Allen & Overy LLP

Banking & Finance Department

United Arab Emirates
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What the team is known for One of the foremost firms in the region, with deep experience in various aspects of commercial lending. Has an excellent reputation for project finance, with expertise in power, renewable energy and infrastructure. Also represents blue-chip clients, both domestic and international, in major restructuring and refinancing matters. Other areas of expertise include asset and Islamic finance. Noted for its ability to assist with transactions originating across the region, with particular expertise relating to Saudi Arabia, Oman and Qatar.

Strengths One of the firm's clients noted that "they have high-quality people and a very consistent approach."

Work highlights Acted for the lenders to the ACWA Power consortium regarding the approximately USD4.3 billion financing for the DEWA IV solar park project.

Notable practitioners

Anthony Traboulsi was based in the Doha office until its closure in 2019 and has acted on a large number of Qatar-related matters. His practice covers all aspects of corporate lending, with noteworthy expertise in real estate finance and debt restructuring.

Anzal Mohammed heads up Allen & Overy's global Islamic finance practice and is considered a market leader in his field. He is especially well known for handling sukuk issuances, and is also highly capable in murabaha and hybrid finance structures.

Bilal Ahmad is a well-regarded Islamic finance and debt capital markets practitioner who maintains a strong reputation when it comes to sukuk issuances. He represents major domestic and international companies and financial institutions, including development banks. He is also capable of acting for issuers.

Christian Saunders leads the banking practice in the region and is highly distinguished for his experience in restructuring and project finance. In the projects space he is best known for handling matters in the petrochemicals and infrastructure sectors. One client praised him as "excellent," noting that he "provides clear, commercial advice and is not afraid to take on difficult discussions."

Ian Ingram-Johnson possesses a formidable reputation for project finance, where he has experience assisting with matters in the power, oil and gas and infrastructure sectors. In these areas he is experienced representing sponsors, lenders and government entities. He is also widely recognised for his experience regarding projects in Saudi Arabia.

Julian Johansen is a prominent regulatory and project finance practitioner who until 2018 was based in Saudi Arabia, where he practised at Allen & Overy's Saudi affiliate, Khoshaim & Associates. Fluent in Arabic, he continues to advise construction companies and others on a variety of projects within the Kingdom.

Kyle Nevin is well recognised for advising sponsors and lenders on the financing for Omani oil and gas projects. He has recently assisted with both conventional and Islamic financings and is also well versed in the energy and infrastructure sectors. Clients praise him for being "technically brilliant and commercially astute."

Michael Diosi relocated to the London office during 2019 having previously practised in the UAE. He is widely experienced in project and structured finance, representing lenders, arrangers, sponsors and borrowers. One source acknowledged that he is "very active in many areas of banking," while another source praised him as "a phenomenal lawyer."

Samer Eido joined the Dubai team in summer 2019. Prior to his relocation, he was managing partner of the firm's now-closed Doha office. He has a wealth of experience regarding Qatar-related banking and finance matters, most significantly in leveraged finance, real estate finance and debt restructuring.