A&O, BLP, DLA make Aldar’s first panel

Aldar, the major Abu Dhabi-based developer of projects, including the ­Ferrari World Abu Dhabi theme park, has finalised its first panel.

Aldar has appointed advisers that are understood to include Allen & Overy (A&O), Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) and DLA Piper. A&O, which has advised the developer in
the past on Islamic and conventional fundraising, was appointed for corporate and finance work, BLP for areas including real estate, development and regulatory work, while DLA Piper has also advised on real estate in the past.

John Sipling, partner and head of BLP’s Abu Dhabi office, said informal relationships still dominate in Abu Dhabi, but that ­panels are becoming more commonplace.

“In all walks of life there’s a thrust towards professionalism [in Abu Dhabi],” he said. “[This panel] wouldn’t have looked out of place in London in terms of the transparency of the process.”

Aldar chief legal officer Richard Gray, a former real estate partner at Australian firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques, asked a total of 31 firms to pitch for places on the roster, with both local and international firms vying for inclusion.