Abdulwahid is a UAE citizen and a partner in our Corporate and M&A practice.
Abdulwahid supports clients with mergers and acquisitions and a broad spectrum of corporate matters. Based in the Firm's UAE offices, he helps both domestic and international clients to achieve their business objectives, primarily within markets in the Middle East and North Africa.
His practice is focused on cross-border transactions, initial public offerings, corporate governance and commercial deals. He also offers clients the benefit of his significant track record in such varied areas as financial regulation, debt capital markets, banking and finance, project finance, real estate and litigation. He is also an active arbitrator under both the ICC and Dubai International Arbitration Center Rules. This unusual breadth of experience enables Abdulwahid to provide comprehensive legal advice across many of the Firm's core practice areas.
Before joining White & Case in 2012, he was a partner of the largest local UAE law firm in Dubai, and a former managing partner of their associated Qatar office. He was also the Group Chief Legal Officer of Dubai World, a prominent and active Dubai-based sovereign wealth fund. On the industry side, Abdulwahid has been involved in a number of senior strategic commercial roles in the retail, natural resources and finance sectors.
This wide-ranging legal and commercial experience has given Abdulwahid a thorough grasp of the business environment within the United Arab Emirates, and has earned him a reputation as a trusted advisor within the local business community.
Representative transactions include advising:
Mergers & Acquisitions
- Masdar, the Abu Dhabi-owned energy company, on its joint venture with Infinity Energy, Egypt's leading renewable energy developer, to develop utility-scale and distributed solar energy and wind power projects in Egypt and Africa
- Etisalat on it's acquisition of Help AG a leading UAE-based business that provides cyber security solutions to major governmental and financial institutions in the UAE
- Blue Horizon Advisors, an investment management firm in London and the UAE, on setting up of the initial structure including trusts to hold different classes of assets, and ancillary running of routine structural changes (e.g. change of directors, or amending reserved matters, transfers into the structure)
- Facebook regarding the potential expansion of Instagram shopping.
- UAE Exchange on the acquisition of a majority stake in a Fintech company in Saudi Arabia
- Emirates Investment Authority on its AED2.3bn acquisition of a 10% stake held by Mubadala Development Company in Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (Du), structured as an off-market trade on the Dubai Financial Market.
- The heirs of Abdul Latif Ibrahim Galadari in connection with their buyout of the remaining shareholders (the Investment Corporation of Dubai and the heirs of Abdul Rahim Ibrahim Galadari) in the Galadari Brothers group.
- The Kuwait Food Company (Americana Group) on its divestment of shares in Gulfa Water (a manufacturer of bottled water products in the UAE) to private Emirati investors as an off-market exchange on the Dubai Financial Market.
- A syndicate of banks including Barclays, J.P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs as Joint Global Coordinators, and BofA Merrill Lynch, EFG-Hermes and Numis as Joint Bookrunners, on Finablr PLC's initial public offering and listing on the Premium Segment of the London Stock Exchange. Finablr's market capitalization at the commencement of conditional dealings was approximately £1.23 billion
- International Holding Company, and ADX listed company, on its business merger with PAL Cooling.
- Emirates NBD Capital Limited and EFG-Hermes UAE Limited on the initial public offering of shares of ENBD REIT (CEIC) Limited (ENBD REIT) and its listing on Nasdaq Dubai. ENBD REIT.
- The Joint lead managers on the US$350 million IPO of Amanat Holdings on the Dubai Financial Market.
- A listed Middle East financial services entity in relation to a de-listing and subsequent winding up, as well as managing the relationship with the relevant regulatory bodies
- Etisalat and Noor Bank on the launch of a Dirham-denominated digital payment services company in the UAE and regulated by the UAE Central Bank.
- Etisalat in connection with the implementation of Federal Decree by Law No. 3 and the subsequent changes to its constitutional documents and ownership structure to permit foreign ownership.
- An expert witness on behalf of Deutsche Trustee Company Limited (the ‘Delegate') in the English High Court on matters of Islamic finance and the UAE Civil Code in relation to the bond program of Dana Gas PJSC.
- Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) in connection with matters of UAE and Dubai laws in the form of expert opinion and as UAE law expert at trial in proceedings between Plantation Holdings (FZ) LLC and DIB before the Commercial Court in England.
- Conduct and supervise internal investigations for an insurance company in the UAE in relation to management breaches and violations.
- A quasi government entity with respect to the following: (a) ad hoc construction advice; (b) claims advice related to delay and disruption arising out of construction works; (c) calling of performance / retention guarantees; and (d) formulation of claims.
- DP World on the negotiation of a 30-year concession to re-furbish, expand, operate and transfer the Jeddah South Container Terminal in Jeddah Islamic Port.