King & Spalding is set to launch in Abu Dhabi, having recently been granted official approval for the launch, and is making a wave of hires across its offices in the Gulf.
The recruitment offensive, which comes at the expense of Appleby, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Norton Rose, highlights the growing number of US firms looking to establish themselves in a region where many UK firms are far more established.
Project finance specialist Michael?Dunphy?will commence work in Riyadh at the beginning of April at the office of Mohammad Al-Ammar – King & Spalding’s local partner.
He joins from the 13-lawyer Bahrain office of Norton Rose, where he was an associate.
Dunphy built up experience advising clients in Saudi Arabia’s eastern province, a mainstay of Norton Rose’s Bahrain business.
Another Norton Rose associate in Bahrain, Adil Hussain, will also leave the firm for a general counsel position at Gatehouse Capital in London.
Meanwhile,?King?& Spalding’s Dubai offering will bring in Jonathan Law from Appleby in the Cayman Islands, where he is a senior associate in the funds team, and Elias Chedid, a corporate senior associate from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in Paris. They will arrive in April and May respectively. Both lawyers will join as counsel – a role situated between the level of associate and partner.