Firms To Watch: Competition/antitrust

The team at GESSEL Attorneys at Law is led by Bernadeta Kasztelan-Świetlik and advises clients on competition and consumer protection, litigation, unfair exploitation of contracting advantage and regulatory issues.

Competition/antitrust in Poland

Allen & Overy, A. Pedzich sp. k.

Allen & Overy, A. Pedzich sp. k. covers the whole spectrum of Polish and EU competition law. The team is adept at handling investigations, strategic advice and litigation before the Polish Competition Authority, the European Commission and the Polish courts. Its position in the firm’s wider US-European antitrust group allows it to conduct domestic and cross-border mandates successfully. Marta Sendrowicz leads the team with expertise in acting on mergers before the Polish Competition Authority and the European Commission. She is supported by senior associates Olga Wiśniewska-ŁukasiukElżbieta Krajewska and Agnieszka Kolasińska-Czerwińska.

Practice head(s):

Marta Sendrowicz

Key clients

Tesco PLC

Liberty Global

Ørsted Wind Power A/S

Liberty House Group

Toyota Motor Corporation and Beijing SinoHytec

Innova Capital

Yetico

Polish Development Fund

Cemex

Work highlights

  • Advised Tesco plc regarding the sale of its operations in Poland to Salling Group A/S which involved over 300 stores and related distribution centres and the headquarters, and the advice included proceedings before the European Commission and the Polish Competition Authority.
  • Advised Liberty Global on its £31.4bn joint venture with Telefónica to merge Virgin Media and O2’s fixed, broadband and mobile businesses in the UK.
  • Advised Ørsted Wind Power A/S on a joint venture with PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna S.A. for the development, construction and operation of two offshore wind projects in the Baltic Sea, with a total potential capacity of up to 2.5 GW.

Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Sp.k.

The team at Baker McKenzie Krzyżowski i Wspólnicy Sp.k. has strengths in antitrust compliance, complex merger clearances, consumer protection matters, cartel investigations, state aid cases and EU competition mandates. More recently, the team has also expanded its practice to include antitrust litigation and enforcement. Recent addition Marcin Trepka, who is praised as ‘one of the best competition/antitrust lawyers in Poland‘, and Mikolaj Piaskowski  jointly lead the team, which has undergone significant expansion with the additions of Elżbieta BuczkowskaMartyna Wurm and Łucja Olszewska from DWF Poland Jamka Sp.k.

Testimonials

‘Competition law is a strong practice within Baker McKenzie. Good communication and collaboration, experience and legal knowledge. Flexibility in finding solutions.’

‘Mr Marcin Trepka is a one of the best competition/antitrust lawyers in Poland. Additionally, he is very business oriented with deep knowledge about the pharmaceutical industry, which allows him to customise his legal services to cover all the aspects of clients’ needs.’

‘Mikolaj Piaskowski is a leading practitioner in the competition law field. Always willing to find appropriate solutions, combines his legal expertise (not only within Polish law, but also concerning other countries in CEE region) with commercial approach. I especially appreciate the training on competition law Mikolaj delivered lately to my international team members (on new trends in competition law). I received very positive feedback on Mikolaj’s professional presentation and knowledge from all of the countries.’

‘I believe that this practice is exceptional because of the person who is leading it, namely Mikolaj Piaskowski. Mikolaj is my first and only point of contact and I highly value his responsiveness, experience, knowledge-about industry and business oriented advices.’

‘Marcin Trepka is an outstanding competition lawyer who can deal with the most complex and sensitive competition law issues. Extraordinary communication skills, vast expertise combined with a pragmatic approach to problems and thinking out of the box make him one of the best antitrust lawyers on the market.’

‘My main contact person is Mr. Marcin Trepka, an experienced lawyer specialised in competition law with a business-wise approach. I highly recommend Mr. Trepka in issues related to anti-trust law and compliance.’

‘I have always found Marcin Trepka’s advice to be technically excellent, taking into consideration recent case law and legislative changes. He is very skilled in crafting pleadings and conveying complex legal issues in a clear and straightforward manner. However, it is Marcin’s approach to advising his clients, and his energetic and tenacious style, that makes him invaluable as an advisor and litigator, and sets him apart from his peers.

Key clients

Polskie Górnictwo Naftowe i Gazownictwo S.A.

MINOVA Ekochem S.A.

KNAUF Service sp. z o.o.

Sport Project sp. z o.o.

MERIDA Polska sp. z o.o.

CANAL+ Polska S.A.

Getback S.A.

TERG S.A.

Dom Development S.A.

PKP Cargo

SPIE

Align Technologies

HPE

Raiffeisen Bank International AG

McFIT Polska sp. z o.o.

ZF Polpharama S.A.

Asbud Mokotów sp. z o.o.

Wydawnictwa Szkolne i Pedagogiczne S.A.

PKN ORLEN S.A.

GAZ SYSTEM S.A.

Work highlights

  • Defended MINOVA Ekochem S.A. successfully before the Court of first instance  in precedent antitrust litigation submitted by Spółka Restrukturyzacji Koplań SA with total damages amounting to 88.9m PLN.
  • Successfully defended PGNiG in a precedent-setting cartel investigation accusing Veolia Energia Polska, Veolia Energia Warszawa, PGNiG Termika and PGNiG and two managers from Veolia Energia Warszawa and PGNiG Termika of price-fixing, market sharing and bid rigging on the Warsaw heat market (the biggest heat market in Europe).
  • Advising PKN Orlen S.A. on a wide array of competition law issues in connection with a pioneer project consisting of development of an offshore wind project in the Polish exclusive economic zone at the Baltic Sea.

Clifford Chance

The substantial Warsaw-based group at Clifford Chance is highly adept at handing a wide range of mandates, including cartel and antitrust law, damage litigation, compliance matters, merger cases, consumer protection investigations and state aid matters. Practice head Iwona Terlecka, is praised for her 'professionalism, efficiency and thoroughness'.State aid specialist Piotr Bogdanowicz and Marta Matynia are also notable team members and associate Filip Stawicki joined the team from Allen & Overy, A. Pedzich sp. k.

Practice head(s):

Iwona Terlecka

Testimonials

‘Clifford Chance offers the highest standards of services . We appreciate the immediate response to our inquiries and the ability to obtain the opinion of experts from various areas, including not only legal, but also economical.’

‘CC operates broadly and efficiently, has the resources and staff to provide the best legal advice and cares deeply about its clients. The specialists employed in CC constitute a great deal of the firm’s reputation and are the key factor in what makes them exceptional. The firm is characterized by its fast response rate. Their accuracy and willingness to go beyond what is expected allows them to excel in their services compared with others.’

‘Iwona Terlecka and Filip Stawicki possess broad, cross-sectional and thorough knowledge of antitrust European and Polish law and doctrine. Their most important strengths are certainly professionalism, efficiency and thoroughness combined with proper preparation to all relevant subjects and the fact that they all can be trusted with sensitive and complex matters.

‘Marta Matynia is clear in her judgement, helpful and easy to communicate with.’

‘Iwona Terlecka provides advice of a very high competence; her approach to the substantive issue and the commitment gives the customer a sense of security and decisions are the result of information provided in an accessible manner.’

Key clients

Mondelēz

Allegro

Pfleiderer

L’Oréal

Axel Springer

Ringier Axel Springer

LafargeHolcim

A. Weber

CVC

Macquarie

DaVita

Montagu

Cinven

Permira

Advent

Work highlights

  • Advised Allegro.eu on its listing on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, including on all antitrust and merger control matters related to this IPO as well as drafting the antitrust sections of the prospectus and other documents related to the IPO.
  • Advising Allegro regarding antitrust proceedings conducted by the OCCP.

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Posniak i Bejm sp.k.

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Pośniak i Bejm sp.k.‘s competition practice sits within the firm’s global and EU competition group, advising on the whole spectrum of matters, including merger control, antitrust compliance, investigations, unfair competition and consumer protection as well as state aid and public procurement. The team also represents clients in proceedings concerning alleged anti-competitive behaviour before the Polish Competition Authority and the competition courts. Competition expert Małgorzata Urbańska heads up the group as well as leading the firm’s consumer products sector focus practice in Central  and Eastern Europe. Senior associates Agnieszka Starzyńska and Izabela Biernat-Sadlak are also notable team members.

Practice head(s):

Małgorzata Urbańska

Testimonials

‘A very dedicated team, meaning that CMS is always available for us in any form and any time and very experienced members, knowing latest local practice of the authority as well as European trends. CMS has expertise in many European markets, that makes CMS an excellent partner in international projects.’

‘It is an excellent team, incredibly strong in competition matters. It has brilliant specialists with extensive legal knowledge, real in-depth expertise and experience. The team is very dedicated and committed to producing the best results for you. They work extremely well together, you have a feeling that you get advice from a team rather than individual lawyers. They are practical in their advice and also understand our objectives and business dynamics. We would not seek competition law advisory elsewhere – CMS Poland delivers it exceptionally well.’

‘Malgorzata Urbanska, the head of the competition team in Poland, is a top-class lawyer who is great to work with. She is an absolute expert in antitrust and combines competition law expertise with an excellent business understanding. She has the rare ability to provide the right combination of strategic sophisticated advice and pragmatic execution. Her best attribute is exceptional client care, she is there for you and with you to solve your problem with a lot of commitment and own initiative.’

‘CMS has huge diversity and is able to cover a lot of areas. Their advice is concise and to the point, yet very comprehensive. They have really high expertise and they are business-oriented and very practical (rather than purely theoretical).’

‘Malgorzata Urbanska has good engagement and knowledge. Izabela Biernat-Sadlak has built a dossier of knowledge. Krzysztof Sikora has good experience with governmental institutions.’

‘Izabela Biernat-Sadlak provided great assistance, proactively reaching out to help in the ongoing matters and more significant projects. Her understanding of the business and the ability to address the underlying commercial and legal issues are definitely worth calling out.’

‘Izabela Biernat-Sadlak is an excellent antitrust lawyer. She is very experienced, incredibly knowledgeable, and delivers very high-quality work. She has a great ability to provide guidance that is specific, well-thought through and practical. She is energetic, business-oriented, and provides very good client care.’

‘My main point of contact in the team is Izabela Biernat-Sadlak. Izabela is great to work with, she is engaged and very responsive, pro-active in looking for tailored solutions.’

Key clients

Bombardier Transportation

Van Tilburg-Bastianen Group

TB Truck & Trailer Service Sp. z o.o.

Stuart

Groupe CAT

Plansee Holding AG

PZ Cussons

Bayerische Motoren Werke AG

BMW

Panattoni Development

Honeywell

Diageo

CooperVision Poland

Primark

Medtronic

Bausch Health

Sportsdirect

Hasbro

Work highlights

  • Advising CooperVision Poland on competition and consumer protection issues relating to its day-to-day activities on the Polish market.
  • Advising Van Tilburg-Bastianen Group, as well as its Polish subsidiary TB Truck & Trailer Service, in a cartel case conducted by the Polish Competition Authority against four DAF dealers in Poland.
  • Advising Vattenfall AB on securing merger clearance for establishing joint ventures with Synthos in the Polish off-shore wind farms sector.

Dentons

The competition practice at Dentons specialises in antitrust investigations and state aid, as well as in complex merger control cases and contentious matters involving investigations and litigation. The team is also well-situated to handle cross-border mandates. Practice head Agnieszka Stefanowicz-Barańska is active in representing clients in EU and Polish competition authority proceedings and before Polish courts. She is supported by Michał Bernat and Aleksandra Siemieniec, who focus on state aid; counsel Anna Gulińska, who is a specialist in TMT and real estate; senior associate Maciej Marek, who is skilled in chemicals and heavy industry; and Adrian Bielecki, who has a core focus on transport, logistics and life sciences.

Testimonials

‘Dentons has a highly experienced team of lawyers in the field of competition and consumer protection law. Their advice is always based on a thorough knowledge of the rules and precedents, but nevertheless always put into practice.’

‘I believe that, on the Polish market, Dentons has one of the most experienced competition law teams’.

‘Thanks to being part of an international law firm with such a global footprint as Dentons, they are able to assist in many jurisdictions concurrently, which is especially useful to us.’

‘Adrian Bielecki is very responsive with, good attention to details.’

As for stand-out individuals, I would before all like to single out Ms. Agnieszka Stefanowicz-Barańska, who heads Dentons’ competition practice in Poland. When there is a legal issue we might work on together, she is my first point of contact. Also, I have worked closely with Mr. Maciej Marek – I liked his sharpness, as well as the speed with which he was able process the information we would throw at him.’

‘Agnieszka has a unique knowledge of competition law. She has a very commercial approach and makes the client feel safe.’

‘Agnieszka Stefanowicz-Barańska and Anna Gulińska have extensive experience, which allows them to provide advice and find solutions of great practical and business dimension. Agnieszka and Anna are great partners in long-term cooperation, always well versed in many aspects of their clients’ business. They are proactive in communicating to the client about changes in the law or events affecting this business.’

Key clients

Air Products

Alvitra

Arriva

Audi

Celanese

Cornerstone Partners

Dr Max

Dr. Ing. H.C F. Porsche AG

DT One

Echo Investment

Enea

Enefit

Fresenius Kabi

Geodis

Ghelamco

GreenOak Europe

HB Reavis

Henkel

Hines

ING Bank Slaski

Kajima Properties

Lhoist

Mansa

Morgan Stanley

Netflix

PCC

Resource Partners

REYL & Cie

Robert Bosch

Salenia

Santander Bank

Tech Data

The Coca-Cola Company

Total SE

UPC

Veolia

Volkswagen

White Star

Yamaha

Yokohama Europe

Yves Rocher

Work highlights

  • Represented Yamaha Music Europe and obtained a favourable decision in a leniency case and substantially reduced the fine.
  • Advised several Volkswagen Group companies on obtaining a number of unconditional merger control clearances from the Polish competition authority for establishing joint ventures.
  • Advised Total on obtaining an unconditional merger control clearance from the Polish competition authority for establishing a joint venture with Shell and Equinor, which will oversee all project activities, including business development, related to the development of the world’s first Carbon Capture and Storage network, the Northern Lights project off Norway.

Linklaters

Linklaters advises international corporations and their Polish subsidiaries on matters spanning all aspects of antitrust/competition law, including merger control, behavioural investigations, state aid, consumer protection, foreign investment and contentious work. Małgorzata Szwaj heads the department with expertise in Polish and EU competition law matters. Of counsel Agata Zawłocka-Turno‘s practice benefits from her previous experience at the Polish Competition Authority and managing associate Wojciech Podlasin has broad sector expertise, including IT, energy, financial services, real estate and chemicals.

Practice head(s):

Małgorzata Szwaj

Testimonials

‘I like the calmness and foresight of the team, proactively addressing matters and anticipating risks. No egos involved –  just the objective to get the job done.’

‘Very accessible and flexible – which for me is very important – even more when tight deadlines are taken into account.’

‘Malgorzata Szwaj has an employment history at the competition authority and having that “inside” perspective to the workings of the “system” is invaluable.’

‘Malgorzata Królak is a stellar lawyer.’

Key clients

Celsa Huta Ostrowiec

GetBack

JD Sports Fashion

Kronospan

LUX MED

Nexi

Orange Polska

Polski Fundusz Rozwoju S.A.

Work highlights

  • Advised the Polish state represented by PFR on the state aid aspects of reviewing its support schemes aimed at helping companies combat the negative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Representing Kronospan Mielec sp. z o.o. and Kronospan Szczecinek sp. z o.o. in appeal proceedings before the Court for the Protection of Competition and Consumers against a decision by the PCA finding a cartel agreement allegedly concluded between Kronospan companies and its two competitors.
  • Advised JD Sports Fashion on the merger control aspects of the acquisition of 60% shares of Marketing Investment Group S.A.

WKB Wiercinski, Kwiecinski, Baehr

The practice at WKB Wiercinski, Kwiecinski, Baehr handles the full spectrum of competition law issues, including cartels, leniency programmes, distribution agreements, merger control and consumer protection, advising both local and international clients involved in the e-commerce, finance and energy sectors. The team also represents clients before the European Commission and the Polish Competition Authority and court disputes. Aleksander Stawicki leads the group and has previously served as the President of the Competition Law Commission of the Union Internationale des Avocats. He is supported by Bartosz Turno, who has a strong academic background and advises on the full spectrum of competition law. Dorota Karczewska has been promoted to partner and previously held the position of Vice President of the Polish Competition Authority.

Practice head(s):

Aleksander Stawicki

Testimonials

‘Their accuracy and willingness to go beyond what is expected allows them to excel in their services compared with others. The firm operates broadly and efficiently, has the resources and staff to provide the best legal advice and cares deeply about its clients. The specialists employed in WKB constitute a great deal of the firm’s reputation and are the key factor determining what makes them exceptional.’

‘Broad, good practice within competition law.’

‘Alexander Stawicki is the best Polish competition lawyer with an in-depth knowledge of all areas of Polish competition law and an understanding of international clients’ needs and expectations.’

‘Dorota Karczewska from WKB is an excellent advisor in the area of consumer protection. She has been supporting us in numerous proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority, always providing services of the highest standards and legal advice with utmost care.’

‘Bartosz Turno and Aleksander Stawicki: important advisors in antitrust issues.’

Key clients

Agora S.A.

CEMEX POLSKA S.A.

DNB Bank Polska

DBK Group

Pfeifer & Langen

Lidl Polska

Pigments Spain

STADA Arzneimittel

PSA Automobiles

Punch Powertrain NV

PKO BP, Pekao S.A.

Jeronimo Martins

Polska Liga Koszykówki S.A.

Discovery TVN

Pekao Leasing

Stock Spirits

Tauron Polska Energia & Enea

Work highlights

  • Represented DBK Group in proceedings carried out by the Polish Competition Authority concerning an alleged agreement restricting competition, bid rigging and an alleged agreement restricting competition in connection to IVECO trucks.
  • Represented Jeronimo Martins in the appeal against a decision of the Polish Competition Authority imposing a heavy fine of PLN 60m for alleged infringement of consumers’ interests.
  • Rrepresented Pigments Spain in proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority to take control of Ferro Corporation for tile coating solutions.

DLA Piper Giziński Kycia sp.

Andrzej Balicki and counsel Michał Orzechowski jointly lead the team at DLA Piper, which sits within the firm’s wider regulatory and public affairs department. Balicki has sector focuses in the life sciences, food and beverage, and energy sectors and focuses on the abuse of dominant positions, whilst Orzechowski has expertise in public procurement. More generally, the team is active in merger control mandates and state aid cases, as well as representing clients in proceedings before the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection.

Other key lawyers:

Agnieszka Staszek

Testimonials

‘The team is highly experienced in life sciences regulatory, distribution and procurement matters. They really understand all practical, legal and business aspects of distribution of medical products. They support us on both legal and business aspects.’

‘The team has a great and well-deserved reputation. They always find solutions in very challenging situations. DLA Piper has a market leading team in relation to all aspects related to the distribution of medical devices. What makes them even more unique is diversity. This is a value that is clearly visible in their daily practice.’

‘The practice is well known for combining its regulatory knowledge and antitrust awareness under the same roof. This makes their advice to-the-point and less theoretical compared to other firms. Their key competitive advantage is sectorial knowledge.’

‘The team has practical and outstanding experience and skills in legal matters regarding antitrust proceedings.’

‘They have solid knowledge, a “can do” approach, think strategically, creative mind-set, good commercial awareness and a pragmatic, solutions-oriented, point of view.’

‘Michal Orzechowski: he has unique experience in high profile cases at the intersection of public procurement and competition law.’

‘Andrzej Balicki: a renowned market expert in life sciences.’

‘Michał Orzechowski is a business-oriented advisor, ensuring appropriate legal service to the company at the highest quality level in a friendly atmosphere. He understands the aim of legal support is enabling business opportunities.’

‘Michal Orzechowski stands out as a young lawyer with vast experience. He remains involved in all matters that require in-depth knowledge. He’s an outstanding partner, helping clients to understand regulatory obstacles in a digestible manner.’

‘Andrzej Balicki: a role model of a trusted advisor, one of the best I have ever met. He has a unique ability to explain practical business implications of complex regulatory requirements. He always comes up with implementable solutions. Michał Orzechowski has innovative idea on distribution topics.’

Key clients

Allergan

Allegro.pl

AmeriGas

Discovery Communications

Generali

HCL Technologies

Hubert Burda Media

Lotos Air-BP Polska

Storskogen

Trek Bicycle Corporation

Żabka Polska

Work highlights

  • Advising Lotos Air-BP Polska, a joint venture between Lotos and BP, on its involvement in merger control proceedings before the European Commission concerning the high-profile acquisition of Lotos by Orlen.
  • Advising Żabka Polska, a portfolio company of CVC Capital Partners, on all competition law aspects of its acquisition of Maczfit Foods, a leader in dietary catering in Poland, from Resource Partners.
  • Representing Trek Bicycle Corporation in proceedings launched by and pending before the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK).

Greenberg Traurig Nowakowska-Zimoch Wysokiński Sp. k

Greenberg Traurig Grzesiak sp. k. provides advice across a variety of areas, including competition and antitrust matters as well as merger control and representing clients in court proceedings. Robert Gago leads the department and combines his expertise in competition with a focus on consumer protection; he is adept at representing clients in proceedings before the European Commission and the President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection. Senior associate Ewa Tabor-Maciejewska is an expert in advising Polish and foreign clients on competition and consumer protection law.

Practice head(s):

Robert Gago

Testimonials

‘Greenberg Traurig’s attorneys are passionate about their client’s cases. They like to engage with their clients, embrace their business aims and discuss their future projects. They plan ahead for maximum commercial benefit.’

‘The way of preparing comments for the management team on the contracts under review gave the opportunity to focus on important things, This is is very important in the case of large projects. Comments were made verbally or in writing outside the contract text, which greatly facilitated risk management’

‘Fantastic, reputable team; excellent communication skills mirrored with stellar market experience. Engaged in high profile cases, the team is also hard to beat when it comes to day-to-day, and ad hoc advice. On top, agile negotiators with strong common sense.’

‘The GT team, in particular Robert Gago, is very committed and thoroughly acquainted with the company’s activities, becoming a partner in the entrusted task. With his support, you feel that he is part of the team and not an external advisor.’

‘Robert Gago believes in working closely with clients to build successful relations. He has flawless unfair competition law knowledge and extensive experience.’

‘Robert Gago, market veteran. Exceptional strategy building skills accompanied by business acumen. In terms of legal advice, one of the best on the market. The very first point of contact, regardless of the matter. He always offers pragmatic solutions. Trusted counsel; the one you want to take with you when you change places.’

‘Robert Gago is a skilful individual who knows how to combine legal, market and practical knowledge. We trust him a lot because not only he understands his job, but also can adequately put it into the business context.’

‘Ewa Tabor, hard working, with excellent communication skills, knowledgeable, and able to manage complicated projects.’

Key clients

Allianz SE

Cyfrowy Polsat S.A.

Polkomtel sp. z o.o.

Agora S.A.

Black Red White S.A.

Partners Group

Innova Capital

CCC Group

Reino Capital S.A.

Work highlights

  • Advising Allianz S.E. in connection with the merger proceedings before the European Commission relating to the purchase of the Polish life and non-life insurance operations, as well as pension and asset management business, from Aviva and acquisition of 51% stakes in Aviva’s life and non-life bancassurance joint ventures with Santander.
  • Assisted Cyfrowy Polsat S.A. and Polkomtel sp. z o.o. on the merger control proceedings related to a conditional sale agreement concerning a 99.99% stake in Polkomtel Infrastruktura sp. z o.o., a subsidiary of Polsat Group, with Cellnex Poland sp. z o.o., a subsidiary of Cellnex Telecom S.A.
  • Representing Agora S.A. in an appeal against the January 7, 2021 decision of the OCCP President, prohibiting Agora from taking control over Eurozet Sp. z o.o.

Hansberry Tomkiel

The team at boutique firm Hansberry Tomkiel is skilled in handling competition matters including matters related to cartels, illegal horizontal and vertical agreements, abuse of dominance and concentrations. The team is also experienced in litigating competition cases before courts of all instances. Sector focuses include energy, publishing, financial services, retail, media and transport. Founders Dorothy Hansberry-Bieguńska, who has expertise in cartel matters, and Małgorzata Krasnodębska-Tomkiel, who was previously at the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, lead the team. Grzegorz Materna provides additional support.

Testimonials

‘Unique competition law specialists in the Polish market. High quality work. Innovative thinking. Determined to drive excellent outcomes for their client. A team of very strong, bright, innovative lawyers.’

‘The team is very professional, a clear way of billing and a flexible approach to the service provided.’

‘The team was extremely invested in producing a good outcome in the case.’

‘Malgorzata is a former agency head who advises uniquely in Poland from her long experience at the agency.’

‘Dorothy is super responsive and client-friendly’

‘Dorothy Hansberry is a stand-out lawyer. Bright, dedicated, excellent at seeing all angles of a particular case, really goes the extra mile to achieve the best possible outcome. Excellent competition law specialist.’

‘Małgorzata Krasnodebska Tomkiel formulates very accurate conclusions supported by professional methodology. Approaches each problem individually in the way it deserves.’

‘The founding partner, Dorothy Hansberry-Biegunska, is an extremely clever and experienced attorney in the area of practice who came up with novel solutions to issues presented. She gave 110% to the matter and went above and beyond in her handling of the case.’

Key clients

Essity

Mastercard Europe Société Anonyme

Iyuno Sweden Holding II AB

Morvan Le Berre sprl

JSW

CEE Equity Partners Ltd

Platinum Wellnes Sp. z o.o.

LLP

Lidl supermarkets Poland

Nowa Era

Green Holding Sp. z o.o.

AB Bechcicki

Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP

Counsel Piotr Skurzyński leads the antitrust, competition, and economic regulation team at Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP and has experience representing clients before the Polish Competition Authority, the European Commission, and domestic courts. The department advises both domestic and global clients, cooperating with the firm’s European and international offices. The practice handles a range of competition law and state issues, including advising on investigations, litigation, merger control, compliance and consumer protection laws.

Practice head(s):

Piotr Skurzyński

Other key lawyers:

Magdalena Kowara

Testimonials

‘The team is one of the biggest experts in Poland, being very responsive and having a very pro-client approach.’

‘Piotr Skurzyński has an extensive knowledge in the field of antitrust matters. He is very client-oriented and invents business-wise solutions from a practical perspective.’

Key clients

Amazon

IBM

BNP Paribas

Credit Agricole

Mars

Kraft Heinz

Ford

Castorama

Makro Cash and Carry Polska S.A.

Saur

Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems

mBank (Commerzbank Group)

Nationale Nederlanden Insurance

Nike

Vinted

Weener Plastic

Corning

City of Olsztyn

City of Wroclaw

Groupon

Veolia

Avon

Work highlights

  • Represented Veolia Energia Warszawa and its parent company Veolia Energia Polska in complex cartel proceedings before the Polish Competition Authority and subsequent court proceedings.
  • Representing mBank SA and BNP Paribas Bank Polska SA in their appellate proceedings against the Polish Competition Authority’s decision concerning the alleged infringement of EC and Polish law, and their imposition of fines of approximately EUR 40m on the banks in relation to the interchange fees in payment card transactions
  • Advising CPI Property Group and Aroundtown on antitrust and merger control issues in their €1.57bn joint takeover of Globalworth, and securing unconditional merger clearance by the Polish Competition Authority in Phase 1 merger proceedings.

Rymarz Zdort

Rymarz Zdort's team acts for Polish and international clients on domestic and cross-border matters concerning merger control, cartels, abuse of a dominant position, consumer protection and state aid issues. The team is also adept at representing clients before the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, the European Commission and the Polish Antimonopoly Court. Iwona Her leads the practice and is supported by counsel Irmina Watly and senior associate Antonina Falandysz-Ziecik, who joined the firm in November 2020 from Modzelewska&Pasnik.

Practice head(s):

Iwona Her

Key clients

Grupa Lotos S.A.

Polski Fundusz Rozwoju S.A.

Vectra S.A.

Santander Bank Polska S.A.

Brookfield Global Renewable Energy Advisor Limited

Northland Power Inc.

PGE S.A.

Innova Capital LLC

MCI Euroventures Fund

APG Investments

Bank Pekao S.A.

Grupa Azoty S.A.

Work highlights

  • Advising Grupa Lotos S.A. in connection with the antitrust aspects of a transaction comprising the acquisition of control over Grupa Lotos S.A. by PKN Orlen S.A., including representation of Grupa Lotos S.A. in high profile phase II proceedings before the European Commission regarding the obtaining by PKN Orlen S.A. of a conditional merger clearance for the transaction.
  • Advising Innova Capital on the antitrust aspects of the sale of Trimo, arhitekturne rešitve, d.o.o. (Slovenia) to Kingspan Holding Netherlands B.V.
  • Advised APG Investments on an agreement with Orange Polska to create a joint venture that will operate a fibre network reaching around 2.4 million households in Poland by 2025.

Soltysinski Kawecki & Szlezak

The Warsaw-based competition group at Soltysinski Kawecki & Szlezak  handles large litigation cases before the Polish Competition Authorities for an impressive client roster including both Polish and international clients. The team also advises on merger control, antitrust matters and compliance mandates. Krzysztof Kanton leads the team. Other notable individuals include Marek Kolasiński, who has previous experience as a judge in the Court of Appeal, and Joanna Marek, who has expertise advising entrepreneurs active in a variety of sectors.

Practice head(s):

Krzysztof Kanton

Other key lawyers:

Marek Kolasiński; Joanna Marek

Key clients

Shell

Engie

Wintershall

OMV

Uniper

ENGIE Energy Management Holding Switzerland AG

Jeronimo Martins Polska SA

Benefit Systems S.A.

Eurocash S.A.

Eurozet Sp z o.o.

Swiss Krono Sp. z o.o.

NEUCA S.A.

Iliad S.A.

Kärcher Sp. z o.o.

Alba Group plc & Co KG

Work highlights

  • Representing NEUCA S.A, a leading Polish wholesaler of pharmaceuticals, in relation to an investigation carried out by the PCA which aims to verify whether pharmaceutical wholesalers may have reached an agreement consisting in the exchange of commercial information, including the prices of medications. The PCA verifies whether such agreement might have taken place through special software used by wholesalers, by means of which pharmaceutical wholesalers could have verified prices applied by their competitors.
  • Advised Iliad S.A. on the Polish competition law aspects related to its takeover of Play Communications S.A.
  • Advising Jeronimo Martins Polska S.A. in connection with its appeal proceedings concerning the record fine of PLN 723 million fine on the account of JMP allegedly demanding unfair and excessive rebates from suppliers of food.

Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners

Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners handles domestic and international mandates, representing clients before national and EU courts and advising company directors and top-level management on the shaping of distribution networks, pricing policies, antitrust risk mitigation and the development of internal procedures and action planning for unannounced inspections. Co-founder and competition and IP expert Pawel Podrecki and Tomasz Targosz lead the practice from Warsaw and Kracow respectively. Counsel Katarzyna Menszig-Wiese is also a key team member.

Practice head(s):

Pawel PodreckiTomasz Targosz

Other key lawyers:

Katarzyna Menszig-Wiese

Testimonials

‘The practice of Traple, Konarski, Podrecki & Partners covers at least 25 large areas of law which allows them to provide complex legal services for the client. One of their key strengths is their availability to combine uniquely academic knowledge with legal practice.’

‘The law firm Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners not only professionally conducts entrusted legal cases and gives opinions on complex, multi-layered legal matters, but also has extensive experience in taking into account the client’s business needs. The team is built of real legal authorities, each of whom is an outstanding specialist in their field, both in the legal, scientific area and in legal practice.’

‘The law office works very quickly and efficiently, adapts to the needs and timeframes of the client, organises meetings and is open to additional consultations, especially for business people, to familiarise them with the legal issues of the case under review.’

‘The services of the law firm always met the previously agreed budget and the highest quality standards of legal services. The law firm offers very favorable hourly rates to regular clients with whom it has been cooperating for many years.’

‘Pawel Podrecki is the person that I work with and his services are truly exceptional. Extraordinary availability, unique knowledge and amazing business approach are the key advantages.’

Key clients

Fabryka Farb i Lakierów Śnieżka S.A.

Emitel S.A.

Lotte Wedel Sp. z o.o.

PKN Orlen

Polska Organizacja Handlu i Dystrybucji (POHiD)/ Polish Trade and Distribution Organisation (POHiD)

Stowarzyszenie Producentów Cementu / Polish Cement Association

Stowarzyszenie Producentów Betonu Towarowego / Polish Association of Ready Mixed Concrete Producers

Związek Pracodawców Branży Internetowej IAB Polska/ Union of Employers in the Internet Sector (IAB Polska)

Henkel Polska

Work highlights

  • Acting for Polska Organizacja Handlu i Dystrybucji in an antitrust case triggered by a complaint about a prohibited anti-competitive agreement between certain banks with regard to the so-called interchange fees.

Wardynski & Partners

The competition and consumer practice at Wardynski & Partners represents clients before the Polish Competition Authority and in antitrust proceedings, as well as advising on cartel and merger control cases. Antoni Bolecki has led  the team since 2020 after rejoining the firm from Hansberry Tomkiel; he has expertise in judicial, administrative and regulatory proceedings. Marcin Kulesza is adept at compliance and competition law. Agnieszka Jelska was a new arrival from Modzelewska&Pasnik in 2020.

Practice head(s):

Antoni Bolecki

Other key lawyers:

Marcin Kulesza; Andrzej Madała

Testimonials

‘Extensive knowledge and practical approach to the issues presented.’

‘Punctuality – very quick responses and flexibility in cooperation’

‘Extensive experience and high level of ethics.’

‘The ability to present other similar cases and conclusions.’

‘Good service.’

Key clients

Alior Bank

Anwim S.A.

Auchan

Audi

Brembo

Briggs & Stratton

Can Pack

Carlsberg

Cassinos Poland

CCC

Daikin

Fortum

Garia A/S

GST AutoLeather, Inc.

Hikvision Poland Sp. z o.o.

JUUL Labs Poland Sp. z o.o.

Konsorcjum Handlowe „STOFARB” S.A.

LAG

Linas Agro Group AB

Leo Pharma

Moody

Netto

NEWAG

Pepco Poland sp. z o.o.

Roca

Sandvik Machining Solutions AB

TBS Warszawa Południe sp. z o.o.

Towarzystwo Funduszy Inwestycyjnych BDM Spółka Akcyjna

Adidas

Arcelor Mittal

Bank Pocztowy

Castorama

Cement Ożarów

Elavon

For Farmers

Granges

Honeywell

Nestle

Samsung

Ströer

Suez

Urban & Co

Veolia

Zara

Work highlights

  • Advised Salling Group A/S on a large transaction concerning taking over 300 Tesco stores.
  • Represented a manager who was fined PLN20,000 by the PCA for alleged cartel conduct.
  • Defended Cement Ożarów S.A. successfully before Court of Appeals.

White & Case M. Studniarek i Wspólnicy - Kancelaria Prawna sp.k.

Global and domestic companies are included in White & Case M. Studniarek i Wspólnicy – Kancelaria Prawna sp.k.‘s client roster, for which they handle the full spectrum of competition matters, including mergers and state aid issues, as well as contentious matters. The practice has cross-border capabilities which is aided by a strong connection with Brussels; co-leader Katarzyna Czapracka splits her time between Brussels and Warsaw and has expertise in the telecoms, consumer goods, finance, IT and media sectors. Counsel Jakub Gubański also co-leads the team.

Other key lawyers:

Iwo Małobęcki; Maciej Gac

Testimonials

‘White and Case provides excellent support on Polish and EU merger control. They deeply understand the legal and commercial issues and are able to expertly and effectively handle complex matters. They are able to successfully handle cases with a combined Polish and EU dimension.’

‘What we value greatly is our ability to tap in quickly to this expert resource who has taken the time to properly understand our structures and approach to various matters.’

‘Highly pragmatic, provides sound advice and a personal style relationship.’

‘Availability when needed and willingness to go the extra mile.’

‘Katarzyna Czapracka is an extremely able, efficient and commercially-minded lawyer.’

Key clients

Nets Denmark A/S

Hellman & Friedman

Mid Europa Partners

DZ Bank AG S.A.

Play Communications S.A.

P4. Sp. z o.o.

Polish Aviation Group PGL S.A.

Global Compute Infrastructure LP

Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.

Novator Partners

Olympia Group

Aroundtown SA

Work highlights

  • Advised Mid Europa Partners on its acquisition of Sage sp. z o.o.
  • Advised Nets Denmark A/S on several M&A transactions in the e-payment sector, including the acquisition of Poland-based Centrum Rozliczeń Elektronicznych Polskie ePłatności S.A. for an enterprise value of €405m.
  • Advised Play Communications SA on ILIAD SA’s €2.2bn all cash public tender offer for all of the shares in Play.

DWF Poland Jamka Sp.k

DWF Poland Jamka Sp.k has expertise in cartel cases and anticompetitive agreements, EU competition law, compliance, merger clearance and consumer law. Sector focuses for the group include energy, chemicals, financial services, sport, packaging and media. Counsel Lech Najbauer now leads the team and is supported by senior associate Kamilla Pomorska, who joined the team from Prof. Marek Wierzbowski and Partners Advocates and Legal Counsel in July 2021. Marcin Trepka left the firm in 2020.

Practice head(s):

Lech Najbauer

Other key lawyers:

Kamilla Pomorska

Testimonials

‘We have been cooperating with DWF lawyers for a decade, basically since the very beginning of our operations. Since that time, we have developed our cooperation in a wide range of areas, including Competition Antitrust. They are business oriented, skilled lawyers, who are always looking for good business solutions.’

‘Lech Najbauer is a go-to-lawyer for competition matters at DWF in Poland. He is very experienced and pays a lot attention to details.’

Key clients

Getback s.a. W likwidacji

Sonoco products company

Enter air

Tauron polska energia s.a.

Wydawnictwa szkolne i pedagogiczne s.a.

Dnb nord polska s.a.

Polskie zakłady lotnicze sp. Z o.o.

A sikorsky corporation

Flügger a/s

Polish wind energy association

Pzu sa

Work highlights

  • Advising Enter Air on communications with the competition authority regarding a letter requesting the client’s position on consumer complaints.

Gide Loyrette Nouel

Gide Loyrette Nouel advises clients on domestic and European legal issues regarding competition, consumer protection law, commercial agreements and distribution systems. The team also represents clients before competition protection authorities, bodies and courts, as well as cooperating with the firm’s M&A practice. The department is chaired by Dariusz Tokarczuk and includes Szymon Chwaliński, who is notable for competition, consumer law issues and distribution law.

Practice head(s):

Dariusz Tokarczuk

Other key lawyers:

Szymon Chwaliński

Testimonials

‘Great knowledge of competition law and good understanding of client’s business.’

Key clients

Auchan

ETI

PKO Bank Polski

Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy

BPI Real Estate

KGHM Polska Miedź S.A.

Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa S.A.

Resource Partners

Polskie Porty Lotnicze

European Investment Bank

Work highlights

  • Assisting PKO Bank Polski in developing the settlement scheme related to loans denominated in or indexed to a foreign currency.
  • Advising JSW on state aid issues related to support for the company related to the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Advising BPI Real Estate on a series of transactions with JV partners on several innovative real estate investment schemes throughout Poland.

Kieszkowska Rutkowska Kolasinski Kancelaria Prawna sp. j.

Kieszkowska Rutkowska Kolasinski Kancelaria Prawna sp. j. advises on regulatory and competition issues to clients in the FMCG, financial services, media and pharmaceutical sectors. Of note is the team's assistance with competition law issues relating to distribution and cooperation agreements and cases of abuse of a dominant position. Marcin Kolasiński heads the practice and is able to draw on his previous role in the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection.

Practice head(s):

Marcin Kolasiński

Testimonials

‘Very responsive and they treat you as their only client. Always help, even after hours.’

‘The team is very dedicated to their duties and the needs of the customers. Additionally, the lawyers understand the business specifics, and this is what makes them special and different to other law firms. I always get the feeling that they are deeply engaged in each and every problem that we face.’

‘The partner is very engaged personally in supporting the clients. He always wants to understand the context and cares about the practical aspects of his advice. Very trustful partner.’

‘A number of law-seasoned experts that have deep understanding of the market and legal environment makes this law firm special in the field it operates in. The expertise coming from KRK law firm is based on very practical approach to the cases they work on, deep legal expertise and excellent understanding of the market dynamics.’

‘Marcin Kolasiński presents in-depth knowledge of anti-trust law and the practices of Polish and European antimonopoly offices. Marcin combines in-depth knowledge of the competition law with the knowledge of pharma industry specifics. Marcin’s legal opinions are always easy to read and understand, he always offers the service at the level meeting the clients’ needs.’

‘Marcin is an excellent expert in competition law, customer friendly, always sticks to the point. He is a unique anti-trust lawyer and is also a very good negotiator representing effectively the clients against the authorities, never in confrontation mood but always focused on reaching win-win.’

‘Mostly we have been working with Mr Marcin Kolasiński, who is a very dedicated and hardworking individual, and the work with him is always also a pleasure.’

Work highlights

  • Providing day-to-day strategic advice to a European FMCG company on all aspects of competition law.
  • Advising a Polish producer and distributor of gases for industrial, specialty food and medical applications on competition and regulatory issues.
  • Advising a Polish pharmacy chain on all aspects of competition law, including representation of the client before the Polish Competition Authority.

Modzelewska&Pasnik

Modzelewska&Pasnik is a boutique law firm providing clients with the full spectrum of competition law advice, including antitrust matters, mergers, distribution, compliance mandates, inspections, litigation and state aid cases. The team also represents clients in cases before the Polish Competition Authority. Małgorzata Modzelewska De Raad and Piotr Paśnik jointly lead the practice and are supported by attorney-at-law Irena Gajewska and head of the consumer law department Agnieszka Kowalczyk-Zagaj.

Key clients

Astra Zeneca

PSA Stellantis

ORANGE Polska

PGNIG

ASHAI BEER

Roche Polska

MAKRO Cash and Carry

Auchan Polska

WSiP

OBI

Konsalnet

PCC Rokita

Calypso Fitness

Oknoplast

ZAP Sznajder Batterien

SPOKEY

POLPHARMA BIOLOGICS

PGNiG Termika

VOLVO FINANCIAL SERVICES

Edipresse

Edipresse Home

Lotte Wedel

Work highlights

  • Represented Calypso Fitness S.A. throughout the entire investigation into an alleged cartel between fitness studios operators and Benefit Systems.
  • Represented PGNiG Termika throughout antitrust proceedings launched by the Polish Competition Authority issued in March 2019.