news

International law firms have continued to invest in their growth in the Middle East, with the likes of Addleshaw Goddard, Charles Russell Speechlys, Clyde & Co, Baker Mckenzie, Baker Botts and Taylor Wessing adding partners across the Middle East recently.

UK-headquartered Addleshaw Goddard added a sixth partner to its soon-to-launch Riyadh office, snapping up transactions partner Christian Broth from Clifford Chance’s Saudi Arabian joint venture AS&H Clifford Chance.

The Riyadh office, which awaits regulatory approvals, will be the firm’s fourth in the region after Doha, Dubai and Muscat.

“The market reaction to our planned launch in KSA continues to be very encouraging. The ongoing investment in our new office shows our determination to support clients in the region and take new market share,” Addleshaws’ Middle East and Asia head Andrew Johnston said.

The firm has also launched a Middle East investment funds practice to be led by Philip Dowsett, who joins Addleshaws in Dubai from U.S. law firm Dechert.

London-based Charles Russell Speechlys also added to its Middle East offerings with the addition of partner Thomas Snider, who will head the firm’s international arbitration practice out of its Dubai office. Snider joins from UAE-based Al Tamimi & Co.

“Litigation and dispute resolution is a fast-growing global team at Charles Russell Speechlys. Since the beginning of the year, we have welcomed seven high-calibre partners to the division across our geographies,” CRS’ dispute resolution head Stewart Hey said in a statement.

CRS also launched an office in Singapore this year.

Clyde & Co hired Elias Matni as a partner in its Doha-based corporate practice as part of a planned expansion of its M&A offerings in the region.

Matni, previously a special counsel at K&L Gates, has over 15 years of experience advising on corporate transactional and governance matters. He has also advised local institutional and government bodies in Qatar.

Clyde now has 28 partners in its Middle East and Africa offices.

Baker McKenzie’s associated firm in Saudi Arabia, Abdulaziz Alajlan & Partners, hired partner Sahal Khalawi to its regulatory and public policy practice in Riyadh.

Khalawi brings significant government experience, working most recently at the Strategic Management Office of the Saudi Arabian government’s economic body, the Council of Development Affairs. He was also a senior legal advisor to the Saudi Royal Court, the chief executive office of King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

Khalawi’s primary focus will be to expand the firm’s regulatory and public policy practice in the region, Baker McKenzie said in a statement.

Energy-focused law firm Baker Botts added attorney Shane Wilson from Squire Patton Boggs to its global projects team as a partner in Dubai.

Wilson advises clients on project financings in the Middle East and Africa, focusing on power, water, waste, oil and gas and transportation projects. He also advises Islamic financiers on projects financed in a Shari’ah-compliant way.

Baker Botts now has three partners in its Dubai office, with other Middle East-focused projects partners in London and Brussels.

The head of intellectual property at UAE firm BSA Ahmad Bin Hezeem & Associates, Munir Suboh, has taken his practice to UK law firm Taylor Wessing in Dubai, where he will launch and build the firm’s IP practice in the Middle East.

Suboh has over 16 years of experience advising on IP transactions and disputes in the Middle East. He also handles media, cybersecurity, and technology-related matters in the region.

“Taylor Wessing is well known for its high-profile work in the IP and technology sector internationally, and we are delighted to have found an expert with wide-ranging expertise in the MENA region to establish this latest offering and collaborate with our international team," Dubai managing partner Ronald Graham said in a statement.

TO CONTACT EDITORIAL TEAM, PLEASE EMAIL ALBEDITOR@THOMSONREUTERS.COM

Related Articles

Long-time HFW partner joins Addleshaws as SG head

UK law firm Addleshaw Goddard has hired energy specialist Chanaka Kumarasinghe as head of its Singapore office from HFW, where he had spent the entirety of his 22-year career.

Winston & Strawn to close Hong Kong office in February

by Mari Iwata |

U.S. law firm Winston & Strawn will close its Hong Kong office on Feb. 1, 2024, after 15 years of operation in the city.

HK: Former Addleshaws disputes partner joins RPC

by Mari Iwata |

UK law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain has welcomed aboard disputes lawyer Ivan Chang as a partner in Hong Kong. Chang’s most recent role was that of partner at Addleshaw Goddard, which closed its Hong Kong office last year.