Mr. Sharif Fareed Akkad has extensive experience (over sixteen years) in corporate, commercial, franchise matters, real estate transactions litigation and Islamic finance. Sharif Akkad is one of the leading lawyers in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East with respects to franchising, distributorship, agencies and license agreements. To date, he has closed more than (250) franchise agreements, distributorship agreements and license agreements.
Mr. Akkad has worked on numerous franchise, distributorship and license agreements including but not limited to: Subway International, Calvin Klein, D&G, Guess, Fossil, Esprit, Rebook, Second Cup, Ikea, Levis, Cartier, Applebee’s, Outback Steakhouse International, Reply, Betty Barclay, Max Mara, Stefanel, French Connection, Barnies, Ebel Watches, Mugg & Bean, Sleep High, Go Sport, Tom Tailor, Free For Humanity, KiKa, Tartine & Chocolate, Vans Co. Ltd., Yves Rocher, Arabian Oud, KAS Australia, Tony Roma’s Restaurant, Wing Zone and “Isuzu”.
His diverse practice includes: Intellectual property and trademark matters, international transactions, Saudi Foreign Investment Law matters, methanol projects (he was involved in the Japanese shareholder consortium Japan Arabia Methanol Company “Mitsui, Mitsubishi, Daicel Chemical and Ion Shipping” in the development, financing and construction of a methanol plant in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, acquisitions, initial public offerings (he was involved in the first ever IPO for the NCB, Jeddah).
He has advised major foreign entities in relation to establishing joint ventures in KSA and associating mixed and foreign limited liability companies in KSA before SAGIA, including advising one of the foreign prospective investors in “Al-Shobily Project”; referred to as a “mega project” on the SAGIA web site (The project is set to attract (60) billion Saudi Riyals investments in KSA), a major British real estate company in establishing a joint venture in KSA and AMLAK Group, the second largest real Estate company in UAE in establishing a joint venture in KSA to carry out a real estate project in KSA.
He formerly worked in the legal department of the NCB in Jeddah specialising in banking and Islamic finance. His expertise in Islamic Finance covers a broad range of matters: dealing with complex legal issues arising from the transferring of “Tawarak” into the local Saudi market for the NCB, with an approximate value of (10) billion Saudi Riyals, involved in the largest Islamic finance transaction by “Mudarabah” of the second GSM licenses in Saudi Arabia, the first project for asset Islamic finance by leasing in Saudi market in NCB with an approximate value of (2) billion Saudi Riyals and associate in a major project for issuing Islamic bonds “Sukuk” in NCB.
Mr. Akkad provides advice on Islamic finance and banking issues to both local and international clients and helps many clients to structure their finance according to Islamic finance tools, such as preparing a “promise to sell letter” to sell offices in the largest business tower in the Western province at The Head Quarter Business Park, valued in excess of (1.5) billion Saudi Riyals, preparing an Islamic lease agreement “Ejar Mantahi baltamleek” to develop a real estate project and preparing an “Ejar Mawasoof falzamah” for a major shopping mall in Jeddah.
Sharif has advised Fortis Bank and NAS Co. Ltd. in relation to sophisticated banking issues in KSA.
Sharif Akkad has worked on many construction agreements, development agreements, construction supervision agreement, consultancy and technical services agreements, contracting agreements and numerous sophisticated FIDIC Contracts.
Sharif Akkad has pleaded many cases and arbitration disputes in connection with commercial, banking, civil, labor, and intellectual property disputes before all courts and judicial committees in Saudi Arabia.
Sharif F. Akkad has appeared in many local and international seminars and events speaking on topics such as Islamic contracts, Islamic finance and franchise agreements.
Sharif Akkad is a regular speaker at the Saudi Chamber of Commerce & Industry and has spoken in seminars at Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Riyadh, Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Jeddah, Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Madinah and Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Makkah since 2005.
Sharif was the only Saudi speaker at the Gulf Franchise Expo (the Expo will have speakers form UK, Germany, France, Malaysia, Egypt, Bahrain, Qatar, India) which was the largest Franchise Expo in the GCC States, and was held in Manama, Bahrain in April 2006.
Sharif Akkad was the only Saudi speaker at the Franchise Middle East Expo [“FME”] held in Dubai, which is the largest Franchise Expo in the Middle East and North Africa held in Dubai, UAE, March 2007, the FME held in Dubai, UAE, May 2008, the FME held in Dubai, UAE, March 2009 and the FME held in Dubai, UAE, March 2010.
Sharif was the only lawyer speaking at the International Conference and Expo for Franchise, which is the second largest Franchise Expo in the Middle East and GCC States held in Riyadh, KSA, June 2008.
He regularly writes on franchise matters in international and local journals and in the print media.
Sharif Akkad has written a draft paper on the Saudi franchise law as per the instructions of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Riyadh, which is currently being reviewed by the Deputy Minister of Commerce and Industry. The paper codifies the law of Franchising.
Mr. Akkad due to his knowledge and experience in franchising and intellectual property matters has been asked to contribute, among other 13 lawyers worldwide, in a publication titled “In Good Company, Managing Intellectual Property Issues in Franchising” to the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO), which is the most important intellectual property organization worldwide and also monitoring the most important intellectual property conventions (Paris and Berne). This publication is considered as a source of knowledge regarding intellectual property in franchising matters by businessman and professionals worldwide. Mr. Akkad holds the esteem of being the only Attorney from the Middle East to be a part of this dynamic group.