European Competition Law

The European competition law practice extends Crowell & Moring's unparalleled levels of quality and client service across the full range of European competition law matters, including mergers, litigation, IP/antitrust, cartel and abuse of dominance investigations, counseling, and sector inquiries. Based in Brussels and London, we offer a wealth of experience to a broad client base, including leading European and U.S. multinationals, before the European Commission, the EU Courts, and a range of national courts and regulators. We pride ourselves on offering both first-class European competition law advice and a seamless service with our U.S. antitrust practice.

Mergers. Our experience includes representing clients in second stage proceedings and participating in some of the most significant transactions reviewed under the EU Merger Regulation both representing merging companies and third party interveners. We have extensive experience managing the challenges that arise in simultaneous clearance procedure before the European Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice/Federal Trade Commission as well as most other merger control authorities across the globe. At the EU level, we have obtained clearances for transactions in industries that include telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, crop protection, the automobile industry, industrial components, and the Internet.

Litigation. Our practice encompasses both traditional defense litigation and a cutting-edge recovery practice. On the defense side, our attorneys are regularly involved in litigation before the EU courts in Luxemburg and in competition law-related litigation at a national level. We have also developed one of the leading recovery practices in Europe representing large industrial clients wishing to recover damages and other value from cartelists, and we currently have active cases in the U.K., Belgium and Germany. We focus on developing innovative solutions that allow clients to maximize recovery while limiting upfront costs and minimizing risks.

Antitrust and intellectual property. We routinely advise clients, including a number of leading patent pools and undertakings with business-critical intellectual property, across a range of IP/antitrust issues that cover, for example, standard setting, licensing, and research and development (R&D) arrangements.

Cartel investigations. We have represented clients in international investigations before the European Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice, as well as in national investigations before various national authorities in Europe.

Abuse of dominance investigations. We have represented companies both in investigations before the European Commission and in national investigations before various national authorities in Europe. We have extensive experience defending clients in administrative fine procedures and in bringing formal complaints.

Counseling. We have particular competence in offering business-focused advice on complex issues and "hot topics." This includes routinely counseling companies with strong market positions across the range of their activities to avoid abuse of dominance issues and advising on complex areas such as the treatment of aftermarkets and information exchange. We regularly provide advice on joint ventures and other agreements between competitors and deliver custom-made interactive compliance programs and training, including in relation to personal, criminal and civil liability.

Sector inquiries. We advise clients involved in sector inquiries and other industry investigations, including the recent EU pharmaceuticals sector inquiry and the UK market investigation in insolvency practices.