United Arab Emirates
Charles Russell Speechlys unveils Middle East expansion
• Plans to grow both Litigation & Dispute Resolution and Real Estate expertise
• Establish a new regional presence in Dubai
16 July 2017; Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Charles Russell Speechlys has announced plans to increase its presence in the Middle East by opening a new office in Dubai on 10 July 2017. Two new Dispute Resolution Partners and four Dispute Resolution senior associates have been recruited for the Dubai office.
Already well-established in the region, their appointments further enhance the firm’s in-region disputes capabilities creating a Middle East-wide team that can handle local, regional and international cross-border litigation and arbitration under one roof.
The recruits are as follows:
• Ghassan El-Daye joined as Partner from King & Wood Mallesons (KWM). Ghassan has 23 years’ experience, specialises in all forms of dispute resolution and will lead the firm’s Arabic litigation practice. Over the course of his career, Ghassan has built a strong dispute resolution practice, handling cases for regional and international clients engaged in local court litigation throughout the UAE and neighbouring jurisdictions. Ghassan joins with a team of two Ssenior Associates Rasmi Ragy, Ahmed El Sayed and one Associate, Costa Khouri which will add significant value to the existing Litigation & Dispute Resolution practice in the Middle East and provide further bilingual capabilities
• Jonathan Brown joins as Partner from Hadef & Partners, where he was a leading dispute resolution partner and led the firm’s Maritime, Transport & Trade practice in Dubai. Jonathan has over twenty years’ experience as a commercial lawyer, both in private practice as an international litigator, and in-house for multinational corporations. Jonathan will be joined by Senior Associate Raymond Kisswany.
The expansion of the Dispute Resolution team into Dubai comes soon after our Middle East Disputes team were awarded the ‘Highly Commended’ award in the ‘Arbitration Team of the Year’ category of the Corporate Counsel Middle East Legal Awards 2017 on 11 May 2017.
The international law firm is also expanding its in-region Real Estate offering with Real Estate and Construction expertise in the new Dubai office. Real Estate and Construction is a key part of the firm’s Middle East practice. The team regularly acts on some of the region’s biggest transactions by value and complexity and has been consistently short-listed for major legal awards over the last few years.
Real Estate Partner, Simon Green, has been in the region for several years and will lead the real estate arm of the business from Dubai and the firm’s other regional offices.
From its existing offices in Bahrain and Qatar, the firm has advised clients throughout the Middle East for more than a decade, including governments, regulators, sovereign wealth funds, multinational corporations, major companies, family businesses and private individuals.
The new Dubai office will grow the regional footprint of the firm, while also providing an additional gateway to Charles Russell Speechlys’ wider international expertise across the full spectrum of corporate and personal legal needs.
Speaking about the plans, James Carter, Managing Partner at Charles Russell Speechlys commented:
“This is a fantastic opportunity to expand the range and depth of services for our clients in the Middle East. We have built a strong reputation in the region over the last ten years around our core areas of litigation, real estate and construction. However, the firm’s Middle East experience goes much wider than that - many of our partners have significant clients in the region; they visit often and in this way clients are able to access the full breadth and depth of Charles Russell Speechlys’ skills and expertise.”
Patrick Gearon, Partner and the Head of Middle East at Charles Russell Speechlys, added:
“Over the last decade, our specialist team in the Middle East has handled some of the most complex, sensitive and high value claims in the region.
“We want to build on our experience and establish Charles Russell Speechlys as one of the Middle East’s foremost advisor’s for Commercial Dispute Resolution. Our new partners and associates will play an important part in this plan and we look forward to sharing with our clients the wealth of knowledge and experience that they bring.”
Duncan Elson, Partner and Head of Litigation and Dispute Resolution at Charles Russell Speechlys comments:
“As one of the leading Litigation and Dispute Resolution practices we are pleased to expand our geographical centres to align with the recognised centres of International Arbitration and Dispute Resolution. I am delighted to welcome the new members of the Division to the Dubai office which will handle local, regional and international cross-border litigation and arbitration.”
Notes to Editors:
Charles Russell Speechlys works with clients in the UK and throughout the world. Our lawyers are based in 11 locations across the UK, Europe and the Middle East and through each of these locations clients are able to access the full range of the firm’s skills and expertise.
We have a broad range of skills and experience across the full spectrum of business and personal needs. This gives us a wider perspective, clear insight and a strongly commercial long-term view.
It has made us a leader in the world of dynamic growth and family businesses, and among the world’s leading creators and owners of private wealth and their families. Major corporates and institutions find our more considered and personal approach a refreshing alternative to conventional business law firms.
Charles Russell Speechlys – Middle East Highlights
• The Central Bank of Bahrain continues to instruct Charles Russell Speechlys on litigation, corporate recovery and insolvency expertise across multiple jurisdictions.
• Last year, the firm secured a landmark judgment in the Bahrain Courts for c. US$780 million, which is thought to be the largest judgment ever made by the Courts. That was swiftly followed earlier this year by a judgment in the Saudi Arabian High Court of US$607 million.
• Further successes have followed: including acting in a major arbitration for the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, a US$600m arbitration for Gulf Air and the successful defence of a US$680 million arbitration claim against Ooredoo, the national telecommunications company of the State of Qatar.
• The Real Estate and Construction team have worked with long-standing client, Diyar Al Muharraq, in relation to Bahrain’s largest master planned development project. Work has included the largest social and affordable housing transaction within the country with a deal value in excess of US$ 1 billion.
• We have been shortlisted for several regional industry awards including The Oath Legal Awards and the Corporate Counsel Middle East Awards.