‘Stronger than ever’ Fenwick Elliott announces Qatar expansion

Internal appointments and move online follow major contract awards with ‘top tier’ Saudi Arabian contractors and clients in 2020

Patrick Stone, Managing Partner United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Construction and energy law specialists, Fenwick Elliott, says it has emerged “stronger than ever from a challenging 2020” and is actively pursuing expansion opportunities across the MENA.

To that end, the firm is planning to add Qatar to a list of active Middle East markets including the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Oman.

The planned expansion into Qatar this year will provide the new market with access to a high level of construction, infrastructure, engineering, and energy law expertise from one of the most renowned firms globally in the sector, said Fenwick Elliott.

The last 12 months have seen the firm rack up contract awards with top tier contractors and clients in Saudi Arabia and further expansion in the MENA Region should see the firm’s revenue grow by 20%.

“The Middle East’s forward-thinking vision and rapid action of getting operations under control and re-open after 2020’s lockdown and tight restrictions, as well as opening the borders with Qatar has allowed us to harness a huge opportunity and expand our services in the Middle East in this first quarter, which we believe will allow us to grow the company significantly in 2021,” said senior partner Simon Tolson.

Fenwick Elliott added in a statement that the the COVID-19 pandemic has driven the majority of business operations online in 2020. The firm explained that the opportunity to update its business model and technical capabilities have helped it to become a leading firm for digital operations and for the facilitation of digital hearings: “Embedding technology and online ways of working into their culture, Fenwick Elliott’s team now encompasses a dedicated partner and personnel focused on the implementation of digital technologies and resources such as text analytics and technology providers. This has allowed the specialist law firm to develop tailored solutions in respect of contract analysis, contract automation, matter analytics, and matter management that enhance its services and minimise costs to clients.”

To support the company’s planned expansion into Qatar and its continued growth in Saudi Arabia with alliance partners Hammad & Al-Mehdar, Fenwick Elliott has introduced a series structural changes and promotions at the start of 2021.

After joining the Dubai office as partner in 2019, Patrick Stone will lead the law firms’ operations as Managing Partner for the United Arab Emirates, operating out of Fenwick Elliott’s international office in Dubai.

“We see technology and law as an essential partnership for our business moving forward,” said Stone. “2020 brought an instant need for us to pivot the way the business was operating, which saw the majority of our meetings and hearings migrating to online, which in turn meant that we were able to continue servicing our clients whilst harnessing the growing technology services in the sector’’

Departing managing partner of the Dubai office, Ahmed Ibrahim, is moving on to become an independent arbitrator after his success in establishing Fenwick Elliott’s Dubai office in 2015.

“I am honoured and grateful to have worked with such a wonderful firm since we started our cooperation in 2013. I thank all my partners and colleagues and I am confident that Fenwick Elliott will continue its impressive growth in the region.” said Ibrahim.

Tolson commented: ‘’we thank Ahmed for his valuable contribution and wish him well on the international arbitration circuit’.’





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