Christian Riis-Madsen is managing partner of O’Melveny’s Brussels office and a member of the Antitrust and Competition Practice. He focuses on EU competition and regulatory law.
Christian has a good understanding of commercial issues and provides companies with pragmatic advice that is well-connected with the business realities. In this respect, Chambers Europe 2013 notes that clients describe him as "well connected, thoughtful and quick," Chambers Global 2011 states that Christian is “impressing clients with his pragmatic, client-focused attitude and strong attention to detail,” and Legal 500 EMEA 2012 notes that Christian "has a ‘keen understanding of competition law’ and its application to a commercial situation."
Christian has significant experience in high-tech industries involving fast evolving markets, IP rights, and complex trade patterns. In Legal 500 EMEA’s 2011 rankings, Christian is singled out for his “‘problem-solving orientation,’ and awareness of particular hi-tech business sectors.”
The highlights of his successful track-record include:
- acting for the AMD in the Intel case securing the highest fine ever imposed by the European Commission,
- securing acquittal for several companies involved in cartel investigations, including for a leniency applicant, and
- representing a complainant in merger control proceedings that ultimately led to the break-up of the deal.
His work on transactions includes deal values ranging from US$10 million to US$30 billion. He handles notifications to the European Commission (EC), national competition authorities, and coordinates filings in jurisdictions outside of Europe.
Christian is one of very few antitrust specialists in Brussels of Scandinavian background. In IFLR’s 2010 EU Competition rankings, Christian is commended by peers as “a rising star in the antitrust community.”
Illustrative Professional Experience
EC Merger Control
- Representing Norsk Hydro in the US$30 billion merger of its oil and gas operations with Statoil ASA, the largest merger in the history of Norway
- Representing Norsk Hydro in the unconditional Phase II clearance of its US$1 billion sale of Kerling to INEOS, and in one of the very few “gun-jumping” investigations ever carried out by the EC
- Representing Honeywell International Inc. in multiple acquisitions, including obtaining Phase I clearance subject to remedies for the US$2.4 billion acquisition of UK listed company, Novar plc
- Representing Spansion Inc. in its US$368 million acquisition of Saifun Semiconductors Ltd.
Abuse of Dominance
- Representing Advanced Micro Devices in its Article 102 complaint against Intel, in which the EC in May 2009 fined Intel a record €1.06 billion (US$1.44 billion) for its anti-competitive practices. In November 2009, all of AMD’s antitrust claims were settled, securing AMD US$1.25 billion and wide-ranging injunctive relief
- Banana cartel investigation - Successfully obtaining the acquittal of Léon van Parys (LVP), the European importer of Bonita bananas, in a banana cartel investigation in the Northern European markets which ultimately led to the imposition of fines amounting to more than €60 million on other banana importers
- GFU cartel investigation – successfully representing two oil companies which were among the 30 companies targeted by the EC's probe into US$160 billion of natural gas supplies from the Norwegian Continental Shelf
- Rolling Stock Components - representing a multinational manufacturer of rolling stock components in relation to the EC investigation into alleged bid rigging of supplies to national rail companies. The EC investigation was closed prior to the issuance of a Statement of Objections
Advokatsamfundet, Brussels BarCo-Author,
"Reform of the EU Merger Regulation: Looking out for the Minority," CPI Antitrust Chronicle
(January 2012 (1)); "One to watch—the European Commission re-thinks merger control rules for minority shareholdings," Private Equity International
(December 2011); “Abuse of Dominance: An overview of recent modernisation developments in Europe,” Competition Law Insight
(11 January 2011);
EC Merger Control," chapter for Corporate Acquisitions and Mergers
, published by Wolters Kluwer Law and Business (2010); "Towards a European Energy Community?," European Antitrust Review 2010
, published by Global Competition Review
(2009); "EC Competition Law: An Overview of the Major Developments of 2008 and Expected Future Trends For 2009 and Beyond," European Antitrust and Competition Alert (March 2009); "A New Energy Era in the European Union," European Antitrust Review 2009
, published by Global Competition Review
(2008); "EU Energy," GCR European Antitrust Review
(2007-08); "Strengthened Cartel Enforcement in the EU," IBA Competition Law International
(2006); "Multi-jurisdictional Merger Control," PLC Cross-Border Competition Handbook
(2005/06). Christian frequently authors the O’Melveny European Antitrust and Competition Alerts. Speaker,
"GCR Live’s Antitrust and Technology," Global Competition Review
, London, UK (March 2012); “Competition,” Union Internationale des Avocats’ 55th Annual Congress, Florida, USA (October 2011); "Effective Document Collection/Legal Hold Protocols," The International Quality and Productivity Centre's Information Retention & E-Disclosure Management Exchange 2009, Brussels, Belgium (2009); "Enhancing Deterrence in Competition Law, Compliance Programmes, and Reduction in Fines," Competition Law Scholars Forum Workshop, Strathclyde University Law School, Glasgow (2007)Languages,
Danish; English; French; German; Norwegian; Swedish