DLA Kuwait, Bahrain head to quit

The office managing partner of DLA Piper’s Kuwait and Bahrain offices – Alex Saleh – is to leave the firm.

Alex Saleh

Alex Saleh

Saleh, who launched the Kuwaiti office in October 2008 through a joint venture with Al Wagayan Al Awadhi & Al Saif ( 13 October 2008) and the Bahraini office earlier this month (1 June 2008), has been replaced in the role by a Kuwaiti laywer – Abdulaziz Al Yaqout.

Al Yaqout was parachuted in to run both Kuwait and Bahrain from Cologne, where he was based since 2004 when he first established that German office.

This news follows DLA Piper’s move between three different local sponsors in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in the course of six months (26 January 2009) and two rounds of job cuts at the firm’s offices in the region (18 June 2009).

A Kuwait-based lawyer at another firm said: “This is just a replay of Riyadh and other jurisdictions…none of the resources [Saleh] thought he’d get to bolster a local practice happened.”

The Kuwait office currently has 11 lawyers, according to DLA Piper.

David Church regional managing partner said: “Abdul Aziz has the perfect combination of local knowledge, energy and management skills to take our Kuwaiti office forward, building on our existing presence following the creation of the joint venture last year.”