa's Funding Alternative -  September 28, 2015
  • Africa: Insights on Deal Trends in a PE Growth Market -  January 08, 2015


"One of the best all-round private equity lawyers"

"Extremely personable, which really helps in tricky situations"

Chambers UK 2018
Bar Qualification
  • England and Wales (Solicitor)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice, Cardiff Law School, 1996
  • LLB (Hons), Cardiff University, 1995
  • Entertainment, Sports & Media
  • Financial Institutions
  • Retail & Consumer Products
  • Fintech
  • English
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Emerging Companies
  • Investment Funds
  • Private Equity
  • Africa Practice