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ACC Grows in EMEA Region with Establishment of ACC Middle East

Posted: May 15, 2014

DUBAI (May 15, 2014) –– The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC), a global bar association representing more than 33,000 in-house counsel, and Corporate Counsel Middle East (CCME), the leading association of corporate counsel in the Middle East, today announced the establishment of ACC Middle East. ACC Middle East will serve more than 150 in-house lawyers representing various industries, including energy, management, telecommunications and oil and natural gas, among others.

ACC Middle East will provide programs on corporate law, compliance and ethics, governance, arbitration and litigation and business practices in the UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. Additionally, ACC Middle East will now offer its members access to enhanced online resources and connections to corporate counsel worldwide.

"The Middle East is a vital global business hub for many industries and the establishment of ACC Middle East demonstrates the importance of this critical region to global business operations and decision makers," said Veta T. Richardson, president and chief executive officer of ACC. "ACC understands the growing strategic role that the Middle East plays in the global economy, both in foreign direct investment by multinational business in the region, as well as the importance of outbound investment from the Middle East around the world."

Leaders of ACC Middle East represent a variety of multinational corporations in the region and include:

  • President - Elias Hayek, Vice President, Legal, Europe, Africa and Middle East (EAME) Division for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
  • Board Member - Franklin Breckenridge, Contracts Department, Parsons MENA.
  • Board Member - Anneliese Reinhold, General Counsel & Senior Vice President - Regulatory Affairs for du.
  • Board Member - Tamer Nasser, Director, Legal & Compliance Middle East Region for Baker Hughes, Inc.
  • Board Member and Qatar Representative - Ziad Zarka, General Counsel for Qatar Chemical and Petrochemical Marketing and Distribution Group (Muntajat) QJSC.
  • Board Member and Bahrain Representative - Afshan Akhtar, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary for Aluminum Bahrain.
  • Board Member and Kuwait Representative - Robert Drolet, Senior Vice President of Technology and Media for Kuwait Projects Company.
  • Board Member - Sana Belaid, Senior Corporate Counsel for Cisco Systems.

"ACC has established itself as the premier network for corporate lawyers around the world interested in advocacy, continuing legal education, peer-to-peer connections, leadership, resources and collaboration opportunities," said Elias Hayek, president, ACC Middle East and vice president, legal for the EAME division for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. "As president, my goal is to work with our board of directors to strengthen the network of in-house counsel in the Middle East and to ensure ACC Middle East develops tools for corporate counsel to manage dynamic and challenging issues that arise when doing business in the region."

In-house lawyers have identified anti-bribery, compliance, corporate governance and regulatory changes as key issues in the region at this time. These concerns are consistent with those ranked as pressing by the global in-house community. In fact, 65 percent of chief legal officers (CLOs) and general counsel in 41 countries, including Qatar and Saudi Arabia, identified these topics among their leading concerns, according to the ACC 2014 CLO Survey published earlier this year.

"As a corporate counsel operating in the Middle East, I look forward to ACC growth in the EMEA region as an opportunity to create new and meaningful connections with other in-house lawyers with similar goals. No doubt ACC Middle East will enjoy a fast growth of its membership base," said Iohann Le Frapper, ACC global board member and chief legal officer for Gulf Bridge International. "ACC Middle East will support needs of the international business community and of many in-house counsel while also offering strong local networks."

For more information, please visit www.acc.com/chapters/middleeast.

About ACC: The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) is a global bar association that promotes the common professional and business interests of in-house counsel who work for corporations, associations and other private-sector organizations through information, education, networking opportunities and advocacy initiatives. With more than 33,000 members employed by over 10,000 organizations, ACC connects its members to the people and resources necessary for both personal and professional growth. By in-house counsel, for in-house counsel.® For more information, visit www.acc.com and follow ACC on Twitter: http://twiter.com/ACCinhouse.

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