Advisories eye Moroccan deals

Kettani Law Firm (KLF) is a major Moroccan business law firm founded in 1971 by Professor Azzedine Kettani who was admitted to practice as a lawyer in 1968 and is approved by the High Court of Justice of the Kingdom of Morocco. He was joined in 1992 – after internships in France and the US – by Nadia Kettani, who is the Head of the International Consulting Department while supervising some areas of the Litigation Department; and Rita Kettani in 1993, who is the Head of the Commercial Department, the Litigation Department and the Labour Law Department. The firm acts for banks and other financial institutions, international businesses, major public and private companies and government departments.

KLF covers the whole spectrum of financial and business activities, and is an acknowledged leader in the fields of corporate finance, banking, project finance, corporate and commercial law. Areas of particular expertise include stock exchange law, aviation law, telecommunications regulations, energy, tourism, labour law, intellectual property, audits and IPOs. Additionally, the firm has a great deal of experience in arbitration and litigation as well as handling all forms of commercial disputes.

International experience
KLF has handled a number of high profile projects for clients around the world. These include advising France Télécom as a potential buyer of Maroc Télécom, the national telecommunications operator, for $2.3bn; and Telefónica’s bid of $1.1bn for the acquisition of the second GSM line. The firm has also developed expertise in the energy industry field, including project finance of $1.6bn for Jorf Lasfar, and of $500m for a wind farm. The firm recently acted as adviser in the following cases: a major British company in the acquisition of the Moroccan state-owned tobacco company Régie des Tabacs for approximately €1.3bn; the merger between two major American computer companies; and the merger between two international confectionary companies.

KLF were the advisors to the international managers to the Morocco government for its non-guaranteed sovereign eurobond issue for €400m. KLF has handled a significant number of major M&A projects, some of which include the restructuring of HP and the acquisition by Coca-Cola of Moroccan companies. The substantial merger of the Moroccan refinery Samir with SCP was also handled by the firm. KLF has advised international bidders during the numerous privatisation bids in Morocco in different areas. KLF advised local banks for the financing of the acquisition by Altadis of 80 percent of Régie des Tabacs for €300m. KLF has also advised Lydec (a subsidiary of Suez) for the outsourcing of its pension scheme for €250m, €100m of which was through a limited recourse bond issue. KLF advised local banks for the financing of the acquisition by SPT (a subsidiary of Vivendi) of 16 percent of Maroc Telecom for €500m. KLF has advised Roche SA locally for the sale of its over-the-counter pharmaceutical business to Bayer. Transaction values worldwide are in the region of €2.4bn. KLF is currently advising large pharmaceutical companies including Novartis Pharma regarding the reorganisation of their business in Morocco.

KLF has also advised on the IPO of Maroc Telecom on the Casablanca stock exchange and the Paris stock exchange (Euronext) as counsel to Merrill Lynch and BNP Paribas (€800m), the upgrade of the Samir refinery as counsel to the banks (about $700m) and refinancing of Méditel’s international debt as counsel to the banks (about €600,000). Also, KLF advised local banks for the investment of Four Seasons in Morocco (€100m) and is currently advising developers on large tourist projects in Morocco.

KLF has also advised IFC in some of their recent investments in Morocco.

Energy and renewable energy
The firm has been present in the energy sector advising blue chip clients with regards to exploration of oil and gas and exploitation of hydrocarbon permits.

The firm has also assisted in the following large energy projects: Ain Beni Mathar (Thermal-solar energy plant), Jorf Lasfar (coal-fired plant), Koudia Al Beida (wind farm – Northern Morocco), Tarfaya (wind farm), Safi bid (coal-fired plant).

KLF has also advised Masen (the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy) regarding the solar power projects in Morocco.

For more information Tel: Nadia Kettani +212 522 43 89 00;

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Author: Travis Esquivel

Travis Esquivel is an engineer, passionate soccer player and full-time dad. He enjoys writing about innovation and technology from time to time.

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