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Competition Investigations

Investigations by competition regulators can absorb significant management time and result in fines and far-reaching remedies – but they can also offer opportunities to businesses to resolve difficult strategic problems with competitors or suppliers who are behaving unfairly.

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Regulators have extensive powers to investigate possible breaches of competition law.  These can range from issuing detailed questionnaires to businesses to launching a "dawn raid" – an inspection of a business' premises or even the home of a director, where the regulator has significant powers to seize and copy emails, documents, voicemails and other data.  An investigation can result in fines and far-reaching orders that transform businesses and even whole industries. 

Our competition lawyers are very familiar with the practical challenges and the technical intricacies of dealing with investigations.  We apply our judgment and experience of handling regulators to minimise the burden and achieve the best possible commercial outcome. 

We are also expert in representing businesses who seek to influence regulators to act against anti-competitive agreements or conduct of competitors, suppliers or customers.  We help businesses to navigate the complex strategic and tactical issues raised by complaints in order to secure a result that advances our client's commercial objectives.  

Some of our experts

Howard Cartlidge

Head of EU/Competition (London)

I advise on all aspects of EU and UK competition law. I help businesses to deal with the legal and policy aspects of regulatory disputes and investigations.

Jonathan Branton

Partner - Head of EU/Competition

I lead the firm in EU/Competition issues, specialising in behavioural antitrust, merger control, public procurement and State aid, and all related issues of public funding, including the UK’s Regional Growth Fund, ERDF and ESIF. I also head up the firm’s Brussels office and the firm’s cross-discipline Public Sector group.

Dr. Daisy Walzel, LL.M. (oec)

Partner - Head of Competition (Germany)

I advise on all aspects of German and EU competition law, specialising in merger control, competition law compliance and provide advice on competitor co-operations and cartel proceedings.

Brona Heenan

Director

I am a highly experienced EU competition and procurement lawyer with extensive experience in representing leading US, Japanese and European clients across a broad range of industries, including media, telecommunications, energy and biotechnology.