K&L Gates GP > Brussels, Belgium > Firm Profile

K&L Gates GP

Belgium > Aviation Tier 3

K&L Gates GP advises aviation, air transport and logistics, and airport clients, handling a range of corporate and commercial issues, regulatory compliance matters, and sector-specific issues such as air ticket distribution, airport expansion projects, and ground handling disputes. The practice works across domestic and cross-border matters, with a combination of local and international clients, and also handles competition and merger matters. Philip Torbøl leads the team, focusing on cross-border competition and internal market matters, alongside Mélanie Bruneau, who takes the lead on regulatory compliance, commercial and distribution work.

Practice head(s):

Philip Torbøl; Melanie Bruneau

Key clients


World Fuel Services



Multi Service Tolls

Jota Aviation

Belgium > Customs, trade, WTO and anti-dumping Tier 4

Under the leadership of Philip Torbøl, the team at K&L Gates GP focuses specifically on customs, trade and WTO matters for a mix of well-known international companies and advocacy groups. Giovanni Campi is highly experienced in advocacy strategy, policy analysis and interest representation, while Alessandro Di Mario focuses on market access issues, including UN and EU sanctions and restrictive measures. Miguel Angel Caramello Alvarez is noted for his broad experience in the rail sector, working with both EU and international rail transport clients.

Practice head(s):

Philip Torbøl

Key clients

Amadeus IT Group

TABC (Trans-Atlantic Business Council)

LG Chem

Jota Aviation

Belgium > Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 5

K&L Gates GP's team operates as part of the firm's international corporate and transactional offering, and advises a combination of domestic and international businesses on cross-border private and public M&A, capital markets, private equity transactions and corporate issues. The office has a strong record in advising international companies operating in Belgium, and has expertise in assisting clients across a variety of sectors. The team is led by Patrice Corbiau, who focuses on domestic and international commercial and corporate transactions, alongside Jeroen Smets, who advises on M&A, acquisition finance, and regulatory compliance issues.

Practice head(s):


‘We appreciate K&L Gates’ reactivity from partner and accurate follow up provided by the team.’

Stands out for its creative approach to strategy and anticipation of problematic matters.

Belgium > Competition: EU and global Tier 5

The team at K&L Gates GP plays a key role in Belgian and European clearances for major cross-border deals, representing international clients before the BCA and European courts in merger investigation proceedings in collaboration with its global offices. The practice also specialises in vertical enforcement and e-commerce issues. The practice is led by Philip Torbøl, Mélanie Bruneau and Francesco Carloni.


‘The team is able to provide excellent, pragmatic support on delicate matters under often very tight timelines.’

‘Francesco Carloni is always a pleasure to work with. He is not only an excellent lawyer but also very business-oriented and pragmatic with a focus on getting things done.’

‘The lawyers involved in this practice are very well skilled and proactive, and oriented to take care of the client’s legal needs anticipating and proposing to the client all possible solutions provided by the applicable law.’

‘I work with Francesco Carloni and his team. I’m very happy with the result obtained and the quality of the advice provided to my company.’

‘K&L Gates renders its services in a very professional and polite way. The people are very skilled, polite and support their client competently.’

‘They are very, very, very accurate, professional and make the clients feel well supported. They explain their advice in a clear and professional way.’

‘In my opinion, K&L Gates possess a very experienced team with regards to State aid issues. Also notable are their capabilities and understanding in railway regulation which is probably a unique combination with state aid experience. I am not aware any other office able to deal so fast yet with such a good understanding and experience in these matters. They are also very flexible and able to understand what big companies need also on the formal side of the cooperation.’

Key clients

II-VI Incorporated


Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana

Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode



Sealed Air Corporation

Mitsui Chemicals

World Fuel Services

Multi Service Tolls




OTB and its brands (Diesel, Maison Margiela, Marni, Staff International)

Audemars Piguet



Work highlights

  • Representing Exact Sciences before the European Commission and the U.S. FTC in connection with Illumina’s $8bn acquisition of Grail.
  • Representing Hexagon in its $2.75m acquisition of Infor EAM from Koch Industries before the Brazilian Competition Authority (CADE), the Austrian Competition Authority, the German Federal Cartel Office and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.
  • Representing Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana and Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode before the European Commission in a review of the Vertical Block Exemption Regulation VBER and Vertical Guidelines.

Hong Kong > Investment funds

Australia > Environment and planning

With locations spanning five continents, the planning and environment team at K&L Gates utilises the strength of the US firm’s global network to assist clients on large-scale projects across the mining, infrastructure, oil and gas, energy and renewables sectors. Kirstie Richards leads in Sydney, advising on pollution and contamination, regulatory approvals, risk and crisis management, land access, and environmental litigation. Supported by former in-house NSW Environment Protection Authority lawyer Luke Salem, the team’s client portfolio includes the NSW Government and EnergyAustralia.

Practice head(s):

Kirstie Richards

Other key lawyers:


‘The team is efficient, knowledgeable, practicable and cost sensitive.’

‘Kirstie Richards is one of the best partners I’ve every worked with. She is efficient, cost sensitive, practicable and knowledgeable. She understands the client’s needs and works hard to assist the business in achieving their objectives. She is truly an asset.’ 

Key clients



Tilt Renewables

Infigen Energy



Newtricity Developments Biala Pty Limited

NSW Government

Lendlease Samsung Bouygues Joint Venture

Great Southern Waste Technologies

VE Property

Generator Property Management

Work highlights

  • Acted for Great Southern Waste Technologies Pty Ltd in relation to their proposed waste-to-energy facility at 70 Ordish Road, Dandenong, including successfully defending a merits appeal brought in relation to their works approval application.
  • Acted for VE Property in relation to the remediation and divestment of a number of major industrial sites associated with the legacy operations of Shell (now Viva Energy) in Australia.
  • Assisting Tilt to obtain successfully approval to a significant modification to the $700M Rye Park Wind Farm to increase the size of the turbines and modify the project layout as required to take the project to construction.

The Firm: K&L Gates’ Brussels office is multilingual, is qualified in several jurisdictions, and brings together significant international experience. The office’s practices have both an international and national focus on European Union (EU) competition, EU regulation across a variety of sectors, public policy and market access issues, and corporate and commercial matters. The firm provides comprehensive international, domestic, and cross-border advice across a broad range of areas,  often involving a combination of practice areas, bespoke to the needs of clients and the particular matter at hand.

K&L Gates is one of the largest law firms in the world with more than 45 offices located in key capital cities and world commercial and financial centres spanning five continents. Its many offices operate as one firm, offering clients local market knowledge and access to both national and international capabilities.

Main areas of practice

EU Competition and Regulatory: The Brussels Competition team advises on the full range of EU competition law and national competition law, including merger control, cartel investigations, anticompetitive behavior, sector inquiries, and state aid. The team, which works closely with lawyers in our other European offices, has a wealth of experience handling cases before the European Commission and national competition authorities. Their clients include private equity funds, industrial and conglomerate groups, financial institutions, and iconic brands.  The EU Regulatory practice offers strategic legal advice across a variety of sectors, assisting companies not only in operating effectively through the maze of regulatory obligations while ensuring compliance, but also on how to influence and take advantage of the regulatory framework.

Public Policy and Market Access: The European Public Policy and Market Access group advises clients on how to better understand and shape regulatory and legislative actions affecting their businesses. They have an in-depth understanding of the regulatory and policy procedures of the EU and access to EU and national decision-makers. The team assists clients in a variety of sectors, including financial services, digital services, international trade, transportation, and fashion and luxury.

Corporate and Transactional: The Corporate and M&A practice of the Brussels office advises companies on the full range of corporate and commercial transactional matters. The practice is fully integrated with the firm’s international Corporate and Transactional practice, one of the most substantial in the world with more than 500 lawyers. The Transactional practice advises multinational and Belgian corporations on a wide range of corporate and commercial transactions and related matters, including cross-border, private, and public M&A deals; commercial contracts; capital markets; private equity; venture capital; joint ventures; corporate restructurings; general corporate law; and dispute resolutions.

Commercial: The Transactional team provides general contract support and handles major projects and business critical contracts for companies across many sectors. We draft and negotiate a wide spectrum of contracts ranging from routine to highly complex strategic contracts, including terms and conditions of sale and purchase, supply, lease, leasing, services, outsourcing, licensing, real estate transactions, collaboration, and consortium agreements across many different sectors. We also frequently provide advisory services on legal matters relevant to our clients’ businesses, such as competition law, fair trade practices, consumer protection, advertisements, product safety, Internet sales and e-commerce, data protection, and anticorruption issues.

Distribution: Lawyers in our Brussels office have deep experience advising on national and international distribution matters, including the drafting of complex distribution, commercial agency, and franchise agreements; the reorganization of distribution networks; and the potential risks and liabilities related to the termination of distributors, commercial agents, or franchisees. We also have experience representing companies before the courts regarding disputes related to distribution issues.

Litigation: The Litigation practice represents companies in a wide range of commercial litigation and arbitration cases. The team has extensive experience in Belgian domestic and international procedures. Clients include international private and public sector entities across a range of industries.

Transport and Logistics: The EU Transport and Logistics team provides sophisticated and practical advice and support for all aspects of international and European transport legislation, including air, rail, road, and maritime transport business; ground handling; logistics; and express transport. They handle major projects and critical business contracts for companies. The team has a strong sector-specific focus in transport, aviation, and airport matters.

Finance: The Finance practice advises Belgian and international financial institutions on acquisition and real estate finance, structured finance, security packages, and regulatory and general banking law. Our clients include investment funds and companies in the high-technology, logistics, textile, automobile, and pharmaceutical sectors. The practice also helps international clients navigate the European and global financial services policy and regulatory landscape with all banking and capital markets regulation.

Brussels Managing Partner: Tony Griffiths (Managing Partner, London, Brussels, Dubai, and Doha Offices and Managing Partner, Europe and Middle East)


Europe: Berlin, Brussels, Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Milan, Munich, Paris. Middle East: Doha, Dubai. United States: Austin, Boston, Charleston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Fort Worth, Harrisburg, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York, Newark, Orange County, Palo Alto, Pittsburgh, Portland, Raleigh, Research Triangle Park, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington DC, Wilmington. South America: Sao Paulo. Asia: Beijing, Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Taipei, Tokyo. Australia: Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney.