DWF continues Dubai expansion with finance partner hire from Pinsent Masons

UK firm makes seventh regional hire in past 12 months as it ramps up Middle East presence

DWF grows its Middle East footprint with latest Dubai hire Shutterstock

Top 20 UK firm DWF has strengthened its finance and restructuring practice in Dubai with the hire of former Pinsent Masons banking lawyer Matthew Dyson.

Dyson joins as a partner, bringing substantial experience in transactional banking, including corporate lending, real estate finance and acquisition finance, both conventional and Sharia-compliant.

His expertise extends to advising on distressed debt scenarios, ranging from consensual restructures to formal processes like administration and liquidation. He departs Pinsent Masons after nine years, having trained and qualified at the firm, moving to Dubai as a senior associate in 2017.

Iain Shurwood, global head of finance and restructuring at DWF, said: “Matthew will play a key role in developing our finance and restructuring offering, including through his expertise in Islamic finance and the distressed debt space.”

Shurwood added: “Matthew has an outstanding reputation and on-the-ground market knowledge, which will further position DWF to meet the evolving needs of our clients in the region and maintain a competitive edge.”

Dyson’s move follows other finance-related hires in the region, with Allen & Overy hiring Freshfields’ regional head of finance Hanis Meyer Hanif this week, who also has similar restructuring credentials.  

The strategic move is part of DWF’s expansion in the Middle East, with Dyson being the seventh partner added to the Dubai office in the past year.

Other additions include hires in financial services regulation, insurance and construction dispute resolution, reflecting DWF’s commitment to tapping into Dubai’s dynamic legal talent pool and enhancing its market presence.

Those feature financial services in-house counsel Bhavesh Dattani, who joined from BACB plc in January last year, while three insurance partners – Victoria Clucas and Bill Evans, then Adam Pryor – joined from Kennedys and Clyde & Co respectively. DWF also hired Paul Suckling and Oliver Dupenois, both dispute specialists, from local firm Horizons & Co.

James Fox, DWF’s Dubai managing partner, said: “This latest senior hire in Dubai further builds on our expansion over the past 12 months. Matthew adds to our existing contentious restructuring expertise and means that our combined team has acted on many of the major restructurings in the region over the past five years.”

Law firm lateral hiring has seen continued momentum in Dubai so far this year, with CMS hiring James Abbott from Clifford Chance earlier in the week.

Abbott left the UK Magic Circle firm after 14 years, having led its Middle East disputes practice for more than six of them. He previously worked at Stephenson Harwood.

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