EU and competition in Netherlands

Allen & Overy LLP

Allen & Overy LLP has an outstanding track record in merger control proceedings before the ACM and European Commission. Also notable is that the firm is prominent in cartel investigations that reflect the ACM’s enforcement priorities, such as those involving televisions and banking payments, among various others. In addition, state aid matters are another driver of activity. Kees Schillemans leads the team, which is noted for its particular expertise in matters concerning industries such as financial services, energy, aviation, telecoms and retail. Schillemans and counsel Tjarda van der Vijver are acting for Dutch postal services company PostNL in appeal proceedings relating to the client’s proposed €130m acquisition of rival postal operator Sandd. In another highlight, Yvo de Vries assisted DSM with obtaining clearance of the €1.6bn sale of its resins & functional materials businesses to Covestro. Elsewhere, beyond merger control work, de Vries led the advice to NZO (Nederlandse Zuivel Organisatie) on an ACM investigation into Koemonitor, which is a new software system that will allow dairy farmers to prove that they comply with legal requirements on animal health, hygiene and food safety. Senior associates Emma Besselink and Pieter Huizing are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Kees Schillemans

Other key lawyers:

Yvo de Vries; Tjarda van der Vijver; Emma Besselink; Pieter Huizing

Testimonials

‘The A&O EU & competition law team has both a practical understanding of the national and EU competition laws and the ability to understand your business, so as to be able to ask the right questions to apply that understanding.’

‘Kees Schillemans is hands-on, business-oriented, sharp and solution-oriented. Pieter Huizing is extremely efficient, while still being thorough, and having in-depth knowledge of the industry as well as having good availability.’

‘Very strong team, both on strategic thinking and practical operation. The interplay between competition and regulated industries makes them knowledgeable and well-informed. They are hands-on, smart and pleasant.’

‘Partner Kees Schillemans is outstanding in his strategic thinking and pragmatic advice. He can deliver an excellent plea when required, but also be just as strong in boardroom advice. Counsel Tjarda van der Vijver is excellent in operations and advice. Strong writer, very knowledgeable. Very clever. Both are also just very pleasant, down-to-earth people to work with!

‘Yvo de Vries is pleasant to work with. He provides high-quality advice, as well as being pragmatic and to the point.’

‘High-class team, with excellent knowledge of this field of law and in-depth knowledge of the markets our company is active in.’

‘Tjarda van der Vijver has excellent communication skills and combines this with in-depth knowledge about the company. She is able to communicate at all levels within our company. She is enthusiastic and a pragmatic lawyer.’

‘The A&O team really works together as a team and is committed to the client. It regularly feels as if my company is the only client they work for.’

Key clients

KLM

KPN

DSM

Aegon

PostNL

Sanoma

NZO

Leaseplan

Renewi

RTL Nederland

Verbond van Verzekeraars

De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek

De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek‘s heavyweight team is widely acknowledged to be a market leader for competition law, with international clients turning to the firm for advice on their most complex, strategic and reputationally-sensitive matters. Jolling de Pree leads the group, which operates on an integrated basis between the Amsterdam and Brussels offices. Its strengths span all the key areas of competition, including merger control and foreign direct investment control, cartel investigations, consumer protection and data protection and state aid and international competition litigation. de Pree and newly-promoted partner Stephanie The are representing British Airways in multiple follow-on actions in the Netherlands relating to the alleged air cargo cartel. Also notable is that, on the transactional side, Bart de Rijke recently led the advice to Royal Philips on the competition aspects (including global merger control filings) of the sale of its domestic appliances business to Hillhouse Capital. In addition, The and others assisted Royal DSM with obtaining clearances across multiple jurisdictions for its €980m acquisition of the Erber Group. Also recommended in the team are Helen Gornall and international litigation expert Machteld de Monchy. Counsel Marieke Bredenoord-Spoek joined the firm in 2022.

Practice head(s):

Jolling de Pree

Other key lawyers:

Bart de Rijke; Helen Gornall; Stephanie The; Machteld de Monchy; Zeynep Ortac; Gurgen Hakopian

Testimonials

‘One of the top-notch competition law firms. Always available and quick to respond with excellent advice.’

‘Jolling de Pree is one of the best professionals in this field. His knowledge and experience in competition law are abundant. I especially value his clear and pragmatic way of advising. He knows his clients well, therefore he is even better at giving pragmatic advice and taking into account the business priorities.’

‘Helen has broad experience both as an external lawyer as well as an in-house lawyer. She fully understands the position and needs of her corporate clients and can offer very pragmatic and ready-to-use advice. In particular, in an area like competition law, it is very important that you find an adviser who offers a clear and well-reasoned position.’

‘Excellent team on all fronts, superb handling of cross-jurisdictional litigation cases, including the manner of client communication.’

‘De Brauw’s EU and Competition team are exceptional. They have a very large team that operates seamlessly and to a very high standard, with an appropriate mix of seniorities involved. Their partners are accessible, strategic and practical, and the more junior lawyers, are all very bright and hungry to achieve client goals.’

‘Jolling de Pree is smart, able to give pragmatic advice in complex matters and is always available.’

‘Best independent Dutch law firm. Great team of partners and associates to work with. Competition practice stands out with a large diverse team of highly skilled practitioners.’

‘Highly qualified, experienced and nice to work with. Stephanie The is a great recent addition to the partnership.’

Key clients

AkzoNobel

AholdDelhaize

Unilever

Booking.com

ASML

Philips

PACCAR/DAF Trucks

Royal DSM

SHV Group / Nutreco

NN Group

DS Smith

British Airways

Work highlights

  • Represented GrandVision as co-lead counsel in the global merger filing processes concerning the acquisition by EssilorLuxottica of HAL Investments’ 76.72% interest in GrandVision. This transaction has been conditionally approved after a Phase II merger filing process in the EU, Chile and Turkey. This transaction gave rise to both horizontal and vertical overlaps and is, according to the European Commission, the biggest retail merger it has ever handled.
  • Acting for PACCAR/DAF as lead counsel in all of the 20 jurisdictions that are involved in one of the most complex mass claims ever made. The European Commission imposed fines totalling €2.93bn on five truck manufacturers, including DAF Trucks. After this decision, massive follow-on litigation was initiated, with hundreds of proceedings in multiple European and non-European jurisdictions.
  • Acting for Illumina on the takeover of GRAIL. This is the first case in which the European Commission seeks to increase its jurisdiction regarding takeovers of start-ups on the basis of art. 22 EUMR. The firm assisted Illumina with suing the Dutch State to prohibit a referral to the Commission.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer‘s EU and competition team in Amsterdam plays a lead role in coordinating national and global merger control procedures for its clients, and it is also highly active in behavioural investigations, follow-on damages actions and state aid cases. In addition, the group has expertise in laws and regulations connected with regulated markets, including healthcare, energy, telecoms and gaming. The practice is jointly led by Winfred Knibbeler and Paul van den Berg, who acted for educational materials publisher Infinitas/Noordhoff in an appeal against the ACM’s decision to grant conditional clearance of Sanoma’s acquisition of Iddink. Another key individual is Alvaro Pliego Selie, whose experience includes appeals against EU tax ruling decisions and multijurisdictional cartel defence work. Also notable is that he assists PepsiCo Benelux with all of its competition matters in the Benelux region. Onno Brouwer, whose practice is split between the Amsterdam and Brussels offices, has been active in EU litigation since 1983.

Practice head(s):

Winfred Knibbeler; Paul van den Berg

Other key lawyers:

Alvaro Pliego Selie; Onno Brouwer

Testimonials

‘We’ve been working with the same people within this firm for years. They have a knowledgeable and smart team. Partner involvement is excellent, as are the associates we work with. The team is always available and quick to deliver high quality and pragmatic legal advice.’

‘Freshfields’ depth of expertise in competition matters is unparalleled. Excellent, timely service.’

‘Paul van den Berg is excellent. He ensures that we receive well-reasoned and practical advice in a very timely fashion. Phenomenal all-around service!’

Key clients

ABB Group

APG

Ardian

Atlas Copco

AB Inbev

Blackstone

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB)

Dôvera

Hutchison Ports Europe Limited

Innogy/Essent

Essity

EQT

Infinitas / Noordhoff

Mars

Nederlandse Vereniging van Makelaars (NVM)

Funda

PGGM

Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V.

SGR

Shell International

Talpa Holding

Thai Airways

UPS

Van Drie

Van Leeuwen Buizen Pipe and Tube Group

VodafoneZiggo and Liberty Global

Volkswagen Group

Work highlights

  • Representing Infinitas / Noordhoff, the largest publisher of educational materials for secondary education in the Netherlands, in a successful appeal procedure against the ACM’s conditional clearance decision with respect to the acquisition of distributor Iddink by competing publisher Sanoma.
  • Representing Van Drie, the world’s largest veal producer, in merger control proceedings with respect to the acquisition of Van Dam, a company that is active at various levels in the supply chain. The transaction was subject to an in-depth Phase 2 investigation by the ACM and cleared unconditionally in August 2021. The ACM inter alia presents this case as an important example of a merger where sustainability considerations play a role in the assessment.
  • Representing Hutchison Ports, part of the CK Hutchison conglomerate, which operates (among others) the ECT container terminal in the port of Rotterdam, in merger control proceedings in relation to the acquisition by ECT of the adjacent APMT-R container terminal, thereby increasing Hutchison Ports’ footprint in the port of Rotterdam.

Stibbe

Stibbe has an enviable reputation in the competition arena, with its team demonstrating strong credentials in major domestic and EU/global conduct investigations and merger control. In addition, it also has an excellent record acting as defence counsel in follow-on damages actions in the Netherlands. In 2020, Floris ten Have and practice head Rein Wesseling led the advice to Viatris on the EU competition aspects of its $50bn merger with Pfizer’s Upjohn business. They are also working with Christof Swaak to represent Credit Suisse in the European Commission’s investigation into an alleged cartel in relation to foreign exchange benchmarks, as well as an investigation into an alleged cartel in the SSA bonds markets. Elsewhere, other work includes acting for Schindler in antitrust damages litigation at the Utrecht District Court, which follows the European Commission’s fining decision in the elevator and escalator sector; Swaak and Jeroen Kortmann are representing the client in this matter. Counsel Marieke Bredenoord-Spoek left the firm in 2022.

Practice head(s):

Rein Wesseling

Other key lawyers:

Christof Swaak; Jeroen Kortmann; Floris ten Have; Roos Elemans; Stijn de Jong

Testimonials

‘The Stibbe competition team has great expertise, which they apply in a very pragmatic manner. They are very customer focused and quick in responding.’

‘The team at Stibbe is simply the best. There is no comparison to other teams.’

‘Rein Wesseling is a great lawyer, and more importantly, a pleasure to work with. And rightly a tier-one lawyer. Additionally, I have never seen a better associate than Stijn de Jong. If you are talking about up-and-coming lawyers Stijn is the one you need to focus on.’

Key clients

ABN AMRO

Air France-KLM

Air Liquide

APG

Atos

Barloworld

Beiersdorf

Biscuit International

British American Tobacco

Buma-Stemra

citizenM

Commerzbank

Credit Suisse

Deloitte

Eneco

Essity

ExxonMobil

Heijmans

Heineken

ICL

Janssen De Jong

KKR

Kuehne + Nagel

Lanxess

Maersk

Mars

MAN

NVB (Dutch Banking Association)

Panasonic

PostNL

ProRail

Prysmian

RWE

Schindler

Smurfit Kappa

Technische Unie

Viatris

Vodafone

voestalpine

Work highlights

  • Representing Credit Suisse in investigations by the European Commission into (i) the foreign exchange (FX) markets and (ii) the US Dollars denominated supra-sovereign, sovereign and agency (SSA) bonds markets.
  • Representing British American Tobacco in an investigation by the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) into conduct in the tobacco industry.
  • Represented the Dutch railway operator NS in a seminal case in the Netherlands concerning alleged abuse of dominance. The Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) imposed a record fine of €41m on NS. In May 2021, the court rendered its final judgment that NS does not have a dominant position on the railway network and therefore could not abuse such a position for a public transportation tender. With this decision, the NS is now finally released from this record fine imposed on it.

Bird & Bird

Noted for its focus on specific sectors, Bird & Bird handles a wide ambit of competition and regulatory matters for clients in the IT, communications, banking and financial services, media, energy and electronics industries. On the behavioural side of competition, the team has extensive experience of internal investigations, dawn raids and investigations by competition authorities, as well as compliance-related issues. It is also highly active in competition litigation before national and EU courts. The practice is led by Pauline Kuipers, who recently advised T-Mobile (as an interested third party) on merger control proceedings at the Dutch competition authority concerning the proposed joint venture between Dutch telecoms operator KPN and pension fund APG, which is intended to roll out fibre to over a million addresses in the Netherlands over the next five years. Kuipers was also the lead adviser to the client on the competition aspects of its acquisition of Simpel; this transaction was cleared by the ACM without the need for an in-depth investigation. Another name to note is Janneke Kohlen, who undertakes a mix of competition and public procurement work. Hein Hobbelen is also a key individual.

Practice head(s):

Pauline Kuipers

Other key lawyers:

Hein Hobbelen; Janneke Kohlen; Piet-Hein Eijssen

Testimonials

‘The team at Bird & Bird is very professional, always up to date with the latest case law and acts proactively. They have profound knowledge of sector-specific regulation and of competition law. But most of all, they are unique in dealing with their clients: very accessible and very respectful to their clients.’

Key clients

T-Mobile Netherlands B.V.

Cellnex Telecom S.A.

NCOI

Tempur Sealy

PPG

Marshall Land Systems Ltd.

Blackboard International B.V.

Corbion N.V.

NLdigital

Epson

SuitSupply

Yum! Brands Inc (franchisor Kentucky Fried Chicken)

Cummins Inc

Work highlights

  • Advised T-Mobile on all competition law matters associated with its acquisition of mobile telecom operator Simpel. The Dutch competition authority (ACM) approved the merger without in-depth investigation, allowing the creation of the largest mobile telecom operator in the Netherlands.
  • Advised Cellnex Telecom SA, a major independent infrastructure operator for wireless telecommunication in Europe headquartered in Spain, on a transaction with Deutsche Telekom (DT), whereby Cellnex and DT will combine their tower assets in the Netherlands. The Dutch competition authority (ACM) gave clearance for the transaction, allowing the creation of the largest independent tower company in the Netherlands.
  • Advised NCOI, the largest provider of educational training in the Netherlands, on the submission of a high-value tender providing educational training services for the State of the Netherlands. Following the award of the contract, one of the losing tenderers initiated interim relief proceedings before The Hague court seeking a preliminary injunction stopping the State from awarding the contract. The firm represented NCOI and successfully litigated in court in order to ensure the tender contract was retained.

Brinkhof

Brinkhof undertakes advisory work and litigation across all areas of competition law, EU law and regulated markets. Pepijn Van Ginneken and Quinten Kroes co-head the team, which acts for clients such as domestic incumbents in regulated industries, as well as multinational corporates. The vast majority it mandates have an international dimension. The group handles a varied portfolio of work, which includes cutting-edge cartel damages actions (representing claimants and defendants), merger investigations and regulatory matters. In an ongoing mandate, van Ginneken and Hanneke Kooijman are acting for Toshiba in all follow-on damages litigation in the Netherlands, which has arisen from its alleged participation in the screens cartel. On the transactional side, van Ginneken and Kroes are advising KPN on the European Commission’s review of the merger between Liberty Global and Ziggo. Remy Chavannes and Daan De Lange are also names to note.

Practice head(s):

Pepijn van Ginneken; Quinten Kroes

Other key lawyers:

Remy Chavannes; Daan de Lange; Hanneke Kooijman

Testimonials

‘The team is consistently professional, available to claimants whenever necessary and proactive in sharing advice.’

‘Pepijn van Ginneken – Incredibly knowledgeable, approachable, proactive and always happy to support the wider team in any way. A true team player.’

‘Brinkhof’s EU competition practice is very approachable and always able to deliver.’

‘Hanneke Kooijman is the rising star within the ranks of Brinkhof’s EU and competition practice.’

‘The key contact is Pepijn van Ginneken, who is an extremely assured and well-connected lawyer. In particular, he is precise and brief, and an extremely good adviser (not always the case in NL, even where the lawyers are very knowledgeable). I’ve worked with many of the best known competition lawyers in NL and Pepijn/Brinkhof is my preference.’

‘The knowledge about competition law within the pharmacy market is excellent. I have dealt within Pepijn van Ginneken. I have great confidence in his knowledge in this area. He does his best to understand what the issue is. He gives well-considered advice appropriate to our organization and the presented problems. He is very approachable. He is able to bring complex problems back to basics.’

‘Very hands-on team. Quick in the “turn-around.” And knowledgeable people.’

‘I have worked for a long time with the partner, Pepijn van Ginneken. Very knowledgeable and extremely skilled. Knows also about the industry!’

Key clients

Google

Expedia

Global Automotive

Heineken

Toshiba

Spotta

KPN

Eurofiber

GoFundMe

Mosadex

Work highlights

  • Representing a number of word-wide brewery groups (among them Heineken) and other large companies in international follow-on damages litigation resulting from the trucks cartel.
  • Assisted Global Automotive (a leading supplier of tyres in the Netherlands) with a merger notification, resulting in the redefinition of the relevant market by the ACM and a go-ahead for the transaction.
  • Represented global travel platform Expedia in an ACM investigation into vouchers issued as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dentons

At Dentons, the head of the EU competition practice is Netherlands managing partner Marc Kuijper, who is experienced in domestic and international cartel investigations, abuse of dominance investigations, state aid cases and merger control matters. He is also well-known for his expertise in competition litigation, where he represents clients in proceedings before the national courts and the European Court of Justice. In a recent matter, Kuijper, Michel Deckers and Denise Coumans were among the advisers to three Brazilian companies on a claim for damages against parties that had been fined by the European Commission for their alleged participation in the cathode ray tube cartel. Another key individual is Bram Braat, who is often seen in cases that involve both competition and public procurement elements.

Practice head(s):

Marc Kuijper; Bram Braat

Other key lawyers:

Denise Coumans

Testimonials

‘The team at Dentons guarantees triple-A advice, which is on time and easy to work with. Asking this team for help means you will actually be helped instead of receiving new questions or obstacles. Dentons stands for innovation and collaboration, which is illustrated by several online tools for clients.’

‘Marc Kuijper knows our business extremely well, which contributes enormously to the added value of his advice. We appreciate his contribution as a business partner, whilst also providing legal advice of the highest standard at the same time.’

‘Marc is a super legal professional, very focused and a real team player.

‘Bram Braat is very proactive, thinks along with the client and its business and keeps his eyes on the solution.’

‘The team advised us on a difficult state aid matter. They were very well informed and were available night and day.’

‘They’re highly knowledgeable, proactive and well equipped to coordinate work across jurisdictions.’

‘Bram looks always further than just the legal side of the case, it feels like he is part of our management team.’

‘Dentons’ competition team truly operates as a team and gets you the expert advice you need when you need it.’

Key clients

Noot Personenvervoer

Vestel Trading Companies

Ricardo Rail

Japan Airlines

Fairtrade

Van Gelder Groep

Leiden University Medical Center

Spaansen Holding

Cemaz Industria Eletrônica da Amazonia S.A./ IGB Eletrônica S.A./ Itautec S.A. – Grupo Itautec

DutchCanGrow B.V.

Erasmus University

Maastricht University Medical Centre

Fleetshield B.V.

Zorlu Holding

Stichting De Glazen Lift

Samskip

Work highlights

  • Advising Fairtrade on the competition law aspects of a new effort to ensure that workers on African farms who produce goods for western consumption are paid a “living wage”. The new system would work by requiring importers to pay a “Fairtrade premium” on top of existing import costs, and that money would go into a Fairtrade fund, which is paid out to the workers directly to raise their income.
  • Representing construction company Spaansen Holding in complex proceedings in relation to the recovery of alleged state aid by the Dutch municipality of Harlingen that claims to have overpaid for land purchases.
  • Successfully represented Noot Personenvervoer in several court cases against competitors and secured an important contract.

Houthoff

In its capacity as defence counsel, Houthoff‘s team has increasingly been active in private enforcement actions arising from cartel investigations by competition authorities. In addition, the group is sought-after for advice on abuse of dominance cases and multijurisdictional merger filings. State aid work is also a driver of activity. The department is led by Weyer VerLoren van Themaat, who mainly acts for international clients and has over 30 years of competition experience. He is leading the firm’s advice to Imperial Brands Plc on a longrunning ACM investigation into alleged price-fixing of cigarettes by cigarette manufacturers in the Netherlands via third parties. Rick Cornelissen is advising Nexans on its defence strategy against various cartel damages actions, which have arisen from the European Commission’s decision to fine producers of high voltage power cables for their alleged participation in a cartel. Gerrit Oosterhuis is experienced in all areas of competition law, with a particular strength in merger control work. Counsel Greetje van Heezik is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Weyer VerLoren van Themaat

Other key lawyers:

Gerrit Oosterhuis; Rick Cornelissen; Greetje van Heezik; Murat Duman; Victorine Dijkstra

Testimonials

‘Very much on the ball, Gerrit Oosterhuis and Victorine Dijkstra are calm and dedicated, which contributes to the quality of the responses.’

‘The team is very supportive and responsive, meeting all of our needs. The team is very meticulous in all of its legal analysis and focused on preparing for important court filings well ahead of time.’

‘I would like to recommend Rick Cornelissen, who is very client-oriented and provides appropriate measures when needed.’

‘Houthoff is strong in international matters. Good network, high quality.’

‘We worked with Gerrit Oosterhuis on many projects. Gerrit is a true go-to lawyer who I would always recommend for competition law issues. Excellent in his field, very friendly and strong at analytical thinking. He was always available for us and could always give good and reliable answers to our questions.’

‘Houthoff has a swift and responsive team with good sectoral knowledge. They are also very proactive in suggesting new ways of collaborations and billing.’

‘The Houthoff team is very knowledgeable and all-round which enables them to serve as our “one-stop-shop”’

‘Rick Cornelissen: Simply an amazing lawyer with a great sense of humour and great character. Rick is approachable, available and extremely knowledgeable.

Key clients

LG Electronics

Singapore Airlines

Total

Volvo Trucks / Renault Trucks

EY

Imperial Brands

Nexans S.A.

Bergman Clinics

Wingtech

Porthos Group

Work highlights

  • Representing LG Electronics in its defence against a major cartel damages claim submitted by Vestel, the leading Turkish manufacturer of televisions and computer monitors, as well as a similar claim brought by Itautec, a Brazilian manufacturer of televisions and computer monitors.
  • Representing Singapore Airlines in numerous Dutch private enforcement proceedings before Amsterdam and EU Courts, initiated by the mass claim vehicles Equilib, SCC and EWD, following the EC decision on the air cargo case.
  • Representing TOTAL Nederland in a claim brought by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, which follows on from the decision of the European Commission in which the European Commission established an EU competition law infringement in the Dutch Bitumen sector.

Loyens & Loeff

Loyens & Loeff has been able to leverage its first-rate reputation in the food, healthcare and life sciences sectors to win new competition clients and mandates. Illustrative of the firm’s strengths in the healthcare sector, Marc Wiggers, Marc Custers and associate Robert Fröger recently advised Zilveren Kris on a number of competition matters, including its successful defence against allegations by Pfizer that its preference policy for generic medicines is contrary to competition law, as well as the Dutch act on the organisation of the healthcare market. Elsewhere, the firm’s increased focus on the digital technology industry has seen it generate a growing volume of work from clients such as start-ups and large online platforms. In addition, other recent drivers of work included matters with a nexus to energy, media, logistics and real estate. Wiggers and Custers co-head the practice with Gert-Wim van de Meent.

Practice head(s):

Marc Wiggers; Gert-Wim van de Meent; Marc Custers

Other key lawyers:

Robin Struijlaart; Robert Fröger; Boyd Wolffers

Testimonials

‘Good knowledge of our organization and the market we operate in.’

‘Besides its on-the-spot knowledge and vast experience, involved team members are a real joy to work with.’

‘Marc Wiggers (partner): on the job, always available, experienced, very efficient in/on strategy, ability to understand client’s business in very limited time. Robert Fröger (associate): always available, able to consume vast flows of information in a short time and able to understand the actual business, which results in him becoming a full sparring partner with the client to get the job done.’

‘Very good industry knowledge, practical, nice people to work with.’

‘In our opinion, the team is unique in the Netherlands in combining a top-class competition practice with an unmatched healthcare regulatory practice. No other firm in the Netherlands can offer this combination (at least not with a team of this quality, size and experience), which is why Loyens & Loeff has for many years been the logical choice for us.’

‘Partner Marc Wiggers is singled out for competition work. Marc is a true super-competition specialist. Marc possesses a unique combination of knowledge and expertise of competition law on the one hand, and specific knowledge and experience in the healthcare (insurance) sector on the other hand.’

Key clients

MSD

HSF Logistics Group

Sun Chemical

Rendac/Darling Ingredients

Zilveren Kruis

Cabooter Rail Cargo

Medtronic

Nederlandse Spoorwegen

DPG Media

Amazon

Bol.com (Ahold-Delhaize)

CZ

Unica

ACTA*/Kiwa

Municipality of Alkmaar

PHOENIX group and Brocacef

MSD

TEVA

Medtronic

Achmea

Goldman Sachs

Blackstone

Rabo Capital

AAC

Coolblue

ABN AMRO Participaties

AlpInvest

Egeria

Gilde

Nimbus

NPM Capital

Active Capital Company

Standard Investment

bol.com

Kloosterboer

Espria

CleanLease

KNMT

AEGON

Aon

Zorgverzekeraars Nederland

BMI Group/Monier

De Hoop Terneuzen

Van Nieuwpoort Groep

PLUS Retail

VGZ

Menzis

Orpea

Equinor

Lekkerland

InterXion

Vivat

Alliander

Torqx

Superunie

Deli Home

Sai Global

Westmont Hospitality

AXA Real Estate

Klöckner

Wessanen

Yara

KKR

Sligro

Carlyle

TSS

Novartis

Cytek

Aurora

CarintReggeland Groep

Sensire

Work highlights

  • Assisted DPG Media with submitting a request to revoke a remedy relating to licensing regulations that were imposed in 2015 in the context of the ACM’s approval of the acquisition of Mecom Group Plc by DPG.
  • Ongoing advice to Zorgverzekeraars Nederland, the association of healthcare insurers in the Netherlands, on various high-profile competition matters. Recent work included advising the client on a joint purchasing arrangement and a solidarity arrangement under which certain costs are jointly borne by health insurers.

NautaDutilh

NautaDutilh has a strong pedigree for handling high-profile competition matters. It features prominently in some of the most significant follow-on damages cases heard before the Dutch courts; its workload in this space spans areas such as cathode ray tubes, pre-stressed steel and high-voltage power cables, among others. The firm is representing Deutsche Lufthansa and its subsidiaries Lufthansa Cargo and SWISS International Airlines in the defence against damages cases arising from the European Commission’s decision in the air cargo space. In addition, state aid cases are another mainstay of the practice; Mauricette Schaufeli and senior associate Evi Mattioli were among the advisers to the Dutch Ministry of Finance on the creation of a €12bn state aid scheme in response to the Covid-19 outbreak, and also twice notified the European Commission of this aid scheme. Elsewhere, Schaufeli, recent hire Nima Lorjé (who joined in May 2021 as an associate partner from Brinkhof), Mattioli and senior associate Arnout Koeman are among the practitioners in the team who are active in merger control mandates. David van Ee has expertise in the development and procurement of infrastructure and real estate.

Practice head(s):

Mauricette Schaufeli

Other key lawyers:

David van Ee; Philip Malanczuk; Nima Lorjé; Arnout Koeman; Evi Mattioli

Testimonials

‘We have been working with Arnout for several years and I have got to know him as a very smart lawyer who is very client-oriented and very experienced in the field of competition law. He has a hands-on mentality and is always willing to help.’

‘Nima Lorjé; he proves that modesty and excellence are perfectly compatible in the legal sector. A top-quality all-around competition lawyer. We will hear a lot more about him in the near future.’

‘The team stands out for its technical knowledge, its practical approach and speed of response.’

‘Mauricette Schaufeli has done a great job re-building the competition team in the last couple of years. The hiring of Nima Lorje as an associate partner was also a good recruitment move and I would expect him to develop well in this role over the coming years.’

‘Mauricette is calm, measured and astute. She is has a collaborative working manner and gets things done on time.’

‘The team we work with provides good and quick advice. The advice is of an excellent nature and does not need a lot of adaptations/corrections. The team understands quickly what is the problem and what is expected.’

‘Mauricette Schaufeli: Very responsive and sound legal advice. A seasoned competition lawyer who has her client’s interests in mind and stays true to her values and principles while staying constructive with a “problem solving” attitude.’

‘The team combines good knowledge of competition law (and economics) with a pragmatic approach. They also take time to design an appropriate (and creative) fee arrangement suitable for any particular project.’

Key clients

Dutch Ministry of Finance

ABN AMRO Bank

Lufthansa

Technicolor

Vopak N.V.

NS

ASR

ECT (Hutchinson)

HAL Investments

SHV, including NPM

Nouryon

INEOS

Work highlights

  • Advising Lineage Logistics on merger control proceedings relating to the acquisition of Kloosterboer Group, a leading and reputable independent company in Europe offering integrated temperature-controlled storage, logistics and value-added services.
  • Assisted the Dutch Ministry of Finance with designing a €12bn state aid scheme in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and notified this aid scheme twice to the European Commission.
  • Acting for Deutsche Lufthansa in its defence against follow on damages claims following the air cargo decision of the European Commission. The case concerns one of the largest follow on damages claim cases currently pending before the Dutch courts.

Pels Rijcken & Droogleever Fortuijn NV

Pels Rijcken & Droogleever Fortuijn NV is widely-recognised for its strength in court litigation involving a wide range of EU and competition issues. The firm has a particularly strong reputation in state aid cases and it is also highly regarded for its involvement in cartel damages actions. In addition, it is also prominent in high-profile merger control mandates. Elsewhere, other drivers of work include cases concerning energy markets, transport concessions and the opening of the gambling markets. Although the firm is particularly well-known for its work for the Dutch state, it also attracts a significant amount of work from private clients. In addition, it also acts as external counsel to the ACM and cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam. The practice is led by Erik Pijnacker Hordijk, who has over 35 years of EU and competition law experience. Recent highlights included acting for ArcelorMittal in a cartel damages action brought by Deutsche Bahn, which arose from the European Commission’s investigation into an alleged cartel among steel companies in relation to prestressing steel. Marleen Botman and George Dictus are among other key practitioners.

Practice head(s):

Erik Pijnacker Hordijk

Other key lawyers:

Marleen Botman; Georges Dictus; Christina Muntinghe; Susanne Kingma; Sebastiaan Cnossen

Testimonials

‘Working with Erik Pijnacker Hordijk is such a pleasure. He understands the business, is available, is always fast and sharp in his assessment and is practical in terms of advising. “The standard” for a competition lawyer.’

‘Pels provides calm support on the spot with relevant legal knowledge and proactive suggestions that go further than the principal matter at hand. The key distinguishing characteristic of Pels is that they really have adapted their approach on legal matters to the modern age. Instead of supplying only legal theoretical surveys, they take a practical approach taking into account the day-to-day business of my organization. So there is a clear link between a solid legal foundation and options on how to act. Fantastic!’

‘Dedicated and well-informed team. Willingness to think a long while case develops.’

‘The practice is unique because it has all the in-house expertise needed for providing full-service legal advice to the public sector. If necessary, a team of lawyers will be put together. The Pels Rijcken lawyers are also renowned for their expertise and have an excellent reputation in the academic field.’

‘I have worked together with Erik Pijnacker Hordijk and Georges Dictus on several court cases. They have shown a good insight into the way high court judges are likely to react to a given degree of technical reasoning, allowing us to have reached jointly supported written submissions and plea strategies in the past.’

‘The team displays a hands-on mentality when it comes to advising the client. It doesn’t matter whether the case is complex or not. Every case gets the attention it needs. They carefully dissect the issues at hand and provide practical solutions.’

‘Georges Dictus stands out for his expertise in state aid law. His pragmatic approach is very effective in figuring out what the issues at hand are and which solutions fit best for the client.

‘The Pels team is very pleasant to work with. They have a good understanding of our position and prove to be a good sparring partner.’

Key clients

Dutch State

Dutch Competition Authority (ACM)

Scandinavian Airlines

ArcelorMittal

Daimler AG

Royal Cosun

City of Amsterdam

City of Rotterdam

EPS

NKT Cable

Medicom

Royal FloraHolland

The Netherlands Gambling Authority

The Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority

Nederlandse Loterij

Work highlights

  • Representing Daimler AG in all pending damages actions, that have been and may be brought against it, before Dutch courts in connection with the decision of the EU Commission in July 2016 on the trucks case.
  • Representing the Dutch State Secretary of Economic Affairs and Climate in administrative proceedings concerning the takeover of a competitor by the largest provider of postal services in the Netherlands (PostNL).
  • Acting for Royal FloraHolland (RFH) in second phase merger proceedings relating to its proposed acquisition of a number of transport companies.

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie attracts mandates from new and existing clients across a number of key areas, including EU and competition compliance, merger control proceedings, ACM behavioural investigations and market studies. Frank Kroes has a stand-out reputation in competition-related damages actions. Elsewhere, the firm is also instructed in regulatory investigations initiated by Dutch government bodies such as customs and administrative authorities. In addition, the implementation of a foreign investment regime in the Netherlands has led to an increase in advisory work for a number of clients. In 2o2o, practice head Christiaan van der Meer acted for Belgian private equity firm Ergon in merger control proceedings relating to the sale of Keesing to BC Partners.

Practice head(s):

Christiaan van der Meer

Other key lawyers:

Frank Kroes; Sjef Janssen; Derk Christiaans

Testimonials

‘Very pragmatic and practical advice, thinking along with the client and its particular interests.’

‘Christiaan van der Meer is very pragmatic and practical, with a thorough background. Easy to work with.’

‘Excellent standard of knowledge. Highly engaged staff and high commitment to help and seek the best solution. Prompt responses and they take the lead when needed. Billing service accurate and competitive fees.’

Key clients

Abbott

Accenture

APG

Biogen

Daimler

Egeria

Ergon

Hitachi

IDEXX

KeBeK

Mitsubishi

Merck

Royal De Heus

Schneider Electric

Shell

Stryker

Work highlights

  • Represented APG Asset Management, part of APG, one of the world’s largest independent pension fund managers, in merger control proceedings before ACM relating to the creation of a joint venture with KPN, the largest telecom provider in the Netherlands, for the implementation and operation of a new fiber-optic network in the Netherlands.
  • Represented Dutch animal feed manufacturer Royal De Heus in several merger control proceedings before ACM, including related to the acquisition of joint control by De Heus over two large poultry slaughter companies in the Netherlands.
  • Acted for Yource and its main shareholder KeBeK (a Belgian private equity investment firm) in merger control proceedings before the ACM in relation to the acquisition by Yource of one of its competitors, Cendris, from PostNL and the acquisition of Yource by Parcom.

Banning NV

Banning NV‘s broad practice covers advisory work (such as vertical agreements and compliance mandates), as well as international civil damages actions and cartel litigation. Minos van Joolingen leads the team, which has a particularly strong presence in the automotive industry; clients in this space include dealer councils of major car brands, trade associations and suppliers. van Joolingen and Sophia Wittkämper are acting for the Dutch dealer association of Opel – and all authorised dealers of these brands appointed in the Netherlands – in extensive civil law proceedings against Opel Nederland B.V. (member of the Stellantis groupe) regarding the applicability of the new Dutch Franchise Act to their relation with dealers. The firm is also defending Fiat, Alfa-Romeo and Lancia Dealer Organisation Nederland (known as FALDON) and its 67 member dealers against allegations of ‘Dieselgate’ fraud brought by a foundation. Elsewhere, the group generates a significant amount of work related to the construction industry and it is also increasingly active in the regulatory postal sector. Martijn Jongmans rejoined the firm from AKD in June 2021.

Practice head(s):

Minos van Joolingen

Other key lawyers:

Martijn Jongmans; Sophia Wittkämper

Testimonials

‘I much appreciate the quality of Minos’ work (crisp, to-the-point, smart), his availability, experience in the field, and also that he is a genuinely kind person. I have referred several of our clients to him and received only good feedback.’

‘Very experienced team, very responsive, longstanding cooperation in different (cross-border) engagements.’

‘Minos van Joolingen: excellent, outstanding antitrust lawyer’

‘Banning’s team is very capable of understanding customer needs and converting them into concrete and effective solutions.’

‘In addition to being an excellent lawyer, Mr Van Joolingen is an extremely pleasant person to work with, a sparring partner and a person who proposes workable solutions. Not unimportant, this partner also has a dose of healthy humor.’

‘The person we work with is a top specialist in our sector. He is familiar with the newest national and European developments. Since he has been our advisor for many years now, he knows the context of our organisation. He is always available for quick questions, as well as for strategy and tough negotiations.’

‘Structured team, very professional, supportive, delivers well and quickly. Very nice to work with.’

‘Many law firms are well-prepared and give detailed and exhaustive legal counsel, but Banning’s team are also very friendly and have an informal approach.’

Key clients

Ricoh group

Udea/Ekoplaza

Perfetti van Melle

Dealer council Audi, Volkswagen

Seat Skoda

BOVAG trade association

Hunkemöller International

Zero Motorcycles

BMN (Bouwmaterialen Nederland)

Vogel’s Holding

Amacom

Van Wijnen group

Vespa Piaggio

Dealer council Citröen/DS

Dealer council Peugeot

Dealer council Faldon (Fiat, Alfa, Romeo, Jeep)

AGC

DHL

McCain

Dealer council Opel

Brand Loyalty

Belron Netherlands

European Dealer council (Audi, Volkswagen, Seat, Skoda)

BarentsKrans

BarentsKrans‘ practice, which is led by Joost Fanoy, is highly-reputed in matters involving the food and agriculture, construction and financial services industries. It is also increasingly sought after for advice on long-term sustainability initiatives. The firm has a particularly strong track record acting for claimants in multijurisdictional follow-on cartel damages actions. In addition, it is equally strong defending companies in ACM behavioural investigations. On the non-contentious side, key workstreams include merger control, compliance advice, cooperation agreements and vertical agreements. Elsewhere, the firm has a growing public procurement practice. Recent highlights included Fanoy and others representing Macedonian Thrace Brewery in follow-on litigation against Heineken and its Greek subsidiary Athenian Brewery, with Athenian Brewery having previously been fined by the Greek competition authority for an alleged abuse of dominance in the Greek beer market. Senior associates Stephanie Vreede and Sophie Gilliam joined from NautaDutilh and DLA Piper respectively.

Practice head(s):

Joost Fanoy

Other key lawyers:

Sophie Gilliam; Stephanie Vreede; Tim Raats

Testimonials

‘A team of very knowledgeable competition experts that translates the legal theory and nuances to lawyers and non-lawyers (including board room members) who are less knowledgeable. They keep up to date with the latest and greatest in competition law and give excellent training to in-house teams on compliance matters.’

‘Due to the longstanding relationship that is present between our company and BarentsKrans, it is always possible to exchange thoughts on business topics without a further introduction on the connected conditions. This makes for a great collaboration.’

‘Communication is one of Tim’s strengths. Tim is almost always available in case of ad-hoc questions and thinks on his feet. This flexibility, paired with exceptional knowledge on EU competition law, contributes to a great overall experience.’

‘Preeminent competition damages litigation group works in a very tight and seamless manner. Every team member has considerable individual merit and experience.’

Key clients

Exterion Media

Porthos Project

Visma Connect

Selecta

EBS

Amadys

Dura Vermeer

Macedonian Thrace Brewery

BMW

Finco Fuel

Claims Funding Europe

Canon

Heutink

Oshkosh Defense

Albron

BCD Travel

Dell

Jeugdformaat

CDC

Exterion Media

Porthos Project

Visma Connect

Selecta

EBS

Amadys

Dura Vermeer

Macedonian Thrace Brewery

BMW

Finco Fuel

Claims Funding Europe

Canon

Heutink

Oshkosh Defense

Albron

BCD Travel

Dell

Jeugdformaat

CDC

Work highlights

  • Acting as plaintiff counsel on cartel damage cases such as Air cargo, Trucks, Elevators, Sodium Chlorate, Paraffin Wax and MTB/Heineken.
  • Working with the Netherlands Agricultural and Horticultural Association (LTO Nederland) on competition law guidance for sustainability initiatives.
  • Acting as the regular sounding board for BMW’s legal department with regard to competition law matters.

bureau Brandeis

Reflective of its fast growth, litigation boutique bureau Brandeis opened its first international office in Paris in 2021. On the domestic front, the Amsterdam team has gone from strength to strength since the arrival of practice head Bas Braeken from Maverick Advocaten N.V. in 2019. Under his leadership, the group has become particularly well-known for its strengths in regulatory and competition litigation, as well as merger control proceedings (acting for notifying parties and complainants). Recent highlights included Braeken and associate Jade Versteeg acting for Prijsvrij in two civil competition proceedings against Thomas Cook Nederland and Corendon; the client is claiming damages from these tour operators for terminating its agency contract in violation of competition law.

Practice head(s):

Bas Braeken

Other key lawyers:

Hans Bousie; Jade Versteeg: Lara Elzas

Testimonials

‘Bas Braeken is a respected competition lawyer with excellent technical skills.’

‘Bas and his team, including notably Jade Versteeg, work as an integrated machine, delivering what they promised as they promised.’

Key clients

Walt Disney/ESPN

Cleary Gottlieb/Philip Morris

EU Athletes/Niels Kerstholt/Mark Tuitert

Bastion Hotels

Dromenjager

Prijsvrij

Dutch Travel Alliance/Dutch Travel Retail United

Centraal Boekhuis

Multi Tank Card

Bosch Siemens Household Appliances

TIX.nl

VTTI

Rabobank private equity fund

AGU

Joh. Enschedé Amsterdam

Work highlights

  • Representing EU Athletes, Mark Tuitert and Niels Kerstholt as (cross-)appellants as well as third parties (complainants) in the appeal proceedings before the General Court in Luxembourg lodged by the International Skating Union (ISU) against the Commission’s decision prohibiting the eligibility rules of the ISU.
  • Representing Prijsvrij in two civil competition proceedings against tour operators Thomas Cook Nederland and Corendon. Prijsvrij is claiming damages from these tour operators for terminating its agency contract in violation of competition law. The case against Thomas Cook resulted in a favourable settlement for Prijsvrij. The case against Corendon is pending before the Court of Appeal after a favourable interim judgement.
  • Representing Joh. Enchedé Amsterdam in appealing the cartel decision of the ACM regarding notarial deed paper which ultimately resulted in a reduction of the fine from €2m to a symbolic fine of €10k by the Dutch Industry and Trade Appeals Tribunal.

CMS

CMS‘ EU and competition practice operates on an integrated basis between the firm’s Amsterdam and Brussels offices. Edmon Oude Elferink leads the team in the Netherlands, which undertakes the gamut of contentious and non-contentious matters for clients, including EU and ACM behavioural investigations, follow-on cartel damages actions, merger control and state aid. Also notable is that Petra Heemskerk leads the public procurement practice, which acts for companies operating in sectors such as life sciences, energy, real estate, public transport and mobility. Elsewhere, the firm also advises on foreign direct investment control and draft legislation on foreign subsidies. A recent highlight saw Elferink, Roderick Nieuwmeyer and other members of a cross-office team advise Equitix on the Dutch and EU merger control issues related to its conditional acquisition of stakes in six PPP projects held by DIF Capital Partners.

Practice head(s):

Edmon Oude Elferink

Other key lawyers:

Petra Heemskerk; Robert Bosman; Roderick Nieuwmeyer; Annemieke Hazelhoff

Testimonials

‘The partner I work with has a high level of knowledge and is able to use this to present clear advice and practical recommendations in complicated business situations.’

‘The team has depth and knowledge of the courts and judicial thinking in the Netherlands, which gives it an edge over its rivals.’

Key clients

Kubota

Medtronic

Pon Group

Shell

All Nippon Airways (ANA)

McDonald’s

AEB

Dutch Association for ICT and Telecommunication Large-volume users (BTG)

Port of Rotterdam

European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic)

Dyckerhoff

Unica

Mitsui Rail Capital Europe

Frasers Industrial & Commercial Trust

Equitix

Indaver

Van Tilburg-Bastianen Group

Work highlights

  • Represented AEB in the proceedings before the European Commission relating to the rescue and restructuring aid that it received from the Municipality of Amsterdam in 2019. The European Commission approved this state aid measure in 2021.
  • Representing All Nippon Airways (ANA) in the Air Cargo cartel damages case before the court of Amsterdam.
  • Advised Equitix on EU and Dutch merger control issues of the conditional acquisition of stakes in six public-private partnership (PPP) projects, among which the IJmond Sea Lock (the world’s largest sea lock), held by DIF Capital Partners.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper‘s team of competition, EU procurement and European law specialists provides cutting-edge advice to Dutch and multinational clients, under the leadership of practice head Léon Korsten. On the competition side, the group advises on horizontal and vertical agreements, as well as ACM and EU merger filings. Also notable is that it handles contentious work, such as state aid litigation and follow-on damages actions. Recent highlights included Janet Meesters and Martijn van Wanroij acting for Danish shipbuilder Pro Safe in litigation against the Dutch Ministry of Defence over the outcome of a tender procedure for the delivery of so-called Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat (RHIB) vessels. Elsewhere, the team is sought after by clients for advice on compliance with EU sanctions and export control regulations.

Practice head(s):

Léon Korsten

Other key lawyers:

Janet Meesters; Martijn van Wanroij

Testimonials

‘The reason for working with this team is their no-nonsense approach, pragmatic and to the point advice. Janet Meesters and her team are experts in their field. The very pleasant additional advantage is that the team is friendly and fun to work with. And they always keep their word.’

‘Janet Meesters is a businesswoman with a human touch and that is simply very pleasant.’

‘Deep competition law knowledge. Down to earth. Pragmatic. High availability.’

‘A team of people who were dedicated to getting all the information related to our case right.’

Key clients

Afvalsturing Friesland

Arcadis

ASR Real Estate

Asset Rail

Ballast Nedam

DEME

Dura Vermeer

Dustin

Ergon Capital Partners

ForFarmers

Hoeksema Totaal Recycling

HTM Personenvervoer

Ocean

Pro-Safe

Société Générale

Waterland Private Equity Investments

Work highlights

  • Successfully defended Afvalsturing Friesland against state aid and misuse of procurement law allegations in civil litigation.
  • Advised Arcadis Nederland on several multimillion, multi-year framework agreements which are of significant strategic importance to Arcadis Nederland’s core business.
  • Acted for ForFarmers on the successful competition approval of its acquisition of its competitor De Hoop Mengvoeders.

Kennedy Van der Laan

Annemieke van der Beek, Martijn van Bemmel and Martine de Koning co-head the EU and competition team at Kennedy Van der Laan, which has a leading position in the Dutch banking and finance sector, and is also active in the public transport and hospitality sectors. Van der Beek is particularly noted for her competition expertise in the payment services market. As part of an ongoing trend, the practice continues to see an increase in follow-on damages actions. In addition, it has seen a growth in mass claims following recent changes in the law. Elsewhere, the group provides compliance advice and represents clients in regulatory investigations, among other matters. In an ongoing mandate, van Bemmel and others are acting for Union Cyclist Internationale (UCI) and Cyclistes Professionnels Associés (CPA) in a dispute with Cycling Service over a new platform for managing prize money.

Practice head(s):

Annemieke van der Beek; Martijn van Bemmel; Martine de Koning

Testimonials

‘They know our business very well and are able to provide advice that is really suited to our requirements.’

‘They are very quick to respond, know the business and know our challenges.’

‘We have been working with Kennedy van der Laan over the past 10 years in the field of competition law. The cooperation is good and successful. The team is well informed about our business and the relevant completion law issues.’

‘We have excellent experience with Annemieke van der Beek and Martijn van Bemmel. Annemieke is an authority in the field of competition law, especially in the payments area. Martijn is an excellent lawyer.’

‘Their practical approach and business knowledge makes the work extremely pleasant, fruitful and, besides all, very useful for clients.’

‘Martine De Koning – Natural leader, great project manager.’

‘Martine de Koning and her team have an exquisite knowledge of the competition rules in Europe/The Netherlands. Besides that, they can translate the laws to the practice of franchising. It is always a great pleasure working with Kennedy van der Laan.’

‘Very commercially minded and client-focused.’

Key clients

ING

Rabobank

ABN AMRO

NIKE / Converse

Currence

NS

GVB

HTM

Geldmaat

Union Cyclist Internationale (UCI) and Cyclistes Professionnels Associés (CPA)

Certis Europe

CB Trafilati Acciai S.p.A.

Port of Amsterdam

Betaalvereniging / Dutch Payments Association

Stichting KOMO

Stichting BKR

Marriott

G-Star

Ahold / Albert Heijn

Secrid

RND

VZVZ

Taskforce Integrale Geboortezorg

Work highlights

  • Successfully assisted Currence and the three large Dutch banks (ABN AMRO, ING Bank and Rabobank) with getting (informal) approval from the Dutch Competition Authority for the modernization of iDEAL into iDEAL 2.0. iDEAL is the most popular online payments method in the Netherlands.
  • Successfully represented the major Dutch public transport operators (NS, GVB, HTM and RET) regarding the proposed creation of a full-function joint venture. This joint venture will introduce MaaS in the Netherlands and will have a major impact on the transport markets, especially in urban areas. It is expected that it will create an innovative and attractive service to travellers that will increase the use of public transport.
  • Successfully represented Nike in a dispute regarding Nike’s termination of its relationship with an Italian retailer based on a breach of Nike’s selective distribution policy by selling products online on the third-party platform of Amazon. This is a high-end case in the Netherlands, dealing with internet platform restrictions and the recent ECJ Coty judgment.

Maverick Advocaten N.V.

Independent boutique firm Maverick Advocaten N.V. has a notable focus on competition law, procurement, consumer law and regulated markets. Clients turn to the team for advice on a wide variety of matters, such as investigations into cartels and other anticompetitive conduct, merger investigations and competition/regulatory litigation. One of the names to note at the firm is Martijn van de Hel, who led the advice to two large hospitals in the Rotterdam region (Erasmus MC and IJsselland Hospital) on their merger procedure at the ACM. Leyla Bozkurt, who has expertise in Dutch and European procurement law, has also acted for a number of healthcare clients since her arrival at the firm from AKD  in March 2020. Diederik Schrijvershof is another highly regarded practitioner.

Other key lawyers:

Martijn van de Hel; Diederik Schrijvershof; Leyla Bozkurt

Testimonials

‘Maverick is in a very specific niche (competition), and within that niche with a clear strategy to represent the market against regulators. The team is well attuned to each other, and as to the (legal) merits ‘clearly on the ball’.’

‘Martijn van de Hel: a sharp, strategic lawyer with humor, who feels ‘at home’ against the regulator. He is very well aware and knows the relevant context, environment and factors in a file. And more importantly: the regulator knows he knows.’

‘The Maverick team is not only amongst the top firms in their field in The Netherlands, but it also provides consistently better value for money. They deliver when promised and give us advice that is actionable. I wish we could find similar teams in other jurisdictions.’

‘Martijn van de Hel is one of the most entrepreneurial and committed advisers I have come across. He thinks like his clients, he advises them like a friend and, when necessary, fights for them like family. His legal expertise is amongst the best. He is incredibly proactive, diligent and fair. Not afraid to stick his neck out. Most Valuable Player in his field, as far as I can tell.’

‘Diederik Schrijvershof is proactive, approachable and very responsive.’

‘We have a very good overview of the market in EU and competition law in the Netherlands. Maverick stands out for its thorough and well-thought-out advice that is practical.’

‘Small team with excellent expertise: can match the quality of the big firms, with the guaranteed engagement of the partner(s) on the file as you find with niche firms. Their marketing campaigns are always innovative and daring with a funny link to latest developments in competition law.’

‘Martijn van de Hel is a seasoned and excellent lawyer combining technical expertise with a hands-on approach and a down-to-earth mentality. Able to level with the client and other counsel in an amicable and constructive manner, yet firm when required.’

Key clients

Achmea

Altrecht

Mediq

RadboudUMC

Parnassia Groep

Arkin

H&S Group

Growers United (Cooperatie DOOR)

Mentha Capital

Gimv

Royal Zon (Cooperatie ZON)

Detailresult

Dental Clinics

De Nederlandse GGZ

Federatie Mobiliteitsbedrijven Nederland (FMN)

Midac

Waterland

GGnet

GroentenFruit Huis/DPA

Tony’s Chocolonely

Funda

Van Loon Group

Equipe zorgbedrijven

Erasmus MC

IJsselland Hospital

 

Work highlights

  • Assisting Erasmus MC with obtaining second phase merger clearance from the Dutch Competition Authority (ACM) in relation to the proposed merger of Erasmus MC/IJsselland.
  • Assisted Mediq, Eurocept Homecare and Excellent Clinics with the process of obtaining ACM’s approval of their concentration.
  • Assisted Stichting Omring and Stichting Vrijwaard with obtaining second phase merger clearance from ACM.

Stek

Stek‘s clients benefit from the expertise of practitioners focusing on EU and competition law issues, as well as its regulated markets specialists. The firm attracts a strong pipeline of competition work in areas such as merger control, behavioural investigations and litigation. In a notable highlight, Ruben Elkerbout and Berend Reuder (who jointly lead the competition team) worked with Mattijs Baneke to assist Corendon with the second phase merger filing procedure before the ACM and Belgian Competition Authority in relation to the sale of its tour operating and Dutch airline operations to Triton Partners. Jan Erik Janssen heads up the regulated markets offering at the firm.

Practice head(s):

Ruben Elkerbout; Berend Reuder; Jan Erik Janssen

Other key lawyers:

Mattijs Baneke; Linde Bremmer

Testimonials

‘The specialised, dedicated and highly skilled staff members make Stek unique. It’s a true niche office in which you find partners and other members of the team that are fast-moving, flexible and available for their clients. In contrast to the large law firms, you mostly deal with partners and are never ‘handed over’ to associates.’

‘Berend Reuder is the partner at Stek dealing with competition law and is a dedicated, highly skilled and down-to-earth professional. He is not only an excellent lawyer but thinks further than the case at hand. Always one step ahead, and always there for his clients. A lawyer you can truly rely on.’

‘The Stek competition team delivers high-quality advice and service which is comparable to top law firms in the Netherlands. Thereby charging fees that are very reasonable. Exceptional value for money.’

‘Berend is able to deliver very clear-cut and pragmatic advice on a subject (ie competition) on which competitors tend to be somewhat vague.’

‘Very practical advice, great training skills.’

‘Berend Reuder was very easy to work with, he quickly understood our business and corresponding needs.’

Key clients

Abacus Medicine A/S – Pluripharm

Atlas Air

Bluestar Adisseo Nutrition Group Limited

Corendon

easyJet

Evides

L’Oreal

Nederlandse Vereniging van Banken / Dutch Banking Association

Nestlé

Samsung SDI

Van Doorne

Van Doorne‘s wide-ranging workload covers merger control cases, behavioural investigations, state aid matters and EU law advice, among other areas. The firm has a particularly notable reputation in the healthcare sector; the key contact in this space is counsel Cees Jan de Boer, who assists clients with matters such as merger notifications, strategic alliances and procurement. Elsewhere, the firm attracts competition law work from clients operating in various other industries, including financial services, mobility services, consumer goods and retail. The arrival of Léone Klapwijk from Loyens & Loeff in November 2020 strengthened the firm’s presence in the energy sector. Other key practitioners at the firm include Sarah Beeston and associate Pim Jansen, who have an interest in the interplay between competition law and sustainability initiatives. Public procurement expert Gijs Verberne is also recommended. Recent highlights included Beeston, and associates Nina Korstenbroek and Maurits Terlouw, acting for EasyPark on the competition aspects of its acquisition of ParkNOW from BMW and Daimler.

Other key lawyers:

Cees Jan de Boer; Pim Jansen; Nina Korstenbroek; Maurits Terlouw

Testimonials

‘Van Doorne N.V. may commend itself for its high-quality opinions that demonstrate a very thorough knowledge of competition law and related branches of law. They put the client’s needs first and try to propose creative solutions that meet the client’s demands.’

‘Sarah Beeston excels because of her many years of experience regarding damages in competition cases. This enables her to give very efficient and thorough advice on this complex matter. And all that with a sincere smile. Nina Korstenbroek is very hands-on and pleasant to work with.’

‘The EU and Competition team is always on call, never fails to deliver legal support of the highest value. International, female-led, very good collaboration with in-house lawyers and business.’

‘Sarah Beeston is one of the best EU and competition lawyers in Europe. She is always thoroughly professional, quick and client-oriented. She understands the business and does not try to be too ‘lawyerly’ when an effective way forward lies in a balanced sales-oriented approach. And she is wonderful in conversation, always listens and has a good sense of humor.’

‘We are happy to have been working with van Doorne for several years now. They know our business and the market well. They also know how we work. The lines of communication are short. We can pick up the phone to brainstorm about issues. We have worked with other firms in the past but choose Van Doorne.’

‘Our primary point of contact is Sarah Beeston. She is very approachable and practical. Her advice is always spot on. We also have good contact with Maurits Terlouw. When Sarah and Maurits give training to our sales personnel they are clear, practical and fun. Teamwork is clearly key to the relations within Van Doorne and between Van Doorne and us.’

‘The van Doorne team is great to work with! They are slightly smaller than the heavy hitters but this makes it particularly easy to establish a close working relationship.’

Key clients

AbbVie

ABP Food Group

Achmea

CPTF Optronics (Chunghwa)

EasyPark

Fortum

Hornbach

Mediq

Mercury (Lloyd’s of London)

Netherlands Federation of University Medical Centres (NFU)

NPM Capital

Oiltanking

Work highlights

  • Acted for AbbVie in an abuse of dominance investigation by the Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets into alleged exclusivity rebates for its medicine, Humira.
  • Acted for EasyPark on its acquisition of leading digital parking services provider ParkNow and the necessary Dutch, German and Austrian merger control notifications.
  • Assisted Mercury and its parent Lloyd’s of London with negotiations with the Dutch Ministry of Finance on the structuring and extension of a €12 billion aid package for the credit insurance sector in the Netherlands in the context of the Covid-19 crisis.

AKD

AKD‘s EU and competition team, which comprises of Dutch-qualified lawyers, divides its time between the firm’s offices in Brussels and the Netherlands as part of an integrated Benelux practice. Jointly led by Pieter Kuypers, it acts for clients on a wide range of Dutch and EU competition mandates, such as merger control matters, state aid cases and cartel investigations. In addition, the group is also extremely active in representing claimants in cartel damages actions. A significant portion of the workload has a nexus to industries such as healthcare, energy and transport industries. Elsewhere, other drivers of activity include matters involving food and beverages, real estate and the public sector. In a recent highlight, senior associate Joost Houdijk and associate Robbert Jaspers assisted Zuyderland with the merger control filing associated with the integration of two additional businesses into the Zuyderland Group.

Practice head(s):

Pieter Kuypers

Other key lawyers:

Joost Houdijk; Nikee Groot; Robbert Jaspers

Testimonials

‘Their antitrust team is very solid and they are trusted partners.’

‘Joost Houdijk is an excellent EU and competition law specialist. He has the knowledge to do a deep-dive in this complex area of expertise, but at the same time, he is able to come up with quick, pragmatic solutions.’

‘Very flexible in planning and always provides an understandable explanation of complex issues, even for non-lawyers.’

‘The team is able to put the right person forward with the relevant capabilities very fast. So no time wasted on internal discussions.’

‘The person we work with most, Joost Houdijk, is first of all knowledgeable, but secondly can formulate it short, compact and to the point. This is important in a business context where the legal details matter, however have to be translated into business decisions. Thirdly he’s always very fast to respond, mostly within the hour.’

‘Joost has extensive experience in all aspects of competition law. He is a rock-solid adviser and a great litigator with great knowledge. This makes him a hard opponent for other lawyers.’

‘Our AKD lawyers are always ready to perform and always perform.’

‘Always accurate, available and outplaying others’ legal advice.’

Key clients

Pro Rail B.V.

VINCI Energies Netherlands B.V.

De Hoge Dennen Capital SHI

Province Gelderland

Natuurmonumenten

The municipality of Tilburg

Achmea

The municipality of Breda

Groningen Seaports N.V.

Work highlights

  • Representing a group of companies in the short sea shipping sector in a competition law dispute with the International Transport Workers Federation in Rotterdam and Hamburg.
  • Advised Denkavit on the acquisition of the animal dairy products portfolio of FrieslandCampina.
  • Acting for litigation funder TransAtlantis in damages claims against alleged participants in the truck cartel.

Clifford Chance

Counsel Frans Muller leads Clifford Chance‘s EU and competition team in Amsterdam, which acts for international clients on multijurisdictional merger filings, high-stakes cartel and abuse of dominance investigations, as well as follow-on damages actions. In addition, it advises on anti-bribery and sanctions and also assists clients with implementing compliance policies. Recent highlights included Muller and associate Jurre Jurriëns advising Royal Ten Cate and Gilde Buy Out Partners on the competition aspects of an agreement to sell TenCate Geosynthetics to Solmax.

Practice head(s):

Frans Muller

Other key lawyers:

Celine Vermeulen; Jurre Jurriëns

Testimonials

‘The individuals all have a lot of knowledge. Besides this, they are very friendly and open. You truly feel that they support you and that you work together with them. Also, they ensure that I feel understood as a client and that I also understand the process and different steps we are going through.’

‘Practical advice that is both timely and insightful.’

‘Frans Muller is the absolute best. Responsive, smart and practical.’

Key clients

Spotify

Nouryon

Upfield

Digital Infrastructure Vehicle (DIV)

ABN AMRO

ING

Rabobank

DSM

Cinven

Gilde

Royal Ten Cate

CVC

HES International

Babilou Group

Work highlights

  • Advising Nouryon, a Netherlands-based global specialty chemicals manufacturer (previously Akzo Nobel specialty chemicals), as their global antitrust counsel covering all antitrust matters, including antitrust behavioural advice and merger control.
  • Advising a syndicate of national and international banks led by ABN AMRO, Rabobank, and ING on the very high-profile state aid aspects of the €3.4 billion financial support package for KLM consisting of a State guarantee on loans and a subordinated State loan to KLM to provide urgent liquidity to the company in the context of the coronavirus outbreak.
  • Advising Digital Infrastructure Vehicle (DIV) on obtaining ACM merger control clearance after an intensive Phase 1 proceeding concerning a much-anticipated next step in the transformation of the telecoms industry in the Netherlands, essentially the de-verticalisation of the traditional mobile telecoms business.

HVG Law LLP

HVG Law LLP‘s team, which is led by Misha lutje Beerenbroek, advises clients on merger control, distribution agreements and vertical restraints, as well as cartel defence. It is heavily involved in mandates connected with heavy industries, retail/consumer products and transport. Pieter Leopold, who is a former ACM official, is a name to note in the group.

Practice head(s):

Misha lutje Beerenbroek

Other key lawyers:

Pieter Leopold

Key clients

REMONDIS

Unilin

Coop Supermarkten

Xiaomi

EY Assurance

Hitachi Construction Machinery Europe

Mitsubishi Logisnext

Shin-Etsu

Nichirei

Kawasaki Motors Europe

Fonterra

Novomatic

Work highlights

  • Assisted Farm Dairy with the ACM merger filing associated with the contemplated acquisition of Veco Dairy.
  • Advised EY Assurance on multiple of their clients’ cartel and abuse cases.

Jones Day

Jones Day‘s team in Amsterdam is experienced in assisting Dutch and international clients with EU and global merger clearances, behavioural investigations and competition litigation. It works closely with other offices to provide a seamless service to clients; in one mandate, practice head Yvan Desmedt is working with the competition team in the Brussels office to represent T-Mobile CZ in a European Commission investigation into mobile telephone network sharing agreements with other Czech telecoms operators. Desmedt has over 20 years of experience in the competition arena.

Practice head(s):

Yvan Desmedt

Other key lawyers:

Rick van ‘t Hullenaar; Coen Drion; Kornel Olsthoorn

Testimonials

‘Very smart practitioners. Easy to work with.’

‘Yvan Desmedt in Amsterdam is fantastic.’

‘Jones Day’s lawyers provide quick and timely services and they not only have legal viewpoints, but also business views. They always consider and propose countermeasures for future risks. This is a very good point for private companies.’

‘Highly skilled team with an ability to give practical answers aligned business needs.’

‘Prompt, direct to the point and business-focused advice from the individuals. Yvan Desmedt is a very skilled and business-oriented lawyer able to advise in a variety of legal aspects.’

Key clients

SHV Energy

Volkswagen Financial Services

SAP

Hino Motors

Suez

Gimv

JBS

DAS Holding

DeutscheTelekom / T-Mobile

Work highlights

  • Advising FESE on the implementation of the EU Directive on markets in financial instruments (MiFiD) and the regulation of data services, which is currently under review by the European Securities and Markets Authority and the European Commission.
  • Advised JBS, one of the world’s largest meat processing companies, on its acquisition of Vivera, a meat substitute business mainly active in Europe.
  • Advising APPLiA, the European association of household appliances, on various strategic industrial topics and compliance with EU regulations (including competition law).

Taylor Wessing LLP

Taylor Wessing is highlighted for its strength in matters involving an interplay between competition law and intellectual property; in a notable highlight, counsel Bram Nijhof and members of the IP team acted for Asus in three Dutch patent infringement proceedings brought by Philips, where the client raised a FRAND defence. Elsewhere, the competition team is also prominent in high-profile mergers, competition litigation involving behavioural issues (such as cartels and abuses of dominance), as well as public procurement and state aid matters. Nijhof heads up the practice.

Practice head(s):

Bram Nijhof

Testimonials

‘Great personal attention, good accessibility, engaging the right people at the right time. In short, we have built up a very good and professional relationship.’

‘Excellent feeling for the issue to be solved in a professional manner.’

‘Very good communication skills to get to the best result possible.’

‘Ambitious team, who is definitely ‘on the rise’. Increasing visibility in the market.’

‘All the individuals I met were very to the point and have a high level of knowledge. What I like is that they are not pushing us to take a quick decision. They listen to our part of the story.’

Key clients

Ericsson

WL Gore

RM (Netherlands) 1

De Vos Diensten

Lidl

ICS Groep

Eijffinger

Vista College

Summa College

Ivengi

Visymo

MBI

Omniform

Ottobock

Asustek

De Meeuw

J&T Express

Rubix Group

Work highlights

  • Assisted De Vos Diensten and RM Netherlands with successfully challenging the decision by the State Secretary for Economic Affairs to overrule the ACM and grant PostNL clearance to take over Sandd. The appeal is now pending with the Trade and Industry Appeal Tribunal.
  • Representing Ericsson in patent litigation proceedings against Samsung in the Netherlands regarding Ericsson’s standard-essential patent portfolio. Advising on the FRAND and competition law aspects of the Dutch cases. These cases signal the next stage of the SEP battles that are expected worldwide and in the EU between owners and implementers of the innovative 5G standard.
  • Assisted Advent International, which owns the Rubix Group, with obtaining ACM clearance of Rubix’s acquisition of Magema.