Partner Simon Auquier specialises in mergers & acquisitions and corporate law. After four years spent at Gide's Paris headquarters, Simon moved to the Casablanca office in early 2010, where he works on corporate acquisitions and divestments, and acquisitions of equity holdings, as well as investment and industrial partnership projects for foreign investors seeking to move into Morocco and/or expand their existing investments in the country. In addition, he works for Moroccan clients in the context of joint-ventures with foreign partners, acquisitions in Morocco, etc.
Simon also assists both Moroccan and foreign clients on their investment projects in sub-Saharan Africa, and over recent years has been involved in a number of major acquisition and investment projects, not only in West Africa, but also further afield, in various African sub-regions. Recent experience:
- Advising a leading Moroccan real estate/tourism group on the outsourcing of part of their hotel and tourism business (together with the associated real estate);
- Advising the ARIF fund on the acquisition of a minority stake (EUR 10M) in the capital of Mass Céréales Al Maghreb;
- Advising Wendel on the acquisition of a minority stake (EUR 100M) in the capital of the Saham Group, a pan-African insurance group based in Morocco;
- Advising Aabar Investments PJS (Abu Dhabi investment fund) on the negotiation and implementation of the first potential investments made by the Wessal Capital fund (a joint venture set up between Qatar Holding LLC, the Kuwait Investment Authority, the Moroccan Tourist Development Fund and Aabar Investments PJS to invest in the Moroccan tourism industry);
- Advising International Finance Corporation (IFC, World Bank Group) on the acquisition of a stake in the capital of HEM (Moroccan higher education group).
Simon graduated from ESSEC (French business school) and the University of Paris II (Magistère de Juriste d’Affaires / DJCE). He speaks French and English.
« During the last 15 years, Gide Cuatrecasas Casablanca has established itself as a key player in the M&A market. It assists local and foreign clients with major M&A transactions in Morocco and sub-Saharan Africa. Simon Auquier and star senior associate Chloé Joachim de Larivière advised Wendel on the $155m sale of its holding in Saham Group. »
Legal 500 EMEA 2019
« This firm is the product of a joint venture between French firm Gide and Spanish firm Cuatrecasas. Both backgrounds bring benefits, with excellence in projects, infrastructure and energy a notable synergy. Other areas of experience include the establishment and divestment of operations and subsidiaries for industrial and automotive clients. One international client praised the firm for its tailored solutions: 'Gide understood exactly our company's situation and needs, then provided us appropriate solutions.' Another source rated the 'strong team and good service,' as well as the technical skills of the team.
Simon Auquier offers clients his extensive expertise in the M&A sector. He advised Wendel on the sale of its interest in the holding company of Saham Group for USD155 million. Peers have a 'very good impression' of him and his team. »
Chambers Europe 2019