Job Title: General Manager, Legal
Employment Type: Full-time
Overall Purpose of the Job
- The role is designed to support the Legal Director of SEPLAT PLC and its Subsidiaries (“the SEPLAT Group”) to guide and advise the Board of Directors, the Executive team and the Leadership Team on the legal framework of the SEPLAT Group and its interplay with the external legal environment, while scanning the internal and external horizon for actual and potential legal risks and implications of all of the business transactions.
- The role will ensure the delivery of all upstream transactions that portend legal, commercial and or reputational risks within the Exploration and Production (E&P) departments and all legal workstreams on mergers and acquisitions, divestures, financing and debt restructuring, corporate finance and tax, corporate restructuring, enterprise risk management, intellectual property rights and protection, corporate law.
- The role evaluates and weighs multiple inputs and impacts of any business decision or action on the SEPLAT Group and works in an integrated manner with the Legal Director and the Executive Team to deliver the purpose, objectives and the strategic business growth plan of the SEPLAT Group.
- Act as a key resource, providing strategic legal advice and assurance to the Board, Board Committees, CEO, Executive Team and providing strategic legal advice and support to the Board, Board Committees, CEO, Executive Team and Heads of all Functions on all company matters including but not limited to, Oil and Gas operations, commercial transactions, financing and capital management, regulatory and partner interface on operational matters, intellectual capital, antitrust, patent, trademark protection, corporate restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures/consortiums, dispute resolution, enterprise risk management, good governance, and employment law.
- Closely work with the Legal Director to deliver the growth and transformational objectives of the SEPLAT Group and drive the culture of the Group, as set by the SEPLAT PLC Board. Act as a ‘sounding board’ for tough decisions aimed at developing/driving high quality business strategies/plans and ensuring their alignment with short-term and long-term objectives, whilst supporting the Legal Director in navigating the CEO and the Leadership Team through potential legal ‘land mines’.
- Play a critical role in setting the standards for the SEPLAT Group’s culture, values and behaviour by weighing the balance of what is legal and what is right for the business and market reputation of SEPLAT.
- Provide commercial and transactional expertise – work at the strategic level in mergers and acquisitions (‘M&A) and other business development projects, decide the appropriate legal documentation for all stages, lead or guide negotiations with Financiers, Private Entities, Government and Regulators, balancing the interests and policy direction of Government and the long-term implications for SEPLAT, provide expert legal advice and support for strategic commercial operations e.g. custody transfer, crude transfer, handling and unitization agreements.
- Manage legal and regulatory compliance in Exploration and Production and corporate transactions– ensuring material risks have remedial plans and are integrated into the corporate risk management system.
- Act as a key resource to the Legal Director in providing advice and counsel regarding legal requirements, best practices and strategies for managing risk to avoid negative publicity issues and litigation and to advance the Company’s vision and mission statement.
- Proactively identify areas of high/critical legal risks, ensuring their inclusion in the Risk Management Framework; and that viable and resourced contingency plans exist for identified elements.
- Enterprise Risk Management – play a critical role in proactively and thoroughly managing the Legal enterprise level risks facing all or any member of the SEPLAT Group by representing the Legal Director as the Legal Risk Champion, ensuring that the key Legal risks and their mitigations are properly reflected in the Enterprise Risk Register, and acting as a liaison between the Legal Department and the Enterprise Risk Management team in managing all legal risks.
- Scan the internal and external horizon for any actual or potential corporate/organisational, counterparty, statutory and regulatory threats and bring them to the attention of key stakeholders whilst advising them on sound mitigations.
- Support the Legal Director in reporting on Legal Enterprise Risks to the relevant Board Committees.
- Manage Dispute Resolution – Lead the resolution of all disputes emanating from the E&P and Corporate units using appropriate alternative dispute resolution proceedings while maintaining an optimal and cost-effective activity/portfolio split between internal and external (local and foreign) counsel.
- Champion the overall legal health of SEPLAT, the proactive formulation and development of enterprise-wide strategies, standards, and practices for Seplat Legal with the aim of building an effective, efficient and best-in-class Legal Department to serve the needs of SEPLAT.
- Public Advocacy – Protect and promote the business objectives of the SEPLAT Group in the external fora through: (a) leadership participation in critical (inter)national industry group/think tanks that promote research, data collection and analysis to address industry issues and shape the Corporate regulatory framework particularly as it affects oil and gas companies, (b) advocate for the SEPLAT Group in special panels set up by the Executive or Legislative arms of the Federal Government of Nigeria to investigate activities of the SEPLAT Group or the Oil and Gas industry, and (c) proactively lobbying in connection with proposed legislation which impact the business or growth of the Seplat Group.
- Lead or guide negotiations or engagements with Government Agencies and Regulators whilst balancing the interests and policy direction of the Government with the long-term implications for SEPLAT.
- External Counsel – Manage the panel of Nigerian and International Law Firms that support the matters arising from E&P and Corporate Units and advise the Legal Director on the use, optimization, retention and evaluation of such Firms.
- Functional Leadership and Responsibilities – Plan, manage execution and measure results of processes and practices with E&P and Corporate units of the Legal Department to ensure that its objectives and activities are aligned with SEPLAT’s business strategy, goals and objectives.
- Contribute to, and deploy within E&P and Corporate units, the vision for success within the Legal Department.
- Lead and motivate subordinates by creating an enabling environment for their high performance.
- Joint Venture Responsibilities- Efficiently support SEPLAT Operations in engaging the relevant stakeholders (NAPIMS, DPR, NPDC) via JV OPCOM and TECOM Meetings ensuring full compliance with the Joint Operating Agreements governing our relationship.
Job Context and Main Activities
- Guide and advise the Leadership Team – 1 levels of Management and support the Legal Director in guiding and advising the Board of Directors, the Executive team and the Leadership Team, on the operations legal framework of the SEPLAT Group and its interplay with the external legal environment, while scanning the internal and external horizon for actual and potential legal threats.
- Provide expert legal advice on E&Pacross Drilling, Production and Maintenance Operations, the Gas Business, HSSE, Base and Community Operations, Lands, etc.
- Provide expert and strategic legal and business advice to the Boards of Directors and Executive Management within the SEPLAT Group, drive efficient dispute resolution, embed a strong governance and compliance culture, manage risks within the legal framework, and manage the impact of external factors.
- Evaluate and weigh multiple inputs and impacts of any high-level decision or action on the SEPLAT Group and work in an integrated manner with the Leadership Team to deliver the purpose, objectives and the strategic business growth plan of the SEPLAT Group.
- Work closely with members of the Leadership Team to implement high quality business growth and transformational objectives and set the standard for the SEPLAT Group’s culture, values and behavior.
- A Degree in Law is required. An MBA, master’s degree or a Ph.D. in Law will be an added advantage.
- Must be qualified to practice as a lawyer in Nigeria and be a member of the Nigerian Bar Association.
- At least 20 years post-call, with experience in Law administration, Legal advisory in Energy, Upstream, Midstream and Commercial in an international law firm or similar post-call experience with a mid-sized or major E&P company in Nigeria.
- Proficient knowledge of MS Word, Excel, and other Microsoft applications.
- Exposure and working experience with an international oil firm for at least 8 years
- Proven evidence of sustained performance and delivery at mid-management or management level in a mid-sized or major E&P operation.
- Legal experience in Oil & Gas across geographies (especially Nigeria and the United Kingdom).
- Strong expertise in drafting, reviewing, and negotiating agreements for complex transactions across the Upstream, Midstream, and with local and international private/government parties.
- Working knowledge of the evolving local and international ESG and New Energy landscape, including the Legal issues and obligations faced by an Oil & Gas Company with dual listing status.
- Ability to drive the legal aspects of, and manage complexities arising within, an entire project/transaction value chain (i.e., from Project structuring to post-completion).
- Strong interpersonal skills and robust negotiation skills.
- Knowledge of legislation governing operations in Oil & Gas.
Application Closing Date
Method of Application
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply online