Middle East

Morgan Lewis has a robust presence in the Middle East with two offices in the United Arab Emirates—Abu Dhabi and Dubai—that connect our clients operating out of or doing business in the region with our network of offices around the world, collaborating with colleagues in the United States, Europe, and Asia who have represented clients and acted on matters in the region.

Our team has the local knowledge and global experience to assist clients in solving a variety of business and legal issues, focusing on corporate transactional and commercial matters (including joint ventures and strategic alliances), investment management (including private investment fund formation and fund investor representation), private equity, venture capital, mergers and acquisitions, structured and Islamic finance, global direct investments, cross-border transactions and disputes, arbitration, sanctions, and investigations.

Our knowledge of the region’s distinct legal, regulatory, and business structures complements our ability to serve clients across service areas, industries, and jurisdictions. Most of our partners have practiced in the Middle East for more than 10 years, and our team includes lawyers fluent in Arabic, English, and French who are qualified to practice in civil and common law jurisdictions. We also maintain collaborative, long-standing relationships with local counsel in the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council as well as in countries located in the Levant, North Africa, and South Asia.

We advise a number of the region’s most significant sovereign and other investors on their global private equity and fund investments, particularly in the technology sector. We also represent private equity and venture capital firms on corporate and commercial transactions, including acquisitions, particularly in the technology, healthcare, retail, defense, energy, and education sectors. Additionally, our team advises lenders and borrowers on complex Islamic and conventional structured and project finance transactions, including those to fund significant infrastructure projects, from wind farms to hospitals.

We also represent global asset and fund managers on matters relating to marketing of securities in the region and fund formation matters in the Dubai International Financial Centre and Abu Dhabi Global Market. 

Additionally, we advise enterprising startups in the region to scale their businesses by helping them raise funds through private equity and venture capital investments, and we assist clients with their joint ventures and represent them in mergers and acquisitions, with deal values ranging from millions to multibillion dollar transactions.

Because the region’s vast wealth brings with it significant regulatory challenges, our team has acted on a number of high-profile sanctions, bribery, and other corporate investigations into allegations such as fraud and regulatory violations across multiple industries. 

We also handle complex, cross-border disputes, and have experience in all of the major regional arbitral institutions. We also collaborate with colleagues in the United Kingdom and globally to assist with arbitrations seated in other major international arbitration centers in Europe, Asia, and the Americas.