Kazakhstan

IFLR1000 Reviews

Financial and corporate
Linkage & Mind

Founded in 2005, Linkage & Mind is a full-service law firm with offices in Almaty, Nur-Sultan and Shymkent.

 

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in all areas of corporate law, including banking and finance, corporate and M&A, project development and restructuring and insolvency.


Key clients

Among its clients are Makinsk Polutry Farm, Kazphosphate, KamaTyresKz, KamLitKz, RG Processing.

 

Research period review: 32nd edition (2021/2022) 

The firm has been particularly active in the area of M&A with deals such as joint-ventures, acquisitions, and establishment of entities, assisting shareholders, sellers and financiers.

The firm’s clients come from various industries, including pharmaceutical and life sciences, investment management, real estate and manufacturing.  

 

Deal highlights: 32nd edition (2021/2022) 

KamaTyresKz $20 million acquisition of assets

KamLitKz $15 million financing

Kazphosphate $2.33 million financing 

Makinsk poultry farm $2 million financing 

RG processing $300 million financing

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

Asset finance                                                                                    

"First of all, I would like to note that Linkage & Mind has very qualified and professional law associates with experience working for the Big Four law firms as well as having drafted number of laws of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Also, I would like to note the competence, professionalism and great experience of the partners, especially Madina Sypatayeva. Additionally, we are very satisfied with law associate Aizhan Aldamuratova's work.

Overall, I note that Linkage & Mind's strongest areas are corporate law, finance, M&A and tax. "

 

Banking and finance

"Previously, when we worked with other firms on similar projects, the Industrial Development Fund had many comments and it took a long time. However, when we started work with Linkage & Mind, we noticed that the Industrial Development Fund accepts their legal opinions, draft documents at once, which allowed us to speed up the process of obtaining funding. Currently, we engage only Linkage & Mind in such projects. "

"The firm provides professional services to a high level. The firm has qualified lawyers, with a good practice in financial projects and good connections in that sphere."

"I can say that the firm is one of the best Kazakhstani local law firms, with a strong team of lawyers. IT has a good reputation on corporate, finance, PPP, tax. When we started work with the firm, we noticed that the Industrial Development Fund accepts their legal opinions and draft documents at once without comments, which allowed us to speed up the process of obtaining funding. Currently, we engage only this firm in our number of projects."

"All of the lawyers are highly qualified and friendly. Generally, I heard many positive recommendations about the firm."

 

Project finance

"Qualified and professional lawyers, deadline-matching and communication. "

 

Restructuring

"The firm's team provided us with very solid advice that we put into practice in our activity, and we see that their advice helps to develop our business."

 

Aizhan Aldamuratova

"Aizhan is very responsible and adheres to deadlines, and the quality of her work is also at the highest level. "

"She is a very highly specialised lawyer, and as far as I know she has work experience of more than years. The nature of her writing of legal opinions is top notch, something noticed by the Industrial Development Fund that reviews legal opinions. That is why we always ask her to support our projects."

"First, she is very smart and a qualified lawyer. She has experience in drafting draft laws of Kazakhstan, and has supported the largest deals. Secondly, she is friendly and has very good communication skills, and I think this is also important. Thirdly, I think that she is worthy of being a senior lawyer, as she fully supports projects. I hope that she will get a ranking in this nomination! Thank you IFLR for such opportunity to provide feedback. "

"Aizhan Aldamuratova is very highly specialized lawyer, as far as I know, she have a work experience over four years. The nature of writing legal opinions is top notch, the Industrial Development Fund that reviews legal opinions noticed that. That is why we always ask her to support our projects, with Madina Sypatayeva."

"Qualified lawyer, she knows her job well."

 

Yerzhan Manassov

"He has a deep knowledge of our field of activity. His advice is always practical, and its application always leads to a positive results in our business. He is also a good strategist."

 

Madina Sypatayeva

"With more than 20 years of experience, she is a partner at the firm. Good communication skills, very qualified."

                                                                                               

                                                                                               

                                                                                               

                                                                                                                

MG Partners

Founded in 2008, MG Partners has permanent offices in Nur-Sultan, Almaty and Karaganda. The firm registered on the territory of the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC) in 2019 and received a license in accordance with its applicable law. The staff currently includes more than 20 employees. 

 

Focusses / specialisms 

Primary practice areas of the firm include corporate, commercial law, registration of legal entities, mergers and acquisitions, legal support of the termination of the activity of a legal entity, de-registration from the record registration of branch and representative office. 

The firm works with clients from Netherlands, Italy, Georgia, China and Japan.  

 

Research period review: 32nd edition (2021/2022) 

During the review period, the firm acted for joint ventures and sellers in several confidential M&A mandates. 

 

Client Feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)         

Project development 

"Punctual and precise." 

 

Ayazhanym Alzhan 

"Educated, precise and punctual." 

 

Aequitas

Aequitas is a full-service law firm with an office in Almaty, Kazakhstan, founded in 1993.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is experienced in corporate law and project development. In banking and finance it advises the financing side on ISDA agreements, derivative purchases, direct financing, project financing and provides regulatory advice.

In project development it advises investors and contractors on projects in construction and mining.

  

Key clients

Among the clients of the firm are ForgeGlobal and Bitfury.

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie opened its office in Almaty, Kazakhstan in 1995. It is part of the international law firm Baker McKenzie which has 77 offices in 46 countries.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is experienced in various areas of corporate law and project development.

In banking and finance the firm is particularly active in advising clients on the regulatory and compliance issues related to offering financial services while in capital markets it advises issuers on buybacks and upgrades of note issues.

In corporate and M&A it advises mainly the financing part on mergers, acquisitions and equity investments. It also provides legal services in the area of restructuring and insolvency such as advising the distressed companies on their restructuring.

In project development it advises clients on corporate and contractual matters.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

Banking and finance

"Quick and professional feedback, clear, detailed and to the point."

 

Financial services regulatory

"Good legal knowledge, prompt responses, flexible approach."

Centil Law Firm

Centil Law Firm is a full-service law firm with an office in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The firm was established in 2003 and, today, it has 45 lawyers and offices also in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in corporate law. In banking and finance it focuses on advising the lenders on project financing, and in corporate and M&A it advises clients on their participation in joint-ventures in various industries, among which are chemicals, automotive and industrial engineering.


Key clients

Among its clients are Allen & Overy, Avito Holding, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner and MTS II.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

Capital markets : Equity

"They provided detailed guidance on KZ issues on subsoil use and AIX offering. Also very responsive and reasonable fees."

 

M&A

"Very responsive and clear. Pragmatic advice relevant to the transaction."

Deloitte

Deloitte is a corporate law firm which established its first Kazakh office in 1994 in Almaty. Today, it has grown to 700 specialists and it has additional offices in Nur-Sultan, Atyrau and Aktau.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in corporate law and project development.

Its banking and finance practice includes advising clients on legal and regulatory matters.

Its corporate and M&A team assists all sides of the table with legal analysis on acquisitions and sales.

In project development it advises clients on various corporate and legal matters.

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

Financial restructuring

"Provided professional advice."

 

M&A

"Very competent, Responsive, detailed oriented, looking for solutions."

Dentons

Dentons is a full-service law firm with two offices in Kazakhstan, in Almaty and Nur-Sultan.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in corporate law and project development.

In banking and finance it advises clients on the buy side and the sell side on acquisition finance, direct finance and regulatory matters.

Its capital markets team is active in advising issuers on bond issues, global institutions on trading with treasury bills and counterparties on ISDA agreements.

Its corporate and M&A team is active in advising buyers and sellers on acquisitions, sales, purchases of shares and investment agreements in various industries, most notably in construction, energy, manufacturing and oil and gas.

The project development team assists developers and contractors with land acquisitions, development of renewable energy projects and construction projects.      


Key clients

Among its clients are EBRD, Eximbank, Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC, Euler Hermes, BTS Digital, AIFC, Eurasian Resources Group, AXA France, Astana International Finance Center, Kcell, Citibank, KazTransGas, Barclays, Tengri Capital Partners, Kazakhstanskaya Ipotechnaya Kompaniya and TAV Holding.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

M&A

"Dentons are hands on, responsive and capable to address complex issues, including during tough deadlines. They also demonstrate great negotiation skills."

"Legal due diligence;

negotiations on the terms and conditions of a sale-purchase agreement;

legal review of the draft sale-purchase agreement."

Eterna Law

Eterna Law is a full-service law firm with an office in Almaty, Kazakhstan since 2012. It is part of the international law firm Eterna Law, focused on Ukraine and the CIS region. Established in 2002 the firm grew rapidly and currently employs over 70 professionals in four active offices: Kyiv, Almaty, Riga and Dusseldorf.

 

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in corporate law and M&A. It advises clients on acquisitions and investments. It has a prolific track record in advising clients on market entries and on restructuring and insolvency transactions such as insolvency proceedings and restructurings.

In terms of industries, it is active in all sectors, most notably in IT and energy.

It also provides legal services in capital markets and project development.


Key clients

Among its clients are AE. Group structuring AE 37, Chartis, Corevalue, Spacebit, MET Grup and Global Spirits.

EY Law

Ernst & Young is a global law firm with more than 700 office locations in over 150 countries. The firm has three offices in Kazakhstan, located in Almaty, Nur-Sultan and Atyrau.

 

Focusses / specialisms

The firm has strength in transactions and advisory involving cross-functional teams. It focuses on a broad range of transactions, including product development, legal, regulatory, compliance and structural issues, as well as with the use of technology and legal managed services to provide cost-efficient and scalable assistance with high-volume, cross-border, routine or event-driven legal projects.

GRATA International

GRATA International is a full-service law firm with offices in Almaty and Astana. It is part of the international law firm Grata International founded in April 1992. Today it has over 200 legal professionals providing legal services in offices in Azerbaijan, Belarus, China, Czech Republic, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Poland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Russia, UK, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Switzerland.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in banking and finance, corporate and M&A and project development. It advises clients on cross-border and domestic transactions, as well as on regulatory matters.


Key clients

Among its clients are Deutsche Investitions und Entwicklungsgesellschaft, Mastercard, MicroVest Capital Management, ENKA İnşaat ve Sanayi, KazStroyServices, Marubeni, Kumpulan, Rönesans Holding and Pipeline Technique.

Integrites

Integrites is a full-service law firm with offices in Almaty, Nur-sultan and Atyrau, Kazakhstan. It is part of the international law firm Integrites with more than 100 lawyers and a network of offices and representatives in Kazakhstan (Aktau, Almaty, Astana, Atyrau, Karaganda), Germany (Munich), the Netherlands (Amsterdam), Russia (Moscow), Ukraine (Kiev) and the United Kingdom (London).

 

Focusses / specialisms

The firm advises all sides of the table on banking and finance and corporate and M&A.

In banking and finance it advises lenders and arrangers on direct financing, acquisition finance and banking and legal matters.

Its corporate and M&A work includes transactions such as acquisitions, share capital increases and various corporate matters.


Key clients

Among its clients are Agip, Altel, ENI, Microsoft, Panalpina World Transport, GazpromNeft – Kazakhstan, Tesco Corporation, Michelin, Kusto Group, Lancaster Group, Alfa Bank, Alliance Bank and HSBC.

 

Client feedback: 31st edition (2020/2021)

Banking and finance             

"Cost-efficient and flexible with fees."

Kinstellar

Kinstellar is a full-service law firm whose Kazakh office was launched in Almaty, in 2013 and the Nur-Sultan office was launched in 2018. It is part of the international law firm Kinstellar which established its first office in Prague, Check Republic in 1992 and today it has offices across Central and Eastern Europe, as well as in Turkey.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in financial and corporate and project development.

Its banking and finance practice consist of financial services regulatory advice.

Its corporate law practice includes capital markets work such as advising issuers and underwriters on bond issues, note issues, amending terms of bond issues and advises creditors on bond restructurings.

It is particularly active in corporate and M&A, assisting sellers and acquirers on mergers, sales and acquisitions in various industries, including energy and financial services.

In project development it advises contractors and JV partners on projects in various industries, including construction and mining.

KM & Partners

Established in 1994, KM & Partners is a corporate law firm with an office in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in all areas of corporate law, including banking and finance, corporate and M&A and project development, advising on direct financing, convertible loans, acquisitions, business restructurings, leases and various corporate matters.


Key clients

Among its clients are International Finance Corporation, Goshawk Aviation Tengri Partners Capital, Eurasia, Sasof Intrenational Master Fund V, Bank Centre Credit, Carlyle Aviation Partners, Saxo Bank, Willis Lease Finance Corporation and DNV GL.

Morgan Lewis & Bockius

Morgan Lewis & Bockius is a full-service law firm with Kazakh offices in Almaty and Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan. It is part of the global law firm Morgan Lewis & Bockius with a team of more than 2,200 lawyers spread across 31 offices in North America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in all areas of corporate law and project development, in both domestic and international transactions.

In banking and finance it advises all sides of the table on direct financing, project financing, mezzanine financing, investment portfolio restructuring and regulatory matters.

Its capital markets practice includes research and analysis of transaction, listing shares, IPOs and advice on various regulatory matters.

In corporate and M&A it advises buyers, sellers and JV partners on sales, acquisitions, buy backs and joint ventures.

It’s active in various industries, including agriculture, oil and gas and financial services.


Key clients

Among its clients are Kusto Agro, Air Astana and Magnetic Oil.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

M&A

“Very diligent and professional, knowledge of market, policy, and economic impact of any advice they provide."

"Highly diligent, professional and responsible."

Reed Smith

Reed Smith is a corporate law firm with an office in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, founded over 15 years ago. It’s part of the international law firm Reed Smith with offices in 32 locations, globally.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in corporate and M&A, advising clients on sales, acquisitions, purchases and corporate matters.

 

Key clients

Among the firm’s clients are Kazatomprom, Kazakhmys Corporation and Shell.

Sayat Zholshy & Partners

Founded in 1998, Sayat Zholshy & Partners is a full-service corporate law firm with offices in Almaty and Astana. It comprises seven partners, two counsels and over 20 associates.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in banking and finance, corporate and M&A and project development. In corporate and M&A it advises purchasers and sellers on acquisitions and joint ventures.


Key clients

Among its clients are Freedom Finance, Arasan Firm, Almaty Orchards, RG Brands, PPG Industries, Purmo Group, Tartyp Join Stock Company, PM Lucas Enterprises, TengizTransGaz and Alautransservice, CAIH Power, KMG Engineering and PSN KazStroy.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

M&A

"Sayat Zholshy & Partners team is highly professional. From our point of view, their key advantages are the impeccable knowledge of Kazakhstan law, clear-eyed understanding of client’s needs, client-tailored approach, responsiveness to client’s requests, and profound knowledge of specifics of doing business in Kazakhstan.

Among other things, Sayat Zholshy & Partners helped identify certain risks that we used to ignore and advised how to eliminate/mitigate such risks, thus ensuring that we avoid many problems."

SIGNUM Law Firm

Founded in 2006, Signum Law Firm is a full-service law firm with offices in Almaty and Nur-Sultana, and staff of 25 people, of which 12 are legal professionals.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in banking and finance, corporate and M&A and project development.

In banking and finance it advises borrowers and lenders on project financing and acquisition financing.

In capital markets it has experience advising issuers on Eurobond issues and convertible debentures.

In corporate and M&A it assists all sides of the tables on acquisitions, joint ventures and sales in a number of industries, including oil and gas, pharmacy, energy and infrastructure.

In project development it advises participants in joint-ventures and concessionaires on concessions, EPC contracts, PPPs and land acquisitions mainly in the energy, engineering and oil and gas sectors.

It has a track record in restructuring and insolvency in advising debtors on bankruptcy proceedings and financial restructurings.


Key clients

Among its clients are Silk Energy, China Power International Holding, Silk Energy, Isoplus, Medtronic, London Prime and Tengizchevroil.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

Project development : Energy

"Always attentive and quick to respond. Flexible in approach. Quick and easy access to the Managing Partner"

 

Project development : Infrastructure

"Very professional in this area and respond swiftly with decisive opinions"

Unicase Law Firm

Unicase Law Firm is a full-service law firm with offices in Almaty and Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, as well as an office in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. It was founded in 2010.

Focusses / specialisms

The firm is active in corporate and M&A and project development.

In corporate and M&A it advises acquirers, bidders and investors on acquisitions, joint-ventures and public bids, and buy guarantors on company acquisitions through shares. Its M&A team is active in a number of industries, including oil and gas, renewable energy and natural resources.

In project development it is experienced in advising contractors, bidders and investors on PPPs, EPC contracts, licences and projects in various industries, ranging from power and renewable energy to healthcare and infrastructure.


Key clients

Among its clients are VPC, The World Bank and Vestas Deutschland.

 

Client feedback: 32nd edition (2021/2022)

M&A

"New approaches to problem-solving, price"

 

Project development : Infrastructure

"Unicase provided a very comprehensive and clear report that provided in depth knowledge of the legal and regulatory framework and applicable policies on Urban Sustainable Development in Kazakhstan."