Banking and finance in Saudi Arabia

Legal Advisors, Abdulaziz I. Al-Ajlan & Partners in association with Baker & McKenzie Limited

Legal Advisors, Abdulaziz I. Al-Ajlan & Partners in association with Baker & McKenzie Limited has strong multi-jurisdictional presence with offices in Riyadh, Jeddah and Bahrain. The practice specialises in project finance, Islamic finance, contractor finance, securitisation and receivables finance. Financing work for PPPs involving water, wastewater and power have been areas of growth, as well as financial restructuring mandates. Practice head Ian Siddell has extensive experience in acting on multi-sourced and ECA supported financings. Basel Barakat is also noted and focuses on project finance, Islamic finance and contractor finance transactions. Julie Alexander retired in December 2019.

Practice head(s):

Ian Siddell

Other key lawyers:

Basel Barakat

Key clients

Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma’aden)

Banque Saudi Fransi

Khair Inorganic Chemical Industries Company (InoChem)

Samba Financial Group/Samba Capital

Saudi Binladin Group Company Limited

The National Commercial Bank

Arab National Bank

Riyad Bank

ACWA Power International

Al Rajhi Banking and Investment Corporation

HSBC Saudi Arabia/The Saudi British Bank

The Saudi Investment Bank

Gulf International Bank B.S.C. / GIB Capital

Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP)

Mohammed I. Alsubeaei & Sons Investment Company

Abdulrahman Saleh Al – Rahji and Partners Company Limited (ARARCO)

ABC Islamic Bank (E.C.)

Bank AlJazira

Thakher Development Company (TDC)

Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD)

Olayan Saudi Holding Company

Work highlights

  • Advising a major Saudi Arabian conglomerate in relation to funding facilities aggregating SAR60bn (approximately $16bn) to assist with the construction of multiple significant projects in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
  • Acting for financing banks Riyad Bank, Samba Financial Group and Al Rajhi Bank in relation to a SAR1.5bn murabaha facility for Advanced Petrochemical Company for the purposes of purchasing commodities and funding the Company’s general corporate purposes.
  • Acting as Saudi counsel to Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP), The National Commercial Bank and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Europe Limited as senior debt lenders to Dammam West Company for Water in connection with an independent sewage treatment plant in Dammam, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Abuhimed Alsheikh Alhagbani Law Firm (AS&H) in co-operation with Clifford Chance

Abuhimed Alsheikh Alhagbani Law Firm (AS&H) in co-operation with Clifford Chance advises a range of international and domestic financial institutions on areas including Islamic finance, project finance, asset finance and acquisition finance. Yasser Al-Hussain heads the practice and is supported by of counsel Michael Quigley and senior associate Abdulkhaliq ElShayya.

Practice head(s):

Yasser Al-Hussain

Other key lawyers:

Michael Quigley; Abdulkhaliq ElShayya

Khoshaim & Associates

Khoshaim & Associates advises domestic and multinationals on banking regulation and financings for real estate and industrial projects. Practice head Karim Wali is a key individual to note and displays a high level of expertise in conventional and Islamic financings. Hamdan van den Brule is also noted and brings a strong knowledge of the oil and gas sector to the practice.

Practice head(s):

Karim Wali

Other key lawyers:

Hamdan van den Brule

Law Office of Salman M. Al-Sudairi in association with Latham & Watkins LLP

Law Office of Salman M. Al-Sudairi in association with Latham & Watkins LLP has a broad practice that covers both debtor and lender side parties in restructuring transactions, as well as banks and borrowers on financings. Key areas of strength include bank lending, restructurings, derivatives, project finance (including project bonds), real estate property development and financing and Shari’ah-compliant financing. Salman Al-Sudairi is experienced in advising clients on complex banking transactions, Islamic finance and restructurings. Counsel Amar Meher is also noted and has a broad practice that includes debt financings and restructurings, derivatives, conventional and Islamic finance.

Practice head(s):

Salman Al-Sudairi; Amar Meher

Key clients

BNP Paribas

Citibank

HSBC

Arab National Bank

Banque Saudi Fransi

Riyad Bank

The Saudi British Bank

The National Commercial Bank

National Industrialization Co. (TASNEE)

Kingdom Holding Company

Etihad Etisalat Company (Mobily)

Emirates NBD Capital Limited / Emirates NBD

Tadawul Real Estate Company

Samba Financial Group

Umm Al Qura Development and Construction Company

Abdulaltif Alissa Group Holding Company

Al Rajhi Banking and Investment Corporation

Warba Bank K.S.C.P.

Commercial Bank of Dubai PSC

Work highlights

  • Advising the Creditors Committee on the proposed settlement of Saad Trading/Al-Sanea.
  • Advising the creditors in relation to the financial restructuring procedure for Ahmad Hamad Al-Gosaibi & Bros. Company and its general partners under the bankruptcy law.
  • Advising the Creditors Committee in connection with phase 2 of the restructuring of conventional and Islamic loans of Al-Ittefaq Steel Products Company, a manufacturer of reinforcing bars.

The Law Office of Megren M. Al-Shaalan in cooperation with White & Case

The Law Office of Megren M. Al-Shaalan in cooperation with White & Case has 'real strength' in the banking and finance space in Saudi Arabia. The firm advises leading clients in the water and power sectors. The practice is led by Doug Peel who has a strong background advising oil and gas clients on M&A, joint ventures and corporate governance. Adam PiersonAlec JohnsonIvan Paskal and Ibrahim Bakhurji are further names to note.

Practice head(s):

Doug Peel; Adam Pierson; Ivan Paskal; Alec Johnson; Ibrahim Bakhurji

Testimonials

‘Real strength in the depth of their KSA practice, supported by a truly market-leading offering regionally and globally.’

‘Alec Johnson is a superb lawyer. Really knows his stuff, while giving the impression of always being available and on hand to address urgent issues.’

Key clients

Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco)

Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma’aden)

National Water Company (NWC)s

Water & Electricity Company (WEC)

King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre

National Commercial Bank (NCB)

DP World

Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC)

USAID / Ministry of Water and Irrigation of Jordan

Arabian Centres Company

Fawaz Abdulaziz Al Hokair Co.

Work highlights

  • Advised Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma’aden) in connection with the conversion of project loans to Ma’aden Rolling Company (MRC), a joint venture between Ma’aden and Alcoa Corporation, into new shares in Ma’aden, and the associated restructuring of MRC.
  • Advising Water & Electricity Company in connection with three greenfield water and wastewater treatment plant PPPs: the Dammam Sewage Treatment Plant PPP (which reached financial close in May 2020); the Jeddah Sewage Treatment Plant PPP, and the Taif Water Field Project Sewage Treatment Plant PPP.
  • Advising Saudi Aramco in connection with the multimillion-dollar Jazan Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) project.

Alshahrani Almansour (in collaboration with DLA Piper)

Alshahrani Almansour (in collaboration with DLA Piper) has a broad client base that consists of both borrowers and lenders. The practice has a strong understanding of conventional and Islamic finance, where the team advises on a range of transactions including acquisition finance, project finance, bank lending, and derivatives. Paul Latto has a broad practice and is recommended alongside Dubai-based energy projects specialist Keith Bullen who has extensive project finance experience in Saudi Arabia.

Practice head(s):

Paul Latto; Trevor Butcher

Other key lawyers:

Keith Bullen

Derayah LLPC – Saudilegal

Derayah LLPC – Saudilegal handles project finance and banking mandates with particular emphasis on cross-border project finance transactions. The team's expertise ranges from desalination plants to sewage treatment plants. Practice head Ali Abedi specialises in asset and project finance, and cross-border joint ventures.

Practice head(s):

Ali Abedi

Key clients

Marubeni Corporation

Abu Dhabi National Energy Company

Orascom

Metito

ACWA Power

Marafiq

Work highlights

  • Advising Marubeni Corporation and the UAE-based Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) on their bid for the planned Marjan cogeneration independent steam and power plant (ISPP) and Tanajib desalination plant.
  • Advised the consortium that Saudi Arabia’s Water & Electricity Company (“WEC”) selected as preferred bidder for the planned Dammam West independent sewage treatment plant (ISTP).
  • Advising ACWA Power as it leads a consortium with Saudi Brothers Commercial Company (SBCC), in its successful signing of senior financing and hedging agreements for the SR2.625bn($700m) Rabigh-3 IWP.

Law Firm of Hassan Mahassni In association with Dechert LLP

Law Firm of Hassan Mahassni In association with Dechert LLP is heavily involved in project finance and advises clients on a broad range of work from thermal energy storage systems and solar projects, to water and power projects. Senior legal consultant Atif Mulla has a broad banking and finance practice with a focus on engineering and construction, infrastructure, project finance and shipping.

Practice head(s):

Atif Mulla

Key clients

NBK Capital

ACWA Power

Ziraat Bank

Work highlights

  • Acted for NBK Capital in its multimillion-dollar divestiture from a prominent Saudi Arabian restaurant chain.
  • Acted for ACWA Power in the bidding of the Noor Midelt-1 Solar Power Project.
  • Advising Ziraat Bank on various matters including drafting their loan facility transaction documents for use in the Saudi retail and institutional banking markets.

King & Spalding in Affiliation With the Law Office of Mohammad Al-Ammar

King & Spalding in Affiliation With the Law Office of Mohammad Al-Ammar advises Saudi and foreign lenders, borrowers and sponsors in conventional and Shari'ah-compliant transactions. The practice has a broad range of expertise from acquisition finance and construction finance, to restructuring and re-financings. Jawad I. Ali heads the practice alongside Zaid Al-Farisi, who focuses exclusively on banking and finance, advising clients on conventional and Islamic finance matters. Dubai-based Nabil Issa is recommended for Shariah-compliant investment fund structures and capital markets transactions.

Practice head(s):

Jawad I. Ali; Zaid H. Al-Farisi

Other key lawyers:

Nabil Issa

Testimonials

‘As a client in North America, King & Spalding LLP assists us to understand the legal process in the Middle East. Our counsel, Nabil Issa explains the local laws in clear language, outlining the processes we need to follow in order to accomplish our tasks. Instructions are always provided in an articulate knowledgeable manner. ’

Key clients

The National Commercial Bank (AlAhli Bank)

Arab National Bank

Samba Financial Group

Jabal Omar Development Company

Riyad Bank

Emirates NBD Bank PJSC

SAIMCO

Gulf International Bank

JPMorgan

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB)

Mohammed Al-Ghamdi Law Firm in association with Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

Mohammed Al-Ghamdi Law Firm in association with Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP has been actively involved in assisting Saudi and international banks with cross-border transactions. The practice showcases particular expertise in Islamic finance and advises on a broad range of Shari'ah-compliant products. Robin Balmer has a particular focus on asset finance, project finance, property finance and Shari'ah-compliant transactions.

Practice head(s):

Robin Balmer

Key clients

Samba Financial Group

The Saudi British Bank

HSBC Saudi Arabia Limited

Alawwal Bank

Banque Saudi Fransi

Al Rajhi Bank

Standard Chartered Bank

MUFG Bank, Ltd.

BNP Paribas

The Islamic Development Bank (IsDB)/ The Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD)

Work highlights

  • Acting for Alinma Bank and Bank Al Bilad on the SAR 1,625,000,000 project financing to Khair Inorganic Chemical Industries Company.
  • Acting for NCB as the lender on the Shari’ah-compliant project financing of a 300,000 m3/day sewage treatment plant being developed by Marafiq, Amwal and Veolia.
  • Acted for Al Rajhi Bank on the limited recourse receivables backed murabaha financing of United Electronics Company (EXTRA).

Al Tamimi & Company

Al Tamimi & Company handles a wide range of banking and finance, project finance and aviation finance mandates across the region. The team advise clients on both conventional and Islamic financings and financial regulatory mandates. Practice head Jody Waugh counts regulators, banks and other financial institutions as his main clients. Rafiq Jaffer has a strong background in banking and finance, as well as debt capital markets.

Practice head(s):

Jody Waugh

Other key lawyers:

Rafiq Jaffer

Law Office of Mohanned bin Saud Al-Rasheed in association with Baker Botts L.L.P.

Law Office of Mohanned bin Saud Al-Rasheed in association with Baker Botts L.L.P. has significant experience advising on matters concerning corporate finance, real estate finance and project finance. Practice head Stephen Matthews splits his time between Dubai and Riyadh and advises clients on banking and finance and global investment matters. Shadi Haroon is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Matthews

Other key lawyers:

Shadi Haroon

Key clients

The Saudi Investment Bank (SAIB)

Derayah Financial

Work highlights

  • Assisting McDermott on the Saudi Arabian elements of a world-wide secured syndicated financing led by Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank.

The Law Firm of Wael A. Alissa in association with Dentons

The Law Firm of Wael A. Alissa in association with Dentons is skilled in handling a wide range of work including project finance, corporate and Islamic finance, asset finance, real estate finance, insolvency, restructuring and debt capital markets. The project finance work includes power, water and infrastructure PPP projects. Managing partner Mahmoud Abdel-Baky heads the practice.

Practice head(s):

Mahmoud Abdel-Baky

Key clients

The National Commercial Bank (NCB)

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

HSBC Saudi Arabia

Samba Financial Group

Standard Chartered Bank

The Commercial International Bank (CIB)

Ministry of Finance – Saudi Arabia

Work highlights

  • Advising NCB on an Ijara financing to Swicorp Wabel REIT Fund for the purpose of financing the purchase by Swicorp Wabel REIT Fund of additional properties.
  • Advising lenders across the region (UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait) on a $250m term and revolving facilities to Aujan Coca Cola Beverages Company.
  • Advising the Ministry of Finance in a portfolio of financing documents related to its Special Support Program and its Project Support Fund in Saudi Arabia.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP has a wide client offering and handles matters from Islamic finance and asset finance, to banking-related regulatory matters. Practice head Adil Hussain is particularly experienced in Islamic finance. Glenn Lovell and Abdulaziz Al-Bosaily are also noted.

Practice head(s):

Adil Hussain

Other key lawyers:

Glenn Lovell; Abdulaziz Al-Bosaily

Zamakhchary & Co.

Zamakhchary & Co. in agreement with Linklaters has strength in handling matters on high grade syndicated finance, acquisition finance, real estate and project development finance and structured finance, with Islamic finance overlaying all these areas. Riyadh-based Omar El Sayed has particular expertise in syndicated loans and Islamic financing. Kieron Zaman specialises in international banking transactions. Sarosh Mewawalla is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Omar El Sayed; Kieron Zaman; Sarosh Mewawalla; Andrew Jennens; Jonathan Fried; Martin Creek; Sarah Gonem

Key clients

Al Ahli REIT

Alinma Bank

Arab National Bank

Banque Saudi Fransi

BNP Paribas

Citibank

Citibank NA

Dekabank Deutsche Girozentrale

Deutsche Bank

Dubai Islamic Bank

Emirates NBD

Engie

Ezdan Holding Group Q.S.C

Farabi Petrochemicals Company

First Abu Dhabi Bank PJSC

GEMS Education

Goldman Sachs

Government of the Emirate of Sharjah

Government of the Sultanate of Oman

HSBC Middle East Limited

Integrated Telecoms Company

Islamic Development Bank (together with Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector)

JBIC

KfW

Morgan Stanley

Qatar Islamic Bank

Qatar National Bank

Riyadh Bank

Samba Bank

Saudi British Bank

Saudi Electricity Company

Saudi Hollandi Bank

Saudi Railway Organisation

Savola

Standard Chartered Bank

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation

The National Commercial Bank

The Saudi British Bank

Vision Invest

Xenel Group

Work highlights

  • Advised the Saudi Investment Recycling Company (SIRC) on the acquisition financing of Global Environmental Management Services (GEMS) from a consortium of investors comprising Jadwa Investment, Fajr Capital and Ashmore.
  • Advised the Managers on the issuance by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia acting through the Ministry of Finance.
  • Advised the financiers on the ground-breaking triple tranche high yield, conventional and Islamic financings to Advanced Energy Systems, totalling in excess of $750m in commitments.