Competition/antitrust in Poland
Allen & Overy, A. Pedzich sp. k.
Allen & Overy, A. Pedzich sp. k.'s team is well placed to handle Polish and EU competition law issues, and works closely with the firm's US offering to provide coverage across the Atlantic. The group has experience in cases before the Polish Competition Authority, the European Commission and Polish courts, as well as advising on non-contentious competition matters in relation to corporate transactions. The department is led by Marta Sendrowicz, who also co-ordinates the CEE competition group.
‘Knowledge and well oriented on the market environment, fast recommendations.‘
‘Very professional, great knowledge, realistic approach to transactions.‘
Generali CEE Holding
Indorama Ventures Spain
Saham and Bertelsmann & Co
- Advised Generali CEE Holding on competition law matters related to its acquisition of Adriatic Slovenica, zavarovalna družba – one of the leading companies in non-life and life insurance and asset management businesses in Slovenia and Croatia.
- Acted for Cemex Polska in submitting an appeal against the judgment of the Polish Court of Competition and Consumer Protection after it received the highest fine ever imposed by the authority.
- Represented Asmodee Group in the merger control proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority related to Asmodee’s acquisition of Rebel Polska.
The team at Clifford Chance is led by competition specialist Iwona Terlecka, and has particular expertise in cartel and antitrust law, litigation and compliance, with the ability to provide economic analysis services. The group also has experience of merger proceedings and state aid matters, an area where counsel Piotr Bogdanowicz takes the lead, as well as assisting clients with consumer protection investigations.
‘The team was very professional in a way that gave a very high comfort around the quality of the documentation produced. More than that, in very complicated circumstances, the core team was advised by professionals from various fields – they could be perceived as a one stop shop able to solve complicated, cross-functional legal issues.‘
‘They are proactive, coming with solutions. They are good at negotiations.’
Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA)
Getin Noble Bank
Polish Industrial Development Agency
Ringier Axel Springer
Województwo Podkarpackie and PL Rzeszów Jesionka
European Investment Bank
- Represented Pfleiderer Group and Pfleiderer Wieruszów in pure horizontal cartel proceedings concerning price fixing and exchange of information on the Polish chipboard and fibreboard markets, with the OCCP seeking to impose some of the largest fines in recent years.
- Acting for A. Weber in an appeal against the OCCP’s horizontal cartel decision.
- Representing Lafarge in court proceedings, after successfully obtaining a positive outcome for the client in proceedings before the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (OCCP) in the cement cartel case.
The group at Dentons handles matters across the competition and antitrust space, including investigations and state aid cases, in addition to novel merger control cases. It also has significant experience of contentious matters, often appearing before the Polish Competition Authorities, as well as at the European Commission level. Leveraging the firm's global office network, the Warsaw office acts as a hub for the firm's CEE regional competition and antitrust group, coordinating and supervising cross-border projects. Experienced competition lawyer Agnieszka Stefanowicz-Barańska heads the team, which includes counsel Anna Gulińska, who focuses on the real estate, TMT, fast-moving consumer goods, banking and heavy industry sectors.
‘They have one of the largest regulatory teams in Poland, which makes them well-positioned to advise on our complex transactions and investment projects.‘
‘They focus on the goal, achieving successful completion of the transaction, ability to negotiate with a difficult opponent.‘
‘They understand (and embrace!) the demands put on them by large US and UK institutions.‘
Bank Polska Kasa Opieki
European Investment Bank
Fortum Power & Heat Polska
GLL Real Estate Partners
Globalworth Poland Real Estate
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts
PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna
Polish Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association
Rockcastle Global Real Estate Holdings
The Coca-Cola Company
Union Investment Real Estate
- Acted for Air Products and Chemicals in merger control proceedings relating to its acquisition of ACP Group, resulting in the negotiation of novel remedies.
- Acted for Perstorp in obtaining unconditional merger control clearance for its joint venture with Addcon.
- Acted for Equinor in obtaining unconditional merger control clearance for the purchase of shares and a joint venture with Polenergia.
Areas of expertise for the team at Greenberg Traurig Grzesiak sp. k. include merger control proceedings, where the group has vast experience before the Polish and EU regulatory authorities of obtaining M&A approvals. The team is led by Robert Gago, whose specialism spans competition and consumer protection law, as well as economic regulation. He also regularly handles representations in administrative antitrust proceedings. Senior associate Ewa Tabor-Maciejewska is another name to note, and has developed a strong track record in cases involving anti-competitive practices and practices violating collective interests of consumers. Senior associate Radosław Pawluk regularly advises on the competition aspects of M&A.
‘The team is excellent, very precise and reactive. Having worked with the Polish offices of two other law international law firms in the past, I must say that Greenberg Traurig is way above the rest of them.‘
BNP Paribas Group
Deutsche Bank and Deutsche Bank Polska
Cyfrowy Polsat Group
- Advised Agora on the competition aspects of its acquisition of a 40% stake in Eurozet.
- Represented Smithfield Foods in antitrust proceedings before the European Commission and the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, resulting in a positive decision for the client.
- Advised BNP Paribas Group on competition and antitrust matters regarding the structuring and negotiation of its acquisition of Raiffeisen Bank’s Polish banking business.
Linklaters has built a strong practice advising multinational corporates on the spectrum of competition law issues. The group has expertise in merger control, behavioural and contentious work, as well as representing clients before Polish and EU antitrust authorities. Małgorzata Szwaj heads the department, and also coordinates the firm's CEE competition and antitrust practice group from the Warsaw office. Of counsel Agata Zawłocka-Turno is an expert in European and Polish competition law with experience handling restrictive practices proceedings.
‘They are always available to be consulted and do the job in first possible time slot with no delay.‘
‘Team is very target oriented and knows the law well and the technical stuff you have to watch out for.‘
‘Excellent capability to design reliable solutions in complex M&A deals; excellent ability to deal with very diverse counterparts.‘
‘High level of dedication, dynamism, availability, and personal values – authenticity, humility. A pleasure to interact with them.‘
BP Europa SE
- Obtained a favourable ruling for Orange Polska in an unfair competition private enforcement brought by its competitor, P4.
- Representing Kronospan Mielec and Kronospan Szczecinek in an appeal before the Competition and Consumer Protection Court, against a decision by the Polish Competition Authority that alleged there was a cartel agreement between the client and two competitors.
- Obtained clearance for BP Europa SE for its acquisition of a portfolio of 17 petrol stations in southern Poland.
WKB Wiercinski, Kwiecinski, Baehr has developed a solid practice representing clients in cases involving cartel and abuse of dominance cases before Polish and EU authorities, consumer protection and private enforcement. The group also advises on leniency programmes, distribution agreements and merger control filings. The department is jointly led by Aleksander Stawicki and state aid expert Bartosz Turno. In October 2019, it was further bolstered by the arrival of counsel Dorota Karczewska, who previously served as vice-president of the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, where she participated in legislative processes at a national and European level.
Aleksander Stawicki; Bartosz Turno
‘The team is very friendly, you get quick answers to your questions, and it is very professional.‘
‘Professional, fast, flexible, customer oriented, problem solving/solution finding approach.’
‘Reliable, precise, caring, proactive.‘
Centrum Rozliczeń Elektronicznych Polskie ePłatności
PKO Bank Polski
Pfeifer & Langen
Santander Bank Polska
The Employers’ Union of Innovative Pharmaceutical Companies INFARMA
InterRisk Towarzystwo Ubezpieczeń
Polish Chamber of Insurance
- Successfully represented PZU in the court proceedings against Maximus Broker concerning alleged cartel practices in the insurance market.
- Represents Cemex Polska in court proceedings regarding follow-on cartel damages claims brought by Thomas Beton.
- Represents ING Bank and PKO BP in proceedings carried out by the European Commission concerning alleged agreement restricting competition.
Polish and European competition law expert Iwona Her leads the group at Rymarz Zdort, which handles merger control, cartel and abuse of dominance proceedings and state aid issues. The group has experience representing clients before the Polish competition authorities, as well as the European Commission. Counsel Irmina Trybalska is another name to note, with significant merger control, state aid, cartel and abuse of dominance expertise.
Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles,
Media Development Investment Fund
PGE Energia Ciepla
Polish Development Fund (Polski Fundusz Rozwoju)
Union Asset Management Holding
- Antitrust advice to Grupa Lotos on the acquisition of a controlling stake in the client by PKN Orlen.
- Antitrust advice to Vectra with regard to obtaining merger clearance for the acquisition of control over Multimedia.
- Assisted the Polish Development Fund with obtaining merger clearance from the European Commission and from the competition authority in Turkey for the indirect acquisition of DCT Gdansk.
Led by counsel Mikołaj Piaskowski, the team at Baker & McKenzie Krzyżowski i Wspólnicy Spółka Komandytowa assists a multinational client base with merger control issues, antitrust, state aid and unfair competition matters. It also has significant experience of consumer protection law and public procurement. Senior associate Michał Derdak, who joined from CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Pośniak i Bejm sp.k. in November 2018, is noted for his expertise in distribution systems.
‘The team clearly understands what is going on in the business. We receive very pragmatic advice from the team based on the in-depth knowledge and analysis of the topic.‘
‘Mikolaj Piaskowski communicates risks quickly and effectively. Mikolaj has great knowledge and attitude towards the clients.’
Aflofarm Farmacja Polska
Agfa Graphics Asia
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
- Represented MCI Euroventures Fund from the MCI Capital Group in merger control proceedings before the European Commission regarding the sale of ABC Data to Also Group.
- Representing PineBridge New European Partners II-A in phase two merger control proceedings regarding the sale of its majority stake in the company to ZAP Sznajder Batterien.
- Advised AmRest on merger control proceedings to enable the client’s acquisition of its competitor Telepizza Poland.
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Pośniak i Bejm sp.k.
CMS is noted for its expertise in merger control and antitrust issues, in addition to the team's experience in handling consumer protection, unfair competition and state aid issues. Investigations and litigation are key components of the group's practice, and it is regularly called upon to support clients in investigations into anti-competitive activities, including in relation to dawn raids and antimonopoly proceedings. Małgrzata Urbańska heads the team, while also leading the consumer products group for the CEE region. Senior associate Agnieszka Starzyńska is another key practitioner, with a particular focus on issues arising from M&A transactions.
‘Extremely strong negotiating skills and business minded approach, insight to quickly understand clients’ needs.‘
‘The team is among top such teams in Poland. Well organised and efficient.‘
‘We like the professional, yet down-to-earth, approach.‘
TB Truck and Trailer Services
- Represented P4 before the Court of Competition and Consumer Protection in an appeal against a decision by the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection to impose a fine for alleged involvement in a cartel with Orange Polska, T-Mobile and Plus.
- Advised Medtronic Polska on a variety of competition compliance matters regarding the sale of its products on the Polish market.
- Advised Panattoni Development on numerous merger control notifications relating to its joint ventures with various partners.
Led by 'creative' regulatory expert Andrzej Balicki, the team at DLA Piper acts for multinationals and state-owned companies on competition matters. Counsel Michał Orzechowski leads on antitrust work, where the team often cooperates with the firm's international offices to handle multi-jurisdictional matters. Other areas of expertise include merger control, state aid and subsidy issues.
‘Very energetic team with great understanding of the antitrust aspects of the life sciences sector. They always provide pragmatic solutions.‘
‘Andrzej Balicki is a delight to work with. Extremely knowledgeable about the industry, providing market-leading advice on life sciences sector-related antitrust matters.‘
‘This is a top notch team especially strong in competition and distribution issues.‘
Concordia Versicherung Holding
PGE Energia Odnawialna
TUZ Towarzystwo Ubezpieczeń Wzajemnych
- Advising Philips Polska on the competition law aspects of its distribution system in Poland.
- Represented Allergo.pl in obtaining antitrust clearance for the acquisition of eBilet Polska.
- Representing Saltex Europa in successful appellate proceedings against the decision of the President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection.
Key duo Dorothy Hansberry-Biegunska and Małgorzata Krasnodębska-Tomkiel jointly lead the team at competition law boutique Hansberry Tomkiel, which is known for representing clients before the Polish Competition Court and courts of all instance. Core areas of expertise for the group include cartels, illegal horizontal and vertical agreements, abuse of dominance cases and concentration matters.
Dorothy Hansberry-Bieguńska; Małgorzata Krasnodębska-Tomkiel
‘HansberryTomkiel has a small highly experienced team specialising in competition law with excellent contacts with and insight into the workings of the Polish Competition Authority. Very client friendly. Excellent considered advice.‘
‘Dorothy Hansberry has a wealth of experience as a regulator, general counsel and external adviser. She is a pleasure to deal with and gives very clear, well thought through advice tailored to the issues.’
Veolia Energia Warsaw and Veolia Energia Poland
CEE Equity Partners
Lidl supermarkets Poland
- Representing Veolia Warsaw and Veolia Poland in an ongoing investigation by the Polish Competition Authority concerning allegations of violating Article 6 of the Polish Competition Act and Article 101 TFEU.
- Representing Essity Poland before the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection and the Competition Court concerning the appeal of a Office for Competition and Consumer Protection decision charging vertical price fixing.
- Represented Precon Poland (a Heidelberg Group company) in eight administrative and court proceedings concerning the lack of access to the Polish railway market and for compensation for an abuse of dominance.
Competition law boutique Modzelewska&Pasnik handles the spectrum of issues, including antitrust cases, mergers, distribution agreements and competition litigation, as well as assisting clients with inspections and in consumer law matters. The group also has knowledge of state aid regulations. Founding partners Małgorzata Modzelewska de Raad (an antitrust expert) and experienced litigator Piotr Paśnik jointly take the lead.
Małgorzata Modzelewska de Raad; Piotr Paśnik
‘Itʼs a very resourceful team combining in-depth knowledge of antitrust law and antitrust litigation experience with a practical and business-oriented approach. They are particularly strong in investigations before NCA and litigation before Competition Courts. They have represented clients in various precedent cases related to horizontal and vertical restraints.‘
‘Piotr Paśnik is a star antitrust litigator. He thinks out of the box and is extremely creative.‘
‘The team makes the effort to understand how the business operates, they do not provide out of the box solutions but want to create unique, tailor-made solutions.‘
MAKRO Cash and Carry
ZAP Sznajder Batterien
- Represented Orange Polska in an appeal procedure against an NCA decision concerning anti-competitive agreement between four major mobile network operators in Poland.
- Represented PGNiG in a precedential case concerning the abuse of a dominant position.
- Represented Grupa INCO in its appeal against a decision to fine the company for the obstruction of the national competition authority’s inspection. The case has set a precedent in interpreting the term “obstruction” in Poland.
Soltysinski Kawecki & Szlezak's team is noted for its expertise in Polish and EU competition law, advising clients on merger control issues (with a particular focus on the food and fast-moving consumer goods sectors) and on antitrust issues, regularly representing clients in proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority. The department is led by Krzysztof Kanton, who has vast experience of antitrust proceedings, as well as competition litigation before the civil courts. Senior counsels Jarosław Łukawski, an expert in merger control proceedings and antitrust, and Marta Kupczak-Strzelecka, an antitrust and consumer protection expert, are also recommended.
‘All services provided by the firm were characterised by a comprehensive and professional approach to implementing projects, excellent understanding of the construction industry and a jurisprudence presented by the office employees.‘
‘Experts in many field.‘
Royal Canin Polska
The Swatch Group (Polska)
Jeronimo Martins Polska
Kaufland Polska Markety
- Representing Swiss Krono in appeal proceedings against the decision of the Polish competition authority concerning collusion in the Polish market for wood boards.
- Represent Benefit Systems in an antitrust investigation which pertains to the alleged division of the market and other collusive practices between the client and various fitness clubs.
- Acted for Eurocash in merger control proceedings before the PCA pertaining to the sale of its subsidiary, Pay-Up, to Centrum Rozliczeń Elektronicznych Polskie ePłatności.
Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners has a strong track record in competition cases, with expertise spanning cartels, price fixing, boycotts, bid-rigging and market share issues. The team regularly handles merger control proceedings before the Polish and EU competition authorities, as well as providing the full spectrum of non-contentious compliance advice to corporates. Paweł Podrecki has significant experience in competition litigation and proceedingsand Tomasz Targosz specialises in unfair competition, antitrust and consumer protection cases.
Paweł Podrecki; Tomasz Targosz
‘Professors of law with deep business experience. Unique combination of academic knowledge and business approach.‘
‘Very good cooperation in the field of operational efficiency, communication, high personal culture and extensive substantive knowledge.‘
Fabryka Farb i Lakierów Śnieżka
Polish Trade and Distribution Organisation
Polish Cement Association
Polish Association of Ready Mixed Concrete Producers
Związek Pracodawców Branży Internetowej IAB Polska
Samsung Electronics Polska
Krajowa Rada Komornicza
- Represented the Polish Trade and Distribution Organisation in an antitrust case trigger by a complaint that the client engaged in an anti-competitive agreement with certain banks in relation to interchange fees; a case that was dismissed at the Supreme Court.
- Advised Brawo on competition matters relating to a distribution agreement.
- Represented Krajowa Rada Komornicza in a cassation appeal before the Supreme Court, following antitrust proceedings against the client.
Wardynski & Partners
Wardynski & Partners' team, led by Paweł Ciećwierz, specialises in advising on prohibited agreements, including in relation to price fixing, and merger control proceedings, as well as abuse of dominance and unfair competition cases. It has also developed a competition litigation practice. Antitrust and unfair competition expert Sabina Famirska is also recommended alongside Andrzej Madała, who has experience in merger control proceedings, and Agnieszka Kraińska, who is instructed on international and EU competition law issues.
‘Great at providing almost immediate feedback, communication is great.‘
‘Flexible and quick assistance and a pragmatic and proactive approach.‘
‘On point, on time delivery of the agreed scope of work.‘
Zhejiang Geely Luoyou Engine Co
Aisin AW Co
Enex Electric Power
Oji Green Resources
Compagnie Financiere Europeenne de Prises de Participation
- Acting for Nikon in explanatory proceedings regarding the selective distribution system.
- Representing Cement Ożarów in a case concerning price-fixing, market allocation and exchange of information between Polish cement producers.
- Assisting Zhejiang Geely Luoyou Engine and Aisin AW with merger control proceedings.
Marcin Trepka leads the team at DWF Poland Jamka Sp.k, which advises private and state-owned companies across the energy, mining, financial and media sectors on a range of competition law issues. Key areas for the group are merger clearance proceedings, consumer protection and compliance issues, as well as cartel cases before the Polish Competition Authorities and courts. Another name to note is counsel Elżbieta Buczkowska, who has a focus on competition law proceedings before EU courts.
‘A law firm with an excellent track record in high-value M&A and corporate transactions. Offers high-quality corporate and transactional advice and a thriving international network.‘
‘It provides the clients with team of dedicated and experienced professionals. They offer extensive support in each project. The team is client-oriented and understands challenges specific for the business activities of their clients.‘
Tauron Polska Energia
Polpharma Capital Group
Rémy Cointreau Group
Polskie Zakłady Lotnicze
Polish Wind Energy Association
- Representing PGNiG in a precedent-setting cartel investigation against the client and Veolia Group in which the Competition Office used a parental liability concept for the first time in Polish competition law history.
- Successfully acted for Minova Ekochem in a bid rigging/cartel case before the Polish Supreme Court following an unfavourable Court of Appeal ruling.
- Representing Koenig & Bauer and Durst Phototechnik in a multi-jurisdictional merger clearance proceeding regarding a joint venture establishment.
Gide Loyrette Nouel's department handles EU and Polish competition and consumer protection law issues, as well as advising on commercial agreements, particularly related to distribution systems. The team is led by Dariusz Tokarczuk and includes Szymon Chwaliński, who is able to draw on his previous experience at the Polish Competition Authority.
Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego (BGK)
KGHM Polska Miedź
Polski Fundusz Rozwoju
- Advised Atlantex on the competition aspects of a business remodelling project.
- Advised ETI Food Industries on distribution and competition law issues relating to its entry onto the Polish market.
At Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP, the competition and antitrust group is well integrated into the firm's global offering, allowing it to handle complex cross-border work, as well as matters on the domestic market. Key areas for the team include antitrust and competition investigations and litigation, in addition to merger control issues, dawn-raid advice and compliance. Counsel Piotr Skurzyński takes the lead, with experience in cross-border M&A.
‘Energetic and skilful team with a very good knowledge of Polish competition law and practice of the Polish authorities.‘
‘Piotr Skurzyński has a very good understanding of how our business works and is able to find the best strategy and explain it in a clear way with no useless legal jargon.‘
‘The team’s strength is for sure their availability to the client, responsiveness, high commitment and substantive and broad knowledge within their practice.‘
Makro Cash and Carry Polska
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Nationale Nederlanden Insurance
One Rock Capital Partners
- Representing One Rock Capital Partners in merger control proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority.
- Acting for Covis Pharma in merger control proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority.
- Represented mBank and BNP Paribas Polska in their appellate proceedings against the Polish Competition Authority.
Kieszkowska Rutkowska Kolasinski Kancelaria Prawna sp. j.
Kieszkowska Rutkowska Kolasinski Kancelaria Prawna sp. j. is focused on providing regulatory and competition advice to entrepreneurs with operations in Poland, with particular expertise in the pharmaceutical and medical device sectors. Competition, consumer protection and public procurement expert Marcin Kolasiński is noted for his experience in merger control proceedings before Polish and EU authorities.
‘Exceptional knowledge of various competition legal aspects and international environment, deep involvement in client matters, solution-oriented approach.‘
‘Marcin Kolasiński has exceptional knowledge in various competition legal issues and the international environment.‘
‘Ability to find an acceptable and balanced solution for every problem.‘
Employers’ Union of Innovative Pharmaceutical Companies INFARMA
White & Case M. Studniarek i Wspólnicy - Kancelaria Prawna sp.k. stands out for its experience in merger control, market share and state aid issues for multinational corporates and funds. It also regularly assists clients with antitrust issues, at the national and EU level. Counsel Jakub Gubański heads the team. In 2019 Katarzyna Czapracka, who specialises in complex merger control and antitrust matters, was promoted to the partnership.
‘Jakub Gubanski is extraordinary, in terms of the service he provides and his knowledge in business matters.‘
Hellman & Friedman
- Advising Nets Denmark and its owner, Hellman & Friedman, on antitrust issues relating to its acquisition of Przelewy24 and Dotpay.
- Assisted Mid Europa Partners with competition issues arising out of its acquisition of joint control over J.S. Hamilton.