Firms in the Spotlight Commercial, corporate and M&A

M.A. Global Consulting

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MA Global Consulting is a Casablanca-based legal and tax one-stop-shop with great expertise in all Corporate Law and Mergers and Acquisitions matters. The firm provides outstanding services and advises major national and international operators on their Business Law related problematics.

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Commercial, corporate and M&A in Morocco

Baker & McKenzie Maroc

Baker & McKenzie Maroc has 'a professional team that responds rapidly to the needs of its clients', with one client noting that it has 'the knowledge, know-how and human qualities that build good client relationships'. Lead partner Kamal Nasrollah frequently acts for major global brands, as shown by his recent work for Nokia on the Moroccan aspects of the post-acquisition integration work for its merger with Alcatel Lucent. In addition, working with associate Keltoum Boudribila, he also acted for Suez on its attempts to avoid a hostile takeover by Veolia.

Practice head(s):

Kamal Nasrollah

Other key lawyers:

Keltoum Boudribila

Testimonials

‘A professional team that responds rapidly to the needs of its clients.’

‘It has the knowledge, know-how and human qualities that build good client relationships. Clients feel that they are being listened to and the firm finds the solutions they need.’

‘As far as the firm’s multidisciplinary team is concerned, I simply believe that it is the best in Morocco, particularly in M&A, corporate and commercial matters.’

‘As well as its technical competencies that the firm puts to work for its clients, it also has a very high level of personal and business relationships, particularly with the Kingdom of Morocco, thanks to Kamal Nasrollah.’

Key clients

Suez

CMA CGM

ONEE

Amazon

AMGEN

Intralot

Nokia

Work highlights

  • Advising Suez in its defense against the hostile takeover launched by Veolia.
  • Advised the Office National de l’Electricite et de l’Eau Potable (ONEE) on the procurement, development and financing of the 87 MW Taza wind farm.
  • Advised Nokia, one of the world’s leading communications, IT and consumer electronics companies, on the Moroccan aspects of the post-acquisition integration work for its merger with Alcatel Lucent.

Bennani & Associés

Bennani & Associés is an independent Moroccan law firm with a prominent role in large cross-border M&A transactions and an impressive roster of domestic and foreign clients. Managing partner Mehdi Bennani and senior associate Hasnaa Bennani are 'very skilled, fast, precise and able to give insights and advice that sometimes goes beyond legal matters'. They recently assisted French private equity group Siparex with its acquisition of a stake in Sintex, a leading European polymer processing company, and helped Vivo Energy Maroc with its investment in Sopétrole.

Practice head(s):

Mehdi Bennani

Other key lawyers:

Hasnaa Bennani; Inaya Abdellatif

Testimonials

‘The B&A team is, in my opinion, state-of-the-art among law firms in Morocco. They are acquainted with the needs of international clients and have a great ability to deal with international managers, while having solid knowledge of local practices. They are able to share advice with clients, going beyond expectations of legal matters.’

‘Managing partner, Mehdi Bennani and senior associate Hasnaa Bennani are very skilled, fast, precise and able to give insights and advices that sometime go beyond legal matters.’

‘They are very responsive and provide clear and business-oriented pragmatic advice and their thinking is solution-focused. There is also plenty of partner involvement when necessary.’

‘In a jurisdiction which does not generally offer a high level of professional legal services, Bennani & Associés stands out as an exception. The leadership of the firm has established a culture of professionalism and excellence which permeates all of its activities and accordingly, remains my first choice for sophisticated, difficult matters.’

‘Bennani & Associés has an entrepreneurial spirit which is reflected in the diversity of its lawyers and the ferociousness with which it attacks client matters. In a part of the world with few truly top-tier firms, Bennani & Associés distinguishes itself.’

‘My greatest exposure has been to Inaya Abdellatif and Mehdi Bennani, both of whom are excellent lawyers. They are substantively solid, helpful in negotiations and always prepared.’

‘The firm delivers quick responses in comparison to the other firms of the market. There is a readiness to help and the availability to reach out.’

‘Compared to the legal counsel we worked with in more than 10 other jurisdictions for the the same matter, the Bennani & Associes team were among the best. Their work product was professional and what is expected from an established international law firm.’

Key clients

AMMC (The Moroccan Capital Market Authority)

Volkswagen Group

Adidas

Western Union

Phillips

Huawei

Akzo Nobel

Carlyle

FIAT

Siemens AG

KBC Bank NV

Samsung C&T

Daewoo

Alstom

Etisalat

TUI Group

Groupe Bel

Maphar

Electrolux

FATER Spa

Cheplapharm

Work highlights

  • Acted for Siparex, a leading French private equity group operating in growth and venture capital, on its acquisition of a majority stake in Sintex NP, the European division of the Indian Sintex group (listed in Mumbai).
  • Acted for Akzo Nobel on the merger clearance of the acquisition of 100% of the share capital and voting rights of Cleming SPRL, holding company of the Mapaero Group, a French based group active in aerospace coatings.
  • Advised Fater Spa, an Italian joint venture between Procter & Gamble and Angelini Group (a leader in sanitary and bleach products), on the exit from Morocco via the sale of 100% of the shares in Fater Morocco, the company operating the ACE and Javel Lacroix brands in Morocco. The buyer was Dislog Group, a Moroccan leader in Fast Moving Consumer Goods.

Clifford Chance

Clients of Clifford Chance praise 'its availability, commitment, knowledge and understanding of the client'. The firm has the capacity to advise on Moroccan, French, English and OHADA (Organisation for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa) law from its Casablanca office, putting it in prime position to handle large cross-border M&A and to advise large local companies on commercial matters. The firm's recent highlights included assisting A.P. Møller Capital with its investment in a cereal-handling logistics platform in Africa. Practice head Mustapha Mourahib is recognised as one of the market's leading practitioners. He advised the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy on the transfer of renewable energy assets from the Office National de l’Electricité et de l’Eau Potable.

Practice head(s):

Mustapha Mourahib

Testimonials

‘On top of their technical knowledge, which is good, mainly what is appreciated is that they deliver what they commit. This is key for fast-moving projects. The legal adviser should go at the same speed as the project team.’

‘We appreciate the availability, commitment, knowledge and understanding of the client expectations. They translate simply explained problematics in legal and contractual terms on paper.’

Key clients

OCP

Africa50

ONHYM

Marsh Insurance

Vantage Capital

Amundi

Azelis S.A.

BMCE Bank of Africa

CDG – Caisse de Dépôt et de Gestion

Masen

HeidelbergCement

A.P Moller

Africa Infrastructure Investment Managers

Work highlights

  • Advised A.P. Møller Capital on its investment in a cereal-handling logistics platform in Africa, a crucial sector for the development of the continent and the food supply for its inhabitants.
  • Advised Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy (MASEN) on the transfer by Office National de l’Electricité et de l’Eau Potable (ONEE) of all their assets relating to renewable energy activities to MASEN in the context of the reorganisation of the energy sector in Morocco.
  • Advised the Marsh group, a worldwide leading insurance broker and risk adviser, on the purchase of a stake in Beassur, a major insurance broker in Morocco. This purchase is the first investment of the Marsh group in Africa and will allow Marsh to enhance its footprint in growing North African market.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper has one of the largest corporate and commercial practices in Casablanca. It now has a four-partner team following the recruitment of experienced private equity partner Franck Coudert from Clifford Chance in late 2020. He joins corporate partner Christophe Bachelet, commercial lead Mehdi Kettani and finance specialist Fabrice Armand. Together, they handle high-value cross-border M&A, private equity investments, equity capital markets deals and advice on large-scale commercial contracts. They frequently act on behalf of investment banks, state-owned entities, retailers, real estate investment funds and sponsors, as well as multinational corporates in key sectors such as agribusiness, insurance, life sciences, hospitality and retail. Counsel Camilia Benani is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Christophe Bachelet; Mehdi Kettani; Fabrice Armand

Other key lawyers:

Franck Coudert; Camilia Benani

Key clients

SPE Capital

Aradei Capital

Yamed Capital

Orbis

Abdelali Belghiti / Nasr Belghiti

Société Générale Maroc

GFH Financial Group

KPNL Bidco B.V.

Oncologie et Diagnostique du Maroc

Vivo Energy Maroc

CFG Bank

CFG Finance

Navis

Work highlights

  • Advised Aradei Capital, a leading Moroccan real estate fund, in Public Investment Corporation’s acquisition of a 13% equity stake in its capital, a $50m investment done on behalf of the Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF), a South African retirement fund. Due to the ticket size, this was one of the biggest transactions in Morocco in 2020.
  • Advised Société Générale Maroc and Yamed Capital on the establishment of Nema Capital, a joint management company for real estate investment trusts (Organismes de placement collectif en immobilier or OPCI).

Gide Cuatrecasas Casablanca

Gide Cuatrecasas Casablanca draws on 17 years of experience on the ground in Casablanca and it continues to assist Moroccan and foreign clients with major M&A transactions in Morocco and sub-Saharan Africa. Its work on cross-border M&A transactions spans sectors as diverse hospitality and tourism, automotive, energy, healthcare, real estate and retail. Partner Simon Auquier and counsel Chloé Joachim de Larivière are the principal contacts. They recently assisted US company Spirit AeroSystems with the acquisition of Bombardier Aerospace North Africa.

Practice head(s):

Simon Auquier; Chloé Joachim de Lariviere

Key clients

Westmont group / Elliott

Westmont group / Actis

Spirit Aerosystems

Air Liquide

International Finance Corporation (IFC)

Adenia Partners

Voltalia SA

Work highlights

  • Advised Westmont hospitality group and investment fund Elliott on the acquisition of a majority stake in a Moroccan company owning the Four Seasons Hotel and other real estate assets in Marrakech (Morocco).
  • Advised the American group SPIRIT in connection with the acquisition of Moroccan company Bombardier Aerospace North Africa (as part of a global acquisition of assets / companies from Bombardier).
  • Advised Mauritius-based investment fund Adenia Partners on the sale of Immoktar / Dairy International Ltd / Socolait, a leading milk and dairy producer based in Madagascar and Mauritius.

Naciri & Associés Allen & Overy

Naciri & Associés Allen & Overy is widely acknowledged as a market-leading practice for corporate and M&A matters. It has a stellar list of clients that includes international financial institutions, investment banks and global brands operating in sectors such as telecoms and technology. Practice head Hicham Naciri is a veteran practitioner in M&A, joint ventures and regulatory matters. He recently assisted Hapag-Lloyd AG with the acquisition of a stake in a Moroccan joint venture Tanger Alliance. Senior associate Moulay El Amine El Hammoumi Idrissi is also highly recommended.

Practice head(s):

Hicham Naciri

Other key lawyers:

Moulay El Amine El Hammoumi Idrissi

Work highlights

  • Advised BMCE Bank of Africa (BMCE), a Moroccan bank with a strong international presence, on a $200m fund raising from CDC Group plc (CDC), the UK’s development finance institution.
  • Advised Holmarcom group on the merger between Atlanta and Sanad (insurance companies, part of the Holmarcom group). Sanad (fully owned by Atlanta) will be absorbed by Atlanta.
  • Advised the Public Investment Corporation SOC Limited (PIC), acting on behalf of the Government Employees Pension Fund of South Africa (GEPF), in relation to the minority investment of GEPF in Aradei Capital (Aradei).

Norton Rose Fulbright

The corporate and M&A practice in Norton Rose Fulbright's Casablanca office handles high-value deals not only in Morocco, but also across Africa. Its recent work included acting for local energy group Akwa Group on the expansion of its partnership with Chevron to 14 African countries. The firm also acts for Moroccan corporates and financial institutions on domestic deals, as well as advising overseas investors on their local activities. Alain Malek leads the practice, in which counsel Godefroy Le Mintier and senior associate Souâde Messaoudi also play key roles.

Practice head(s):

Alain Malek

Other key lawyers:

Godefroy Le Mintier; Souâde Messaoudi

Key clients

Akwa Group

Attijariwafa bank

Bombardier

Caisse de Dépot et de Gestion du Maroc

Holmarcom

Label Vie

Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy

Pikasso

PSA Peugeot

Work highlights

  • Advised Akwa Group on the expansion of its partnership with Chevron to 14 African countries.
  • Advised GRIT Real Estate on the acquisition of Club Med resort in Senegal.
  • Advised Pikasso on the acquisition of Greenberry, Moroccan leader of advertising in malls.

ASAFO & CO. MOROCCO Sarl

ASAFO & CO. MOROCCO Sarl's practice is based around a core group of experienced partners, including practice heads Patrick Larrivé, Benoit de Monval and Mouna Boubia, all of whom were previously at Dentons Sayarh & Menjra. Together with Alain Gauvin (who joined from LPA-CGR), they act for a rapidly growing number of domestic and international clients.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Larrivé; Benoit de Monval; Mouna Boubia

Other key lawyers:

Alain Gauvin

Testimonials

‘Asafo & Co. is one of the few teams to put the alignment of interests with their clients at the top of its priorities. I had the opportunity to witness this during one of our recent collaborations as they accepted to support our team during our PE fund’s fundraising and to postpone the billing until the initial closing of the fund, which is something that strengthens our commercial relationship and makes them indispensable.’

‘I had the opportunity to collaborate very closely with Mr Benoit de Monval, who has shown outstanding business, technical and communication skills. Benoit has become very quickly a very close adviser to us, and is now indispensable for any decision that has legal components or implications. Benoit has built this very good relationship thanks to his dedication, his very deep knowledge of African transactions and also his very strong expertise.’

‘The firm has unrivalled deal execution experience in Morocco and in the broader French-speaking Africa region. It has dedicated partners who go above and beyond what is committed on paper to deliver on success for the clients, and it is strong in negotiation, creative structuring and coordinating complex workstreams in a transaction context.’

‘Patrick Larrivé is strong in deal negotiations, innovative structuring and problem-solving, as well as downside risk mitigation mechanisms for his client.’

‘Benoit De Monval is strong in terms of his attention to detail, project management and coordination skills, problem-solving and the negotiation of legal terms.’

‘The team’s credentials in terms of M&A transactions in Africa are based on its excellent reputation, competitive financial offering and its highly committed team.’

‘Benoit de Monval is a professional with excellent understanding of the issues and constraints related to M&A transactions, deep technical expertise, and deep knowledge of local specificities in sub-saharan Africa.’

‘Asafo’s team has shown high availability towards us compared to other firms we worked with and they have been able to match very short deadlines. They understood the key aspects of our relationship with our counterparts and have been able to reflect it in the agreements and documents they reviewed.’

Key clients

NBK Capital Partners

SPE Capital

Tana Africa Capital

Amethis

Wafa Assurance

Andaloussi Family

IMMORENTE

Mediterrania Capital Partners (MCP)

Development Partners International (DPI)

Work highlights

  • Advised NBK Capital Partners on acquisition of Polymedic, one of the major pharmaceutical laboratory in Morocco (this transaction was one of the largest deal in Morocco in 2019).
  • Advised Development Partners International (DPI) on its investment in Société Industrielle des Conserves Alimentaires (“SICAM”), a leading food and tomato processing business in Tunisia.
  • Advised Mediterrania Capital Partners (MCP) on its investment in Aktidal holding, a holding company with 12 subsidiaries specializing in the health sector.

BFR & Associés

BFR & Associés is regarded by some as 'the best independent law firm in Morocco'. It is frequently involved in some of the biggest M&A transactions in the domestic market, often working in collaboration with major international law firms. Safia Fassi-Fihri and Romain Rabillard are the lead practitioners in corporate and finance matters. Clients note that they are 'very dedicated, competent and know their business very well'.

Practice head(s):

Safia Fassi-Fihri; Romain Rabillard

Testimonials

‘BFR is a Moroccan firm working to the best international standards. very responsive and professional. ’

‘Romain Rabillard and Safia Fassi-Fihri are very dedicated, competent and know their business very well as well as the business and political environment. They are responsive and very pleasant to work with.’

‘They are available, responsive. They understand the sector and are open to negotiations.’

‘Sometimes words cannot describe what makes a firm unique. I just feel very confortable and secure with this firm. The partners, especially Safia Fassi-Fihri, with whom I work a lot, is very sharp, talented and one of the most responsive people I have worked with in the past. I can call her anytime, even during holidays time, she would always answer and address my problem right away. She has also an outstanding business network on the ground, which is very unique comparing to other firms. ’

‘I work with Safia Fassi-Fihri who is one of the most talented lawyers on the ground. She is very sharp, responsive and business-oriented while being a very good law practitioner.’

‘Flexibility, Imagination, deep knowledge of the local market and, above all intelligence describe this firm and in particular Romain Rabillard, the partner in charge of our account. Contrary to a lot of his peers from international law firms, Romain Rabillard is actually present and installed in Casablanca.’

‘Romain Rabillard is undoubtedly a brilliant and imaginative legal mind with an infinite work capacity. He grasps issues in no time, proposes original solutions when necessary, delivers products at international level standards (and above) and does all that with a friendly touch that often lacks his peers in the legal industry.’

Key clients

CCCC (China Communication Construction Company)

Mixta

Duet (Private Equity)

AfricInvest

Proparco

ING Bank

Google

Vantage Data Centers

Ardian

Sunpack

EBRD

Aramex

Expedia

GKC Partners

Mondi Group

Socotec group

ONDA (National office of Airports)

Mituc

Mindray

Hiliventures

Jumia Group

Saham Group

De Richbourg

Calm Group

Bosch

Bayer

Attijari Finance Corp

Global Motors

Abraaj

ENGIE

Nareva

Airbnb

Hili Ventures

UPC Renewables

Leica Geosystems

Label Vie Group

Ciech Group

Alliances Group

Dahua Technology

SoLocal Group

Ministry of General Affairs and Governance

Société Générale

Africa Capital Partners

ESL / Agence Publics (ESL AP Maroc)

EMID – Al Rashideen Group (the exclusive distributor of Philipp Morris in MENA Region)

Mediterrania Capital Partners

Dentons Sayarh & Menjra

Dentons Sayarh & Menjra blends the international experience of a global law firm with in-depth local law experience in Casablanca, following the merger with a local firm in 2018. Omar Sayarh and Mehdi Mezgari are among the experienced local partners. They frequently act for domestic and foreign companies in M&A transactions in Morocco, and are increasingly active for private equity funds.

Practice head(s):

Omar Sayarh; Mehdi Mezgari

Garrigues Maroc Sarl

At Garrigues Maroc Sarl, partner José Ignacio García Muniozguren and principal associate Jaafar Laidi are ‘professional, always engaged with our firm and constantly available for any enquiries’, according to one of the firm's clients. They frequently act for Spanish and Portuguese investors on cross-border M&A, as well as corporate reorganisations and contractual matters. Recent highlights included assisting Spanish company Cítrico Global with the purchase of a 75% stake in the Moroccan company Sunpack.

Practice head(s):

José Ignacio García Muniozguren

Other key lawyers:

Jaafar Laidi

Testimonials

‘We are an international company with different cultures, markets, legal frames. This firm mixes Spanish and Moroccan cultures, which gives us the opportunity to develop projects with the correct target, saving the real gap there is. We need to point out the commitment and professionalism of the partner Jose Ignacio Garcia and his team. They try to understand the business of their client which allows them to connect with problems.’

‘Its strengths are its proximity and its good technical level.’

‘José Ignacio García Muniozguren and Jaafar Laidi both show good availability and operate at a very good technical level in the areas of commercial and tax law, and they have deep knowledge of the country.’

‘We appreciate receiving a personalised service specific to our company.’

‘They are professional, always engaged with our firm and constantly available for any enquires.’

Key clients

Barceló

Tecnimede

Atento

Prada

Fujikura

Syngenta

FCA Dealer Services

Grupo Alibérico

Banco Sabadell

Smurfit

Blue Box Partner Iberia

Chryso

Work highlights

  • Advised Spanish company Cítrico Global on its purchase of 75% ownership interests in the Moroccan company Sunpack, S.A.R.L.

Jeantet

Jeantet's Casablanca office handles corporate and M&A transactions in Morocco, as well as further afield in the MENA and sub-Saharan Africa regions. It mainly focuses on advising foreign investors operating in those regions, having handled high-value transactions in sectors such as telecoms, automotive and aerospace. Philippe Malléa, Mamoune Kettani and Mohamed Ali Khelil Charef are the key partners. They recently advised Maroc Telecom on the sale of  €800m in share capital by the Kingdom of Morocco.

Practice head(s):

Philippe Malléa; Mamoune Kettani; Mohamed Ali Khelil Charef  

Key clients

COPAG

Grupo Profand

6temik

ALSO France

Maroc Telecom

LafargeHolcim

SMRC Automotive

Scopelec

GGI Solutions (E2IP)

Ariston Thermo SA

Johnson&Johnson

webedia

Globalia

Frontier Digital Venture – FDV

Work highlights

  • Advised Bombardier Inc. on a $20m capital increase of Bombardier Aerospace North Africa.
  • Advised LAFARGEHOCIM Maroc on the management of all its commercial relationships during the Covid-19 crisis.
  • Advised MAROC TELECOM on the sale of 8% of its share capital (approx €800m) by the Kingdom of Morocco.

Kettani Law Firm

At Kettani Law FirmNadia Kettani is regarded as one of the most accomplished corporate practitioners in Morocco, with her dedication to clients widely attested. Having joined the firm nearly 30 years ago, her work continues to include significant cross-border M&A transactions and complex commercial contracts for foreign companies operating in Morocco. She also advises on group restructurings, public tenders and stock exchange listings.

Practice head(s):

Nadia Kettani

LPA-CGR

LPA-CGR is a prominent French firm whose Casablanca office plays a key role in M&A transactions across francophone Africa. Lead partners Romain Berthon and Lina Fassi-Fihri combine years of international and local law expertise, allowing the firm to work on high-value transactions for Moroccan and foreign corporates, multilateral development banks and public sector organisations. The firm's knowledge of key sectors such as real estate, tourism, infrastructure and automotive is another key strength.

Practice head(s):

Romain Berthon; Lina Fassi-Fihri

Key clients

LEONI

ACOME Maroc

Clauger

Diebold Nixdorf

Folly Fashion

Total Safety Maroc

SATEBA Vagneux Systemes

UGGC Africa

UGGC Africa has a growing workload of M&A, PPP, private equity and competition law matters, and it also advises on commercial contracts. The firm's Africa desk handles work across the MENA region and is highly active in francophone Africa. Ali Bougrine, Jean-Jacques UettwillerLaurent Sablé and Corinne Khayat are the most prominent practitioners in a large corporate practice that works between the Paris and Casablanca offices.

Practice head(s):

Ali Bougrine; Jean-Jacques Uettwiller; Laurent Sablé; Corinne Khayat

Testimonials

‘Although based partly in Paris, the team travels and gives itself the means to know the environment and the evolution of legislation, and it attends events that allow it to be aware of developments in the law on competition and to better master the environment of Moroccan institutions and case law.’

‘Within the firm, Corinne Khayat demonstrates exemplary responsiveness on all types of subjects.’

Key clients

CDER Investissements

LafargeHolcim

PERI

MATIS Aerospace

GBH and its subsidiaries in Morocco

Orange OMEAM

Association Professionnelle des Cimentiers (APC)

Groupement des Petroliers Marocains

Sienna Investment Group

GCCI

induver

Avenis

Air Liquide

Amundi

ATALIAN

RATP Developpement

Armonia

Work highlights

  • Advised CDER Investments on its acquisition of an aerospace company.
  • Adviseing LafargeHolcim on M&A and corporate matters, joint venture closures and competition law.
  • Advised MATIS Aerospace, a joint venture owned 50/50 by Safran Electrical & Power and Boeing, on corporate issues.

Afrique Advisors

Afrique Advisors‘ growing client base includes a number of global brands and it has been involved in an increasing number of cross-border transactions. Key partner Laila Slassi advises Procter & Gamble on various commercial matters arising from its business in Morocco, and she recently assisted Unilever with the local aspects of a global deal to sell business assets under the Alsa and Moench brands.

Practice head(s):

Laila Slassi

Key clients

Brookstone Partners International

Edgeboro International Inc

Procter & Gamble

Signify International

Mr Issam Nait

Unilever

CERPHOS

Work highlights

  • Within the framework of a global transaction, the firm advised Unilever Maghreb SA on the partial sale of business assets brands to Dr Oetker Maroc SARL for a total amount of MAD37,309,752.40.
  • Advised the purchaser, Mr Issam Nait, and the sellers (foreign persons) of a Moroccan holding company providing services, Invest 31, on the sale of 85 % of the shares of the company Invest 31 for a total amount 25,500,000.00 MAD.
  • Advising Edgeboro International as a co-shareholder of Ecomed Group, a holding company specialised in waste management, on the implementation of the provisions included in the term sheet executed by the co-shareholders in order to proceed with the restructuring of the group. A large legal due diligence of the ten subsidiaries located in Morocco has been performed.

Bakouchi & Habachi - HB Law Firm LLP

Bakouchi & Habachi - HB Law Firm LLP is well-versed in helping domestic and international companies with license, franchise and distribution agreements, corporate transactions and corporate governance issues. Salima Bakouchi and Kamal Habachi are the lead partners. Their recent work included advising Moroccan Infrastructure Fund on matters arising from shareholders agreements. Habachi has particular expertise in franchising and other distribution agreements.

Practice head(s):

Salima Bakouchi; Kamal Habachi

Key clients

Marsa Maroc

Wafa Assurance

LISI AEROSPACE

Attijari Invest

CDG Capital

Compagnie Générale Immobilière – CGI

Emaar Group

Upline Group

Samsung

AL OMRANE Group

Abengoa Group

Attijariwafa bank

Attijari Factoring

BMCE Bank

Umnia Bank

Total Maroc

Vivo (energy “Shell)

ZIZ (Energy Fields)

WAFA Imma

AXA Assurance

Sanad Assurance

Microsoft Corporation

ALPARGATAS “Havaianas”

MAGIDEUTZ

Société Marocaine des Tabacs

British American Tobacco

NOVOMATIC AG

ATLAS NORD HYDROCARBURES (“Cepsa”)

Work highlights

  • Assisted Moroccan Infrastructure Fund (MIF) with a complex operation called “clawback”. MIF made distributions for the benefit of its shareholders, sometimes in the form of a dividend, sometimes in the form of a capital decrease with repayment.
  • Assistance to CDG Invest Infrastructure with the recapitalisation of Capmezzanin (an investment fund of CDG) through decrease of the capital and the reimbursement of shareholders.
  • Assisting Umnia Bank with the process of the recapitalisation of the bank and the operation of the capital increase according to central bank ratios.

BFF LAW FIRM

At BFF LAW FIRM, partners Bouchra Belouchi and Fatima-Zahra Fassi-Fihri have a strong profile among international firms. The firm is well-known for its work in cross-border M&A on behalf of major corporations, banks and financial institutions. It acts for clients on inbound investments into Morocco (and, more broadly, Africa), as well as outbound investments into Europe.

Practice head(s):

Bouchra Belouchi; Fatima-Zahra Fassi-Fihri

Benzakour Law Firm

Benzakour Law Firm has a broad practice that combines advice on foreign investments in Morocco, as well as dispute resolution, labour law and competition matters. Rachid Benzakour, Abdelaziz Benzakour and Leila Benzakour are the main contacts. Their recent work included assisting Korean company KT&G with its incorporation and investments in Morocco. They are also key advisers to Open Gate Funds on local acquisitions and merger control matters.

Practice head(s):

Benzakour Rachid; Benzakour Abdelaziz; Benzakour Leila

CMS

CMS has a long-standing presence in Casablanca, where the practice calls on French, English and Arab-speaking lawyers to advise large domestic and international companies on cross-border M&A transactions, foreign exchange, tax and insurance matters. Its work spans the incorporation of local entities, corporate governance advice, company audits and the structuring of M&A deals. Tax and business law specialist Marc Veuillot is the lead partner.

Practice head(s):

Marc Veuillot

El Amari & Rouissi

El Amari & Rouissi predominantly acts for large Moroccan corporations, both in the public and private sectors, and it increasingly advises multinational companies and foreign entities on their local business interests. Mariam Rouissi and Mohieddine El Amari are the lead partners. They recently assisted the local subsidiary of Dr. Oetker with the acquisition of banking ingredients business ALSA from Unilever.

Practice head(s):

Mariam Rouissi; Mohieddine El Amari

Key clients

Arma Holding

Avito SCM

Dr. Oetker maroc

Arrakisyeselkron Morocco

Marhaba

Iwaco

Docmeetoo

Work highlights

  • Advised Arma Group on the acquisition of ACERE (lighting).
  • Advising an investment fund in the context of a legal due diligence for the acquisition of AVITO SCM, the leading site for general announcements.
  • Advised Dr. Oetker Maroc on the acquisition of ALSA Business (fonds de commerce) located in Morocco, from Unilever.

Mernissi - FIGES

Mernissi - FIGES is best known for its work on projects and public law matters, but it also handles a broad scope of other work, including corporate transactions, IPOs, competition law matters and advice on commercial issues. It frequently acts for domestic and international private sector companies in the key sectors of water, energy and transportation, and it has a strong track record in PPP contracts. Lamya El Mernissi and Mohamed El Mernissi are the main practitioners.

Practice head(s):

Lamya El Mernissi; Mohamed El Mernissi

Work highlights

  • Advising VEOLIA Environnement, a French company listed on Euronex Paris and its Moroccan subsidiaries for the implementation in Morocco of the international employee share offering reserved for employees, in particular the requirements and authorisations of the Foreign Exchange Office and the Moroccan authority of capital markets and their legal issues.
  • Advising Vinci S.A., global player in construction and concessions, and its Moroccan subsidiaries for the implementation in Morocco of the international employee share offering reserved for employees in particular the requirements and authorizations of the Foreign Exchange Office and the Moroccan authority of capital markets and their legal issues.

Bassamat & Laraqui

Bassamat & Laraqui increasingly acts for domestic and international companies on corporate and commercial matters. The firm recently advised Royal Air Maroc on issues arising from Covid-19's impact on the aviation sector, which included advice on the state assistance programme. In addition, it acted for North Africa Tobacco Company on the negotiation of a tripartite distribution contract. Bassamat Fassi-Fihri and Asma Laraqui are the main contacts.

Practice head(s):

Bassamat Fassi-Fihri; Asma Laraqui

Testimonials

‘Bassamat Fassi-Fihri is particularly efficient and pragmatic in managing complex litigation and negotiation processes.’

‘Through the experience we have had with the Bassamat firm, we clearly note the availability and expertise of the team that supports us as well as their mastery of legal processes. We also appreciate the quality of their advice and recommendations.’

‘We note the rigorous and personalised follow-up of our matters, the quality of representation in hearings and the billing system by progress.’

‘We have the opportunity to be advised by associates and senior lawyers. We appreciate the specialisation of each lawyer in the subjects for which we have contacted the Bassamat firm.’

Key clients

Royal Air Maroc

Aluminium du Maroc

Groupe Mafoder

North Africa Tobacco Company

Ram Handling

AGC Automotive Europe

Amadeus Maroc

Office Scolaire et Universitaire International (OSUI)

Société Africaine de véhicules industriels

Aluminium du Maroc

Decathlon Maroc

Pickalbaros Group

AGC Automotive Glass

Spaib International

Crédit Immobilier et Hôtelier (C.I.H)

BMCI (BNP Paribas Group)

Crédit Agricole du Maroc

Work highlights

  • The firm assisted Royal Air Maroc with amending the current Aircrew Statute to reduce remuneration, the adoption of salary reduction measures, and the assistance programme set up by the Government.
  • Assisting AGC Glass Europe with its anti-corruption code of conduct in compliance with the rules of Moroccan law.
  • Assisting North Africa Tobacco Company with a tripartite distribution contract, the distributor being a foreign oil company with a large network of service stations in Morocco.

Boulalf Mekkaoui Law Firm

Boulalf Mekkaoui Law Firm is increasingly involved in large domestic and cross-border transactions. Its work for leading Moroccan corporates and entities from Spain, Lebanon, the US and Italy, among others, is spread across many industry sectors, though aviation is a key area of focus. Ahlam Mekkaoui and Abdelatif Boulalf, who handle corporate, employment, finance and litigation work, are the lead partners.

Practice head(s):

Ahlam Mekkaoui; Abdelatif Boulalf

Testimonials

All the staff have a good knowledge of corporate law.’

‘We have improved our organisation and professionalism thanks to this firm.’

‘His sense of listening and looking after the interests of his clients and excellent communication make Ahlam Mekkaoui outstanding.’

‘The team is highly competent, providing efficient and rapid services to clients.’

‘Ahlam Mekkaoui and Abdelatif Boulalf are very professional, providing swift assistance whenever necessary with friendly disposition.’

‘The team at Boulalf & Mekkaoui has always been fully available to us, delivering a high quality of service.’

‘The Boulalf & Mekkaoui firm is unique in its approach to every legal matter, They provide in-depth analysis and provide every piece of information that allows partners to be confident in running their business. The team anticipates challenges and provide guidance and their availability reassures us as a company that our legal is in safe hands.’

‘Boulalf & Mekkaoui is flexible in providing support to us. They provide on-site legal support, and they have provided us with a special COVID-19 support pack that takes into consideration the economic impact on our business despite the legal requirements actually increased during the pandemic. The firm can be reached on multiple communication channels and at any time which makes it easier to communicate and get support.’

Fraikech Associés

Fraikech Associés advises a diverse mix of Moroccan and international companies on all aspects of their local business affairs. Managing partner Oussama Fraikech is highly experienced in both domestic and cross-border matters. His recent work included assisting investment bank Capital Gestion with the drafting of shareholders’ agreements. He is also well-versed in the competition law aspects of M&A transactions.

Practice head(s):

Oussama Fraikech

Hajji & Associés

Amin Hajji at Hajji & Associés is widely recognised as a skilled corporate partner who frequently advises on joint ventures, M&A and business restructurings for foreign corporates investing in Morocco. The firm is a popular choice of local counsel for international law firms, particularly in sectors such as infrastructure and renewable energy.

Practice head(s):

Amin Hajji

M.A. Global Consulting

M.A. Global Consulting focuses on corporate, commercial, finance and tax matters. Oussama Fedane and Mehdi El Attar are noted for their work in sectors such as renewable energy, construction, finance, education and manufacturing. The firm serves as the local partner of Andersen Consulting, giving it a key role in a growing number of cross-border transactions.

Practice head(s):

Oussama Fedane; Mehdi El Attar

Testimonials

‘The team is highly professional and very available for our needs. They provide us with very precise answers even at short notice. The level of the deliverables provided by Dr. El Attar and Mr. Fedane is impressive and competes with the best firms in Casablanca.’

‘Dr. El Attar is a very highly regarded professional that enjoys great humility as he is constantly learning and improving his skills.’

‘Mr. Oussama Fedane is a very pragmatic lawyer with a very impressive thinking speed. His negotiation skills are as impressive as his mind.’

‘M.A. Global Consulting is unique when it comes to advisory services because it is a one-stop shop for all needs. The lawyers are very skilled and the expertise is global and covers all aspects of transactions. We only work with M.A. Global Consulting on our deals and are happy with the quality of the services.’

‘Oussama Fedane is a very professional lawyer with very precise knowledge on the matters that are submitted to him. He is a very good negotiator and a very skilled lawyer that is recognised by his peers as extremely competent.’

‘A really hardworking team. They are always delivering on time. When I happen to meet or be in contact with other colleagues they show same level of eagerness to answer our expectations.’

‘The team is unique because it is composed of high level profiles only. All partners were top level associates in big firms and that shows in the quality of the services provided and the profiles recruited that compose the team. M.A. Global Consulting enjoys a very great reputation on the market and that reputation is bettering year after year.’

‘We work with Dr. El Attar and Mr. Fedane on our transactions. Dr. El Attar is a very well known expert with a great reputation and many connections. He always has precise information and knows when to warn us about dangerous decisions.’

Key clients

Société Générale des Travaux du Maroc (SGTM)

Société de Promotion conjointe au Maroc (SPCM)

Société Générale des Travaux du Maroc (SGTM)

KD HOLDING S.A.

Advanced Vision Africa

AKMH Invest

GreenYellow Morocco

MIF Maroc

Falomen – a subsidiary of the El FAL Group

Advanced Vision Morocco

Work highlights

  • Acted as advisers to Société Générale des Travaux du Maroc (SGTM) on two major public works in (i) the Republic of Cameroon for the construction of the Nachtigal Dam and an electric energy production plant and (ii) in the Republic of Ivory Coast for the construction of drainpipe channels.
  • Assisted Advanced Vision Africa with obtaining the Casablanca Finance City label and legal status as well as the incorporation of several companies in Egypt, Gabon and Guinea Conakry.
  • Assisted TRAREM with the opening of its share capital to CDG Capital Private Equity and acted as legal, tax and business advisers to the sellers.