EU and competition in Croatia

Babic & Partners Law Firm

Jointly headed by Boris Babic and Iva BasaricBabic & Partners Law Firm's 'knowledgeable, dedicated and professional' team delivers an 'excellent work product' to international and domestic corporates across a range of issues, including dawn raid training and commercial contract reviews through to merger control matters. Praised for her 'practical and solution-oriented approach', Basaric is regularly involved in competition law aspects impacting the pharmaceuticals sector.

Practice head(s):

Boris Babic; Iva Basaric

Testimonials

Focused, reliable, with excellent knowledge in the field.

The team is extremely knowledgeable, dedicated, and professional.

The team delivers an excellent work product.

Iva Basarić’s efforts go beyond standard expectations since every opinion she provides is thoroughly thought out and intelligent.

Key clients

Beiersdorf

Gorenje d.o.o.

Magyar Suzuki Corporation

Merck Sharp & Dohme

Bradvica Marić Wahl Cesarec

Led by 'top competition lawyerMislav BradvicaBradvica Marić Wahl Cesarec is 'well equipped' to handle the full spectrum of work for clients from the media, telecoms and retail sectors, including as it relates to merger control, competition compliance and contentious matters before the national competition agency and courts, as well as the European Commission. Praised for his 'very creative approach', Bradvica is particularly accomplished at handling contentious matters relating to cartel cases and abuse of dominant positions. The 'excellentIvan Luetić has a flourishing reputation advising e-commerce and new technologies clients across the competition law issues impacting their businesses.

Practice head(s):

Mislav Bradvica

Testimonials

Mislav Bradvica is highly experienced and very creative (he often finds a solution when the situation is almost hopeless).

Mislav Bradvica is a top competition lawyer.

Ivan Luetić is well equipped for competition law.

Ivan Luetić is excellent.

Key clients

Konzum plus d.o.o.

Ledo plus d.o.o.

Jamnica plus d.o.o.

REWE Group / BIPA d.o.o.

Metro Cash & Carry d.o.o.

Wienerberger Croatia

Total TV (Totalna televizija d.o.o.)

Work highlights

  • Advising Konzum plus d.o.o. (and Agrokor) on restructuring matters (competition law related) and providing day-to-day legal advice.
  • Acting for Ledo plus d.o.o, the biggest ice-cream producer (and producer of frozen foodstuffs) in Croatia and the region, on a range of competition matters, including strategic advice on tailoring distribution across the entire supply chain, negotiations with business partners, as well as day-to-day advice.
  • Advising Metro Cash & Carry on the regulation of unfair commercial practices compliance programmes.

Divjak Topic Bahtijarevic & Krka

Fed a significant flow of merger clearance work by dint of the firm's premier domestic M&A practice and also securing a raft of standalone work, Divjak, Topic & Bahtijarevic is a 'clear market leader' for competition law matters. Team head Mario Krka is well versed across contentious and non-contentious matters and in addition to M&A and general compliance-related work (including advice on horizontal and vertical commercial agreements), he regularly represents clients in abuse of dominant position cases before the Competition Agency.

Practice head(s):

Mario Krka

Testimonials

Clear market leader.

Key clients

AR Packaging

RTL Televizija

Japan Tobacco Industry

Unilever

Arriva

Work highlights

  • Advising AR Packaging, one of Europe’s leading companies in the packaging sector, on Croatian-law based due diligence of the target (Istragrafika), including antitrust-related matters, as well as on the legal assessment and advice concerning merger notification requirements.
  • Acted for RTL on securing the relevant merger clearance pursuant to its acquisition of Net.hr.
  • Advised a multinational public transportation company on the competition law aspects associated with its acquisition of a domestic bus company.

Šavoric & Partners

As one of the most prolific transactional firms in the country, unsurprisingly a good deal of Šavorić & Partners' competition work relates to merger clearance matters. Other work includes advice to large international corporates on general competition compliance issues associated with their commercial agreements in the country, while on the contentious front, the team is noted for its expertise handling cartel investigations.

Practice head(s):

Boris Šavorić; Mia Lazić; Lovro Gašparac

Testimonials

Very good team of junior and senior lawyers who are always up-to-date.

Key clients

Designer Outlet Croatia

adidas South East Europe

Enterprise Investors Corporation (Pan Pek)

Enterprise Investors Corporation (Studenac)

Enterprise Investors Corporation (ISM)

Work highlights

  • Acting for Designer Outlet Croatia, which is developing an outlet shopping centre in Zagreb, in competition proceedings against a competitor whose practices are deemed to distort competition.
  • Advising adidas on potential competition compliance issues regarding the company’s general terms and conditions of business operations and sale agreements.
  • Assisted Enterprise Investors Corporation with competition law matters, preparing merger filing and obtaining merger clearance from Croatian Competition Authority, to facilitate the purchase of the Pan Pek group of companies.

Bardek, Lisac, Mušec, Skoko in association with CMS Reich-Rohrwig Hainz Rechtsanwälte GmbH (Austria)

Led by recently promoted partner Marija ZrnoBardek, Lisac, Mušec, Skoko in association with CMS Reich-Rohrwig Hainz Rechtsanwälte GmbH (Austria) handles a significant volume and variety of EU and competition matters for clients from across a range of of heavily scrutinised industry sectors, including the pharmaceutical and energy industries. Zrno is particularly strong on the non-contentious front, and as well as regularly providing the merger control advice associated with M&A handled by the firm, she also undertakes dawn raid training for clients and provides drafting guidance on commercial contracts to ensure that they comply with competition law strictures (for example, in relation to distribution agreements).

Practice head(s):

Marija Zrno

Key clients

Goodyear

Thales

Orpea

CML Construction Services / Strabag

OTP

Eusa

Conforama

HETA

J C Bamford Excavators Limited

Advantage Austria Zagreb

EBRD

Starwood

Electrolux

Travelers

Felbermayr Holding GmbH

Bauhaus

Weitzer

Podravka

Work highlights

  • Advising Heta on the sale of its Croatian servicing platform and a portfolio of receivables and properties with a total exposure of around €800m to an international consortium, including merger notification on the seller’s side, providing input aimed at enhancing the chances of approval.
  • Developing and delivering comprehensive training on competition and antitrust law matters to the operational management of the Croatian service company, Strabag, including advice on investigation procedures, leniency programmes, general risks and lawsuits for damages, horizontal and vertical agreements.
  • Advising a US entertainment provider on the regulatory aspects of a media concentration within a potential takeover of a TV channel.

Mamić Perić Reberski Rimac Law Firm LLC

Jointly headed by Luka Rimac and Frano BelohradskyMamić Perić Reberski Rimac Law Firm LLC is particularly well known for its advice on state aid issues, including as it relates to projects funded by the European Commission and on guarantees issued by public bodies.

Practice head(s):

Luka Rimac; Frano Belohradsky

Key clients

Jadrolinija

Zagrebački Holding d.o.o.

Technital s.p.a.

Mlin i pekare d.o.o.

Work highlights

  • Advice to Jadrolinija on restructuring, including on state aid law issues.
  • Assisting Zagrebački holding with state aid issues.
  • Advising Technital on various regulatory issues, including legal matters regarding conducting business activities in the Croatian market and issues regarding public procurement procedures.

Wolf Theiss - Zagreb branch

Wolf Theiss - Zagreb branch has a strong reputation advising across a range of purely domestic competition issues, as well as on matters where a cohesive approach is required throughout the CEE region (where it can leverage its strong presence in key jurisdictions including Austria). Senior associate Luka Čolić heads the team and is well versed in cartel cases, dawn raid issues, state aid and merger filings; he recently secured merger clearance for investor clients acquiring a substantial NPL portfolio from Heta, in the so-called Solaris transaction (a very rare occasion where merger control issues were triggered by NPL divestments).

Practice head(s):

Luka Čolić

Key clients

Abbott

Bancroft Private Equity

B2 Holding

Baxter

Borealis

Celgene

Chipita

City Ex

DDM Group AG

Emil Frey Holding

Mondelez

Quanex Building Products

Shire

IC İçtaş İnşaat Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş

Astaldi S.p.A

Work highlights

  • Advising DDM Group and B2 Holding on the merger filing associated with their role as bidders in the Solaris transaction (the high-profile divestment of a very large NPL portfolio by Heta).
  • Acting for Quanex Building Products Corporation on Croatian competition law issues concerning its distribution contract with a local company.
  • Advising Celgene International on its dawn raid standard operating procedures and adjusting them with Croatian competition law requirements.

Žurić i Partneri

'Perfectly placed to assist clients not only on local competition matters, but also to offer outstanding cross-border legal advice on supranational issues'Žurić i Partneri regularly provides the competition law overlay on M&A transactions handled by the firm. Other areas of expertise include advice on vertical and horizontal restraints and state aid.

Practice head(s):

Daniela Mayer; Edin Karakaš

Testimonials

With an innovative and preventive approach to the steadily increasing complexity in the field of competition, Žurić i Partneri takes legal advice to the next level.

When it comes to competition matters, Edin Karakaš is a person demonstrating enormous legal knowledge and an energetic and modern approach.

Perfectly placed to assist clients not only on local competition matters, but also to offer outstanding cross-border legal advice on supranational issues.

Matekovic Law Firm

At Matekovic Law Firm, name partner Krešimir Mateković has niche expertise within the pharmaceutical industry and has handled work for major clients in the sector on the competition law issues associated with certain distribution agreements implemented throughout Croatia.

Practice head(s):

Krešimir Mateković

Key clients

Adriatic Luxury Development

Asura Multiservis

Aquanautica

Banca Farmafactoring S.p.A.

China Dynamics (Holdings) Limited

Heta Asset Resolution

Luxottica South Eastern Europe

Luxottica Group

NOVO NORDISK Hrvatska

Omya S.p.A.

Proarh tri

Raiffeisen – Leasing

Renesola

RL – ETA

RL GAMMA

RL BETA

RL Jankomir

Sanofi Aventis Groupe

Sanofi – Aventis Croatia

Sioil

Shire

Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Work highlights

  • Advised Sanofi-Aventis Croatia on the competition ramifications with respect to the implementation of exclusive distribution of certain medicine.
  • Acting for Luxottica South Eastern Europe on the implementation of a Ray Ban selective distribution system in Croatia with all interested undertakings.
  • Advising Novo Nordisk on the  implementation of GDPR in different business areas.

Law Office Mucalo

Led by Igor MucaloLaw Office Mucalo has a strong pedigree handling cases before the Croatian Competition Agency, including on behalf of Croatian Telecom, which the firm is defending in several abuse of dominant position proceedings.

Practice head(s):

Igor Mucalo

Key clients

Croatian Telecom

HEP (Hrvatska elektroprivreda)

HP  (HRVATSKA POŠTA)

INA

Profil Group

Alas Group

Ezpada

Genesis Pharma

Energocontrol Zagreb

Bavaria N. V.

Facebook

Continental Film

Work highlights

  • Defending Croatian Telecom in an abuse of dominance case  before the Croatian Competition Agency on the pay TV market against allegations that it restricted the TV coverage of UEFA Champions League and Europa League and the Croatian national football league.
  • Acting for Croatian Post on the carve out of its EVO TV service, which was later sold to Croatian Telecom, and later in merger clearance proceedings before the Croatian regulator in the area of electronic communication (Hakom), including the administrative lawsuit proceeding initiated by competitor A1 against Hakom’s decision on conditional merger clearance.
  • Representing Croatian Telecom in a case before the CCA regarding abuse of dominance allegations concerning the bulk text messages market.

Porobija & Porobija

At Porobija & PorobijaBoris Porobija is noted for his work for financial services and telecoms clients, among others, on proceedings before the Competition Agency and on merger filings.