Clyde & Co is to launch in Riyadh after forming an alliance with Islamic finance specialist Abdulaziz Al Bosaily.
Until June 2008 Al Bosaily had been DLA Piper’s sponsor in Saudi Arabia. The two-year-old relationship came to an end because of differing views on how to conduct business, sources said at the time.
Clydes head of Middle East Jonathan Silver said: “There’s a very strong alignment of values, approach and agreement over development plans [between Clydes and Al Bosaily]. “We’re already seeing the benefits of this relationship for our client-base.”
Clydes chief executive Peter Hassan added: “We’ve been looking at the region for some time, but we needed a lawyer who could add a new dimension to our team.”
The firm, which already has three offices in the Middle East - in Dubai, Doha and Abu Dhabi - had previously avoided Riyadh.
“We need to have the right people on the ground,” said Hassan. “We’re broadening the range of people we have in the Middle East and it’s less of a hardship if you’re an Arabic-speaking lawyer.”
Clydes hired DLA Piper Middle East partner Peter Hodgins for its Abu Dhabi office in March (The Lawyer, 16 March).