DUBAI – In a move that reflects the firm’s continued investment into the Middle East, global law firm Reed Smith today announced that Mahmoud Awad will be joining the firm as a partner in its Commercial Disputes (EME) Group.  Mahmoud will be based in the firm’s Dubai and Abu Dhabi offices.

Following on the recent addition of Sachin Kerur, Michelle Nelson and Shourav Lahiri in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, Mahmoud’s arrival exemplifies a strategic push by Reed Smith to enhance its global offering while boosting its construction, energy and natural resources, and international arbitration capabilities in the region.

Joining from Hadef & Partners and recognised by Legal 500 as a Recommended Lawyer in the category of Arbitration and International Litigation, Mahmoud specialises in complex commercial and corporate disputes, often with multi-jurisdictional implications. He has represented a diverse range of clients, including Fortune 500 companies, multi-national corporations and government authorities. He is also a member of the American Bar Association and is admitted to the New York State Bar as well as the New Jersey State Bar.

Peter Hardy, head of Reed Smith's Europe and Middle East commercial disputes group, said: “I am thrilled that Mahmoud is joining us, he will make a great addition to our Commercial Disputes (EME) Group. His broad range of expertise will expand our disputes platform and client reach in the region, as well as strengthening our London and ME disputes connection. Clients operating globally have disputes and commercial risk with potentially global consequences; with Mahmoud joining us, our ability to deliver a unified global disputes response has become stronger.”

In addition to Mahmoud’s appointment, Waseem Khokhar has joined the firm as a senior consultant in the firm’s Commercial Disputes (EME) Group.  He is also based in the firm’s Abu Dhabi and Dubai offices. Waseem has 25 years of legal experience in the UK and across the Gulf region, most recently as managing partner of DWF’s Middle East practice.   He has significant experience in the regulatory investigations field, including disputes, complex tax investigations and investigations. Waseem also works extensively across the region in the government and regulator sector.  This includes work on major transformation projects and advising MNCs. 

Sachin Kerur, head of the Middle East region for Reed Smith, commented: “Reed Smith has a long-held commitment to the Middle East.  Mahmoud and Waseem are very highly regarded and we are delighted that they have joined us to deepen our platform across the region and to boost our commercial disputes, investigations and regional regulatory practices.”

Tamara Box, managing partner, EMEA, said: “Between Sachin, Michelle, Shourav, and now Mahmoud and Waseem – as well as our existing roster of highly qualified lawyers in Abu Dhabi and Dubai – we are sending a clear message to the market that we are not only determined to continue growing in the region, but that we are also attracting top talent who bring the skills and legal acumen that our clients demand.”

Reed Smith was one of the first international law firms to commit to building a presence in the United Arab Emirates. It’s Abu Dhabi and Dubai offices have become the hub of the firm’s practice in the Middle East, South and Central Asia, and Africa.