Background - Practices (Details)

Crowell & Moring Brussel’s cross-disciplinary automotive group brings together professionals from different legal disciplines so as to assist domestic and international clients from the automotive industry in relation to a broad spectrum of sector-related issues. Our group integrates members active in the following areas: corporate and commercial, antitrust, intellectual property, international trade, labor and employment, and product risk management.

C&M’s Brussels Automotive Group

Geert Bogaert is well known and highly reputed in this field. With more than 30 years’ experience working in the automotive sector, he has particular knowledge of dealership agreements and the restructuring of (after)sales networks.

Emmanuel Plasschaert has significant experience in the restructuring of undertakings, both from a corporate and a labor & employment perspective. He is also a skilled litigator with more than 25 years’ commercial litigation experience before the Belgian courts.

In addition to his corporate capabilities, Frederik Van Remoortel brings to the team an enviable ability to negotiate and draft complex contracts. He has in-depth knowledge of EU data protection/cybersecurity regulation.

Eric Montens has extensive experience with distribution agreements and product liability issues and is equally at home advising clients and representing them as counsel in litigious matters.

These key group members are assisted as necessary by associates from across the Brussels practice groups.

Automotive Network

The EU Automotive Network, co-founded by Geert Bogaert, is an informal network of highly regarded independent law firms or practitioners. All members are experienced automotive lawyers with both a strong reputation and a deep knowledge of the automotive industry in their respective countries. The Network focuses mostly on Europe. Its strength lies in the exchange of information between its members through the handling of multi-jurisdictional cases, the exchange of alerts about recent developments in EU Member States, and the organization of seminars highlighting topics of particular relevance to vehicle manufacturers and importers.

A relation of trust exists within the network and this allows its members to deliver integrated, efficient, and swift service of top-quality.

To further discussion on topics of common interest to the sector, the network organizes a yearly symposium to bring its members together with in-house general legal counsel working in the automotive sector. The latest symposium took place in Paris and was attended by some 35 in-house counsel from leading car and truck manufacturers (Ferrari, GM, Kia, Mercedes Daimler, Iveco, Porsche, PSA, Renault, Volkswagen, DAF, Mazda, FCA, Toyota, and Nissan). Issues discussed included the reorganization of new vehicle sales and after-sales networks, the termination of dealership agreements, e-commerce, and e-vehicles.

Worldwide Reach

The Brussels Automotive Group works in close collaboration with C&M colleagues in the U.S. so as to provide international clients with a one-stop shop. Our U.S. colleagues represent clients in state and federal courts across the U.S. and before agencies such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), and the International Trade Commission (ITC). Our strong presence in Washington, D.C., along with our international capabilities and regulatory and litigation prowess, makes us a go-to team for bet-the-company matters.

Brussels Automotive Group Capabilities

  • Distribution & Networks
    • Contracts
    • Antitrust aspects
  • Corporate (M&A)
  • Compliance: Sector-related EU Regulation
  • Commercial Litigation
  • E-Commerce
  • Intellectual Property
  • Privacy & Data Protection

Automotive Network

  • Belgium and the U.S.: Crowell & Moring
  • Austria: Schneider & Schneider
  • France: Vogel & Vogel
  • Germany: Noerr
  • Italy: Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Capelli & Partners
  • Spain: Pérez-Llorca
  • Sweden: Vinge
  • Switzerland: Pestalozzi
  • The Netherlands: Houthoff Buruma
  • U.K.: Macfarlanes

Representative Clients in the U.S. and Europe

  • Bridgestone
  • BMW AG
  • Daimler AG
  • Dana Holding Corporation
  • D’Ieteren
  • Enkei
  • Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
  • General Motors
  • Greyhound
  • Robert Bosch LLC
  • Valeo

Notable Rankings

“Emmanuel Plasschaert […] is ‘responsive and pragmatic.’” Legal 500 EMEA, 2016

“Geert Bogaert of Crowell & Moring LLP is recognised by market commentators as an expert in trade practices and IP. His practice particularly focuses on the automotive sector.” Chambers Europe, 2016