Gibson Dunn adds corporate partner to London and Dubai offices


Author: BI-ME staff
Source: BI-ME
Published: 04 February 2008
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UAE. Law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher announced that Mitri Najjar has joined the firm as partner and will split his time between the firm’s London and Dubai offices. Formerly a partner with Dewey & LeBoeuf, Najjar practices corporate and finance law, with an emphasis on cross-border transactions.

“Mitri is well known to us and is very respected throughout the Gulf region. He is an outstanding lawyer, who will provide key support to our recently opened Dubai office and play an important role in achieving our long-term initiatives for the Middle East,” said Ken Doran, Managing Partner of Gibson Dunn. “Mitri’s transactional practice is very complementary to our own focus for the Gulf Region.”

“Mitri has 25 years of experience working on transactions involving Middle Eastern and Gulf countries. His contacts and his ability to speak Arabic fluently will be a tremendous benefit to our clients,” said Peter Baumbush, who leads Gibson Dunn’s Dubai office.

“Combining my practice with Gibson Dunn’s existing Middle Eastern experience makes sense. Gibson Dunn has an extremely strong platform in this region,” said Najjar. “The region is experiencing a tremendous economic boom, and I look forward to being a part of the growth.”

Mitri Najjar advises a broad range of clients in the Gulf region on international transactions and investments, as well as European and US companies conducting business in the region. His clients include prominent individuals and families from Middle Eastern and Gulf countries.

Gibson Dunn lawyers have been involved in numerous Islamic finance transactions, and have regularly worked with Sharia scholars to develop Sharia compliant investment structures. For example, Gibson Dunn lawyers worked with Sharia scholars to develop the Ijara lease structure which subsequently became the model for Sharia compliant leveraged real estate ownership in the US. The firm advised on the design and implementation of the first Sharia compliant leveraged private equity transaction in France; and the firm has also helped structure Sharia compliant investments in leveraged private equity transactions in other European countries and the United States.

The firm has also provided advice to many Middle Eastern financial institutions, including Islamic institutions, regarding the regulations applicable to such institutions, including anti-money-laundering regulations, and has represented many such institutions with respect to establishing and operating affiliates in Europe and the US.

Other areas of the firm’s commercial practice include advising on infrastructure development, financing, construction and operation; banking and finance; foreign investment; mergers and acquisitions; joint ventures; private equity transactions and fund formation; real estate; distributorship/agency agreements; offset investment ventures; defence contracts; tax; and oil and gas, including negotiation and preparation of exploration and development, royalty and production agreements, petrochemical joint ventures, pipeline contracts and major oil rights privatisation issues.

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