Lynda Amadagana is the Founder and Managing Partner of A&P Law Firm. She is a lawyer admitted in Paris and Cameroon advising investors and sponsors on general business law, corporate operations, projects and concessions in the energy and infrastructures sectors as well as project financing in Africa with a specific focus on the OHADA zone.
She previously served as General Counsel of Cameroon Power Holdings, the investing affiliate of the investment fund Actis in Cameroon and the majority shareholder of the main energy utility of the country. She has previously worked at the Paris offices of the international law firms Orrick, Clifford Chance, Simmons & Simmons and Reed Smith where she advised on transactions and investments in Cameroon, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Benin, Togo, Tchad, Mali, DRC and the Congo Republic and other African countries.
Lynda holds two Masters degrees from the University of Paris Nanterre-La Defense in France and is admitted to the French and Cameroonian Bars. She is a former lecturer in several subjects of Business and Public Law at Cergy Pontoise University in France and regularly conducts training sessions for lawyers of the Cameroon Bar in the field of energy and public-private partnerships.
Lynda is the Vice President of the Diallo Telli Club, a think tank that promotes inclusive and sustainable growth in Africa and she is the former Vice-President of the African Business Lawyers Club, a club dedicated to improving the business environment in Africa. She is also the Secretary-General of the Cameroonian Mining Association.
Lynda is a Cameroonian-born who enjoys travelling, reading and listening to music during her free time. She lives between Cameroon and France.
Thank you for making out time to chat with us — in your own words — who is Lynda Amadagana?
Lynda Amadagana is a business lawyer of Cameroonian origin, admitted to the Paris and Cameroon Bars. After several years of experience in France in international law firms and in large companies in Cameroon, Lynda Amadagana founded the business law firm Amadagana & Partners in 2019. The Firm’s head office is located in Yaounde and it has offices in Paris in France and Kinshasa in the DRC.
Generally speaking, I could be described as an ambitious and willing person, eager to contribute to empowering women and for the development of my native country in particular and Africa in general.
Amazing! Tell us more about the work you do at Amadagana & Partners.
Amadagana & Partners, of which I am the founder and Managing Partner, is a law firm specializing in the energy, mining, infrastructure and finance sectors.
Together with my partners and associates, we provide legal services and strategic advice to investors, companies and governments for their projects in Cameroon and Africa, with a focus on the OHADA zone. The term OHADA (Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa) refers to an international organization legally integrating 17 African countries, of which Cameroon is a member.
For all these sectors, we work on issues of corporate law, tax law, employment law and business litigation.
Interesting — why would people choose Amadagana & Partners over other legal firms?
A&P combines knowledge of the Central African environment with mastery of international standards. Our team has gained its experience in major international law firms in Europe, and also within large companies in Africa and is therefore equipped to resolve the most complex legal issues.
The combination of these two factors enables us to offer a quality service to all our clients and particularly to those who wish to invest in key sectors of the African economy. Whether local or foreign, investors are sure to receive tailor-made advice, adapted to their needs and the realities on the ground.
Our internal organization also helps us address client queries efficiently and in a timely manner. A&P is distinguished by its dynamic staff. The team is particularly reactive, flexible and highly adaptable.
And what have been the highlights for Amadagana & Partners? Any challenges faced?
The main highlight since the opening of A&P is the focus on four core sectors, energy, mining, infrastructure and financing. Our Client base has been structured around these sectors and we had the honor to advise on major deals in the Country.
We have taken up many challenges in 2020 but one of the most striking remains the episode of the Covid 19 pandemic. It was an event of a totally new and unpredictable kind.
In order to comply with the health measures laid down by the government, we had to find new ways of working, communicating with each other and with our clients. It was very trying for us, but thanks to our determination, our quality of service remained the same. Our customer relationships have been consolidated and our team spirit has been strengthened.
Tell us about a memorable case or issue you worked on while working at Amadagana & Partners.
All of our cases are memorable in many ways, but since I must mention just one, I will talk about a public-private partnership contract between the State of Cameroon and a French consortium finalized in early 2020. We accompanied the French consortium locally in its negotiations with the State for the financing, construction and maintenance of 14 motorway toll stations. The contract has been signed, the work is underway and will modernize the road landscape in Cameroon.
If you were to advise a group of women who desire a career path in the legal space, what do you think makes someone successful in this field?
From the outset, you have to dare to be ambitious and dream big. You must not accept any limitations imposed by your peers or society because of your status as a woman. A woman has the right to work in any field even if it is labelled as predominantly male. To this must be added a lot of discipline and perseverance, and the ability to use her emotional intelligence to interact with others. Finding the balance between both personal and professional life is also essential.
Who are the greatest influences in your life and business?
The greatest influence in my life and business is my mother who raised 3 children while working full time and managing several businesses. I also have several mentors who have helped me and are continuing to help me manage A&P. I am also inspired by all these women who are breaking the glass ceiling in all industries and male-dominated sectors.
Now for some more personal stuff — what books are you reading now, and what music do you have on your playlist?
I currently read “ A promised land” by Barack Obama and “How Will You Measure Your Life?” by Clayton Christensen, James Allworth and Karen Dillon.
What does self-care mean to you, and what three things do you do to unwind?
Self-care to me is the ability to take care of oneself and to recharge batteries. I am really busy on a daily basis so self-care to me is a day doing nothing, turning off my phone and spending time with family or friends.
If you could put out an intention or desire for 2021, what would it be?
To find the right balance between personal life and professional goals.
The Leading Ladies Africa interview series focuses on women of African descent, showcases their experiences across all socio-economic sectors, highlights their personal and professional achievements and offers useful advice on how to make life more satisfying for women.
Do you know any woman of African descent doing phenomenal things? Send an email to email@example.com and we just might feature her.