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Venezuela > Competition and antitrust > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Competition and antitrust
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

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Who Represents Who

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D’Empaire Reyna Abogados is consistently recognised for the quality of its competition and antitrust practice, and has handled some of the highest-profile merger control matters in Venezuela. It combines merger control experience with particular expertise in the telecoms sector, recently handling the competition aspects of Cable & Wireless Communications’ purchase of Columbus International, which is pending subject to regulatory approval. Other work included advising on the merger control aspects of AT&T’s acquisition of DirecTV. In addition to its merger control work, the group represents clients in relation to investigations into restrictive practices. José Humberto Frías and José Valentín González are highly regarded.

Grau García Hernández & Mónaco handles high-profile contentious matters and pre-merger filings. It is especially noted for its involvement in precedent-setting administrative and judicial proceedings, and is also increasingly active in matters concerning economic regulations. ‘Heavyweights’ Miguel Mónaco and José Ignacio Hernández González have an outstanding reputation in the competition space.

Hoet Pelaez Castillo & Duque provides an ‘excellent service’ and fields a team of ‘highly qualified professionals’ with ‘a global vision of the client’s business and the risks associated with the queries that are requested’. Due to the decline in investigations work in Venezuela – the competition authorities not having initiated any new investigations since 2014 – the firm has refocused its competition practice on economic regulations. José Gregorio Torrealba and Alejandro Gallotti are handling several matters for the Instituto Universitario De Mercadotecnia concerning an investigation conducted by the National Superintendent for the Defense of Socio-Economic Rights, including challenging a freeze on enrolment fees. The team also has a strong reputation in merger control notifications in the telecoms sector; recent work includes assisting Liberty Global in obtaining the approval of the competition authority and relevant regulatory bodies for the purchase of Cable & Wireless Communications. The practice also covers competition compliance issues relating to distribution agreements. Rosa Virginia Superlano has notable expertise in the telecoms sector.

Competition compliance forms the bulk of Imery Urdaneta Calleja Itriago & Flamarique’s workload, and it is experienced in advising on legislative changes and in providing competition training. The team also has a strong record in administrative and judicial proceedings concerning alleged abuse of dominance, and in merger control notifications. Faustino Flamarique is the name to note.

Norton Rose Fulbright has notable expertise in administrative and judicial proceedings involving competition matters. Luis Ernesto Andueza is acting for Aga Gas in challenging the antitrust authority’s decision to impose sanctions on the client for alleged exclusionary practices. Andueza is also part of a team representing Aserca Airlines in challenging sanctions imposed by the antitrust authority over alleged collusion to increase fares.

Tinoco, Travieso, Planchart & Núñez, which provides ‘sound legal advice’, is regularly sought by corporate clients and international law firms to provide legal opinions concerning competition legislation. The team also handles litigation, and is representing Biotech Laboratorios in challenging the antitrust agency’s finding that the client engaged in prohibited practices. Margarita Escudero León and María Verónica Espina Molina are the key practitioners.

Torres, Plaz & Araujo has an ‘excellent’ reputation in the competition space, largely thanks to the profile of practice head Juan Domingo Alfonzo Paradisi. The firm has been particularly active of late representing airlines in challenging decisions made by the competition authority, including acting for Air Europa in an appeal concerning alleged exclusionary practices. Other work included advising Takeda on antitrust legislation and assisting Bacardi Venezuela in relation to fair pricing regulations.

Araquereyna is well-versed in advising clients on the intersection between pricing regulations and competition law, and is also experienced in competition compliance issues. Antonio Canova, Pedro Sosa and associate Rodrigo Moncho Stefani are the key names.

Despacho de Abogados Miembro de Hogan Lovells regularly assists with merger control issues, drawing on the firm’s strength in multi-jurisdictional M&A deals. The team also represents clients in contentious competition matters, recently acting for PDVSA in five antitrust proceedings in different US federal courts concerning alleged violations of the Sherman Act. Bruno Ciuffetelli, who splits his time between Houston and Caracas, and counsel Juan Carlos Pondal-Kleber are the key names.

Moreau, González & Asociados provides an ‘excellent’ service and is experienced in competition compliance matters. Ana Carolina González Benoit, who is an economist rather than a lawyer, draws on her previous experience with the Venezuelan antitrust agency; she stands out for her ‘technical analysis and expertise in antitrust regulations and control prices’.

WDA legal, S.C.’s competition practice includes handling antitrust litigation, assisting with government inspections and advising on competition compliance matters. Hernando Díaz-Candia has acted for numerous clients facing competition investigations.

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