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Nabarro boosts Middle East fee income as office prepares for Camerons merger

Nabarro has increased its Middle East fee income to around AED 7m (£1.65m) for 2015/16 in the firm’s loss-making Dubai office.

The firm launched the office in early 2014 with a practice focusing on construction and engineering under managing partner Terry Fleet.

After two years in charge, Fleet is set to return to fee earning while Sheffield-based construction and infrastructure partner Mark Rocca will take over the office.

The firm said Dubai had increased its turnover by more than 200% in a year. The office is losing money, according to the firm’s Middle East LLP accounts, with operating losses of around AED 6.1m, or around £1.34m.

Nabarro had increased its total turnover by around 3.5% in 2015/16, up to £130.4m.

The outpost has grown to nine fee earners, with four partners working out of Dubai, with the firm having recently added corporate partner Mohammed Majid to the office in March.

Nabarro is currently in talks to combine with CMS Cameron McKenna and Olswang early next year as part of a triple merger. The merged firm has an office overlap in the Middle East, where Camerons also has a Dubai office as well as further Middle East offices in Oman as well as an office in Iran that was launched at the start of this year.

Nabarro senior partner Ciaran Carvalho (pictured) said: ‘We have prioritised winning business and growing the team in this early phase and are building a solid client base across the region.’

CMS’s Middle East offices are under the Camerons LLP as part of its European network. The Dubai office is led by corporate partner John O’Connor, while the firm’s head of oil and gas Matthew Culver set up the office in 2012.

Carvalho added: ‘Mark and the team look forward to working with colleagues in the Dubai office of CMS as the firms move towards merger next year.’