Background Significant amendments to the Law of Ukraine “On protection of economic competition” came into force on 17 December 2017. The changes are aimed at prohibiting transactions involving persons included in the Ukrainian sanctions list (the Sanctions list). The Sanctions list was introduced by the Law of Ukraine “On Sanctions” following the annexation of Crimea…

The European Commission’s recent focus on the impact of mergers on innovation competition has sparked a heated debate amongst lawyers and economists. Innovation seems to have become the new “Greater Good” the Commission is pursuing when reviewing mergers, whether in the pharmaceutical or medical device sectors, in pesticides, engineering, ICT or other technology-driven industries. The…

Most merger control regimes provide for so-called stand-still obligations, i.e. the parties cannot implement the transaction until the necessary merger clearances have been received from the relevant competition authorities. This means in particular that the acquiring company cannot starting controlling the target’s business prior to closing – no “gun jumping” is allowed. Competition authorities have…

Between 2012 and 2013, Marine Harvest ASA (“Marine Harvest”), a Norwegian seafood company, acquired Morpol ASA (“Morpol”), a Norwegian producer and processor of salmon. Marine Harvest notified the transaction to the European Commission under the European Union’s Merger Regulation (“EUMR”), but implemented it prior to the European Commission having granted clearance. The European Commission imposed…

The financial crisis led to the bail out of several banks which were considered to be “too big to fail.” Considering the costs of those bail outs for the European taxpayer and in view of the importance of financial stability for the proper functioning of the EU’s internal market, the EU institutions created a new…

Complex transactions are subject to an increased level of antitrust scrutiny by competition authorities. This often results in extended waiting periods between signing and closing – it can nowadays be one year or even longer before the parties are able to implement the deal. For the acquiring company it is often important to start planning…

Summary New German threshold for high value but no/low German sales transactions to enter into force: Imminent changes to merger control will widen jurisdiction to catch (i) high value transactions worth over EUR 400 million with (ii) target substantial German activity even where (iii) the deal would previously not have been notifiable because the target’s…

The European Commission increasingly issues large document requests in complex merger cases. The number of requested documents has increased significantly in recent years, from a few hundred to several hundred thousand, in particular in Phase I or Phase II cases that raise substantial issues. If the document request is issued during the formal proceedings, the documents…

Austria will introduce a transaction value merger notification threshold, which will enter into force on 1 November 2017.  The draft law and explanatory notes are available here (in German).  In essence, transactions with a transaction value of more than € 200 million, provided the target has “significant” activities in Austria, will potentially require notification. The…

With her delivery of the UK’s Article 50 notice on March 29, Theresa May has launched the two-year negotiating process leading to the first exit of a Member State from the European Union (EU).  The negotiations will affect virtually every economic and policy area in Europe, including competition policy. These effects will be felt first…