Middle East and Africa

Philip O’Riordan

Partner, Dubai


+971 4 384 4580

Main office

+ 971 4 384 4000
+ 971 4 384 4004

Phil has been in the region for over 10 years and is consistently ranked as a leading corporate/M&A lawyer by Chambers and Legal 500. Chambers Global describes him as ‘an emerging force with a strong commercial flair’ as well as being recognised for an “all round quality service”.

Phil is a member of Clyde & Co’s KSA board and has acted on a number of prominent M&A and joint venture transactions in the Kingdom.

Our breadth of expertise and sector knowledge means that we understand all aspects of a transaction ensuring the deal moves smoothly.  Our approach is energetic, decisive and clear.

  • Advising on the sale of Milestone Overseas Holdings Limited (METS). Phil led to the team that was appointed to structure, negotiate and implement the transaction in an auction sale process. METS is a leader in oil country tubular goods with operations in UAE, Oman and Iraq.
  • Advising Cummins Inc on the sale of 49% of the share capital of COE (a company operating in KSA).Cummins is a Fortune 500 company that manufactures and distributes engines, filtration and power generation products.
  • Advising on the sale of Millennium Offshore Services Superholdings LLC, a leading provider of large scale offshore jack up accommodation service vessels in the MENA and Asia-Pacific regions. The company is head quartered in the UAE with operations in Singapore, Australia, Qatar, Egypt and Timor-Leste. The transaction illustrates Clyde & Co’s in-depth knowledge and experience in M&A in the offshore/oil and gas services sector in the region.
  • Advising Thomson Reuters on the acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Zawya Limited (a leading on-line business intelligence platform in the MENA region). Phil led the team that was appointed to structure, negotiate and implement this transaction. Specialist corporate, TMT, IP and employment issues also had to be considered across a number of jurisdictions (including UAE, KSA and Lebanon).
  • Acting for Lamprell plc (listed on the London Stock Exchange) on its recent USD 366 million acquisition of Oslo stock exchange Listed Maritime Industrial Services Co. Ltd Inc – a public company takeover in part funded by a rights issue. Lamprell is a leading provider of specialist engineering services to the oil & gas & renewables industry. Both Lamprell’s and the target’s business are based primarily in the UAE and GCC region. Clyde & Co’s role included advice on the structuring of the transaction, the underwriting, acting on the local aspects of the acquisition and target due diligence.
  • Advising Select Group on its AED 3 billion (USD 816,000) joint venture relating to the development of the Marina Gate Residence project in Dubai. Clyde & Co played a pivotal role in structuring the transaction, carrying out the due diligence and drafting and negotiating the main joint venture and ancillary development agreements.
  • Advising ACWA Holdings on a USD 120 million disposal of 50% of its KSA piping and coatings divisions. This complex transaction included a subsequent joint venture with Welspun (a USD 3 billion group listed on BSE and NSE). ACWA is the largest private provider of water in KSA.
  • Advising Northern Region Cement company in connection with its SAR 900 million IPO on the Saudi Tadawul. Clyde & Co was appointed to structure, negotiate and implement this transaction.
  • Advising Saudi Hollandi Capital as sole underwriter in relation to the rights issue of Annam International Holding Company.
  • Advising Le Blanc International on the sale of its KSA interests to Al Babtain Power and Telecommunications (a company listed on the Saudi Stock Exchange – Tadawul). The unique deal structure involved a mixture of cash and shares and was described by HSBC Saudi Arabia as a “landmark transaction” involving the first instance of a publically listed Saudi corporate issuing equity as consideration to a foreign vendor.
  • Advising on the sale of Safar Gas and Oil Field Services to TWI. Safar provides specialist products and services to the oil & gas and mining industries across MENA and Central Asia. A range of cross border and local structuring issues had to be considered in this complex transaction.
  • Advising SCA (a company listed on the Swedish stock exchange and one of the world’s largest manufacturer/supplier of branded personal care products and consumer goods) on its joint venture with Nuqul Group, based in Jordan.  The deal involved simultaneous acquisition of the branded fempro business in Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and UAE, with due diligence on operations in Bahrain, Comoros Islands, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, UAE and Yemen.
  • Advising Emirates Airlines on its joint venture with Whitbread plc (the owner of the Premier Inn brand). Under this complex structure, the joint venture vehicle was granted rights across the GCC to own and operate Premier Inn Hotels. Phil led the team that was appointed to structure, negotiate and implement this transaction.
  • Advising Charles Taylor plc (a leading international provider of professional services to clients in the global insurance market) on the acquisition of 60% of Noble Inspection and Loss Adjustment Company in Saudi Arabia. The consideration was structured as a mixture of both cash and equity.
  • Advising Hyder Consulting plc on the acquisition of a majority stake in the industrial building division of SAK (a leading KSA based architectural and engineering firm). Hyder is a leading international design consultancy that has worked on some of the world’s most iconic landmarks including the Burj Khalifa, the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the new Berlin airport and Taiwan High Speed Railway.
  • Advising on numerous establishments and corporate structurings in the UAE, KSA and across the GCC region (with a specialist knowledge on construction and hospitality licensing).
  • Advising on a number of other confidential UAE joint ventures and M&A transactions, including the acquisition of a leading regional engineering business.
  • Advising issuers and sponsors on various fund raisings including the structuring and establishment of MENA real estate fund, Islamic compliant ship finance fund, Iraqi regeneration fund, MENA education fund and various MENA hotel/hospitality related funds.


  • Corporate

Relevant regions