Antitrust and Technology


Described as the Fourth Industrial Revolution, digital transformation is driving innovation, facilitating rapid information exchange, and creating more efficient marketplaces. From increasingly innovative and powerful apps, to online platforms, and AI systems, technology is changing the way companies do business and how consumers engage with each other and buy products and services. At the same time, competition authorities around the world are increasingly scrutinizing potential antitrust concerns involving these new technologies and the companies that develop them. Charged with promoting competition and protecting consumers, these antitrust enforcers are wading in—in different ways and some more quickly than others—to assess and address competition issues, perceived or real, raised by digital technologies.

As we continue to race headlong into perhaps the greatest period of technological change in human history, antitrust policy and enforcement is evolving as well. Companies that anticipate and prepare for these evolving competition principles will be more likely to withstand scrutiny and successfully execute their business strategies—or challenge the potentially anticompetitive conduct that other firms impose on their business.

We formed Crowell & Moring’s Antitrust and Technology practice to think critically about emerging competition issues and advise clients with an eye towards where their businesses are going, not where they have been. We represent clients on a range of transactional, litigation, and counseling matters, whether they are incumbents seeking to innovate to stay ahead in this evolving landscape or nascent competitors seeking to disrupt it. Drawing upon our deep bench of former senior antitrust agency enforcers, former competition policy officials, and seasoned transactional lawyers and litigators, we counsel and represent clients on a broad range of antitrust issues in tech, including:

  • Artificial Intelligence and Algorithmic Pricing: AI and algorithmic pricing are revolutionizing how businesses make decisions and engage with their customers. While these technologies offer the potential for better, faster, and more efficient decisions, products, and services, antitrust enforcers are also weighing the potential risks to competition brought on by these technologies. Our lawyers help clients navigate the cutting-edge antitrust issues associated with business conduct, contracts, and transactions involving AI and algorithmic pricing.
  • Blockchain and Distributed Ledger: Blockchain and distributed ledger technologies are finding new applications in a wide variety of industries, and antitrust regulators around the globe are paying attention to emerging issues and potential challenges, including the potential for DLT to facilitate collusion, improper information exchanges, monopolization, and group boycotts. We counsel clients on all aspects of DLT antitrust issues, from structural issues at formation, to designing smart contracts and information transparency protocols, to developing membership criteria and access rights.
  • Digital Agriculture: As global agricultural markets have become increasingly concentrated, they have also become increasingly dependent on digital technologies that are transforming the world’s food supply. Our lawyers have represented companies throughout the supply chain to help them navigate emerging antitrust issues involving digital agricultural technologies in a rapidly changing marketplace.
  • Digital Health: Digitization is disrupting healthcare, perhaps like no time in history. From consumer-centric healthcare propelled by app-based healthcare service, to telehealth, to personalized medicine facilitated by AI, technological innovation is advancing throughout medicine and changing the way healthcare is delivered by hospitals and doctors to patients. We represent providers, payers, and other digital disruptors navigate antitrust issues implicated in the digital health revolution.