Foreign firms in Algeria
King & Spalding LLP has a focus on oil and gas and telecoms, and handles corporate restructuring, M&A and dispute resolution. Mehdi Haroun’s team has been assisting Emirate International Investment Company (EIIC) and its real estate development arm Bloom with a controversy against the Algerian state concerning the realisation of a leisure park, real estate and commercial development project in Algiers. Cepsa and Welltec are other notable clients. Nora Djeraba is another name to note.
Shearman & Sterling LLP’s expertise includes international arbitration, M&A, public international law and project finance, and its clients are typically drawn from the energy and natural resources, construction, infrastructure and telecoms industries. Emmanuel Gaillard, Yas Banifatemi and Coralie Darrigade have been acting for the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria in an arbitration initiated by EIIC and Société des Parcs d’Alger related to a contract for the development of a park project. Another highlight has been advising Sonatrach in an ICC arbitration initiated by Saipem, concerning an agreement for the construction of an oil and gas facility in North Africa. Maude Lebois and Benjamin Siino are also recommended.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is noted for its advice to energy clients as well as investors in the energy industry. London-based Craig Tevendale has been assisting BP with a number of controversies arising from the January 2013 terrorist attack at the Algerian gas facility In Amenas. The team has also been advising Engie on part of the disposal of its upstream oil and gas business. Paris-based of counsel Laurence Franc-Menget is strong in international arbitration. Bertrand Montembault, who works between Paris and Johannesburg, is another key contact.
White & Case LLP is experienced in dispute resolution and acts for clients involved in oil and gas, power, construction and infrastructure, chemicals and telecoms. Paris-based Christophe Von Krause has handled a number of complex contentious matters concerning power plants, oil and gas facilities and infrastructure.
Allen & Overy LLP
From its office in Morocco, Allen & Overy LLP is active in the Algerian legal market, assisting energy companies and financial institutions with M&A transactions, project structuring and financing as well as litigation and arbitration. Casablanca-based Hicham Naciri is the main contact for the North Africa region.
Assisting companies and institutions from the energy, digital infrastructure and transport sectors, Ashurst is experienced in relation to M&A, finance, capital markets transactions, private equity, funds, projects and dispute resolution. Total is a key client. London-based Yann Alix heads the Africa practice.
The Casablanca-based team at Clifford Chance has a ‘very good understanding of the region’. The practice advises financial institutions; industrial conglomerates; energy, construction and transportation companies; investment funds; mining companies; and public institutions and agencies on transactional and contentious matters. Mustapha Mourahib is an ‘excellent lawyer with excellent legal and interpersonal skills’.
Linklaters’ francophone Africa team includes ‘true experts of the region’, who often handle transactional and contentious work relating to Algerian energy assets. The practice has been advising Sonatrach and Total as sponsors on the development of a petrochemical project. Paris-based Bertrand Andriani is ‘a fantastic and humble lawyer with outstanding technical skills’. Aymeric Voisin is another name to note.