Under the leadership of Riccardo Celli, head of the firm’s European Antitrust and Competition Practice and founder of our Brussels office, we advise clients on the complete range of competition/antitrust, foreign direct investment, regulatory, and trade issues. Qualified in all key European jurisdictions, our multilingual lawyers not only offer first-in-class strategic and procedural advice, but also draw on their close working relationships with EU and national competition authorities to help clients efficiently and effectively navigate multijurisdictional proceedings.
While our home is Brussels, our perspective is global. With antitrust/competition regulatory enforcement on the rise, particularly cross-border merger enforcement, our team anticipates and adapts to evolving laws, policies, and trends around the world. We regularly represent clients before antitrust and competition agencies in the United States, Europe, and Asia, and we use our US, European, and Asian antitrust knowledge to advise on the transnational implications of deals. This is a critical aspect of international business now that antitrust authorities increasingly conduct parallel merger inquiries and monopoly and cartel investigations. Few firms can match our consistent strength across these three economically vital regions.
Guided Advanced Micro Devices to victory in a global fight against Intel Corporation for monopolizing the x86-microprocessor industry through scare tactics and coercion. With litigation and investigations spanning the US, EU, and Asia, O’Melveny helped AMD turn the tables on Intel, forcing it to pay some USD$2.7 billion in settlements and fines.
Achieved a major victory for Ardagh, a leading producer of recyclable packaging, when the EU Commission issued a rare merger prohibition, barring the contemplated combination of the steel businesses of Tata Steel and ThyssenKrupp in Europe. The parties—Europe’s second- and third-largest steel makers—were both significant suppliers to Ardagh, which was concerned that the merger would harm its steel-packaging business. It would have also led to reduced choice in suppliers and higher prices for European steel customers.
Advising Asiana Airlines on its proposed acquisition by Korean Airlines. The combination of the two Seoul-headquartered carriers has been notified to competition authorities in numerous jurisdictions worldwide, including the EU Commission, and has received approval from many, including the Korean Fair Trade Commission. Our Brussels team is advising Asiana in merger control reviews by the UK Competition and Markets Authority and the EU Commission.
As part of a team spanning multiple O’Melveny offices, our Brussels lawyers provided antitrust merger control advice to DL Chemical on its USD$2.5 billion acquisition of Kraton Corporation, a leading global sustainable producer of specialty polymers and high-value bio-based products. Our team helped secure antitrust and FDI merger clearances in nearly ten jurisdictions.
Helped IAA, Inc. secure merger control approval from the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) for its acquisition of SYNETIQ Holdings Limited, an integrated salvage and vehicle dismantling company in the UK. Under O’Melveny’s guidance, IAA received unconditional clearance of the transaction in Phase 1 within the statutory 40-working-day period. Since the transaction closed before notification to the CMA, which operates a voluntary regime, O’Melveny also helped IAA navigate the standard Initial Enforcement Order that was issued following notification, proactively implementing safeguards and other measures to reduce disruption to the parties’ operations during this hold-separate period.
Secured an unconditional EU merger clearance for the acquisition of a market-leading music recognition app, a rare outcome that avoided the EU Commission’s adoption of a formal Statement of Objections. Approval came after a nine-month in-depth Phase II review of the transaction by the EU Commission, which seldom grants unconditional approval once it initiates an in-depth probe. The case, referred to the Commission by the competition authorities of seven Member States, received intense scrutiny given its focus on the importance of data in the digital economy and the potential harm to competition.
As lead antitrust counsel, O’Melveny is advising Norsk Hydro ASA in the European Commission’s merger control review of its proposed acquisition of Alumetal S.A., a Polish producer of aluminium foundry alloys and master alloys.