Overview

Clients say that "his experience and technical knowledge are incredibly impressive." - Chambers Global 2017

Truly an expert in M&A, business-oriented and highly responsive” - Legal 500

Tom Thraya is partner-in-charge of Mayer Brown's Dubai office, head of the firm's Middle East corporate and commercial team and a member of the Global Corporate & Securities practice. Tom has spent nearly a decade practicing in the United Arab Emirates and the Middle East region and spends a small portion of his time in the firm's Washington DC office.

Tom focuses his practice on the Middle East and has worked in the region for nearly a decade. He advises both private and public clients in the areas of cross-border and domestic mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, international and domestic joint ventures, private equity and global corporate reorganizations. He also advises clients on international and domestic commercial agreements, foreign direct investment, employment, including immigration matters, and compliance related advice and investigations, litigation/arbitration support and general corporate and commercial counseling. Tom also has an international geographic focus on the Middle East, with particular emphasis on Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Iraq. He is a fluent Arabic speaker and reader.

Tom was ranked by IFLR1000 as a Leading Attorney in the Middle East for 2019 and 2018 and was ranked by Chambers Global in 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014 for M&A/corporate matters (“his experience and technical knowledge are incredibly impressive” – Chambers Global 2017) and was recognized by Legal 500 as "truly an expert in M&A, business-oriented and highly responsive." Tom also received special mention by Chambers Global in 2014, 2013 and 2012 for Corporate/M&A in the UAE under the “Highly Regarded” category and as a “key contact partner for M&A work". Additionally, Tom was recognized by IFLR1000 in 2013, 2012 and 2011 and by Legal 500 for UAE for having "an impressive transactional record in 2011". Tom also received special mention in 2012 and 2011 by Chambers Global rankings for corporate/commercial in Qatar for having “excellent work product and very hands-on". Finally, Tom was also listed in the 2012 MENA Fund Manager Service Provider Power 50.

Spoken Languages

  • English
  • Arabic

Experience

  • Representing Caesars Entertainment Corporation in a joint venture/hotel management arrangement with Meraas for the development of two luxury hotels (including a Caesars Palace), a conference centre and a breach club at Bluewaters in Dubai (on-going)
  • Representing Underwriters Laboratories in a significant joint venture with GCC Labs (Saudi Arabia) for the creation of the largest renewables testing lab in the MENA region (on-going)
  • Representing a UAE based client in a significant joint venture in Saudi Arabia for the creation of the largest biofuel plant in the Kingdom (on-going)
  • Representing a large US client in a joint venture in connection with the operation of the first nuclear reactor in Abu Dhabi (on-going)
  • Representing a large US multinational in a strategic joint venture in Saudi Arabia (on-going; valued over $60,000,000)
  • Representing a large UK based reinsurance company in the acquisition of a target in run-off in the UAE (on-going)
  • Representing a Saudi Royal Family member in connection with three significant oil commodity transactions in North America (on-going; valued over $100,000,000)
  • Representing the largest Middle East bank in a strategic asset divestiture in Hong Kong (on-going)
  • Representing a global luxury brand in connection with the ratification of an arbitral award in Abu Dhabi (on-going)
  • Representing a large US defense firm in the creation of an energy services related offering in the UAE (on-going)
  • Representing the largest US printing company in a joint venture with the Ruler of Sharjah (on-going)
  • Representing DM Prevent in a joint venture with Al Sharq Hospital in Fujairah to establish the only diabetes wound clinic in the Middle East (on-going)
  • Representing a global professional services company on a significant government procurement transaction with the Governmental of Abu Dhabi (on-going).
  • Representing a global professional services company on the first BPO transaction in the Middle East (on-going).
  • Representing a global professional services company on three significant government procurement transactions with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (on-going).
  • Representing a large US based defense firm on its off-set obligations in the UAE (on-going; value in excess of USD 200 million).
  • Representing a UK publicly traded company in a significant joint venture with an African oil & gas company (on-going; value in excess of USD 100 million).
  • Representing the world’s largest security company in a significant joint venture in the UAE (on-going; value in excess of USD 25 million).
  • Representing a large UAE based catering company on the sale of a majority of its shares to a large UAE publicly traded company (value in excess of USD 70 million).
  • Representing private US investors in their acquisition of an equity stake in a UAE based aluminium smeltering plant (on-going; value in excess of USD 50 million).
  • Representing a leading UAE real estate developer on its acquisition of distressed real estate developments in Dubai (on-going; value in excess of USD 250 million).
  • Representing a leading UAE real estate developer on its joint development arrangement with a leading Dubai governmental developer (on-going; value in excess of USD 500 million).
  • Representing a leading UAE real estate developer on its sale and lease back transaction with a Bahraini based private equity firm for Dubai-based warehouses (on-going; value in excess of USD 250 million).
  • Representing a Saudi Royal Family member in the acquisition of an equity interest in a Spanish resort development (on-going; value in excess of USD 400 million).
  • Representing a US-based piping fabrication company in its acquisition of a UAE company (on-going; value in excess of USD 25 million).
  • Representing a US publicly traded company on its acquisition of a Saudi target (on-going; value in excess of USD 55 million).
  • Representing a leading UAE based e-commerce company on its acquisition of an Egyptian target (on-going; value in excess of USD 25 million).
  • Representing a large US based defense firm on its joint venture with AMMROC in Abu Dhabi (on-going; value in excess of USD 25 million).
  • Representing a European publicly traded global advertisement firm in the acquisition of a UAE target (on-going).
  • Representing a European luxury brand in the restructuring of its Qatari joint venture and operations (on-going).
  • Representing a large publicly traded company in the UAE in its more than $350 million acquisition of another publicly traded company in the UAE.
  • Representing a large UAE based IT systems company in its more than $500 million auction sale process.
  • Representing EQT in a more than $225 million private equity acquisition of a UAE target.
  • Representing the Dubai Crown Prince in a number of cross border transactions into the United States and Europe valued at more than $125 million.
  • Representing a US publicly traded company in its more than $105 million acquisition of a large UAE based manufacturing company.
  • Representing Tristar, Dutco and the Omani Investment Fund in a more than $60 million joint venture for the manufacture of antimony ores in Oman.
  • Representing the Binladen Group, Porr and HBK in a large construction consortium and joint venture in Qatar in connection with the more than $2.2 billion Qatar Integrated Railway Project.
  • Representing Lockheed Martin in the more than $450 million procurement of an air academy in Qatar.
  • Representing BR Foods in its more than $56 million acquisition of a significant interest in Federal Foods in the UAE.
  • Representing BR Foods in its more than $150 million joint venture with Al Nowais Investments for the construction and operation of a meat processing plant in the UAE.
  • Representing a large US based defense firm in the establishment of a more than $300 million joint venture in the UAE and the procurement of offset obligations.
  • Represented the Iraqi Oil Ministry in a more than $15 billion BOT transaction involving the construction of Iraq’s third oil pipeline.
  • Represented KEPCO in connection with its more than $20 billion award of the nuclear power plants in the UAE.
  • Represented Abercrombie & Fitch in significant joint ventures in the UAE and in Kuwait.
  • Represented Abraaj Capital in the acquisition of a controlling stake in a major Saudi Arabian air transportation and services company.
  • Represented Masdar Capital, a Mubadala Company, in a venture capital investment into a US-based early stage specialty chemicals company.
  • Represented Kaizen Development Consulting in a global joint venture with a US-based hospital construction company.
  • Represented Publicis Groupe in the acquisition of Flip Media in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and India.

Tom serves as key litigation support on large matters before UAE courts for global clients, including:

  • Representing a large Malaysia oil & gas quasi-governmental entity as defendant in an agency dispute in the UAE for more than $185 million.
  • Representing a large US defense contractor as defendant in an agency dispute in the UAE for a claim for more than $65 million.
  • Representing a large US defense contractor as defendant in a wrongful death claim in the UAE.
  • Representing a large Australian oil & gas services company as plaintiff in a breach of contract claim.
  • Representing a large US oil & gas company as defendant in a wrongful death claim in the UAE.
  • Representing a large Saudi investment company as plaintiff in a fraud case in the UAE.

Education

University of Michigan Law School, JD

University of Calgary, BA, with honors

Admissions

  • Emirate of Dubai
  • Illinois
  • Not admitted in the District of Columbia. Practicing under the supervision of firm principals.

Memberships

  • Muslim Bar Association of Chicago
  • American Bar Association
  • Arab-American Bar Association