Competition/Antitrust - Global-wide
THE FIRM This top firm is uniquely placed to provide expert advice on competition and antitrust law on both sides of the Atlantic. Alongside unmatched Washington, DC and Brussels teams, it fields highly rated practices in Germany, Italy and France, and an increasing profile in London. It regularly advises on high-profile multinational mergers and related litigation. Notably, the firm acted for NYSE Euronext on the EU antitrust aspects of its proposed merger with Deutsche Börse, and advised Google on its USD12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility. In other notable work, the team represented several US companies in respect of allegations of price-fixing in the automotive parts industry before the US Department of Justice and the European Commission.
Sources say: "They have incredible bench strength and work incredibly well as a team." "A fantastic firm on a global scale." "They are the best of all the players I use globally."
KEY INDIVIDUALS George Cary and Mark Leddy are top-tier specialists in Washington, DC, while Nicholas Levy and Antoine Winckler are equally esteemed for their work out of Brussels. Former chairman of the UK Competition Commission Peter Freeman is a senior consultant in the London office. Maurits Dolmans is also a key name in London, while Dirk Schroeder and Mario Siragusa are notable partners in Cologne and Rome.
THE FIRM This firm is widely regarded as a powerhouse in Washington, DC and is recognised for its increasing strength in Brussels. It benefits from the additional support of teams in San Francisco and New York, and has acted on a slew of weighty merger cases in the USA. The team represented AT&T in the antitrust review of its proposed USD39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA. It also acted for Intel on its purchase of McAfee, and for Cisco on its acquisition of NDS. In other highlights, the firm is advising LG on class actions in California alleging anti-competitive behaviour in the markets for cathode ray tubes. It also represented AREVA in an appeal before the European Court of Justice concerning power transformers and gas-insulated switchgear cartels.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Marleen Van Kerckhove leads the team in Brussels, while Deborah Feinstein and Robert Taylor are key contacts in Washington, DC and San Francisco, respectively. Also in Washington, DC, William Baer is head of the global antitrust group.
THE FIRM This magic circle firm has an excellent network of competition specialists in Europe and Asia, with top practices in Brussels, Beijing, Düsseldorf, Amsterdam and Madrid. It also stands out for its presence in Tokyo and Washington, DC. The team advises on cartel and merger enforcement, investigations, state aid and private damages work. Representative highlights include advising Xstrata on its proposed USD90 billion merger with Glencore, involving filings in the EU, North and South America, Asia, Africa and Australia. The firm also acted for EMI on the competition law aspects of its divestments to Universal and Sony, and advised Schenker on a global investigation into the freight forwarding sector and on defending a damages claim brought by the liquidators of Enron.
Sources say: "Freshfields has a fantastic competition department." "Its partner base is broad and strong."
KEY INDIVIDUALS John Davies in London and Martin Klusmann in Düsseldorf co-head the department. Other key contacts include Frank Montag in Brussels, Deirdre Trapp and Jon Lawrence in London, and Michael Han in Beijing.
THE FIRM This firm is a dominant player in the USA, and is singled out for its extensive worldwide network. It is well regarded across Europe, with teams in Belgium, Germany, France and Spain, and in Asia it is well known for its strength in China and Japan. It leverages this multi-jurisdictional expertise to act on a wide range of cross-border work, including mergers, abuse of dominance cases and litigation. It acted for Goodrich on its USD18.4 billion acquisition by United Technologies. The firm also advised Apple on an investigation by the EC into the sale of eBooks, and in defence of a class action case in California relating to the integration of the iPod and the iTunes music store.
Sources say: "They are extremely responsive, timely and practical in their advice."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Phillip Proger heads the global practice from Washington, DC, where Joe Sims is also very prominent. Peter Wang in Shanghai and Bernard Amory lead the Asian and European practices.
THE FIRM This firm has built exceptional teams in the key competition centres of Washington, Washington, DC, New York and Brussels. It is best known for its merger practice, and has additional expertise in antitrust litigation. European highlights include advising Finland's Outokumpu on the EUR2.8 billion acquisition of ThyssenKrupp's stainless steel business. In the USA, the firm assisted Express Scripts with its USD29.1 billion acquisition of Medco Health Solutions, and acted for HarperCollins on its settlement with the Department of Justice in connection with the eBooks investigation. It also defended China Minmetals in a class action in New Jersey relating to the price of magnesite exported from China to the USA.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Shepard Goldfein leads the global team from New York, where Clifford Aronson is also based. In Brussels, James Venit and Simon Baxter co-head the European antitrust and competition group.
THE FIRM This firm benefits from an impressive network of expertise in competition law, with notable global sector coverage extending across the IT, energy and automotive industries, amongst others. It is well regarded in China, Australia and across Europe, and continues to develop its practice in the USA. In recent highlights, the firm advised SAMSUNG on an investigation by the European Commission into the enforcement of intellectual property rights. It also advised Seagate Technology on its acquisition of SAMSUNG's hard disk drive business.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Olivier Fréget in Paris is global head of the group. Mark Friend, Dirk Arts and Elaine Johnston are leading figures in, respectively, the UK, Belgian and US practices.
THE FIRM Clifford Chance has a strong profile for its top-rated competition practices in Brussels and Beijing, with additional strength in Moscow and across Europe. It advises on both contentious and non-contentious work, including mergers, joint ventures, market investigations, litigation and state aid. Highlights include representing Oracle in investigations by the French, Spanish and Japanese competition authorities into a dispute with Hewlett-Packard. The firm also advised the Belgian government on a series of state aid cases before the EC.
KEY INDIVIDUALS The group is led from Brussels by managing partner Oliver Bretz and chairman Thomas Vinje. Elizabeth Morony in London and Ninette Dodoo in Beijing are key figures.
THE FIRM This transatlantic partnership is well regarded for its experience in the UK, the USA, China and across Europe. The team advises on all aspects of competition and antitrust law, including litigation, investigations, merger control, EU regulatory and public law and policy. It acted for Research In Motion on the antitrust clearance from the Department of Justice and Germany's Federal Cartel Office for its USD4.5 billion acquisition of a patent portfolio from Nortel. It also represented Appliance Components Companies (ACC) in US litigation and EU investigations concerning a refrigerant compressor cartel.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Susan Bright in London and Jan McDavid in Washington, DC co-head the global practice.
THE FIRM This well-known US practice group benefits from a strong European offering, with strong teams acting out of Brussels, London and Paris in addition to Washington, DC and San Francisco. 2012 saw the firm act on a range of high-profile litigation matters as well as merger clearance procedures. Notably, it is representing Singapore Airlines in multi-jurisdictional damages cases arising out of the air cargo cartel investigations. It also acted for National Semiconductor on its USD6.5 billion merger with Texas Instruments, involving filings across the USA, South Korea, Israel, Taiwan, Germany, Hungary, Japan and China.
KEY INDIVIDUALS The team is co-chaired by Christopher Yates and Al Pfeiffer in San Francisco, along with Michael Egge, who relocated from Washington, DC, to Brussels in August 2012.
THE FIRM This top London firm is rated for its competition law practice across Europe, and its 2012 alliance with Allens Arthur Robinson in Australia further strengthens its reach across Asia and the Pacific. Additionally, the firm maintains a close relationship with São Paolo-based firm Lefosse Advogados, and regularly acts on transactions involving Brazil. It acted for Glencore on its proposed merger with Xstrata, and advised Johnson & Johnson on its acquisition of Synthes, which involved clearance procedures in Brazil, Russia and China in addition to an investigation by the EC.
KEY INDIVIDUALS In London, Michael Cutting is global head of the competition department while Christopher Bellamy QC is chairman of the practice. Other notable contacts include Gerwin Van Gerven in Brussels and Cheng Yuan in Beijing.
THE FIRM This eminent national practice group is recognised for its long experience in advising on competition and antitrust matters in the USA. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the team regularly represents technology clients and is singled out for its involvement in significant antitrust litigation in this sector, amongst others. Highlights include defending UBS in class actions brought against a group of major banks alleging manipulation of the LIBOR interest rate. Other notable clients include Microsoft, Apple, McDonald's and Intel.
KEY INDIVIDUALS LA-based Daniel Swanson co-chairs the department alongside Peter Sullivan in New York, Gary Spratling in San Francisco and Sean Royall in Dallas.
THE FIRM This international partnership is highlighted for its practice in Brussels, and also fields strong teams in China and Japan. It is singled out for its expertise in pharma antitrust patent cases, where recent highlights saw the firm successfully represent Par Pharmaceutical Companies and Paddock Laboratories in a reverse payments challenge filed by the Federal Trade Commission. It also stands out for its work on the cartel side, and is currently representing international cable manufacturer Nexans against charges of cartel activity in proceedings around the world.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Washington, DC-based Mark Gidley is the global head of the practice group. Ian Forrester QC is one of the top competition litigators in Brussels.
THE FIRM WilmerHale is rated for its experience in cartel and merger clearance work, and for its sector-spanning experience. It recently advised Deutsche Bahn on its damages claim against members of an alleged rail track cartel. It also advised Thermo Fisher Scientific on the clearance for its EUR2.5 billion acquisition of Phadia, and acted for GDF SUEZ on its bid to acquire Open Grid Europe, the operator of Germany's largest gas pipeline network. The firm offers competition/antitrust advice from New York, Washington, DC, Berlin, Frankfurt and Brussels.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Thomas Mueller splits his time between Washington, DC, and Brussels, and sits as co-practice chair with Michelle Miller in Boston. Ulrich Quack heads the German team from Berlin.