One of the first global law firms to establish a presence in the Middle East, Shearman & Sterling has extensive regional experience and an integrated global network of offices providing top-tier legal services. We have represented clients on groundbreaking deals and precedent-setting projects that have led to the emergence of the region as a dynamic financial center. We have also represented clients on some of the most complex disputes arising out of construction and development projects, investments, acquisitions and joint ventures.
We provide exceptional service to both regionally based clients and foreign investors seeking opportunities in the Middle East, including multinational companies, government ministries, state-owned companies, banks, contractors, investment agencies and financial sponsors. These clients turn to us because of our distinguished record in M&A, project development, finance, financial regulation, capital markets, private equity and dispute resolution, as well as our deep experience in the construction, energy and infrastructure industries.
A pioneer in the field of financing in the region, we have advised on two of the largest project bond financings in the Middle East and on groundbreaking Shari’ah-compliant financings, such as the first power project in the Middle East that included financing from Islamic banks and the largest-ever oil and gas Islamic financing. Our track record also includes successfully representing Dow Chemical in an ICC arbitration arising from the failed joint venture with Petrochemical Industries of Kuwait, in which a $2.47 billion award was rendered in Dow’s favor — the largest commercial arbitration award ever.
In addition, we have worked closely with governments to draft new laws and regulations. We also worked with the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in 1971 to create the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), helping them establish a new era in Abu Dhabi’s economy. We established an office in Abu Dhabi in 1975 to assist our clients in transforming Abu Dhabi into one of the world’s most important energy centers. More recently, we have been advising Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) on its establishment as an international financial center in the United Arab Emirates and the UAE government on reforming its financial regulatory framework.
With the success of our longstanding presence in Abu Dhabi, we opened an office in the Dubai International Financial Centre in 2015. From our hubs in the UAE, we continue to represent clients on some of the region’s largest projects, premium domestic and foreign investment transactions, and major international arbitrations.
The economies of the Middle East have continued to diversify in recent years, especially in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. To support the Kingdom and its domestic clients, Shearman & Sterling formed an association with Dr. Sultan Almasoud & Partners in Saudi Arabia in 2015 to create a top-tier Saudi law practice with offices in Riyadh, Jeddah and Al-Khobar. The association harnesses the firm’s global network with Dr. Sultan Almasoud & Partners’ Saudi experience to provide legal support on local and cross-border mergers and acquisitions, private equity, capital markets, corporate reorganizations, foreign investments, project development, dispute resolution and regulatory matters.