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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Austria > EU and competition > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. EU and competition
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which EU and competition clients in Austria using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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bpv Hügel specialises in merger control, antitrust and international cartel defence work. Practice head Astrid Ablasser-Neuhuber advised a real estate company on complex capital markets, merger control and antitrust issues stemming from a takeover involving the two other leading Austrian real estate companies, and represented the Austrian Association for the Wood Industry in a third-party intervention in the largest Austrian merger of office furniture companies. Ablasser-Neuhuber and Gerhard Fussenegger, the co-managing partner of the firm's Brussels office, are also advising Axel Springer on all its competition and merger control proceedings in Austria. Antitrust litigation expert Florian Neumayr and Christian Schneider, who specialises in EU law, are also key members of the team. The practice's blue-chip client base also includes A1 Telekom Austria, Raiffeisen Ware Austria and Verbund.

Schoenherr (Schönherr Rechtsanwälte) is active in high-profile antitrust, merger control and state aid matters and regularly represents Austrian clients before EU institutions. Hanno Wollmann acted for Altstoff Recycling Austria in one of the few article 102 TFEU cases before the European Commission, which was the first abuse of dominance case to result in a settlement. Practice head Franz Urlesberger is acting for paper and packaging group Mondi in relation to European Commission investigations of alleged collusion in the European kraft paper and industrial paper bags market. The team is also handling cartel damages matters, advising Daimler on follow-on damages claims from the European trucks cartel and acting for Kone in relation to the elevators and escalators cartel. Volker Weiss, who is based in Brussels, is also noted.

Binder Grösswang is particularly strong in the pharmaceutical, transport (especially railways), food and beverages, industrial, energy, banking and finance, and gaming sectors. The team 'knows competition law inside out'; it acts for Coca-Cola HBC Austria, Lenzing and Novomatic, among others, and has recently won several significant new clients, including Samsung Austria, GlaxoSmithKline, Metro Cash & Carry and Magna International. Department head Raoul Hoffer ('a top competition lawyer') and the 'responsive' and 'committed' Christine Dietz represented German wagon-leasing company VTG in one of the few phase II merger control proceedings to take place in Austria last year. Assisted by counsel Isabelle Innerhofer (who is praised for her 'practical, problem-solving approach'), Hoffer also acted for the city of Vienna and the federal state of Upper Austria in follow-up damages proceedings relating to the elevator and escalator cartel. Other areas of expertise include state aid and abuse of dominance cases. Johannes Barbist is also noted.

CHSH Cerha Hempel Spiegelfeld Hlawati handles state aid and cartel investigation proceedings, as well as advising clients on their compliance measures. The team has also been involved in a series of high-profile merger control cases: it represented OMV before the European Commission in merger control proceedings relating to its acquisition of joint control of Smatrics; acted for the sellers of Hali and Svoboda in proceedings that involved the four largest manufacturers of office furniture in the Austrian market; and represented Austria Asphalt before the Court of Justice of the European Union in proceedings concerning the merger control aspects relating to a joint venture with Teerag-Asdag. Bernhard Kofler-Senoner heads the team, which also includes Anna Wolf-Posch, who joined as a partner from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in January 2018, and counsel Michael Mayer .

The team at Eisenberger & Herzog advises on a wide range of competition and EU law, including merger control proceedings, dawn raids, and cartel and abuse of dominance cases, and counts a number of leading Austrian companies among its clients. Practice head Dieter Thalhammer represented a manufacturing company in merger control proceedings regarding the sale of its production facilities in Austria, and acted as Austrian counsel to an automotive company in private enforcement proceedings relating to the trucks cartel. In addition, Judith Feldner advised a multinational electronics company on the merger control aspects of an investment relating to the autonomous vehicles market. Andreas Zellhofer is also a key member of the practice.

Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwalte GmbH & CoKG is noted for advising on merger control proceedings, cartel investigations and damages cases, dawn raids, abuse of dominance cases and state aid matters across a range of industries, including retail, consumer products, pharmaceuticals, construction, transport (particularly airlines), chemicals and TMT. Practice head Günter Bauer is 'an outstanding lawyer in every aspect' and 'ensures his competition team meets the highest standard'. He represented two major telecoms companies in EU Commission merger control proceedings concerning one of the biggest transactions in the Austrian telecoms sector. Counsel Jochen Anweiler advised China-based producer of home appliances Hisense on the EU and national merger control aspects of its public takeover offer for the acquisition of all shares in Slovenian white goods manufacturer Gorenje. Other key clients include Airbus and the Kraft Heinz Company. Bucharest-based Adrian Ster and newly promoted counsel Robert Wagner are also recommended.

Baker McKenzie • Diwok Hermann Petsche Rechtsanwälte LLP & Co KG handles cartel litigation, merger control, abuse of dominant position, distribution and licensing, and state aid matters, with a particular focus on competition litigation and regulated industries. Practice head Andreas Traugott is defending elevator and escalator firm Schindler and debit card provider Six Austria against private enforcement claims; he also acted for a number of clients, including Sappi, Haushahn Aufzüge and Motorola Solutions, in relation to merger control proceedings.

Isabella Hartung heads the practice at Barnert Egermann Illigasch Rechtsanwälte GmbH, which is 'extremely responsive' and 'well organised' and 'delivers exceptional service'. The team is noted for its strength in the energy, transport, construction and media sectors; recent highlights include acting as Austrian counsel (alongside White & Case LLP) to Triton on the merger control filing required for the acquisition of Zarges. The team is also advising construction company Porr on competition law matters.

The healthcare and pharmaceutical sector is a key focus for the team at Dorda Rechtsanwalte GmbH, which counts Novartis Group, Kwizda, GlaxoSmithKline, Orpéa Group and a number of Austrian manufacturing businesses among its clients. Practice head Heinrich Kühnert is 'an excellent attorney with passion, deep knowledge, and a wide range of experience and humanity': 'he is always willing to make any effort to get the best results'. Highlights included Kühnert and of counsel Elisabeth König advising manufacturing company on the acquisition of a business with production sites in the US and Germany, and acting for Robopolis, a European distributor of electronic consumer goods, in proceedings before the Austrian Federal Competition Authority regarding alleged resale price maintenance.

The 'customer-oriented' team at Reidlinger Schatzmann Rechtsanwälte GmbH 'thinks strategically' and 'tackles challenges creatively'. The practice is led by Axel Reidlinger ('one of the most respected competition lawyers in Austria') and advises on merger control, cartels and private enforcement cases, among other matters. Highlights included acting for a market research company in private enforcement proceedings before the Cartel Court to obtain an injunction against a dominant competitor and representing a metal products manufacturer in a merger control matter before the Austrian and German Federal Competition Authorities relating to the establishment of a joint venture. Styria Media, Volvo Car Austria, the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation and Österreichische Post are among the firm's other clients.

The 'first-class' team at Saxinger, Chalupsky & Partners (SCWP Schindhelm) advises on cartel investigations, merger control, dawn raids and follow-on damages claims, among other matters. 'Pragmatic', 'hands-on' practice head Christina Hummer, who divides her time between Vienna and Brussels, represented employees of Kaefer who were facing criminal sanctions for bid rigging before the General Federal Competition Prosecutor and the Prosecutor for Corruption; this was the first Austrian cartel case where employees subject to criminal prosecution applied for personal leniency. Markus Fellner, who is 'precise in his advice' and 'never loses sight of the practical needs of the client', assisted transport and logistics company Gartner with two merger control filings in Germany and Austria concerning its acquisition of German transport company Gustav Ziegler. Senior partner Wolfgang Lauss is advising the Business Upper Austria agency on whether a government subsidy granted to the client could constitute state aid.

Schima Mayer Starlinger Rechtsanwälte GmbH's EU and competition practice is noted for its strength in the energy, media and tourism sectors. Practice head Christian Mayer represented Sri Trang Agro-Industries in proceedings relating to restrictions on the global distribution of joint venture products, leading to a landmark judgment by the Austrian Supreme Court; acted for a financial services company in Austrian merger control proceedings concerning the acquisition of a leading manufacturer; and is advising the Association of Austrian Hoteliers on a variety of matters, including competition law, state aid and general EU legislation. Moritz Am Ende is also noted.

Taylor Wessing Austria handles dawn raids, penalty proceedings before the Cartel Court and merger control proceedings, among other matters, with particular expertise in the food retail and construction industries. Highlights included practice head Martin Eckel representing BGO, the owner of the two biggest Austrian office furniture producers, before the Austrian competition authorities in merger control proceedings relating to the acquisition of Hali and Svoboda, the third and fourth largest players in the Austrian office furniture market. The team regularly handles merger control filings across the CEE region and also advises clients on competition compliance. Other clients include VÖB, Nestlé and Pernod Ricard. Senior associate David Konrath is also noted.

The practice at BECKER GÜNTHER POLSTER REGNER Rechtsanwälte GmbH is led by Stephan Polster, who focuses on the energy, rail and telecoms sectors. Clients include the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB).

Bernt Elsner, who is noted for his experience in cross-border merger control matters, heads the practice at CMS, covering cartel law, merger control, abuse of dominance, state aid and antitrust compliance and damages matters. Dieter Zandler is also a key member of the team; he regularly represents international and Austrian clients before the national competition authorities and the European Commission.

Claudine Vartian heads the team at DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach, which specialises in investigations, merger control proceedings and abuse of dominant position cases. Many key clients are from regulated industries; among other matters, the team advised Energie-Control Austria on the separation of the Austrian and German electricity pricing zone. Other highlights include 'competent' and 'collegial' counsel Florian Schuhmacher advising HBB-Haas Beratung und Beteiligungen on the competition law aspects of the sale of its global group headquartered in Austria to Swiss-based technology corporation Bühler, and Porr on the competition law aspects of acquisitions in the construction industry.

The team at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer handles antitrust, merger control and state aid law, focusing particularly on the pharmaceutical, chemical, transport and logistics sectors. Practice head Thomas Lübbig, who is based in Berlin, has extensive experience representing clients before the EU Commission and European Court of Justice.

Haslinger/Nagele & Partner Rechtsanwälte GmbH's practice specialises in antitrust and state aid law, covering administrative fine proceedings, abuse of dominant position, private enforcement, cartel investigations and merger filings. Martin Oder and Martin Stempkowski are the key contacts.

Peter Thyri, the founder of boutique firm Dr. Peter Thyri, handles cartel enforcement proceedings, merger control, private enforcement and state aid matters. Thyri also advises on competition compliance training. Clients range from international listed companies and government bodies to privately owned SMEs.

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Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in Austria

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • THE NATIONAL REGULATION ON THE SECURITY OF "NIS" IN AUSTRIA SHOULD BE OF INTEREST TO YOU

    Good things come to those who wait? Finally, the main implementing regulation for the Austrian Law on Network and Information System Security ( Netz- und Informationssystemsicherheitsgesetz , " NISG ") was published last week. It serves primarily to define which companies are actually affected by the NISG. Now it is getting serious for the operators of " essential services ". What does that mean?
    - Dorda
  • "BLACK FRIDAY" - NOW FREELY USABLE FOR PROMOTIONS IN AUSTRIA

    Black Friday is unquestionable one of the most profitable and busiest days of the year for retail, particularly online. Worldwide almost all online store do offer sales or special promotions on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Already after this practice has established online, a trademark for " BLACK FRIDAY " was registered in Germany back in 2013. In 2016 a Chinese company acquired the trademark and then filed in 2017 for its extension to Austria. Based on the registered trademark, it granted exclusive rights to an Austrian company, which licensed usage rights to various partner stores against remuneration. Further, an exclusive " Black Friday-Cooperation Program " was established. Non-partners who used the event name or trademark were prosecuted and requested to either pay a license fee or refrain from running Black Friday promotions. Some followed the request and entered into license agreements. Some, however, did challenge the validity of the trademark. Finally, respective proceedings to check the actual protection of the trademark were initiated. Austrian courts now held that the trademark " BLACK FRIDAY " is not protected in Austria .
    - Dorda
  • AUSTRIA: ANONYMISATION ACCEPTED AS VALID DATA DELETION METHOD

    On 5th December 2018, the Austrian data protection authority ( Datenschutzbehörde , "DSB") issued a decision (DSB-D123.270/0009-DSB/2018) on data subject's right to data deletion according to Art 17 GDPR. In a nutshell, the DSB accepted consistent anonymisation as a valid alternative to physical and technical deletion. Beside the clear statement that anonymous data is not subject to the GDPR, the DSB provided detailed information on (technical) requirements of anonymisation methods:
    - Dorda
  • Consent or pay – a valid scheme under the GDPR?

    Media companies throughout Europe struggle with a difficult economic environment: Shrinking sales figures for print products, the digitalisation and consumer demand force publishers to offer their content also on the internet. However, generating money for online publications is not quite easy as – at least in Austria – online subscription against renumeration has not been well accepted by customers. This partially has its root in the lack of suitable micropayment means in the past and users thus getting acquainted to online information being offered for free. Thus, publishers have instead focused on financing their platforms by online marketing activities such as placement of banners. Nowadays such digital advertisement is usually targeted to the specific user. For this purpose, cookies are stored on the user's computer upon his first visit of the website, which then collect data about his location, technical equipment used and online behaviour. This finally allows to display specific, user targeted advertisements. However, such cookies may cause issues with applicable consent requirements under the telecommunication and data protection regulations:
    - Dorda
  • fwp expands know-how thanks to new junior partner

    Vienna, March 2019. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner GmbH (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by welcoming Pavel Bachleda in its midst as a new attorney-at-law and junior partner.
  • fwp helps find a new mega arena location

    fwp helps find a new mega arena location
  • AUSTRIAN DATA PROTECTION AUTHORITY ISSUED THE "BLACK LIST"

    Processing operations subject to the requirement of a data protection impact assessment.
    - Dorda
  • Rien ne va plus!

     
    - Dorda
  • DORDA advises on the acquisition of Austrian office properties Denk Drei

    Stefan Artner , Partner and Head of the Real Estate Practice Group, and real estate attorney Klaus Pfeiffer of DORDA advised Austrian Real Estate Development GmbH ( ARE , a subsidiary of Bundesimmobilien-Gesellschaft, the Austrian privatization agency) on the acquisition of the Denk Drei office properties from IC Development . The successful closing of the forward purchase transaction took place on April 30, 2018. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.
    - Dorda
  • Austrian "White List"

    Exceptions from the OBLIGATION TO CARRY OUT A data protection impact assessment
    - Dorda

Press Releases in Austria

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to
  • fwp extends its expertise by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks

    Vienna, September 2018. Motivated and energetic - this is how the new junior partner of Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) presents himself. One of Austria’s leading law firms acclaims Clemens Gabriel’s new status as attorney-at-law registered since 19 September 2018.
  • fwp strengthens areas of competence by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks.

    Vienna, September 2018. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by promoting Michael Froner to junior partner.
  • Slovakia: Schoenherr advises AlbĂ©a on the acquisition of Scandolara Slovakia

    Schoenherr Bratislava has advised the Albéa group ("Albéa") on the acquisition of 100 % of the shares in SCANDOLARA TUB-EST, s.r.o. ("Scandolara"), a Slovak subsidiary of the Italian Scandolara Group, which produces laminate tubes. read more...
  • Schoenherr assists Republic of Austria in offer to HETA-creditors

    On Friday, 2 September 2016, the Austrian Finance Minister has given the green light to finance a public offer by Kärntner Ausgleichszahlungs-Fonds (KAF) to HETA creditors pursuant to § 2a of the Austrian Financial Market Stability Act. The offer will implement the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) concluded in May 2016 between the Austrian Minister of Finance and a significant number of creditors of debt instruments issued by HETA ASSET RESOLUTION AG (HETA) that are subject to a regional law deficiency guarantee. The offer will be published by KAF on Tuesday, 6 September 2016.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises banking consortium on issuance of EUR 500 million mortgage covered bond

    Schoenherr advised an international banking consortium comprising Commerzbank Ak-tiengesellschaft (technical lead), Barclays Bank plc, Crédit Agricole CIB and CaixaBank SA as Joint Lead Managers on the successful issuance of a EUR 500 million fixed-rate mortgage covered bond ( Pfandbrief ) by Vienna-based Erste Group Bank AG (closing date: 9 September 2015). The bond was placed with institutional investors and listed on the Second Regulated Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange.  read more...
  • Austria: JUVE confirms Schoenherr's leading role in Austrian legal market and among corporate/M&A pr

    JUVE, the premier German-language legal business publication, ranks Schoenherr as the  leading law firm in Austria  and recognises the firm's Corporate/M&A practice for being at the very  apex of the country's transactional practitioners . In the newly-released 2015 edition of its annual 150-page handbook on corporate law firms in Austria, JUVE identifies Schoenherr as having generated the highest revenues among the country’s 15 largest law firms, thanks not least to Schoenherr's advisory role in a large selection of the headline transactions and restructurings during 2014/15.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Allianz Capital Partners on its first acquisition of wind parks in Austr

    Schoenherr advised Allianz Capital Partners (ACP) on its acquisition of four wind parks in the Austrian state of Lower Austria from ImWind, one of the country’s largest wind farm operators, with a portfolio of 320 MW in operation. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises UNION Investment on prominent real estate transactions in Vienna

    Schoenherr has advised UNION Investment Real Estate GmbH, one of Europe's leading property investment management companies, on several prominent real estate acquisitions that the Hamburg-based group has made in Vienna. In addition to space2move, Schoenherr has also advised UNION Investment. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Cimpress on its acquisition of Austria's Druck.at

    Schoenherr advised Cimpress N.V., a world leader in mass customization, on its acquisition of Druck.at, one of the leading web-to-print businesses in Austria. The transaction, which was announced on 18 March 2015, closed on 17 April 2015 following the successful achievement of various closing conditions including Austrian antitrust clearance. The acquisition supports Cimpress’ strategy of building a software-enabled operational platform that aggregates and optimizes the supply chain and production of mass customized products such as signage, printing, apparel and promotional products. read more...
  • CEE: Schoenherr named Leading Law Firm in South East Europe by Chambers

    Schoenherr has been recognized as " South East Europe Law Firm of the Year " (2015) by the renowned legal publisher Chambers and Partners . Schoenherr lawyers Monica Cojocaru (partner; Bucharest), Miloš Laković (partner, Moravčević, Vojnović & partneri OAD in cooperation with Schoenherr; Belgrade) and Marko Prušnik (partner; Ljubljana) accepted the award on behalf of the firm at the Chambers Europe Awards event held this past Friday evening at Amsterdam’s Hotel Okura. read more...