EU and competition in North West


DWF specialises in advising on EU state aid, EU procurement, EU funding and regulatory matters. The firm has been undertaking an increasing number of instructions in UK merger control work and in 2018 notified three mergers through the Competition & Markets Authority (CMA). Other areas of expertise include cartels, EU funding disputes, judicial reviews, and providing advice around the European regional development fund (ERDF) and Brexit.  Jonathan Branton , who splits his time between Leeds, Manchester and Brussels, heads the team. Senior associate Jay Mehta is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Branton

Other key lawyers:

Jay Mehta

Key clients


Liverpool City Council & Liverpool City Region Combined Authority

Big Lottery Fund, Heritage Lottery Fund & The Arts Council

Burtons Foods

Cornwall Council

Maven Capital Partners

Birmingham City Council/ Finance Birmingham

Dairy UK

Barnfield Group

Manchester City Council & Greater Manchester Combined Authority

National Exhibition Centre Ltd



Leeds City Council

Dransfield Properties


Liverpool John Moores University

Lancaster University

Manchester Growth Company

Wirral Borough Council

Serco Plc

Work highlights

  • Long running complaint before the European Commission alleging anti-competitive conduct by third parties.
  • Handling a variety of difficult State aid issues for the major lottery fund allocations nationwide.
  • State aid advice against delivery of major fund for industrial collaborations, plus miscellaneous advice for other large public funding situations
  • State aid and related advice against delivery of major fund for stimulation of economic growth in the Merseyside region.
  • Advising in merger control notification and clearance by the Competition & Markets Authority

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP advises on cartel damages, competition law, state aid and procurement law. It has a particular focus on the food and drink, and insurance sectors and also advises local authorities, listed companies, universities, developers and venture funds on state aid issues with grants, loans and deal structures. Laurence Pritchard heads the team and advises on EU and UK competition law, including merger control and the control of anti-competitive agreements and practices.

Practice head(s):

Laurence Pritchard

Other key lawyers:

Gary Jones; Vincent King

Key clients

UK Trucks Claim Limited

S. Norton & Co. Limited

Chiesi Limited


John West Limited

Stobart Group

Wi-Manx Limited

Washington Mills Limited

Motor Insurers’ Bureau

British Insurance Brokers Association

Lotus Bakeries UK Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised UK Trucks Claim Limited in relation to issued proceedings on behalf of owners and lessees of over 600,000 trucks which were sold by way of unlawful anti-competitive practices undertaken and admitted by a cartel of European truck manufacturers over a 14 year period. The claim is estimated to be worth £14 bn.
  • Advised the Motor Insurers’ Bureau on the pooling of risks amongst all motor insurers for losses suffered by innocent victims of terrorist actions.
  • Advised S Norton & Co on its submissions to the Competition and Markets Authority in relation to two merger inquiries.
  • Advising Chiesi on competition law issues.
  • Advised John West Limited, the well-known supplier of branded canned fish products, on resale pricing issues.

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard advises on general competition law, competition litigation cases, state aid, damages actions and cartels. The team is also experienced in merger control, market investigations and antitrust counselling/investigations. The firm is seeing an increasing amount of state aid instructions and represents clients locally and nationally. The practice is headed by Mark Molyneux and London-based Bruce Kilpatrick.

Practice head(s):

Mark Molyneux; Bruce Kilpatrick


‘Bruce Kilpatrick is a superb technical lawyer’.

‘Mark Molyneux is a great tactician and always thinking two steps ahead’.

Key clients

Office Depot

Yorkshire Building Society

Leeds Building Society

Skipton Building Society

Lucozade Ribena Suntory

Bruntwood Management Services

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council

Stockton Borough Council

NewRiver Leisure Limited

Road Haulage Association

Squire Patton Boggs

Squire Patton Boggs 's Manchester competition practice is headed by Diarmuid Ryan, who splits his time between London and Manchester. He is assisted by local legal director Nicola Elam . The team is able to work closely with colleagues in London, Brussels, Paris, Washington and Asia to handle antitrust, private enforcement, judicial review proceedings, merger control, CMA and European Commission investigations. They also advise on state aid matters, public procurement and policy and communications law matters. It has also been advising some clients on Brexit-related planning.

Practice head(s):

Diarmuid Ryan

Other key lawyers:

Nicola Elam

Key clients


Ashtead Group plc

Bathroom Brands/Crosswater Holdings Ltd

Bayer AG

Bemis Company, Inc.

BritNed Limited

Brewers of Europe

British Beer and Pub Association

Cathay Pacific

Cott Corporation

Cranswick PLC

Lane Clark Peacock LLP

Live Nation

Low & Bonar PLC

Magnox Limited

Manchester Airports Group

Marston Holdings

Metal Packaging Manufacturers Association

Neptune Networks Limited

Peninsula Business Services

S.A. Industrias Celulosa Aragonesa CIF (SAICA)

SRCL Limited

Synthomer plc

Vp plc

World Sailing

Work highlights

  • Represented BritNed in first ever cartel damages claim to go to full trial and judgment in the UK.
  • Advising Cott Corporation on the EU/UK merger control aspects of the proposed $1.25 bn sale of its traditional beverages manufacturing business to Refresco Group N.V.
  • Advised Nielsen on the CMA’s Phase 1 and Phase 2 review of Nielsen’s acquisition of Ebiquity plc’s adintel division.
  • Advising investment consultancy Lane Clark & Peacock on its involvement in the CMA’s market investigation into the supply and acquisition of investment consultancy and fiduciary management services in the UK.
  • Advised Ticketmaster, GET ME IN! and Seatwave on the CMA’s secondary ticketing investigation.