Foreign firms in Qatar

Allen & Overy LLP

Allen & Overy LLP has been a key name in the Qatari legal market, particularly in the areas of corporate and M&A, banking and finance, project finance and capital markets. Dubai-based Samer Eido is a key figure and is an expert in capital markets, banking and finance, and projects. Also in the Dubai office is Anthony Traboulsi, who was recently promoted to partner and specialises in real estate finance, corporate lending and debt restructuring. The firm recently closed its Doha office.

Practice head(s):

Samer Eido

Other key lawyers:

Anthony Traboulsi

Key clients

Qatar National Bank

The Commercial Bank

Barwa Bank

QInvest

Credit Suisse

Investment Holding Group

Qatar Islamic Bank

Masraf Al Rayan

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Constellation Hotels Holding Limited

Al Faisal Holding

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Work highlights

  • Advising the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia  as arrangers on $300m-worth of unsecured facilities to the telecoms company Ooredoo.
  • Acting for the Bank of China QFC Branch in connection with a $150m Credit Facility for Ooredoo.
  • Advised Masraf Al Rayan (MAR) on the merger of MAR, Barwa Bank and IBQ to create a larger and stronger financial institution.

Dentons

Dentons is 'outstanding' in terms of its advice, approach and commitment to clients, and has stand-out strengths in the aviation and construction sectors. Managing partner Safwan Moubaydeen is singled out for his 'exemplary leadership' and is notably advising on commercial agreements for the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, the entity responsible for delivering the FIFA 2022 World Cup.  He splits his time between the firm's Doha and Amman offices. Corporate specialist Zaher Nammour is another key figure, and advised Qatar Airways on the sale and leaseback of four Boeing 777 aircraft. Construction disputes expert Andrew Jones is another integral part of the team. Also noted is corporate and commercial associate Peter Motti, who is 'an energetic professional' and 'very accurate' in his advice.

Testimonials

The individuals we work with have always have provided us with the best quality service and the amount of efforts they make to fulfil our legal requirements is highly appreciated.’

The entire team is prepared to carefully listen to our queries, analyze them with their expertise and provide us with the perfect solutions.’

Moubaydeen has unmatched industry exposure and charismatic leadership.’

‘Mr. Safwan takes considerable efforts to ensure the legal opinions he provides accurately meet the expectations of his clients.’

Provides timely and valuable information about the market.’

The level of service provided by Dentons is outstanding where their professional approach towards delivering appropriate advice, industry exposure, capabilities of the team members and commitment to our requirements make them unique.’

‘The key success comes from the exemplary leadership of Mr. Safwan Moubaydeen, who shows the team the right way to make our tasks very easy in a timely fashion.’

‘Peter Motti is an energetic professional who always pays high attention to our requirements.’

Key clients

Qatar Airways Group

Qatar Sports Investments

Castlelake

Qatar Mining Company

Qatar International Islamic Bank

The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy

Work highlights

  • Assisted Qatar Sports Investments with its contracts and IP protection relating to the FIFA 2022 World Cup and the French football club Paris Saint-Germain, which the entity owns.
  • Advised Qatar Mining on corporate restructuring and sector-specific compliance issues surrounding its expansion into Africa and Latin America.
  • Acted as Qatar local counsel for Qatar Investment Bank’s $2bn sukuk programme, which is now listed on the London Stock Exchange.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP fields 'an experienced team in the commercial and construction industries' and is 'highly qualified', 'friendly' and 'practical in its approach'. Practice head Jonathan Collier focuses on contentious and non-contentious issues concerning issues surrounding construction and infrastructure projects. The team often draws upon its Dubai office for major projects, such as advising an international consortium on Qatar's first major solar power plant, tendered by Kahramaa. Tim Armsby, who focuses on advisory matters in construction, and Mark Raymont, who works on construction disputes, are key names from the Dubai office.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Collier

Testimonials

‘They listen to our concerns and take their time to explain and clarify situations in simple terms that our management and engineers can understand and gain confidence in regarding a legal course of action.’

‘The practice is superb. It has unrivalled experience in Qatar, a wealth of top-class clients, and an absolutely first-rate team of outstanding lawyers who are not only extremely bright but also immensely hardworking, with fantastic strategic and commercial judgement.’

‘Jonathan Collier is absolutely outstanding. He is one of the best solicitors with whom I have ever worked. He is immensely bright, extremely hardworking and a brilliant strategist. His down-to-earth manner commands the complete trust and confidence of his clients, and the advice he gives always takes account of the practical and commercial realities they face.’

Simmons & Simmons

Simmons & Simmons has a strong track record in M&A, banking and finance and capital markets, and has recently boosted its presence in dispute resolution with the arrival of George Vlavianos joining form Bennett Jones LLP. Vlavianos has expertise in litigation and alternative dispute resolution, with a particular emphasis on the energy and construction sectors. Andrew Wingfield leads the practice and advised the International Bank of Qatar on its merger with Barwa Bank, which created a combined entity with total assets of QAR80bn. He also assisted Vodafone Qatar with its capital restructuring. Another key figure is Arnaud Depierrefe who focuses on the defence, engineering and construction sectors.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Wingfield

Key clients

Qatar National Bank

The Commercial Bank

Vodafone Qatar

Al Khalij Commercial Bank

Doha Bank

Qatar Investment Authority /Qatar Holding

Qatar Foundation

Mandarin Oriental Group

International Bank of Qatar

Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy

Sidra Medical and Research Centre

Qatar Financial Centre

Qatar Islamic Bank

Qatar First Bank

Work highlights

  • Assisted The Commercial Bank (formerly The Commercial Bank of Qatar) on a number of debt programmes.
  • Appointed by the project company, Umm Al Houl Power (in which Mitsubishi holds a 40% stake), in relation to the expansion of its water and power plant.
  • Instructed to act on behalf of the lenders in relation to an English law-governed $750m syndicated facility to The Commercial Bank.

White & Case LLP

White & Case LLP has 'a strong construction, projects and energy practice', which has expertise in contentious and non-contentious matters. Michael Turrini is a key figure and is highly skilled in construction litigation and arbitration. Payvand Vahdat also works on construction disputes but also advises on contracts and procurement. The team has also been described as 'able to call upon a deep pool of expert lawyers from London and other offices who can augment the local team when required.' This is true of Michiel Visser and Philip Stopford, who are based in New York and London respectively. Visser is an expert in M&A and restructuring, whereas Stopford stands out for his work in project finance. M&A specialist Charbel Abou Charaf, who is also based in London, is another name to note.

Testimonials

‘They are very responsive and have always provided top-class advice and assistance when needed.’

Key clients

Qatar Investment Authority

Qatar Petroleum

QatarGas

United Arab Shipping Company

Qatari Diar

Qatar Cool

Katara Hospitality

Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy

Amwal LLC

Baker & McKenzie Limited

Baker & McKenzie Limited has a real breadth of capabilities in this region, including project finance, banking and finance, corporate and M&A, real estate and defence. Ian Siddell leads the practice and is particularly known for his work on project and Islamic finance. Mohsin Iqbal is an expert in transactional banking, project finance and acquisition finance. Basel Barakat is highly experienced in project, Islamic and contractor finance. Also recommended is Gavin Witcombe, who works on construction projects and litigation.

Practice head(s):

Ian Siddell

Key clients

Saudi Binladin Group

Company Limited Circa

Porr Bau GmbH

Hamad Bin Khalid

Contracting Company W.L.L.

The Commercial Bank

Qatar National Bank

Barwa Bank

Msheireb Properties

Work highlights

  • Advising Saudi Binladin Group on the QAR7bn contract for the construction works comprising a significant part of the Khalifa Avenue Masterplan in Doha.
  • Advising a consortium of construction companies on all corporate, project and construction issues in relation to several of the key packages of the Doha Metro Project, including the Green Line Underground Package and Green Line Elevated and Above Ground Package.
  • Assisting Saudi Binladin Group with the QAR4.2bn construction contract for major infrastructure works relating to Lusail City, including the Lusail Plaza infrastructure, light rail transit station, public car parks and landscape works.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP's 'knowledge, expertise and experience in Qatar enables clients to understand the local market and rules in an environment that has been constantly evolving.' Laura Warren is the newly made managing partner and focuses on contentious and non-contentious issues relating to construction and infrastructure projects. The corporate side is handled by Lee Keane and David Salt, who are both particularly active in the areas of education and healthcare. The 'absolutely outstanding' Emma Higham focuses on employment issues and 'goes above and beyond' for her clients,  providing 'in-depth knowledge of the law and practice in Qatar'.

Practice head(s):

Laura Warren

Testimonials

Its cross-cultural knowledge has helped us ensure our legal documents in Qatar align with our UK policies.’

Very approachable, the team has taken the time to understand our work, providing us timely and thorough counsel, empowering us to make knowledgeable decisions.’

Working with Clyde & Co in Qatar is always a pleasure.’

Not only an excellent lawyer, Emma Higham is a great connector.

Over the years Emma Higham has created platforms for clients with common interests to network and meet.’

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP has a strong foothold in the Qatari market through its work on major infrastructure projects and disputes. Managing partner Dani Kabbani leads the team and is an expert in commercial and corporate law, particularly in the oil and gas sector. On the contentious side, Richard Ward is highly skilled in construction litigation and arbitration.

K&L Gates

K&L Gates handles a steady stream of work relating to project development, M&A and capital markets. Moreover, the team handles disputes involving the construction and engineering sectors. Matthew Walker, one of the team heads, is particularly strong in construction arbitration. Fellow co-head Amjad Hussain focuses on banking and Islamic finance.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Real estate and project finance are the two key pillars of Charles Russell Speechlys LLP's practice. Simon Green leads the team and is notably skilled in handling mixed-used real estate developments, often through the medium of a public-private-partnership. The team is also highly capable in handling contentious work, with Patrick Gearon focusing on commercial disputes and the Bahrain-based Paula Boast specialising in construction disputes.

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance has a strong track record in advising on M&A and joint ventures. Practice head Jason Mendens is based in Abu Dhabi and advises on corporate and M&A and energy and infrastructure projects.

Shearman & Sterling LLP

The 'superb' Shearman & Sterling LLP is 'extremely responsive', 'provides commercial advice' and 'manages difficult issues'. The Milan-based Domenico Fanuele handles M&A, real estate and capital market transactions. London-based of counsel John Inglis is highly active in project finance and development. Also in London is John Adams, who is very active in advising on private and retail investment funds. The San Francisco-based Michael Dorf advised the Qatar Investment Authority on its $400m investment in Compass in conjunction with SoftBank.

Key clients

Qatar Investment Authority

Mubadala

Japan Bank for International Cooperation

Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation

Mizuho Bank

KfW IPEX-Bank Gmb

Work highlights

  • Advising the Qatar Investment Authority on its provision of debt financing to LifePoint Health and RCCH HealthCare Partners for their merger.
  • Acted for Qatar Investment Authority on its investment, alongside Softbank Corp., in Compass.

Badri and Salim El Meouchi LLP

Badri and Salim El Meouchi LLP covers the spectrum of legal services with Chadia El Meouchi at the helm. She is skilled in corporate work and M&A, banking, finance and capital markets.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper is predominantly involved in mandates concerning power and water projects, as well as advising on general corporate and commercial issues facing clients in the TMT and hospitality sectors. The team regularly draws upon its Dubai office, with Doha-based corporate and commercial legal director Brenda Hill supporting the team on these mandates. Energy and infrastructure specialist Trevor Butcher is a key name in the UAE.

Practice head(s):

Brenda Hill

Key clients

Katara Hospitality

Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology

Cisco Systems Inc

Harrods Hotel Group

Katara Hospitality

Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co. Ltd

Cisco Systems Inc

Harrods Hotel Group

Work highlights

  • Advising a software and technology services company on the establishment of an office in the Qatar Financial Centre, including immigration and sponsorship requirements, risk and liabilities attaching to a particular function of the entity, localisation of workplace policies and drafting an employment contract for use in the Qatar Financial Centre.

Squire Patton Boggs

Squire Patton Boggs' practice is led by Charbel M. Maakaron, who is an expert in M&A and restructuring, as well as advising on general commercial and regulatory issues. He is particularly adept at construction work.