Paras Shah

Paras Shah

Managing Partner
Nairobi, Kenya: Coulson Harney LLP
T: +254 20 289 9000
  • Overview
  • Experience
  • Publications & Insights


Paras Shah is the Managing Partner of our Kenya office.

Paras is one of the leading corporate and commercial lawyers in Kenya and specialises in private equity, mergers & acquisitions, corporate and commercial law, banking and finance law, privatisations, capital markets and real estate law. He has advised on some of the most important M&A and financing transactions, IPOs and takeovers, listings and public-private partnership (PPP) transactions, and infrastructure projects undertaken in Kenya in recent years.

He has a Diploma in Legal Practice (with distinction) from the College of Law in the United Kingdom, a Diploma in Management from Henley School of Management, in the United Kingdom, and a Postgraduate Diploma from the Kenya School of Law. He has also attended an executive law firm management course at Harvard Law School.  He is an English-qualified solicitor and an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya.

Specialist Services

Relevant Experience

Below are some recent transactions which Paras has advised as lead counsel:

  • Linde Group on the sale of its controlling stake in BOC Kenya Limited (a listed company);
  • Allianz on its acquisition of a controlling stake in Jubilee Insurance’s general insurance business in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi and Mauritius;
  • Rubis Energie S.A.S (France) on its USD 420 million take-over of KenolKobil PLC (NSE listed), a pan-African downstream oil company and the subsequent delisting of KenolKobil PLC.
  • Rubis Kenya in its acquisition of Gulf Energy Holdings Limited;
  • Naivas Limited and its shareholders in relation to a private equity investment by Amethis, a French, private equity fund.
  • Tullow PLC on its upstream oil exploration project in Northern Kenya and midstream crude oil pipeline project in Kenya;

Signature Matters


  • Chambers and Partnersranked Paras in Band 1 for Banking & Finance for seven consecutive years (2016 to 2022), in Band 1 for Corporate/ M&A for eight consecutive years (2015 to 2022), in Band 2 for Real Estate for four consecutive years (2019 to 2022) and prior to that in Band 3 (2016 to 2018), as well as in Band 3 for his work in the Projects and Energy space, for five consecutive years (2018 to 2022). 
  • IFLR1000’s Financial and Corporate Guide consistently rated Paras as a Highly Regarded Lawyer for five consecutive years (2018 to 2022) for his work in Capital markets, Project development, Banking and M&A, particularly within the Energy, Transport, Real estate and Social infrastructure sectors and prior to this as a Leading Lawyer in the same categories in 2016.
  • Legal 500 has ranked Paras as a Leading Individual for Banking and Finance, Kenya for seven consecutive years (2016 to 2022) as well as for Commercial, Corporate & M&A for the past five years (2018 to 2022).
  • Paras was recognised by Who’s Who Legal 2020 in the category Banking:
  • Best Lawyers2015 recognised Paras best lawyer within banking, capital markets, corporate, finance, mergers & acquisitions and real estate & conveyancing as areas of specialisation.
  • ILO has previously awarded Paras with the Client Choice Award for corporate counsel in Kenya.

“Highly qualified lawyer, with excellent knowledge of the oil and gas sector. He gives timely feedback on the issues and involves the experts in different fields in order to provide a complete analysis. “

“Paras and Aleem make a formidable team and complement each other very well. Paras has a depth of knowledge on interactions with government contracts, whereas Aleem has distinguished himself particularly in the structuring of transactions.”

– IFLR1000, 2022

“Paras is incredibly transactional and will get deals done.”

“He knows what is going on and will make quick commercial decisions.”

“He has a good depth of experience and is quite agile with his thinking.”

“He is a versatile lawyer who covers the full range of energy projects and is especially good with international clients.”

– Chambers and Partners, 2022

“The highly rated Paras Shah is a leader in capital markets issuances, structured lending, and trade and commodities finance.”

“Paras Shah is very strong on M&A, and business advice.”

“I worked with Paras Shah and found him able to devote attention to our issues, help us deep dive on all the various options and arrive at workable solutions.” – Legal 500, 2021

“Paras Shah continues to impress market observers with his deep understanding of the banking sector, acting as a key contact and partner to a large number of established investment banks and financial institutions. He is rated highly in Kenya for his breadth of practice, covering project, property and development finance, as well as corporate transactions and M&A.”

“Paras Shah is “good to have on your side in negotiations,” explained one commentator, while another said: “He is diligent, experienced and practical.” Famed for his multifaceted practice encompassing finance, real estate and projects, he also has a superb track record of advising on both cross-border investments and domestic acquisitions.”

“Paras Shah is a luminary commercial practitioner with a versatile skill set and a diverse practice which sees him regularly handle matters in the real estate space. He is frequently instructed to advise on conveyancing issues and has a wealth of experience concerning property acquisition and disposition. He acts for a range of clients including investors and operators.”

“The “excellent” Paras Shah is noted for his corporate expertise in relation to energy projects. He is frequently instructed by notable oil and power firms to advise on project financing and various other matters from PPAs to shareholder and host government agreements.” – Chambers and Partners, 2021

Publications & Insights