Clifford Chance's 'stellar' practice assists an impressive roster of Spanish and international clients with high-profile EU and competition matters in the sports, TMT, food, industrial, energy and aviation sectors. In particular, the team stands out for its expertise in multi-jurisdictional merger control cases involving key players in the telecoms industry. Other areas of strength include state aid, cartel and abuse of dominance cases before the EU and Spanish competition authorities and courts. Practice head Miguel Odriozola is highlighted for his 'vast knowledge' of competition law, with a focus on restrictive practices and merger control in the TMT sector. Counsels Begoña Barrantes and Belén Irissarry, who was promoted in May 2022, senior associate Ana Latorre and associate Diego Doménech are also names to note.
EU and competition in Spain
Other key lawyers:
Begoña Barrantes; Ana Latorre; Belén Irissarry; Diego Doménech
‘Clifford Chance has a stellar competition practice with an incredible team, who are open minded and ready to offer the best quality advice in the Spanish market. They are extremely cooperative and integrate seamlessly with clients’ in-house teams.’
‘Miguel Odriozola has vast knowledge of competition law and works together with his team to successfully resolve problems through a detailed study of the issues, always providing value-added solutions. He also has a great understanding of the issues and of clients’ needs. The rest of the team is also very impressive. Begoña Barrantes and Ana Latorre are both fundamental to the team and are very practical in their approach.’
‘Begoña Barrantes stands out for her great technical strength.’
‘A large team backed by a multidisciplinary firm that allows specialists from other areas of law to be brought in when the situation so requires.’
‘The Clifford Chance competition and EU law team is unique because of its close relationships with the client and level of involvement in each case, which I have never seen before. The team’s focus on looking out for the client’s interests, knowing the case perfectly and seeking out what is best for the client is unprecedented.’
‘The lawyers get involved in the case with a passion that I haven’t seen before. They want to help and put themselves in the client’s shoes. I would highlight the work of Ana Latorre and Diego Doménech in this regard.’
‘Clifford Chance’s competition and EU law practice remains a benchmark for us in Spain. It is the team we go to for matters that are most important to the company. This decision is the result of recognising the team’s technical excellence and intelligence in its strategic approach to matters before the European or Spanish competition authorities.’
‘The team have the intelligence to convince the authorities and resolve our cases. They work with us to facilitate the formation of a project team with our in-house lawyers. They have excellent technical legal training and business knowledge, and the team is led by a partner (more so than in any other law firm we have worked with). Miguel Odriozola and Belén Irissarry deserve to be highlighted.’
Superleague (Key Capital)
Çimsa (Sabanci Group)
Cartonajes International, S.L. (International Paper)
Cirrus (currently DTN)
Restaurant Brands Iberia (Burger King)
- Advising Key Capital on the creation of the Super League, a new European football competition launched as an alternative to the UEFA Champions League, including representing the client in a hearing before the European Court of Justice relating to UEFA’s potential monopoly position.
- Advised Telefónica Tech on a series of merger control cases, including in relation to its €350m acquisition of Germany company BE-terna and related notification to the German competition authority.
- Represented Megasa in an investigation before the CNMC into a cartel for the purchase of scrap metal and successfully achieved the closure of the case.
Led from the firm’s offices in Madrid and Barcelona, the competition team at Cuatrecasas handles a wide range of matters for a strong client base of leading domestic and international companies. The team’s expertise spans high-profile merger control cases at both the national and EU level, as well as cartel investigations and subsequent litigation, private enforcement proceedings and state aid cases, and it has a growing practice assisting major domestic companies with compliance audits. In Madrid, practice co-head Andrew Ward (who is also director of the Brussels office) and senior associate María López Ridruejo are the key contacts, while in Barcelona co-head Irene Moreno-Tapia and senior associate Cristina Vila are the names to note.
Irene Moreno-Tapia; Andrew Ward
Other key lawyers:
María López Ridruejo; Cristina Vila
LaLiga (Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional)
El Corte Inglés
Bombardier (Alstom Group)
Algeco (Modulaire Group)
- Advising La Liga in relation to competition aspects of the auction of broadcasting rights for Spanish football league matches for the five year period from 2022-2027.
- Advising Votorantim on the acquisition of Cementos Balboa and HeidelbergCement’s business in Andalusia, including one cement plant, three aggregate sites and 11 ready-mixed concrete plants, including first phase clearance by the CNMC.
- Advising Vinci on the notification of its €4.9bn acquisition of ACS Industrial in jurisdictions across Latin America.
With ‘the best antitrust lawyers in Spain‘, Garrigues is highly active in major national and multi-jurisdictional merger control matters, cartel and abuse of dominance cases before the Spanish courts and competition authority, and state aid and follow-on damages litigation. The team also has expertise in competition litigation before the EU courts, drawing on the support of its Brussels office, led by Alfonso Lamadrid. Its blue-chip client base includes major Spanish and international corporations (including Ibex 35-listed companies), with an emphasis on the technology sector. Susana Cabrera Zaragoza leads the practice and is particularly well known for her merger control experience. Oriol Armengol Gasull and principal associate Fernando Las Navas are also key contacts.
Susana Cabrera Zaragoza
Other key lawyers:
Oriol Armengol; Alfonso Lamadrid; Luis Ortiz Blanco; Fernando Las Navas; Konstantin Jörgens
‘Garrigues’ lawyers know the law and the internal workings of the European Commission, and they understand and adjust to the needs of the client and think strategically. The team showed great commitment in dealing with our complex and sensitive matter over several years. They know when to mount a strong defence, when to negotiate effectively with the Commission and when to go to court. Their role has been key to the successful resolution of our matter, and our experience with them has been excellent.’
‘Alfonso Lamadrid and Luis Ortiz Blanco both demonstrated great technical strength in writing and in oral hearings. Alfonso Lamadrid stood out particularly for his design of long-term strategies, for his close communication with the client and for his skill in negotiating with the Commission. Luis Ortiz is a highly respected lawyer in the professional and academic world and highly valued by the competition authorities and by his fellow professionals.’
‘Garrigues’ antitrust team has the best antitrust lawyers in Spain. The team of partners and senior associates participate in major cases and major transactions in Spain. The technical quality of the team and their ability to understand the client’s business and commercial needs makes them stand out from other firms. By turning to Garrigues, you can be certain that a matter will be dealt with at the highest technical level and with a commercial approach. I would like to highlight the involvement of the partners in all cases.’
‘Oriol Armengol is one of the few lawyers in Spain who understands the issues affecting the digital market and has participated in most cases before the competition authority in that sector. His technical quality and personal involvement in matters make him stand out from the rest.’
Boston Scientific Corporation
Jaguar Land Rover
- Advised Telefónica on the merger control and regulatory aspects of the acquisition by Pontegadea of joint control, together with Telefónica, over Telxius Cable.
- Represented Prosegur before the National Appellate Court obtaining the annulment of the €39.4m fine imposed by the CNMC for anticompetitive behaviour.
- Advised Warner Media in connection with the investigation into the major studios recently closed with commitments by the CNMC.
Linklaters' 'exceptional' team particularly stands out for its strength in high-profile cartel investigations and related litigation, but its broad practice also spans merger control, abuse of dominance cases, state aid investigations and competition compliance advice. With a wide-ranging client base of major Spanish and international companies from the construction, energy, mining, sports and retail sectors, among others, the team is experienced in cases before both the Spanish and EU courts and competition authorities. Jaime Pérez-Bustamente heads the team, which also includes Fredrik Löwhagen, who is dual qualified in Spain and Sweden and stands out for his advice on EU merger control and state aid, 'fantastic' consultant Juan Passás and managing associate Miguel Andreu.
Other key lawyers:
Frederik Löwhagen; Barbara Rivera; Juan Passás; Miguel Andreu
‘We like that they are able to say whether we should go ahead with a case or transaction and explain it convincingly and seamlessly. Then they are exceptional when processing the files before the authorities. Jaime Pérez-Bustamante and Fredrik Löwhagen immediately grasp ideas, quickly describe the context and explain the situation in a way that is understandable.’
‘Jaime Pérez-Bustamante, Juan Passás and Barbara Rivera stand out for their mastery of the subject and of the CNMC’s scope and the minimum time limits before an important inspection or decision on the matter. Their command of English, which enables them to write documents in both languages, is also positively valued.’
‘They show total commitment to the client, looking for creative solutions that are not always the ones that everyone follows. They always try to go a step further in the defence of their client. In addition, they have excellent knowledge of the subject and make an in-depth study of the case from all perspectives.’
‘Juan Passás is a fantastic lawyer who is fully focused on delivering a tailored advice and identifying pragmatic solution to unexpected problems. I would like to praise his business-oriented approach and his availability.’
‘The Linklaters competition law team stands out for its professionalism and close relationships with clients, as well as for its focus on proposing legal solutions that adapt to the needs of the client’s business. It is a very balanced team, with some lawyers with a more technical focus and others with a more commercial/business focus. Likewise, its commitment to young lawyers stands out, giving them visibility when the matter does not require the intervention of the most senior partner or lawyers.’
‘We have worked with Juan Passás. His practical approach and simple explanations are perfect, so members of senior management who do not have a legal background can understand the legal advice provided.’
‘The team’s understanding of cases is fast and global. From the beginning, they set out a very effective strategy to achieve the interests of the client, with great results. They look at the issues exhaustively and from different perspectives, which gives rigour and originality to their approach, and they are able to extract what is most important from each case. Communication is very practical and fluid, avoiding heavy workloads for the client.’
‘Jaime Pérez-Bustamante stands out for his professionalism and rigour, as well as his sense of empathy.’
Pérez-Llorca has a broad competition practice with significant expertise in cartel investigations conducted by the Spanish and EU competition authorities, major domestic and cross-border merger control cases, and follow-on damages claims. In addition, the team stands out for its strength in EU law, frequently handling high-profile litigation before the European Court of Justice; this practice was further bolstered in September 2022 with the launch of the firm's Brussels office, led by Sonsoles Centeno. Juan Jiménez-Laiglesia leads the competition practice, while Juan Rodríguez Cárcamo heads the EU law litigation practice. Jaime De Blas, Pablo Figueroa, who has additional foreign direct investment expertise, and senior associate Ana María Rodríguez are also key contacts in the sizeable team.
Juan Jiménez-Laiglesia; Juan Rodríguez Cárcamo
Other key lawyers:
Jaime de Blas; Pablo Figueroa; Sonsoles Centeno; Ana María Rodríguez; Alejandra González-Concheiro
Pequeños y Medianos Astilleros Sociedad de Reconversión
AM Fresh Group
Arcelor Mittal (Grupo Condesa)
El Corte Inglés (Sánchez Romero)
Fremman Capital Partners (Palex)
Santa Lucía (Unicaja)
- Advised MásMóvil on the merger control aspects of the combination with Orange España.
- Assisting LaLiga in its challenge before the Supreme Court regarding the rules on publicity on gambling issued by the Council of Ministers.
- Representing Banco Santander before the European Court of Justice in relation to an appeal lodged by Aeris Invest Sàrl in a case relating to the adoption of a resolution scheme regarding Banco Popular.
Uría Menéndez has 'extensive knowledge' in a wide range of EU and competition matters, with particular expertise in advising major companies in the insurance and pharmaceutical sectors. The team is highly active in merger control cases, including multi-jurisdictional transactions, at both national and EU level, and is also representing clients in a series of high-profile cartel investigations and related litigation, EU law and state aid cases, and follow-on damages claims. Antonio Guerra leads the practice, while other key contacts include Patricia Vidal, who stands out for her strength in competition litigation, Alfonso Gutiérrez, an expert in competition matters in the pharmaceutical sector, and Tomás Arranz, who is highly experienced in merger control.
Other key lawyers:
Patricia Vidal; Alfonso Gutiérrez; Tomás Arranz; Jokin Beltrán de Lubiano
‘Their technical quality and experience is superior. They also manage to explain complex problems (and possible solutions) simply. They are able to help you make complicated decisions because they are not obvious or risk-free. Antonio Guerra deserves a special mention for his technical ability and experience.’
‘Their strong points are their extensive knowledge in competition matters, great knowledge of the sector and their full availability.’
‘The team stands out for its technical knowledge, excellent relationships with the regulators and great strategic vision.’
‘Alfonso Gutiérrez and Tomás Arranz are two of the best competition law lawyers in Spain. Their understanding of the issues on which the different cases centre is excellent; this is what makes them stand out above the rest of lawyers specialised in the subject matter.’
‘The Uría Menéndez team not only has the technical legal knowledge that is expected of any first-rate law firm, but also an extra understanding of the client and a specialised service is adapted to each client’s needs. Compared to other firms in Madrid, its strong point is in adapting to the needs of the client in each case, regardless of the team in charge. Uría Menéndez stands out above other firms in terms of quality and personalised attention. The firm regularly sends out an adapted bulletin with legal developments that specifically affect each area of the client’s business.’
‘Very available, brilliant and technically able.’
- Acting for several clients in competition damages claims, including DAF in those related to the EU truck cartel case and Toyota and Hyundai in claims resulting from a 2015 CNMC decision.
- Advising Santander Consumer Finance on the reorganisation of its collaboration with Stellantis, by which it becomes the main financing partner in eight countries, which entails three parallel merger filings with the European Commission and separate filings in Morocco, Switzerland, Turkey and China.
- Advising CaixaBank on the notification of the acquisition of two bancassurance joint ventures which Bankia held with insurance companies, with the aim of consolidating all of its activity under CaixaBank’s insurance division VidaCaixa.
Allen & Overy
With 'deep knowledge' of EU and competition matters, Allen & Overy has been highly active representing clients in significant infringement proceedings before the CNMC and in subsequent appeals before the national courts. In addition to its expertise in cartel and abuse of dominance cases, the team has extensive experience in merger control (including multi-jurisdictional matters). Antonio Martínez leads the practice, with expertise in both merger control and competition litigation. Counsel Jaime Rodríguez and senior associate Enrique Ferrer, who also advises on competition compliance programmes, are other names to note.
Other key lawyers:
Jaime Rodríguez; Enrique Ferrer
‘Beyond the deep knowledge they have, I would like to highlight their availability in urgent situations when we have needed their advice without prior notice.’
‘Both Antonio Martínez and Jaime Rodríguez differ from their competitors due to their high degree of commitment and their close relationships with clients, which creates trust between the parties.’
Hanson Hispania (HeidelbergCement)
Altadis (Imperial Brands)
Intermediate Capital Group
- Successfully defended HeidelbergCement’s subsidiary Hanson Hispania in its appeal before the Appeals Court (Audiencia Nacional) regarding the full annulment of the CNMC’s fining decision in the Hormigones Asturias case.
- Advised NortonLifeLock in relation to the merger control aspects of its acquisition of sole control of competitor Avast in Spain, where the transaction was unconditionally cleared.
- Advised Thales in relation to the merger control aspects of its acquisition of sole control over the navigation aids business of Moog.
Latham & Watkins LLP
Latham & Watkins has 'enormous experience' of advising major Spanish and international companies on obtaining merger and foreign direct investment clearances from the national and EU competition authorities, as well as in other jurisdictions around the world. The team also has a strong track record of representing clients in investigations by the CNMC and in subsequent litigation before the national courts of all levels, as well as handling private enforcement actions and state aid proceedings. The team in Madrid is led by José María Jiménez-Laiglesia, who has extensive experience of advising Spanish multinationals on high-profile competition matters, and can also draw on the support of Javier Ruiz Calzado, Héctor Armengod and Carles Esteva Mosso in Brussels.
José María Jiménez-Laiglesia
Other key lawyers:
Javier Ruiz Calzado; Héctor Armengod; Carles Esteva; Carlos Betoret
‘José María Jiménez-Laiglesia and his team are great lawyers with enormous experience in competition matters. They propose ideas and suggestions that are highly valued.’
MLAB Abogados, SLP
'Outstanding' EU and competition law boutique MLAB Abogados, SLP is highly renowned for its strength in competition litigation. The team has extensive experience in cases relating to cartels, abuse of dominance, and vertical and horizontal agreements, representing major domestic and international clients before the national and European courts of all levels, as well as handling private damages litigation. Advising clients from regulated sectors (including the telecoms, railway, postal and energy sectors) is a particular area of expertise. Managing partners Rafael Allendesalazar and Helmut Brokelmann, who is also qualified in Germany, lead the practice, while Mariarosaria Ganino and Alfonso Rincón are also names to note.
Rafael Allendesalazar; Helmut Brokelmann
Other key lawyers:
Mariarosaria Ganino; Alfonso Rincón
‘Helmut Brockelmann is a preeminent figure. Very professional, responsive and easy to work with.’
‘The team stands out for its very personal and direct treatment of clients and high level of specialisation in competition matters, with a clear perspective and knowledge of the sector. The team is fully available at any time for any questions and is very decisive.’
‘Working with Rafael Allendesalazar and Alfonso Rincón is a joy. They are experts, with extensive experience and good knowledge of key actors in the sector. Their technical ability is of the highest quality.’
PROCTER & GAMBLE
SGAE (Sociedad General de Autores y Editores)
- Acting for UEFA (alongside Ashurst) in a civil competition claim brought by the European Super League against UEFA and FIFA before the Madrid Commercial Court, which involved a preliminary reference to the Court of Justice of the EU.
- Acting for Altice in an appeal against the judgment of the General Court in Altice Europe N.V. v European Commission and successfully reduced the fine imposed for gun-jumping.
- Representing Uber in several appeals against national and regional regulations restricting the provision of private hire vehicle services and in annulling fines imposed by regional and local authorities, as well as representing the client in an unfair competition case brought by Cabify.
Ashurst LLP has considerable expertise in cartel, abuse of dominance and gun-jumping investigations, and is also highly experienced in representing clients in appeals before the national courts against the decisions by the CNMC. In addition, the team frequently handles merger control filings at the Spanish and European levels and has growing expertise in follow-on damages claims, acting for both claimants and defendants. Clients include major domestic and international companies from the energy, sports, insurance and finance sectors, among others. Rafael Baena leads the practice, with key support from counsel Javier Torrecilla.
Other key lawyers:
Santa Lucía, S.A., Compañía de Seguros y Reaseguros
Albia Gestión de Servicios
Altadis (Imperial Tobacco)
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo is highlighted for its 'fantastic experience' in merger control cases and competition litigation, and also stands out for its strong follow-on damages practice, representing both claimants and defendants in high-profile recent cases. In addition, the team in Spain is able to draw on the expertise of the firm's Brussels office, headed by Miguel Troncoso, in EU law cases, particularly complex state aid and public procurement matters. Barcelona-based Íñigo Igartua leads the practice, and is singled out for his experience in damages litigation and competition matters in the e-commerce sector. In Madrid, of counsel Eduardo Gómez De La Cruz is the key contact, particularly for telecoms-related matters.
Other key lawyers:
Miguel Troncoso; Eduardo Gómez de la Cruz; Andrea Díez de Uré Loinaz
‘Fantastic experience in merger control and antitrust litigation, with a special mention for private enforcement litigation.’
‘Iñigo Igartua is one of the best known Spanish lawyers and deserves it. He is always available and responsive, with very good advice on every topic.’
‘The Gómez-Acebo & Pombo team seeks solutions in very complicated competition law matters. They obtain from the client all the information they need to be able to give complete and coherent advice. In the city of Barcelona there are few teams with that ability to get involved.’
‘Iñigo Igartua, in my opinion, is one of the best competition lawyers. He studies each topic in depth to help the client find the solution they need.’
European External Action Service
- Advising Ramco Litigation Funding on a collective action brought by almost 1,000 farmers seeking damages derived from the Spanish milk cartel.
- Advised Taconic Capital on the preparation and filing of a multimillion-euro claim for Unipost against the incumbent postal operator, Correos, in a complex case of abuse of dominant position including predatory pricing and the use of illegal state subsidies.
- Acting for Iveco, which was fined by the European Commission as part of the trucks cartel, in the defence of a number of private damages claims.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP
An 'expert partner' in competition matters, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has a particularly strong track record in merger control cases, advising on notifications to the Spanish and EU competition authorities and often handling complex multi-jurisdictional cases alongside the firm's international offices. The team is also highly active in cartel investigations and in subsequent leniency applications and appeals before the national courts. Other areas of expertise include advising on the competition law aspects of public tenders, and assisting major domestic and international clients in the energy, infrastructure, retail, digital and transport sectors. The 'excellent' Henar González Durántez leads the team, with key support from associate Pilar Carrasco.
Henar González Durántez
Other key lawyers:
‘Henar González is an excellent lawyer who combines her technical knowledge with her superb personal treatment of clients. She is assisted by Pilar Carrasco, who is a very worthy colleague. Henar stands out for her legal reasoning based on outstanding discernment and rigorous support of clients before the courts and regulatory bodies.’
‘They have a more creative take on the case than other established law firm teams. A young but experienced team that is attentive to clients and creative.’
‘The team’s strength lies in its knowledge of competition law at the national and European level, and administrative and judicial procedures, as well as the current environment.’
GRUPO GALLARDO BALBOA
- Advised CAF, a multinational group focused on the railway industry, on the merger control aspects regarding the acquisition of Alstom’s Coradia Polyvalent mainline rolling stock platform and its Reichshoffen production facility, and Bombardier’s Talent 3 mainline rolling stock platform.
- Advised Universal Pictures on an investigation initiated by the CNMC into its local distribution subsidiary (and those of other major Hollywood studios) for engaging in potential anticompetitive practices in the film distribution market in Spain.
- Advised Spanish metallurgy company Grupo Gallardo Balbao on a cartel investigation initiated by the CNMC active in the scrap metal sector, focusing specifically on the potential coordination among competitors to set up purchase prices of scrap, as well as the sale prices of finished carbon steel products.
With offices in Madrid, Barcelona and Brussels, Marimón Abogados has 'extensive experience' in competition matters before the Spanish and EU courts and regulatory authorities. The team stands out for its track record in high-profile cartel and abuse of dominance investigations, as well as subsequent litigation, merger control and follow-on damages claims. In particular, it is highly active in advising major multinationals in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector on competition matters. The 'exceptional' Diego Crespo leads the practice from Madrid, alongside Brussels-based of counsel Stefan Rating, an expert in state aid matters, and Barcelona-based senior associate Yolanda Martínez, who has particular expertise in the pharma sector.
Diego Crespo; Stefan Rating; Yolanda Martínez
Other key lawyers:
‘Diego Crespo is a very able lawyer with a clear and distinct understanding of commercial matters. He is a no-nonsense lawyer able to focus on the critical issues.’
‘Marimón Abogados is a team with extensive experience in this branch of law. It offers imaginative solutions to complex problems and knows both our business and the new developments that are emerging very well. Compared to other firms, it tends to dispense with the most conservative solution to focus on solutions that are feasible but acceptable to the business and are commercially oriented.’
‘The service provided by the team is exceptional – they are very pleasant and immediately available. With respect to their competitors, they provide a much more personal and more accessible service because their technical quality is indisputable. Diego Crespo and Andrea Gutiérrez are exceptional.’
Campofrío Food Group
Suntory Schweppes España
- Represented La Liga before the Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg as well as before the Spanish National Court in a case brought by the European Super League against UEFA and FIFA regarding the competition laws applicable to sport associations.
- Advising ISDIN in relation to an investigation initiated by the Spanish competition authority into whether the client is restraining distributors’ freedom to decide their retail price, particularly for online sales.
- Acting for Primafrio in its damages claim against the truck manufacturers that were sanctioned by the European Commission for their participation in an illegal cartel between 1997 and 2011.
Ramón y Cajal Abogados
Ramón y Cajal Abogados' 'agile and practical' team is highly active in private enforcement cases, representing both claimants and defendants in several high-profile recent damages claims, and also handles litigation before the national courts at all levels, appealing against decisions by the CNMC. Its wide-ranging client base includes many leading Spanish corporates as well as international companies, with a growing emphasis on the agri-food, pharmaceutical and investment sectors. Pedro Suárez leads the team, which also includes of counsel Javier Salinas and managing associates Pablo González De Zárate and Javier Pérez, a specialist in damages claims.
Other key lawyers:
Javier Salinas; Pablo González de Zárate; Javier Pérez
‘The Ramón y Cajal team is agile and practical, focusing on the actual problems that we face, with a good knowledge of our needs and internal procedures. They keep us promptly informed of both legislative developments and news in relation to specific issues that affect us, not in a generic or abstract way.’
‘We work with Pedro Suarez and Pablo González de Zárate. They are easily accessible, have a good understanding of the urgency and importance of the issues, and are knowledgeable about the practice area. Their advice is precise and useful.’
‘They understand our business model, our concerns and the requirements that have to be covered when it came to having a legal service perfectly, going beyond simply resolving or giving technical advice on a specific issue.’
‘Pedro Suárez and Javier Salinas stand out for the technical quality of their service, and their experience, availability, and understanding of the client’s requirements and business model.’
‘The team have extensive legal training, a lot of experience, know the workings of our company very well, are permanently available and produce high-quality documents. They work together with total coordination and also coordinate the external economic advisers. Finally, they are flexible and competent in dealing with legal proceedings. This is what matters to us.’
‘Pedro Suáez and Javier Salinas are highly trained lawyers, who have a good academic background, analytical skills, and a great work capacity. They are rigorous, independent, and think critically and with initiative.’
‘In addition to their expertise, they are fast, efficient and agile with immediate response times. We can immediately get in touch with Pedro Suárez and Javier Pérez.’
‘Pedro Suárez and Pablo González de Zarate should be singled out. They are our go-to advisers for Spanish competition law. Great to work with, great team players.’
BANKIA (now part of CAIXABANK)
JEZ SISTEMAS FERROVIARIOS
- Acting for a group of claimants, including Tendam, Grupo Planeta and Mutua Madrileña, in follow-on damages claims against three manufacturers of paper envelopes sanctioned by the CNMC in 2013.
- Acted for Atresmedia in an appeal which was partially upheld by the Audencia Nacional annulling the €2.8m fine imposed by the CNMC for an alleged breach of the commitments for the authorisation of the merger of Antena 3 and laSexta.
- Acted for JEZ Sistemas Ferroviarios in an appeal which was fully upheld by the Audencia Nacional, annulling the €1.075m fine imposed by the CNMC for allegedly anticompetitively sharing with other competitors the supply of railway turnouts for Spain’s railway infrastructure manager, ADIF.
Based in the firm’s offices in Madrid and Barcelona, Baker McKenzie has ‘extensive knowledge‘ of competition matters, with a broad practice covering merger control and foreign direct investment (including for multi-jurisdictional transactions), cartel and abuse of dominance cases, follow-on damages claims and competition compliance. Valeria Enrich leads the team from Barcelona, where Javier Menor and associate Isaque Leite, who specialises in competition litigation, are also key contacts. Paloma Martínez-Lage, who has particular expertise in regulation in the telecoms and energy sectors, heads the practice in Madrid.
Valeria Enrich; Paloma Martínez-Lage
Other key lawyers:
Javier Menor; Isaque Leite
‘They have good lawyers and are flexible with clients.’
‘A team with extensive knowledge of competition law in Spain and the EU. They work diligently and to a high standard compared to other lawyers. The interaction with investors has also been at a high level.’
‘Paloma Martinez-Lage and Laura González directed the process with a high level of professionalism and efficiency. They provide a personal client service that creates a very positive work environment.’
ACCO (Autoritat Catalana de la Competència)
Association of Catalan Bar Associations
Bar Association of Barcelona
Bar Association of Lleida
Bar Association of Figueres
Clarios Germany HmbH & Co
Correos y Telégrafos
HONDA MOTOR EUROPE LIMITED SUCURSAL EN ESPAÑA
Callol, Coca & Asociados
EU and competition law boutique Callol, Coca & Asociados stands out for its 'in-depth knowledge' of high-profile cartel and abuse of dominance investigations, as well as competition litigation before the Spanish and European courts, with a strong track record in appeals against decisions by the CNMC. The team also has experience in merger control and the application of foreign direct investment screening rules. The 'impressive' Pedro Callol, who is dual qualified in Spain and the UK, leads the practice, and Jorge Manzarbeitia is also noted for his expertise in competition law and trade regulation.
Other key lawyers:
‘Specialist competition boutique. Responsive, proactive and friendly.’
‘Pedro Callol is energetic, focused, responsive and well respected.’
‘As a boutique law firm their focus is entirely on EU and Spanish competition law, which ensures they have broad experience and in-depth knowledge of this area of law, the right approach and strategies for their clients and are dedicated to handling cases successfully.’
‘Pedro Callol is very impressive. He is always in control of the case because of his outstanding strategic skills and thorough knowledge of the law, as well as the commercial aspects of the field in which his clients are operating. He is always accessible and very pleasant to deal with.’
‘The team are highly specialised and it gives clients a sense of security to know they are managing the file.’
‘As it is a boutique-type office, the client service is very attentive and transparent.’
Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF)
Mooring Port Services
Cemesa Amarres Barcelona
Oxford University Press Spain
GME (García Munté Energía).
- Representing the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) as a co-defendant in the Super League case, in which the European Super League has sued UEFA and FIFA for infringement of competition law, both in the preliminary ruling before the European Court of Justice and the main proceedings before the Spanish Commercial Court.
- Acting for Oxford University Press España in the judicial appeal before the High Court against the Spanish competition authority’s decision concerning infringements of competition law in the textbook market.
- Acting for bus companies Roig Bus and Autocares Vidal before the High Court in the successful appeal against the Spanish competition authority’s decision in the Balearic Islands school transport cartel case.
CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo
CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo's 'fantastic' competition team advises a growing client base of leading domestic and international clients, particularly in the consumer products and industrial sectors, on matters including merger control filings before the CNMC and the European Commission, abuse of dominance and cartel investigations at both the national and European levels, and competition law compliance programmes. 'Outstanding' practice head Carlos Vérgez has recently been active in several high-profile merger control cases. Senior associate Aida Oviedo is also a key contact.
Other key lawyers:
Aida Oviedo; Edward Crespo
‘The CMS team strive to learn everything related to the client’s business and anticipate their needs. They are very empathetic – they not only see things from a legal perspective but also take into account the business they are providing the service to.’
‘Their best quality is their close communication and empathy with clients. They know how to get down from their position as lawyers to be able to connect with the business and its needs. They adapt a lot.’
‘The CMS Albiñana & Suarez de Lezo team provides the necessary experience and specialisation for competition and EU law matters. Its approach has been essential for decision-making in these aspects.’
‘The team stands out for its experience and knowledge, as well as its professionalism, close relationships with clients and high level of availability. We would like to highlight Carlos Vérgez, Aida Oviedo and Edward Crespo.’
‘Pragmatic and solid lawyers for mid-market transactions. Value for money.’
‘Carlos Vérgez has extensive experience in competition law. He is also charming and trustworthy.’
‘The CMS competition law practice in Spain is simply fantastic! Carlos Vérgez is the key to its success. In my experience, this practice group has a very sophisticated level of expertise in every phase of competition law involving an M&A transaction. Carlos Vérgez and his team provide excellent, efficient and seamless legal services. Their advice is very commercial and they are very collaborative, which is a wonderful value add. The entire team are also especially helpful in keeping the entire process moving forward, whether it is with opposing counsel, government authorities or other members of the client’s team.’
‘Carlos Vergez is a true standout. He has a keen and deep expertise in the field of competition law. Additionally, I truly valued how he was always able to communicate and discuss legal issues with me and my non-legal colleagues in a clear, concise and very comprehensible manner. He was also very helpful in addressing commercial issues in addition to legal matters. He is the type of outside counsel whom I always felt comfortable inviting on calls with my business colleagues. This was very valuable to me because it helped me meaningfully manage risk and expectations on behalf of my organisation. Finally, it was simply a pleasure working with Carlos – he is lovely and was always a bright part of my workday! Potential clients will find that Carlos Vérgez and his team are a ten out of ten!’
Coca-Cola Europacific Partners
Asociación de Vehículos Compartidos en España
SUMINCO (Alpla’s subsidiary)
Egis Pharmaceuticals Plc
- Advising Thomson Reuters on the competition law aspects of the joint sale of its legal publishing business in Spain (Aranzadi), together with the Spanish and French businesses of Wolters Kluwer, to Karnov.
- Advising Macquarie Capital and Aberdeen Standard Investments on the notification to the European Commission of the incorporation of Arjun Infrastructure Partners as a joint-controlling long-term investor in Onivia, the joint venture created by Macquarie and Aberdeen.
- Advising Boluda Corporación Marítima on the merger control analysis of various acquisitions, including the acquisition of Iskes Towage & Salvage and on the sale of a joint-controlling shareholding over its subsidiary, Boluda Maritime Terminals, to DIF.
DLA Piper has 'extensive knowledge' of merger control matters, including advising on the Spanish law aspects of high-value, multi-jurisdictional transactions, and also handles competition litigation, follow-on damages claims and compliance advice. Among the team's clients are a number of major multinationals from the telecoms, automotive, media, industrial, healthcare and financial sectors. Practice head Joaquín Hervada frequently assists with merger control and cartel investigations and subsequent appeals, while senior associate Rafael Maldonado provides key support.
Other key lawyers:
‘Joaquín Hervada is an expert in competition law. He is focused on his work and his clients, and is very quick and at the same time attentive to detail in his way of working.’
‘Extensive knowledge of merger processes in our sector and good management of the relationship with the authority, which brings added value to their advice.’
‘Joaquin Hervada and Rafael Maldonado keep us up to date with the possible options when considering a transaction and filing with the authorities.’
Dentsu Aegis Network
Colegio de Registradores de la Propiedad, Mercantiles y Bienes Muebles de España
Asociación Nacional de Establecimientos Financieros de Crédito (ASNEF)
- Advised Knorr-Bremse on the merger control aspects of the acquisition of Cojali.
- Advising HeidelbergCement on the competition law aspects of the structure and implementation of its divestment strategy and the subsequent sale of several assets in Spain.
- Advised Nutreco Iberia on the competition aspects of several sale processes in Spain.
Hogan Lovells International LLP
Hogan Lovells International LLP's 'meticulous and highly experienced' team has a broad competition practice, with considerable strength in high-profile cartel and abuse of dominance investigations and appeals before the national courts, as well as in assisting with the merger control aspects of major M&A transactions. The team is also handles private damages claims and advises on competition compliance programmes and training. In particular, it has expertise in advising clients in regulated sectors, including automotive, insurance, financial services and pharmaceuticals. 'Exceptional' practice head Casto González-Páramo and senior associate Alfredo Gómez are the key contacts.
Other key lawyers:
Alfredo Gómez; Raquel Fernández
‘Hogan Lovells has a team of highly technical, meticulous and highly experienced lawyers. When you work with Hogan Lovells you can see that they are used to managing complex situations.’
‘Casto Gonzalez Páramo is an exceptional lawyer, with extensive experience in competition law. Casto has a strategic vision and knowledge of the client’s needs that allows him to provide precise advice at all times to detect or solve problems.’
‘It has a team that knows our sector and is very used to working on international projects.’
‘Casto González Páramo has great knowledge of the subject and the sector. Easily accessible. He understands matters quickly and is very open to the client’s business needs.’
‘The team is solid, hard-working, goes deep into the issues and always looks for the best solution. They have perfectly adapted to new technologies and other ways of working for clients without any reduction in the quality of the service.’
‘In particular, I would like to highlight Casto González-Páramo’s knowledge, his in-depth study of the issues without forgetting nuances, his overarching strategy when dealing with problems, his clarity when explaining legal issues to people who are not so knowledgeable about them, and his calmness in moments of great tension.’
- Acted on behalf of rail transport multinational Alstom in sanctioning proceedings initiated by the Spanish competition authority for alleged collusion in public tenders for the construction and maintenance of railway infrastructures.
- Acting on behalf of Alstom in sanctioning proceedings initiated by the Spanish competition authority for alleged collusion in public tenders for the railway signalling infrastructure.
- Representing Caixabank in an ongoing appeal before the Spanish Appeal Court against the sanction imposed by the competition authority for the alleged price fixing of hedging derivatives in syndicated loan products.
ONTIER has a wide-ranging competition and EU law practice, with significant experience in high-profile merger control filings at national and European level, abuse of dominance and cartel cases, follow-on damages claims, foreign direct investment filings (particularly in the renewable energy sector) and state aid matters. Francisco Cantos, who is highlighted for his ‘extensive experience‘, most notably in cross-border competition mandates, leads the practice. Senior associates Lucía Urdiales and Paloma Hurtado are also key contacts.
Other key lawyers:
Lucía Ordiales; Paloma Hurtado
‘Francisco Cantos has extensive experience in this area.’
Cerealto Siro Foods
General Motors Corporation
Mercedes Benz’s car dealerships in the region of Madrid
Japan Tobacco International
Grupo Viamed Salud
- Representing Adif in a claim for damages caused by various cartels which were sanctioned by the CNMC in 2019.
- Advising Cerealto Siro Foods on the merger control aspects of its sale to Davidson Kempner and Afendis and securing clearance from the CNMC for this transaction.
- Acting for General Motors in an appeal before the Spanish Constitutional Court of a decision by the Supreme Court on the treatment of non-price information exchanges under EU competition law, and in damages claims brought against the company as a result of the automobiles cartel case.
DelaCalle Abogados SLP
Boutique firm DelaCalle Abogados SLP is particularly active in litigation before the national courts challenging decisions taken by the CNMC, and is also experienced in follow-on damages claims, merger control and the design of competition compliance programmes. Co-founding partners José Antonio De La Calle, whose practice has a focus on the regulated sectors, and Swedish-qualified Sanna Orkan lead the team.
Sanna Orkan; José Antonio de la Calle
‘A specialised competition law firm with a small team that is very knowledgeable, extremely fast and agile, and gives practical and directly useful advice.’
ANFAC (Spanish Assoc. of Automobiles and Trucks Manufacturers)
A&G Private Bank
Fintonic Servicios Financieros
Plukon Food Group
Snap-On Business Solutions
- Providing strategic EU and competition law advice to the Swedish home appliances group Electrolux on its business operations throughout Europe, as well as assisting the in-house legal department with the design of its antitrust compliance programme.
- Advising South Texas Accelerated Research Therapeutics, LLC (START) on the impact, under European and national competition laws, of the legal structure aimed at developing clinical research trials in oncology with leading Spanish hospitals.
- Providing key EU and national competition advice to the National Association of Automobiles and Trucks Manufacturers (ANFAC), as well as assisting the in-house legal department with the design of an antitrust compliance programme.
Patricia Liñan is the name to note at ECIJA, which is particularly experienced in competition litigation, representing major domestic and international clients in cartel and abuse of dominance investigations and appeals, as well as handling private enforcement actions. The team is also highly active in advising on the design of competition law compliance programmes. Key areas of expertise include the payments, TMT and automotive sectors.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team’s knowledge of competition law is unmatched. We have not seen such a meticulous and detailed way of working at other firms. They work well with international clients. Their management of files is completely reliable.’
‘The team stand out for their knowledge, treatment of clients, trustworthiness and delivery.’
STMP (SISTEMA PAY)
SPANISH BANK CONSORTIUM
PRIVALIA (VENTE PRIVÉE)
- Acting for Lactalis (and for its subsidiary Puleva), as defendants, in actions for damages recently filed by livestock farmers following the CNMC’s decision to sanction the main dairy companies in the Spanish milk industry cartel case.
- Representing Nokia in its appeal against the CNMC’s decision in the railway communications case before the Spanish Appeal Court.
- Advising Sistema Pay on all competition law matters related to the participation of Spanish banks in the European Payments Initiative.
Led by Crisanto Pérez-Abad, Eversheds Sutherland has a particularly strong practice in cartel cases, frequently assisting major multinational and domestic clients in high-profile investigations and appeals before the national courts of all levels, but is also active in abuse of dominance cases and follow-on damages claims. In addition, the team has experience advising on merger and foreign direct investment control and assisting clients in preliminary investigations.
Spanish Association of Private Railway Operator (AEFP)
- Acted for the AEPF before the Appeal Court and the Spanish Supreme Court in appeals filed by RENFE and DB against an historic fine imposed by the CNMC following a complaint by the AEPF.
- Representing Cabelte Incasa and Cabelte Cabos, which were fined €1.8m by the CNMC in the electric cable cartel case, in their appeals against the decision, as well as in stand-alone civil claims for damages.
- Acting for Orange in a claim for damages against companies sanctioned by the European Commission in the lithium batteries cartel case.
The Madrid office of Jones Day frequently works alongside its international counterparts to advise on multi-jurisdictional competition matters, including merger control and foreign direct investment filings. The team also has notable expertise in competition and regulatory actions before the CNMC and follow-on damages claims. At the head of the practice, Raimundo Ortega stands out for his experience in competition matters, including foreign direct investment filings, in the energy, telecoms and infrastructure sectors and Marta Delgado Echevarría is the name to note for competition litigation.
Raimundo Ortega; Marta Delgado Echevarria
‘The firm’s experience, knowledge and ability to stay up to date mean that it is constantly advising us on any competition law issue that may affect any of our usual activities, as well as any new projects. In this sense, the work of Raimundo Ortega is impeccable.’
‘Good availability, close communication with clients and advice that is adapted to clients’ requirements.’
‘Raimundo Ortega is a great connoisseur of the subject. He always offers us solutions and also has the ability to explain the issues in a way that makes them easier to understand.’
‘The team stand out for their technical knowledge, previous experience and good communication skills and availability. They keep in close contact with clients and understand the organisation so they can identify problems when trying to resolve cases. They speak English fluently and know how to express technical legal concepts in English. The partner responsible for the case is available and we deal with them directly, so doubts are resolved more quickly.’
‘Raimundo Ortega provides a 360-degree approach that none can beat in the Spanish market. He has two very important skills: his expertise in competition and European Union law and the commercial knowledge to understand the impact of these areas of law on a company’s business.’
‘They are a team with great experience in this area. They stand out from other firms for their versatility to adapt to other sectors and for their customer service.’
‘Marta Delgado stands out for her great ability to understand complex legal problems in new sectors in situations without legal or jurisprudential precedents.’
‘Great availability and great knowledge of our business. They anticipate our needs. Raimundo Ortega is a great professional who knows exactly what we need and what our areas for improvement are. We couldn’t have anyone better.’
MVA ASOCIADOS has a strong track record in cartel cases, representing clients in investigations by the CNMC as well as in subsequent litigation before the national courts of all levels. In addition, the team is experienced in merger control, follow-on damages claims (particularly in the oil sector) and compliance matters. Eduardo Abril, who stands out for his expertise in competition matters in the energy sector, leads the team.
Other key lawyers:
Antonio Robles; Beatriz Villalba
‘Impressive knowledge and wide expertise. The members of the teams work well together to provide rigorous and detailed legal advice. They understand our sector and our key challenges quickly and provide fast responses. The team of lawyers usually varies depending on the case to ensure efficiency and the best outcome possible. Their availability is remarkable. In conclusion, they always meet our expectations and provide specific and successful legal solutions for each case.’
‘Eduardo Abril is technically solid, sharp and available. He is a top competition lawyer and his advice is pragmatic and strategically intelligent. We have total confidence in him. Antonio Robles is rigorous in his analysis. He knows all relevant precedents and how to apply them to the case at hand. Beatriz Villalba is always available, hardworking and smart.’
‘They strive to find alternatives that suit the needs of the business instead of playing things safe from a legal point of view.’
ACER (European Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators) and ACER’s Board of Appeal
BP OIL ESPAÑA
HOLMEN GROUP (HOLMER PAPER MADRID, S.L.)
PAVAPARK MOVILIDAD, S.L.
GRUPO ARMANDO ÁLVAREZ
SEDIGAS (ASOCIACIÓN ESPAÑOLA DEL GAS)
ALBA GROUP (ALBA SERVICIOS VERDES, S.A.)
AREMA (ASOCIACIÓN DE LA RECUPERACIÓN Y EL RECICLADO DE MADRID)
CARPA CARTÓN Y PAPEL RECICLADO, S.L.
HNOS. INGLÉS-VIDAL, S.L.
HIJOS DE DEMETRIO FERNÁNDEZ, S.A. (DEFESA)
S. SOLÍS, S.A.
RECICLAJES ELDA, S.L.
- Advised Mémora Servicios Funerarios, S.L.U., a leading Spanish company in the management of funeral services, on two different phase II merger control procedures, which were approved by the CNMC with commitments.
- Acting for EDP España before the Court of Justice of the European Union in a successful challenge to several orders of the Ministry of Energy which regulate the obligation to fund the so-called ‘social bonus’ (a subsidised electricity regulated tariff for low-income end users).
- Successfully represented AREMA before the Supreme Court in an appeal filed by the State Attorney against a ruling which upheld the client’s previous appeal in connection with the CNMC’s decision in a cartel case.
PwC Tax & Legal Services
PwC Tax & Legal Services has been highly active in representing clients in investigations by the CNMC, as well as in appeals against fines imposed by the authority before the national courts at all levels, and high-profile merger control matters. The team also has considerable expertise in advising on competition compliance programmes and distribution agreements. Key areas of strength include the telecoms, franchising, oil and gas, and automotive sectors. Alberto Escudero leads the practice, while manager Michael Tuit is also a key contact.
Other key lawyers:
Michael Tuit; Rubén Gil
‘This team of attorneys has a deep understanding of our industry. In their advice they have always been able to explain matters at a high technical level, which means we can turn to them in cases of greater complexity or in which we need a second opinion to help with business decisions and support our work as in-house lawyers. Excellent advice and support in this specific area.’
‘I would like to highlight the work of Alberto Escudero, who is always involved in our consultations. His advice is of excellent quality, business-oriented and pragmatic. His technical knowledge of competition law is outstanding, but at the same time his advice and recommendations are clearly written, in a way that allows us to draw very practical conclusions. We highly value the fact that he keeps us regularly informed about developments in competition law. Alberto stands out because he is able to put himself in the client’s shoes and understand perfectly the type of advice we need, getting the approach right and conveying his conclusions very clearly.’
‘I believe that part of the value of the firm’s lawyers is that they have in-depth knowledge of all the elements of competition law that can affect a project.’
NEW DURALEX INTERNATIONAL
- Acted for ASEFA in appeals to the High Court and Supreme Court which reduced the fines imposed by the CNMC in a cartel case involving construction insurance, and in a subsequent investigation by the CNMC which was closed.
- Advised AEF on competition law matters relating to a blockchain technology project.
- Advised AECOC on various projects, including preparing a report to the CNMC on the compatibility with EU and competition law of new regulations in the transport sector imposed by the Spanish government.
Competition and EU law litigation is a key area of focus for the team at Roca Junyent, which is experienced in handling cases before the national and European courts. The team has considerable expertise in cases in the banking sector, as well as appeals against decisions taken by the CNMC, state aid proceedings, and follow-on damages claims, and has acted as legal counsel to the Catalan Competition Authority. Roberto Vallina Hoset leads the practice, with experience acting for both companies and state bodies in competition matters.
Roberto Vallina Hoset
LUKSIC FAMILY (AERIS INVEST, S.À.R.L.)
FUTBOL CLUB BARCELONA
ISS FACILITY SERVICES, S.A.
BANCO de SABADELL, S.A.
PLATAFORMA JUEGO LIMPIO DE ADMINISTRACIONES DE LOTERÍAS
AUTORITAT CATALANA DE LA COMPETENCIA
TOP CABLE S.A.
SERVICIOS FUNERARIOS DE MADRID, S.A.
EUROMADI IBÉRICA, S.A.
CHEPLAPHARM ARZNEIMITTEL GMBH
KELLOGG’S SPAIN S.A.
GAPS POLITICA I SOCIETAT S.L.
GREMIO DE CONSIGNATARIOS DEL MERCADO CENTRAL DE PESCADOS Y MARISCOS FRESCOS Y CONGELADOS DE BARCELONA Y PROVINCIA
ASOCIACIÓN PROFESIONAL DE GUIAS TURÍSTICOS DE CATALUNYA
POMPAS FUNEBRES DE BADALONA SA
FACONAUTO PROYECTOS Y SERVICIOS, S.L.U.
AMP SERVICES LIMITED
- Acting for Aeris Invest, S.à.r.l, in the appeal related to the resolution of Banco Popular before the Court of Justice of the European Union.
- Acting for Banco de Sabadell in proceedings before the Spanish Competition Authority concerning alleged anticompetitive conduct during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Representing Banco de Sabadell in proceedings before the Spanish National Appeal Court, appealing against the decision of the Spanish Competition Authority to impose a fines on four banks over price fixing on interest rate derivatives.