Press Release

Morgan Lewis Enhances Investment Funds, Institutional Investor, and Middle East Capabilities by Launching in Abu Dhabi and Expanding in Washington, DC

Monday, February 11, 2019

ABU DHABI and WASHINGTON, DC, February 11, 2019: Morgan Lewis continues its focus on global depth of capabilities by adding a team of investment management, tax, and corporate lawyers in Washington, DC, and in Abu Dhabi, where the firm will open an office on March 1 as its 31st office worldwide, adding to the firm’s existing strengths in Dubai. All joining from the same global law firm, partner Courtney Nowell will lead a seven-lawyer, 10-person team in Washington, DC, and partner Bill Nash will lead an eight-lawyer, 21-person team in Abu Dhabi.

“Global depth is a chief priority for our firm and we are thrilled to add this elite team in several of our core areas of practice,” said Firm Chair Jami McKeon. “This talented and cohesive group allows us to build on the successes we’ve had in Dubai and augment our Middle East multi-practice offerings to sovereign and other institutional investors and global clients.”

In the Middle East, Morgan Lewis focuses on investment management (including private investment fund formation and fund investor representation), private equity, structured and Islamic finance, global direct investments, cross-border transactions, arbitration, sanctions, and investigations. Several members of the team joining Morgan Lewis began working together in 2000 and expanded their practice when Bill opened an Abu Dhabi office in 2008 for one of the first US firms in the market, while continuing to work closely with Courtney in the United States to represent sovereign wealth funds and other institutional investors with global needs.

Bill, who served as the office managing partner and coordinator of the Middle East/North Africa practice of his prior firm, represents institutional investors in their global investment activities, focusing on private investment funds, international transactions, and joint ventures. He also advises Middle East financial institutions on US anti-money laundering, sanctions, and know-your-customer laws and regulations.

In addition to Bill, the partners who will be resident in Abu Dhabi are Alishia Sullivan, who has lived in the United Arab Emirates for more than 10 years and represents institutional investors primarily in the Middle East in investments in private investment funds, including private equity, hedge, infrastructure, and real estate funds, and co-investments. Additionally, Mark Gilligan advises local and international clients on a variety of corporate and commercial transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, as well as the legislative and regulatory considerations and alternatives applicable when operating in the UAE and broader Middle East marketplace, and Jay Gladis provides experienced cross-border corporate transactional advice based on decades of service in the Middle East, Japan, and the United States. They will be joined by four associates.

“I know Bill well and have tremendous respect for him and his colleagues. We are now doubling down following our very successful launch in Dubai in 2013 by further strengthening our investment management and corporate practices with exceptional lawyers. Our new colleagues will be a perfect fit with our existing practice and will set the stage for further expansion of our practice and geographic reach,” said Ayman Khaleq, managing partner of Morgan Lewis’s Dubai office. “The synergies of Dubai and Abu Dhabi as financial centers in the UAE will solidify our Middle East practice, including outbound investments by clients in the region, and will give us additional insight in assessing current market terms and conditions that benefit our clients.”

The new team resident in Washington, DC, which will continue its close collaboration with the Abu Dhabi team, focuses on investment management, including advising private investment funds, public pension funds, and other institutional investors on investment transactions and tax structuring. Courtney, who led her prior firm’s sovereign and institutional investors’ practice, has represented institutional investors for more than 18 years with respect to their worldwide private fund investments and co-investments. She also advises investors on US corporate structuring, compliance, and governance issues.

In addition to Courtney, the partners who will be resident in Washington, DC, are Gregg Buksbaum, who led the prior firm’s private investment funds practice and spearheaded a multi-disciplinary group of lawyers advising US and non-US fund sponsors and institutional investors in a wide range of domestic and international investment fund and other business transactions. Additionally, Kathryn Hambrick is an investment management tax structuring lawyer who regularly advises institutional investors on structuring and participating in investment funds that make real estate and corporate securities investments in the United States, Europe, and Asia. They will be joined by four associates.

“Courtney and the DC team bring a tremendous skill set and, coupled with the additional investment funds capability in the Middle East, add significant depth to our already well integrated practice in the Middle East, United States, Europe, and Asia,” said Louis Singer, leader of Morgan Lewis’s investment management practice. “This team brings an extraordinary level of sophistication and experience to our cross-border funds practice that is very important to our clients who operate on a global basis.”