Best legal adviser: Dechert
Formed in July 2005, Dechert’s Islamic finance and investment practice has quickly established an impressive track record of transactions, which span the entire spectrum of Islamic finance from traditional trade finance techniques to pioneering derivative products. The practice currently operates out of offices in New York, Frankfurt and London, but Michael McMillen, who founded the unit, says Dechert is actively looking at adding an office in the Middle East.
Like many leading practitioners, McMillen believes that the future for Islamic finance lies in its integration into the conventional finance fold. “Our goal is to infuse cutting-edge legal technology and advancements into the Islamic finance field, where appropriate, thus better serving both our clients and the Islamic finance industry as a whole. This should allow Islamic finance to advance more rapidly in the development of a broader range of more sophisticated Islamic finance products that are more competitive with conventional products in a shorter time frame.” As a result of this approach Dechert has attracted a broad range of clients in the Middle East, Europe, Asia and the US, comprising Islamic financial institutions, conventional financial institutions, corporates, family investment companies, fund sponsors, private equity investors, multilaterals, and government agencies.