As the Middle East market became more sophisticated, Clyde & Co said its vision has been to match clients' needs with an evolving regional footprint and strong specialist sector expertise. This balanced offering has ensured our continued growth since 1989 and allowed us to build the largest presence in the region of any international law firm 30 years later.
From 4 to 400
The firm's first office in the Middle East was Dubai, launched in 1989 by Jonathan Silver, senior partner for Clyde & Co in the Middle East, who says “We have had a tremendous 30 years. As the market became more sophisticated, our vision was to match our clients' needs with an evolving regional footprint and strong specialist sector expertise. This balanced offering has ensured our continued growth since 1989 and allowed us to build the largest presence in the region of any international law firm 30 years later.” What started as a small office with 4 people has become a multi office regional operation of over 400 employees and 5 offices. Located in the major commercial hubs of the region, Clyde & Co says it now has the largest presence and is one of the most experienced international law firms in the Middle East with over 48 partners and 400 staff, operating in Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the UAE, Doha in Qatar, Muscat in Oman and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia. Mirroring the growth of the region, Clyde & Co opened its second UAE office in 2004 in Abu Dhabi, expanded into Qatar in 2007 and moved into Saudi Arabia in 2009. The latest phase of Clyde & Co's growth in the region was the expansion in Oman in 2018, with the launch of an associated office in Muscat.
The firm has advised on some of the most high profile projects in the region, including Burj Khalifa, Dubai International Financial Centre, Burj al Arab, Nasdaq Dubai, all major airport and metro developments:, and has drafted landmark legislation and regulations across sectors and advised many of the leading education and healthcare providers in the region. Most recently, Clyde & Co has advised the DIFC Authority on its new employment regulation and advised various state-owned companies on several billion dollar-plus mega infrastructure projects across Saudi Arabia. The firm also launched the Clyde & Community programme in 2009 to promote corporate social responsibility and the non-profit sector in the region. Mark Blanksby, Partner and Chairman of the MEA Board, says “As a firm, we are excited about the prospects for the Middle East as it keeps developing thanks to projects such as Dubai's Expo 2020, Saudi's Vision 2030 initiatives and the FIFA 2022 World Cup in Doha.”