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Co-Founder & Senior Partner

Sam Habbas

Sam is the Senior Partner at ASAR. Sam established ASAR’s international division in 1988, providing strategic direction and developing it into the leading legal practice that it is today. As an accomplished corporate lawyer, Sam has extensive corporate and commercial law experience and both advises, and acts as lead counsel to, a host of local and foreign multinational clients on a wide range of commercial, banking and finance, aviation finance, mergers and acquisitions, oil and gas, energy, projects and infrastructure projects and multi-jurisdictional corporate transactions.

Sam also leads ASAR’s specialist private clients practice and advises leading family offices and ultra-high net worth individuals in relation to their personal, business and philanthropic affairs. He also advises family offices on their governance and succession matters. Sam has been instrumental in the establishment of new family offices as well as providing ongoing strategic advice to families with long established family offices.


Personal Info

+965 229 22700


  • Juris Doctorate, Boston College Law School, USA
  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Santa Clara, USA

Practice Areas

  • Aviation Banking & Finance Corporate Mergers & Acquisitions PPP & PFI Projects Private Client Services Private Equity Oil & Gas
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Professional Experience


Private Client Transactions
Sam has led on a multitude of private client transactions on behalf of various family offices, ultra-high net worth individuals and families in connection with the accumulation, management, transfer and protection of personal wealth. Private client transactions attended to by Sam include, among others: Family governance and inter-generational wealth transfers: advising family businesses on long term family governance structures, including the setup of family councils/boards and family constitutions; Specialized assets and collectibles: negotiating the acquisition and/or sale of high value moveable and real estate assets and unique collectibles (e.g., art, artefacts and luxury assets), planning for the succession and preservation of collectibles; Philanthropy: arranging the structuring of philanthropic and charitable endeavors, including the structuring and establishment of trusts and legal entities; and Family disputes and arrangements: disputes involving family originated businesses and pre-dispute assistance, such as family settlements.
USD3.4-billion Acquisition of Kuwait Food Company (Americana)
Advised the purchaser of a 93.4% stake in Kuwait Food Company (Americana), a then Kuwaiti listed entity. This was a complex public acquisition transaction with a record-breaking deal value of approximately USD-3.4-billion. The transaction set several precedents and landmarks in addition to winning the prestigious IFLR M&A Deal of the Year Award for 2017.

Professional Experience

ECA Financing
Advising a syndicate of lenders consisting of seven export credit agencies in relation to the financing of Kuwait National Petroleum Company Clean Fuels Project. The overall cost of the project is KWD3.4-billion (USD11.35-billion), and is part of the Kuwait’s KWD30-billion (USD100-billion) economic development plan.
Az Zour North Phase 1 – Independent Water and Power Producer (IWPP) Project
Advised the government of Kuwait on the groundbreaking Az Zour North Phase 1 IWPP PPP Project. This power and water desalination plant is now fully operational and will ultimately supply 1,500 megawatts (MW) of electricity and 102 million gallons of water per day. Having reached financial close in December 2013 with both public and private stakeholders on board, the Al-Zour North Phase 1 IWPP is the first project to be successfully procured by the Kuwait Authority for Partnership Projects (KAPP), the main body responsible for implementing projects on a PPP basis and the Ministry of Electricity and Water under Kuwait’s IWPP PPP Law.