Increasingly, international companies are looking to expand, invest or do business in the Middle East and North Africa.
We provide our local and international clients with a single point of contact to advise, and manage advice from across the Middle East, through our office in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
We offer expert legal advice across the corporate and commercial world, with special focus on certain key industry sectors. We do this through a combination of lawyers on the ground in the UAE and the ability of those lawyers to call upon, and take advantage, of the worldwide expertise that Bird & Bird is able to offer from our broad network of international offices. Our local knowledge, coupled with being able to access the finest lawyers from our recommended ‘best friend’ law firm network enables us to be able to meet all of your needs in this region - providing local expertise within a global context.
As well as our growing practice in the Middle East, we also have considerable experience within Northern Africa advising across similar industries, including telecoms, energy & utilities, IT and media. We work particularly closely with El Amari & Associés in Morocco and Dakhlaoui Avocats in Tunisia, both firms with which we have established association agreements.
For more information about our practice in the Middle East, please contact Mark Pinder or Osama Abu-Dehays in Abu Dhabi, or Simon Shooter in London. For further details about how we can help you in North Africa please contact Gildas Louvel in Paris.
Recent highlights of work
We recently assisted:
> a large international construction and infrastructure company on its tender to the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company to build a new hospital in Al Ain
> one of the UAE’s leading airlines on a broad range of international commercial, employment and aviation related matters, including advice in relation to several large-scale ICT projects and the establishment of a UK based global call centre
> advising a large international media company on the corporate, commercial and regulatory issues associated with providing broadcast media in the UAE
> advising on a private placement offering for an international IT company based in the UAE
> a Singapore-based manufacturer and wholesaler on its commercial arrangements with two UAE companies to distribute the manufacturer’s products within the UAE
> a major Moroccan company in defining IP policies, IP audit and IP-related internal processes, as well as devising strategies and providing recommendations for optimisation in protecting inventions, trademarks, and other generated IP in a global environment
> the Port of Lomé as regards the successful negotiation of a concession agreement and the agreement of a mining concession in Togo
the Tunisian state in relation to the contemplated disposal of its 25% stake in one of the largest mobile operators in Tunisia
> Maroc Telecom on the acquisition of a telecom operator in two African countries and advising their subsidiary CASANET on the legal structuring of a BtoC electronic marketplace.
“Abu-Dehays is considered one of a handful of legal experts in the field of TMT in the region”
Osama Abu-Dehays joined Bird & Bird in 2012 as a Partner in Abu Dhabi from his previous position as the Chief Legal Officer of Al Jazeera Network in Qatar. Osama is a Canadian/Jordanian qualified multilingual lawyer with over 10 years TMT, litigation, IP and general commercial experience across the GCC, primarily in Qatar and the U.A.E. Osama was recognised by the Who’s Who Directory of Professionals in 2007, is a member of the International Bar Association, the Young International Arbitration Group and the International Media Committee.
“Melissa has broad experience in all forms of commercial agreements… Melissa was recommended for two consecutive years as one of the world's leading Franchise lawyers by the The International Who's Who of Franchise Lawyers for 2011 and 2010.”
Chambers Global 2012
Abu Dhabi Senior Consultant Melissa Murray has for many years been recommended by the international Who’s Who of Franchising Lawyers as a specialised franchising lawyer for the UAE. She is also referenced in Chambers & Partners as an “Associate to Watch” and recommended in Legal 500 both for intellectual property and various Middle East franchising deals.