January 6, 2023
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP is significantly expanding in the Middle East, with the opening of an Abu Dhabi office in the Abu Dhabi Global Market and the hire of a seven-lawyer team in the United Arab Emirates.
The new team includes three of the leading partners in the Middle East: Renad Younes and Samuel Ogunlaja who will join the new Abu Dhabi office, and Jade Chu, who will be based in Dubai. Renad is one of the top-ranked lawyers in the region, recognized as a leading individual by Chambers for both M&A and Energy. She is the only lawyer listed in the Hall of Fame category for UAE Oil, Gas and Natural Resources in Legal 500 EMEA 2022.
The announcement closely follows news of the arrival of leading capital markets partner Marwan Elaraby to Gibson Dunn’s Dubai office last October. The firm also recently announced that it had promoted private equity lawyer Hanna Chalhoub and international arbitration lawyer Nooree Moola to its partnership in Dubai.
Commenting on the major expansion, Barbara Becker, Chair and Managing Partner of Gibson Dunn, said: “Gibson Dunn has had a presence in the Middle East for over four decades, and Abu Dhabi’s evolution into a global energy, finance and commerce center has led us to open our Abu Dhabi office. This is the latest exciting development for the firm in a region where we see tremendous opportunity and expect continued growth.”
“We are committed to continuing to broaden our work in the United Arab Emirates and wider Middle East, and are investing in this through the hire of additional best-in-class lawyers, as well as through the internal promotion of our outstanding talent.’’
Younes advises companies, financial institutions, and governments on international M&A transactions and project development. She is focused on the energy sector, including renewable energy and infrastructure, and has extensive experience in the upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors. She also has particular experience with structuring complex, regulated, and market-facing global joint ventures.
Chu advises corporates, government entities, sponsors, and financial institutions on corporate transactions, including domestic and cross-border public and private M&A, joint ventures, and equity capital markets transactions.
Ogunlaja focuses on project development and finance in the energy and infrastructure sectors. He advises sponsors, governments, government-owned entities, and financial institutions on a broad range of corporate matters, including greenfield and brownfield project development, M&A, carve-outs, restructurings, and capital market transactions in the Middle East and Africa regions.