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Franco Grilli Cicillioni

Principal - Capital Markets

Franco is a senior international lawyer consistently ranked among the top financial lawyers. He acts as team leader and client relationship partner in complex corporate, financial and investment transactions.

With almost 30 years of experience in three different continents, Franco is able to advise on complex and innovative matters and transactions and to deal with any type of entity, from Central Governments and Authorities, to supranational entities, to financial and non-financial private and publicly listed companies.

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+971 56 682 2780


Franco’s main areas of experience include: capital markets; corporate M&A; asset, project and infrastructure financing; payment services, sovereign and supranational financing; securities offering; banking and financial regulation; and investment funds.

  • Structured Financing: acted in several public securitisations; pioneered a new flow of receivables backed financing. Acted in the first covered bond programme by an Italian bank.

  • Debt and Equity Capital Markets: acted in several high-yield and secured corporate bond issuances; regular advisor in connection with medium-term note programmes by major banks, corporates and sovereigns; main counsel in IPOs, rights issues and hybrid securities offerings; acted in several liability management processes.


  • Payment Services: assisted the promoter on the establishment and licensing of a specialized community digital bank in the UAE; Assisted a large banking group in the MENA Region in structuring and establishing a digital banking business in several selected countries.

  • Sovereign Debt: regular counsel in connection with syndicated placements of Treasury bonds by the Republic of Italy; advised the Ministry of Finance on its implementation of new EU law on sovereign debt restructurings.

  • Infrastructure Financing: acted in connection with large infrastructure development of public interest.
  • Aviation Finance: assisted lessors and lenders in aircraft leasing and financing transaction for local carriers and in connection with emergency aircraft repossessions and insolvency and pre-insolvency situations.

  • Regulatory and Compliance: advised major listed companies in connection with market abuse regulation and disclosure obligations; assessed feasibility and compliance ramifications of proposed transactions and reported to top managers and directors.


  • Partner, EY Law, Dubai & Milan

  • Partner, Galadari Advocates and Legal Consultants, Dubai

  • Partner, Clifford Chance LLP, Dubai & Milan



  • Registered Practising Legal Consultant, Dubai

  • Admitted as Avvocato, Bar Association, Italy

  • Registered European Lawyer, England & Wales


  • LLM in International Banking & Financial Law, Boston University, United States

  • LLB Law, Bologna University, Italy

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