Islamic Finance

Latham & Watkins’ Islamic Finance Practice provides clients global coverage and an in-depth understanding of Islamic finance matters and principles.

Why Latham

An Innovative Approach

Latham’s global Islamic finance lawyers have extensive Islamic finance experience across the core practice areas of banking, project finance, capital markets, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions (M&A), investment funds, and dispute resolution. The firm's lawyers advise corporations, governments, banks, sponsors, export credit agencies, investment funds, and other investors on Shari’ah-compliant transactions in the Middle East, Europe, United States, and Asia.

Latham lawyers have a reputation for innovation and have been involved in the development of ground-breaking Islamic finance transactions globally. Recognized as preeminent practitioners in the Islamic finance field by leading directories, Latham's lawyers regularly participate and host Islamic finance workshops and conferences, and have authored articles and books on topical issues in Islamic finance. Most recently, Latham lawyers published The Sukuk Handbook: A Guide to Structuring Sukuk, and Latham’s Dubai and London-based partner, Craig Nethercott, co-edited and contributed to Islamic Finance Law and Practice, a practical and commercial guide to the fundamental principles of Islamic finance and their application to Islamic finance transactions, published by the Oxford University Press.

Expertise Across Borders

The practice has a broad geographic reach with experienced Islamic finance lawyers located in the Dubai, Riyadh, and other offices, including London, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, and Singapore.

Our Experience

Latham & Watkins' transactional experience includes structuring, documenting and advising on:

  • The key Islamic contracts of Murabaha, Modaraba, Tawarruq, Ijara, Wakala, Musharaka, Salam and Istisna
  • Shari’ah-compliant investment funds, including private equity, venture capital and real estate funds
  • Sukuks
  • M&A transactions involving Shari’ah-compliant vendors and targets
  • Project finance (either on a wholly Islamic, or multi-tranche, basis)
  • Shari’ah-compliant asset finance, including aviation and ship finance
  • Interbank treasury instruments for IFIs
  • Islamic mezzanine and structured finance
  • Tax issues relating to Islamic finance transactions
  • Restructuring and ‘amend-and-extends’ of Islamic facilities
  • Islamic transaction dispute resolution
  • Shari’ah-compliant structured finance and derivative products, including profit rate swaps

The firm's lawyers have been involved in a number of groundbreaking Islamic finance transactions, including:

  • Dana Gas PJSC, the largest independent oil and gas company in the UAE, in the restructuring of its US$1 billion Trust Certificates (sukuk al-mudarabah), the first restructuring of its kind in the Middle East
  • Saudi Electricity Company’s issuance of US$1 billion Sukuk Certificates due 2023 and US$1 billion Sukuk Certificates due 2043, the first international 30 year Sukuk issuance by any issuer
  • The US$4 billion State of Qatar Sukuk, the largest Sukuk for a sovereign issuer and the largest US-Dollar-denominated Sukuk issuance to date, awarded Qatar Deal of the Year by Islamic Finance news 2013
  • Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank PJSC’s perpetual and Basel III compliant tier 1 Sukuk issuance, awarded Mudaraba Deal of the Year 2013 and UAE Deal of the Year 2013 by Islamic Finance news and received an honorable mention by Asian-MENA Counsel
  • First Malaysian Ringgit Sukuk Programme established by a Saudi issuer
  • First-ever Shari’ah-compliant private equity fund domiciled in the Qatar Financial Centre
  • The US$1.25 billion Sukuk under the Government of Dubai’s US$5 billion Trust Certificate Issuance Programme
  • First unrated, non-sovereign public Mudaraba Sukuk issued by SIPCHEM in Saudi Arabia
  • The innovative airtime sale facility for Mobily and the SAR7.5 billion refinancing of this facility in 2012

Awards & Rankings

 
  • Latham Named Best Firm for Islamic Finance - September 27, 2016
  • Middle East Team Advises on Two Innovative Deals of the Year - October 16, 2014
  • Islamic Finance news Names Latham & Watkins the Leading Law Firm in Mergers & Acquisitions and Energy & Natural Resources - August 04, 2014
  • TMT Finance Names Latham & Watkins “Legal Adviser of the Year” for MENA - May 18, 2014
  • Asian-Mena Counsel Ranks Latham & Watkins #1 for Work on Stand-Out Deals - May 04, 2014

Islamic Finance News named Latham & Watkins the "Best Law Firm for Real Estate" in 2015, and The Banker awarded Latham "Middle East Islamic Finance Deal of the Year" for 2015.

Media Coverage

Rising Star: Latham & Watkins' Harjaskaran RaiGlobal 20: Latham & Watkins

News

Latham Advises on Saudi Arabia’s Debut 144A/Reg S Sukuk ProgrammeLatham Named Best Firm for Islamic FinanceFirm Participates in Leading Capital Markets Industry Conference in the GCC

Thought Leadership

The Sukuk Handbook: A Guide to Structuring Sukuk (Full Guide)Doing Business in the UAE Desire for Benchmarks to Drive Sovereign Sukuk Issuances Outside of Traditional Markets