Law Firm Acts On Iraq Deal – Baker & McKenzie Acts for Merchant Bridge on US$1.25 Billion Mobile Phone Licence Acquisition in Iraq

London, 20 September 2007 – LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – Baker & McKenzie, London has acted for Merchant Bridge, as part of a consortium with Qtel and AsiaCell, on its acquisition of an Iraqi GSM licence for US$1.25 billion.

The license was one of only three GSM licenses to be issued by the Iraqi Government, through an auction, to operate mobile phone businesses in Iraq. The successful bid secures a 15 year nationwide license for the consortium, which funded the acquisition by a mix of debt and shareholder equity.

Merchant Bridge is a specialist investment banking group primarily for the Middle East, North Africa and Europe.

Peter Strivens, corporate Partner at Baker & McKenzie, said: ”This deal has been described as among the largest commercial transactions completed in Iraq this year, and we were pleased that our telecommunications team were able to advise Merchant Bridge on such a major transaction, in a jurisdiction that can present a number of challenges”.

The Baker & McKenzie team was led by Partner Peter Strivens and corporate associate Oliver Stacey, and included trainee Caspar McConville. Partner Corinna Mitchell and associate Lynn Rosell Rowley provided finance advice.

Qtel was advised by Trowers & Hamlins.

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