Egypt and Arabophone Africa
Our Arabophone North Africa practice provides legal advice across Egypt, Libya and Sudan.
Our dedicated Arabophone North Africa Group is based in our offices in the Middle East and consists of lawyers fluent in English, Arabic and French.
Genuine on the ground experience in Egypt
Our team is well versed in the Egyptian business landscape having advised both local Egyptian clients as well as international clients on their interests in Egypt. Our solid track record across a wide range of sectors and specialisms and excellent relationships with leading Egyptian professional advisers sees us appointed on the most complex and innovative deals in the country.
We have relevant experience in Egypt in a variety of industries (banking, energy and natural resources, infrastructure, private equity, telecoms) and across a full range of legal services (from project finance to capital markets, lending, private equity and corporate/M&A, dispute resolution):
- projects and energy: we have a strong track record advising on projects and energy deals, particularly in the renewable energy sector. Key highlights include advising a pan-African renewable energy generation platform on entry into a joint development agreement with a solar technology company in respect of the development of a proposed solar project and advising an international energy group on its bid for a 250MW wind project in Gabal El Zeit.
- banking and finance: our team has advised on a number of big-ticket loan facility deals in Egypt, such as advising the lenders (including Bank Audi and National Bank of Egypt) on a US$521 million syndicated financing for Egyptian Electricity Holding Company, a company owned by the Egyptian government.
- Corporate and M&A: we have considerable experience advising international banks on high profile deals in Egypt such as Citi on the sale of its consumer banking business in Egypt, Qatar National Bank on its acquisition of National Société Générale Bank and Ecobank Transnational amongst others.
- private equity: we advise global and regional private equity houses doing business in Egypt and the wider region. We recently advised Actis on the acquisition of a 21% stake in Integrated Diagnostics Holdings.
- dispute resolution: our team is currently busy representing a Kuwaiti investor in an ICSID claim for breaches of BIT arising out of a unilateral increase in the gas price and cancellation of free zone licence (resulting in an increase in tax to be paid) by the Egyptian Government.
- Advising European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a multilateral developmental investment bank, on a US$87 million syndicated loan to Infinity for Solar Energy and IB Vogt's two solar projects in Egypt.
- Advising the financiers European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) and Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), on the financing for six solar projects in Egypt. This is the largest portfolio projects being developed by the same sponsor group as part of the Egyptian Phase 2 FiT program, and will provide a total of 400MW of power.
- Advising across a range of renewable power projects in Egypt including:
- an international energy group on its bid for a 250MW wind project in Gabal El Zeit
- lenders in connection with the development and financing of three solar PV IPP projects
- Advising Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), a leading pan-African multilateral development finance institution and project developer, on its US$25 million investment in Egyptian petrochemicals company Carbon Holdings Ltd.
- Advising on a landmark Islamic Shari’a compliant financial package of around EGP1.8 billion extended to Al Sharkeya Sugar Manufacturing S.A.E (ASSM) for the construction of a sugar production facility in Al Sharkeya Governorate in Egypt – Infrastructure and Project Finance Deal of the Year, Islamic Finance News Awards 2015
- Advising Citi on the sale of its consumer banking business in Egypt to Commercial International Bank (CIB). The transaction entailed the transfer of approximately 900 full time consumer banking and contract employees, eight Citi branches and the ATM network in Egypt to CIB.
- Advising QNB on the largest financial institutions in the MENA region, on the acquisition of Société Générale’s 77.17% stake in National Société Générale Bank – Egypt (NSGB).
- Advising Actis on the US$102 million acquisition of a 30% stake in Edita Food industries, an Egyptian food business – North Africa Consumer Deal of the Year in the Private Equity Africa Awards 2014. We also advised on the subsequent IPO of Edita.
- Advising Actis on the acquisition of a 21% stake in Integrated Diagnostics Holdings, the largest fully-integrated private sector medical diagnostic services provider in Egypt, with operations in Egypt, Jordan and Sudan.
- Representing a Kuwaiti investor in an ICSID claim for breaches of BIT arising out of a unilateral increase in gas price and cancellation of free zone license (resulting in tax increase) by the Egyptian Government. Using investment protection arbitration expertise.
Awards and milestones
- Restructuring Deal of the Year 2015 – Advanced Energy Systems Company US$170 million
Restructuring – Islamic Finance News Awards
- Infrastructure & Project Finance Deal of the Year 2015 – Al Sharkiya Sugar Manufacturing Company financing – Islamic Finance News Awards
- North Africa Consumer Deal of the Year 2014 – Actis' investment in Edita Food Industries – Private Equity Africa Awards
- "This international powerhouse maintains a foothold in Libya by way of its Abu Dhabi and Dubai offices. Local expertise includes advice relating to sanctions, employment law, and oil and gas. Mohamed Hamra-Krouha is the key client contact."
General Business Law- Libya (Expertise Based Abroad) – Chambers Global 2017
- "This international giant has built up a team with notable Libyan experience. Particularly active from the Abu Dhabi and Dubai offices, the team has worked on oil and gas sector work, sanctions advice and employment law. Abu Dhabi-based contact Mohamed Hamra-Krouha has experience on projects across the Middle East."
General Business Law- Libya (Expertise Based Abroad) – Chambers Global 2016