Commercial Contracts Specialist & South Africa Legal Counsel

Legal Durbanville, South Africa


Position at GVW Group, LLC


GVW Group (Pty) Ltd.

Commercial Contracts Specialist / South Africa Legal Counsel




The primary responsibilities of the Commercial Contracts Specialist / SA Legal counsel role are to:

(1) On behalf of a heavy-duty truck manufacturer, assist the Procurement team and U.S. Legal Team with negotiation, documentation, drafting, administration, tracking and compliance associated with supplier and vendor contracts, to the extent permissible as a non-U.S. licensed attorney (80% of responsibilities); and

(2) As a licensed South Africa attorney in good standing, support the SA operating and affiliate companies’ in-country needs with respect to commercial contracts, human resources (including but not limited to guidance on labor and employment matters for South African employees), intellectual property, regulatory requirements, insurance, benefits and other matters as may be requested from time to time (20% of responsibilities).

The main duties include but are not limited to the following, and may change from time to time:

Commercial Contracts Specialist (the part of the role that supports the Procurement and U.S. Legal Team (to the extent permissible as a non-U.S. licensed attorney (i.e., that does not involve the practice of law or providing legal advice)):

  1. Develop in-depth knowledge of key assembly components; their current or potential suppliers, including previous and current agreements, and current status.
  2. With U.S. Legal Team, review, update, and maintain templates for procurement agreements.
  3. Direct, lead, and/or coach supplier negotiations with Procurement team.
  4. Assist with management of contracts, ensuring that agreements are reviewed, approved and signed by authorized parties, that the company is receiving all benefits specified in the contract and that document retention processes, systems and protocols are followed for internal reference, tracking, administration and compliance.
  5. Review supplier strategy with Procurement team and draft agreements for appropriate contract types, pricing provisions and adherence to company sourcing templates, all consistent with strategies and directives.
  6. With U.S. Legal Team, draft complex pricing provisions, such as raw material pricing adjustments, volume-based pricing reductions and other conditional adjustments as negotiated by the parties and ensure that future adjustments comply with the contract.
  7. With and under supervision of U.S. attorneys, review and draft commercial agreements as requested.
  8. With Procurement team, negotiate pricing and commercial aspects of supplier and vendor contracts; and assist U.S. attorneys in translating requirements into appropriate contract terms.
  9. Obtain data relating to component-level compliance matters, including United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement certifications and Buy America certifications, as necessary and with supervision of U.S. attorneys.
  10. Identify and discuss with U.S. attorneys Company risks that may arise from contractual commitments.
  11. Manage contractual timelines regarding expiration, renewals, notice periods, amendments, price adjustments, change orders, etc.



SA Legal Counsel (the part of the role that supports the SA entities, including GVW Group (Pty) Ltd. and Triz Engineering SA on matters relating to application of SA law):

  1. Commercial contracts.
    1. Serve as the lead attorney on commercial contracts including but not limited to with respect to non-U.S. engineering clients; real estate matters including leases and any other transactional needs.
  2. HR and Employment.
    1. Be a resource for, and advise, business leaders and HR partners in SA regarding SA employment policies and agreements and all aspects of the employee life cycle such as hiring, performance management, training, compliance, discipline, employee relations, adverse employment actions and other employment-related matters.
    2. With outside counsel, manage and defend employment-related claims, litigation, investigations and other external employment matters.
    3. Prepare required reports and filings.
    4. Support management in securing employee benefits.
  3. Insurance / Risk Management
    1. Support management in assessing and procuring appropriate enterprise insurance policies.
  4. Regulatory
    1. Support management with regulatory matters and submissions, including but not limited to with respect to audits and transfer pricing.
  5. Intellectual property considerations and filings (e.g., patent, trademark, copyright) to secure IP in South Africa only, and to support the U.S. Legal team with respect to potential or actual U.S. IP filings.


Qualifications and Experience

  • Four-year bachelor’s program and LLB degree from an accredited law school.
  • Licensure and / or appropriate authorization to practice law in South Africa are required.
  • Willingness and ability to work full-time in the Company’s office are required.
  • Experience with, or knowledge of, U.S. commercial contract law. Procurement experience, preferably for manufacturers, is a plus.
  • Experience drafting and negotiating a wide range of complex agreements using strong negotiation skills, attention to detail and excellent business judgment.
  • Experience providing practical advice on SA employment and HR-related matters.
  • Experience supporting risk management efforts including, but not limited to, with respect to enterprise insurance.
  • Experience with SA regulatory matters and requirements including, but not limited to, with respect to audits and transfer pricing.
  • Advanced written and oral communication in English.
  • Ability to collaborate with both legal and non-legal colleagues in SA and the U.S.
  • Comfortable in a fast-paced environment with ability to manage multiple priorities simultaneously.
  • Highest of integrity, strong work ethic, great attitude, and willingness to learn.
  • Ability to work independently, meet timelines and willingness to be available during U.S. business hours.
  • Ability, appropriate visa eligibility and willingness to travel to Company sites in the U.S. for short periods as requested.
  • Professional references.