(L-R): Awards host Shadia Bseiso; Lylia Mezhoud, legal manager, and Fatima Najeeb, legal counsel, Total Marketing Middle East; Yacine Gouich, corporate governance specialist, Equity

Finalists: Al Ghurair Investment; Sidra Medical and Research Center (Highly Commended).

Total Marketing Middle East’s legal department was a clear winner for the small team award, given the vast regional coverage it provides across four business units while maintaining a staff of just two counsel.

In addition to handling a wide range of corporate and legal matters such as governance, compliance and various commercial advice, two individual achievements best underscore the team’s expertise and innovation. The first involved the successful drafting, negotiation and execution of a crucial corporate transaction that ensured the sustainability of its business units. The second involved digitising the legal department and standardising contracts so that Total Marketing employees can automatically generate pre-formatted documents for business agreements in just 10 minutes.

The team also finds time to provide legal training to the company’s roughly 230 employees on topics such as anti-corruption, conflict of interest, human rights and ethics. The duo’s contribution to the wider business is unequivocal: a near complete absence of legal disputes and litigation in the past five years.

“A great example of the diverse and intensely challenging nature of work handled by small in-house teams in the region – certainly appears to accomplish more than its headcount should allow for,” enthused one judge.

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