King & Spalding hires Hogan Lovells' Middle East practice group leader in New York

Leading arbitration specialist spearheaded Hogan Lovells' Middle East practice group launch in 2020

Samaa Haridi

King & Spalding has hired Hogan Lovells’ Middle East practice group head as a disputes partner in New York. 

Samaa Haridi joins the Atlanta-based firm after almost seven years at Hogan Lovells in New York, where she was a partner in the transatlantic firm’s international dispute resolution group. She spearheaded the launch of the firm’s Middle East practice group in 2020 as part of a wider shakeup of the firm's organisational structure and leadership followng Miguel Zaldivar appointment as the firm’s CEO

Haridi, who also spent time working at Weil Gotshal & Manges and Crowell & Moring prior to joining Hogan Lovells in 2015, currently serves as co-chair of the International Court of Arbitration’s arbitration committee and vice president of the International Court of Arbitration. 

She arrives at King & Spalding with more than two decades of experience in international commercial and investment arbitrations, with a particular focus on disputes involving clients with business in the Middle East and emerging markets, the firm said. 

Andy Bayman, head of King & Spalding’s trial and disputes practice group, said Haridi’s connections in the Middle East will be of great value to the firm’s other practices and offices that focus on developing and taking on work in the region on top of providing a boost to the international arbitration team. 

“Maintaining a strong international arbitration team is a strategic priority, and Samaa’s hire will further strengthen our bench of senior-level talent in this critically important market,” he said. 

Edward Kehoe, co-head of King & Spalding’s international arbitration and litigation team, added Haridi’s “entrepreneurial spirit should prove invaluable for cultivating relationships with clients and colleagues”. 

With the inclusion of Haridi, King & Spalding’s New York office houses more than 100 partners, with 38 partners working in the trial and global disputes practice, according to the firm’s website

Some of the firm’s recent work in the Middle East includes its role in the landmark $2bn restructuring of Azmeel Contracting, one of Saudi Arabia’s largest builders. A team from King & Spalding is currently advising the company on the restructuring agreement, which is among the largest restructurings under insolvency legislation which came into force in 2018. 

King & Spalding expanded its trial and transactional capabilities on the East Coast last month with the launch of a Miami office, which the firm said would allow it to deepen its existing ties to the Sunshine State’s bustling legal market. 



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