The European Antitrust Review 2014 • Section 3: Country chapters
Antitrust and merger control rules are mainly contained in the Prevention on the Restriction of Competition Act (ZPOmK-1), which contains both substantive and procedural rules for administrative proceedings, as well as provisions concerning the institution responsible for enforcement. Substantive rules in general follow the EC competition rules.
Since infringements of antitrust and merger control rules are defined as minor offences, the provisions of the Minor Offences Act (ZP-1) are also applicable.
In addition, infringements of antitrust and merger control rules are defined as criminal offences under the Criminal Code (KZ-1). Article 225(1) of KZ-1 prescribes imprisonment for between six months and five years for persons who, while performing a business activity, breach antitrust rules banning the conclusion of anti-competitive agreements between undertakings, abuse the dominant position of one or more undertakings, or create a forbidden concentration of undertakings, and who in this way prevent, materially impede or distort competition in the Republic of Slovenia or in the EU market, or materially or in significant part affect trade between member states, resulting in significant proceeds for that undertaking or undertakings, or significant loss for another undertaking. In addition, an undertaking can be held responsible for the same offence in accordance with the Liability of Legal Persons for Criminal Offences Act, punishable by a fine of between €10,000 and €1 million, forfeiture of property, termination of the undertaking, a ban on participation in public procurement or a ban on trading with financial instruments. KZ-1 also provides for a form of leniency which applies to all anti-competitive agreements. A perpetrator who concludes an anti-competitive agreement, but informs authorities of this before the investigation has begun, cooperates with authorities during the investigation and applies remedies to the situation, and who has not coerced others to participate or remain in agreement, can have his punishment remitted. There are still no known criminal cases.
Relevant authorities: their powers and procedures
Slovenian Competition Protection Agency (CPA)
From 1 January 2013 the newly established CPA took over responsibility for the enforcement of competition rules from the Competition Protection Office (CPO). The organisation of the CPA was based on the amendments to the ZPOmK-1 (ZPOmK-1D), which entered into force on 28 July 2012. The CPA was established by reorganisation of the CPO and took over all the employees of CPA and all of its cases. The CPA is organised as an independent public body led by a director and five-member council. The director is also a member of the council and employees of the CPA could also be appointed as council members. Members of the council and the director are nominated by the government and appointed by the parliament for a five-year mandate. The CPA is financed directly from the budget, as a direct budget user, as well as from the fees in relation to its costs. In accordance with ZPOmK-1 CPA should adopt its tariff in relation to the costs, but so far the CPA has not published its tariff, which means that the CPA is for now only funded from the budget.
Two procedures exist: for administrative and minor offences. In an administrative procedure, infringements are assessed and brought to an end; in a minor offence procedure, fines are levied.
Rules on administrative procedure are contained in ZPOmK-1, with the rules of the General Administrative Procedure Act also applicable. An administrative procedure is initiated either:
- ex officio by the CPA when it has information on possible breach of antitrust rules or existence of notifiable concentration with the publications of order on initiation of proceedings; or
- following notification of concentration by the parties.
There is one joint proceeding conducted for the infringement of national and EU rules. Parties to the proceedings are usually only undertakings against which the proceedings are initiated. Natural persons are not party to the proceedings, except in cases of concentration by a natural person which already controls another undertaking. Complainants and other parties, which can show legal interest, can request to be made party to the proceedings within 30 days from the publication of the order upon initiation of the proceedings. During proceedings, the CPA safeguards the confidential information that it gathers and the identity of the complainants, if requested to do so. Before the decision finding the infringement is reached, the CPA issues a statement of objections (SO). Parties have the right to respond to the SO within the 45-day time limit, as prescribed by ZPOmK-1. Decisions concluding administrative procedure are made by the panel, comprised of all the members of the council.
ZPOmK-1 prescribes time limits within which proceedings before the CPA should be concluded; however, there are no consequences if these are not met, and in fact the CPA does not usually reach a decision within the set time limit. Antitrust infringement proceedings should be concluded within two years of initiation, and merger control proceedings within 25 working days of the complete notification for Phase I decisions, and for Phase II decisions within an additional 60 or 75 working days from the issue of order on commencement of the proceedings.
The minor offences procedure is usually conducted as a follow-on procedure after the infringement has been established in an administrative procedure. There is no statutory requirement for this, and only a minor offences procedure could be conducted for finding an infringement and levying fines without previous administrative proceedings. However, the CPA generally chooses to conduct administrative proceedings beforehand. ZP-1 prescribes the same fast-track procedure for finding an infringement of antitrust and merger rules and levying fines for these infringements as for other minor offences (eg, speeding). Proceedings are initiated ex officio. Perpetrators of minor offences are undertakings and natural persons – responsible persons of the undertakings. The CPA informs perpetrators of the charges against them in writing and warns them of the privilege against self-incrimination. Perpetrators have five days to provide an answer to the charges. After the CPA receives the answers it adopts a decision levying fines. Decisions concluding minor offences procedure are made by the three-member minor offences panel, comprised of the members of the council and employees of the CPA. Minor offences panel is appointed by the council for each case separately upon the request of the director immediately after the first action in the relation with the minor offences proceedings has been performed. ZPOmK-1 prescribes a relative five-year limitation period and an absolute 10-year limitation period from the date of the infringement.
In line with ZPOmK-1, the CPA has similar powers in administrative proceedings, as does the European Commission. It can request information (article 27 ZPOmK-1) and conduct inspections (articles 28 to 33 ZPOmK-1).
Under article 27 ZPOmK-1, the CPA has the power to request information from any undertaking or partners, members of management or supervisory boards and persons employed with the undertaking, even before initiation of proceedings, in the form of a simple request. The CPA can also request information from the undertaking by issuing a special order. The undertaking can challenge such an order only in the judicial protection filed against the final decision. There are no other legal remedies available to the undertaking against a special order requesting information. Undertakings have a duty to cooperate and provide all the information requested correctly, completely and on time, but are not required to admit to the infringement. If the request for information is made with a special order, the undertaking that does not provide the information requested, does not provide it on time or provides incorrect, incomplete or misleading information can be penalised by order of the CPA with a penalty of up to €50,000. The penalty can be imposed again until the combined amount reaches 1 per cent of the annual turnover of the undertaking in the preceding business year. Undertakings can challenge, in judicial protection proceedings, the order setting the penalty, but cannot challenge reasonableness of the special order requesting information within those judicial proceedings.
The CPA can also conduct inspections on the premises of the undertakings against which proceedings have been initiated, or on the premises of other persons.
In accordance with article 33 ZPOmK-1, the CPA can conduct inspections on other premises if there are reasonable grounds to suspect that documentation relating to the subject matter of an inspection are being kept at the premises of another undertaking, or on the residential premises of members of the management or supervisory bodies, or of staff or other associates of the undertaking against which procedure has been initiated. The CPA needs a court order to search those premises, obtained from a judge of the competent court in Ljubljana.
Article 28(1) of ZPOmK-1 provides that the CPA can enter and conduct inspections on the premises of the undertaking against which proceedings have been initiated with an order issued by the director of the CPA. This provision has however been found to be unconstitutional by the decision of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Slovenia (Constitutional Court) from 11 April 2013 (see below under ‘recent developments’).
The CPA-authorised persons have the same rights as the EC when conducting inspections and can, in addition, seize items for no longer than 20 working days and identify persons present at the inspection.
Undertakings have a duty to cooperate with the CPA. Privileged communication, ie, communication between the undertaking against which the procedure has been initiated and its attorney pertaining to the procedure in question, is excluded from the inspection. If there is any doubt as to whether documents are to be treated as privileged communication, documents are seized and the Supreme Court of the Republic of Slovenia (Supreme Court) decides if it constitutes privileged communication. In the case of obstruction of the inspection by the undertaking being inspected, the CPA can issue an order setting a penalty of up to 1 per cent of the annual turnover of that undertaking in the preceding business year. If the inspection is obstructed by any other person not connected to the undertaking being inspected, the CPA can issue an order against such person, setting a penalty of up to €50,000. The undertaking or other person to which the order is addressed can challenge, in judicial protection proceedings, the order setting the penalty, but cannot challenge reasonableness of the inspection within those judicial proceedings.
For minor offences procedures, criminal procedure rules apply in accordance with ZP-1 – meaning that all the caveats of criminal proceedings apply (privilege against self-incrimination, reasonable cause standard). In order to conduct an inspection, the CPA needs a court order from the local court. Inspections are carried out by the police with CPA employees assisting. The CPA does not usually carry out investigations in minor offences proceedings.
The biggest development in 2013 so far has been an introduction of new independent enforcement body the CPA, replacing the CPO. In addition, the CPA’s number of employees has almost doubled, and now it has 28 employees. In April 2013 the CPA adopted instructions for the companies notifying concentrations to the CPA to provide information on the concentration that is being examined by the CPA to the general public. The companies are now asked to provide their consent for publication on the CPA’s website of the following information: names of the parties in concentration, date of the notification, number of proceedings and sector in which the concentration is taking place. This is done in an effort to bring more transparency to the proceedings and to allow more opportunities to the interested parties to be able to enter the proceedings or provide relevant information to the CPA. Since there is currently no legal obligation on the parties to provide such information or to agree to publication, the CPA cannot force the parties to submit their approval for publication.
The CPA’s powers of inspection, in accordance with ZPOmK-1, were challenged as unconstitutional before the Constitutional Court in 2012. The Supreme Court referred as unconstitutional rules of articles 28 and 29 ZPOmK-1. In its decision from 11 April 2013 the Constitutional Court found that article 28(1), giving the CPA the right to conduct inspections at the premises of companies against whom the proceedings have been initialised allowing also for inspection of all form of data carriers and communication, based only on the order of the director of the CPA, is in breach of article 37 of the Constitution of the Republic of Slovenia (Constitution) on communications privacy. Article 37 of the Constitution states that communications privacy can only be suspended if so prescribed by the law, on the basis of a court order, for a set time, where it is necessary for the initiation or course of criminal proceedings or for reasons of national security. The Constitutional Court has found that the current regime is unconstitutional since it allows for intrusion of communication privacy without the order of the competent court, which is required under the article 37 of the Constitution. Parliament has now been given one year to bring the unconstitutional provisions in line with the Constitution. However until the changes to the ZPOmK-1 are adopted, the current regime can still be used by CPA.
The information commissioner has also challenged rules of article 29 ZPOmK-1 giving the CPA the power to conduct inspection of e-mails, as a breach of article 37 of Constitution. This decision is still pending.
The Supreme Court has ruled in a number of cases with regard to the possibility of third parties entering proceedings before the CPA. In a decision of 25 March 2013 the Supreme Court ruled that contractual partners of the company that is being taken over by another company do not have a legal interest to be allowed to take part in the merger control proceedings. The Supreme Court has also ruled in its decision of 26 June 2012 that possible interest for follow-on damages does not constitute a legal interest for a party to enter into proceedings before the CPA.
In another decision from 10 October 2012, the Supreme Court rejected a claim by a party for the the right to enter into judicial protection proceedings regarding a decision by the CPA finding an abuse of dominant position. The court had already rejected a claim by the party for the right to enter into proceedings before the CPA (due to the fact that the party had missed a legal 30-day deadline to make a claim). In accordance with article 19(1) of the Administrative Dispute Act, a party whose entry into the administrative proceedings is finally rejected, does not have a standing in judicial protection proceedings.
But in a decision from 26 June 2012, the Supreme Court found that a party has a legal interest to enter in merger control proceedings, and a right to challenge an order issued by the CPA, if by an order of the CPA issued with regard to another party (also not party to the merger proceedings) in the course of merger control proceedings an interested party has been prevented in exercising freely its rights as a shareholder.
The Administrative Court of the Republic of Slovenia (Administrative Court) found in its decision of 13 July 2012 that the CPA had acted illegally and had breached the constitutional right to protection of private property of the party to the proceedings before the CPA, by having revealed in the course of the proceedings to another company data of the party that represents its business secret. The Administrative Court had also with the same decision forbidden the CPA to reveal any further business secrets of the party in its proceeding in breach of the constitutional right to protection of private property.
Decisions by the CPA can only be challenged in judicial proceedings
In administrative proceedings, the Supreme Court has full jurisdiction to hear cases. There is only one stage in proceedings, and no complaints or requests for revision can be made against the decision of the Supreme Court. Parties cannot introduce new facts in the judicial proceedings. A request for judicial protection has to be filed within 30 days from the issue of the decision or the order.
Decisions of the CPA in minor offence proceedings can be challenged in accordance with ZP-1 with a request for judicial protection before the Local Court in Ljubljana. Decisions of the Local Court can be appealed before the High Court in Ljubljana.
The Supreme Court has, before the Constitutional Court, referred as unconstitutional the rules of ZPOmK-1 regarding judicial protection proceedings in administrative proceedings. The Supreme Court maintains that rules limiting the ability to challenge orders by the CPA, and limiting judicial protection to one-stage proceedings before the Supreme Court, is in breach of article 25 of the Constitution (the right to legal protection). In its decision of 11 April 2013, the Constitutional Court rejected arguments by the Supreme Court and found that those provisions are in line with the Constitution.
Rules in ZPOmK-1 on substantive matters are modelled on EC competition rules. ZPOmK-1 is applied to all sectors and all undertakings.
Anti-competitive agreements and concerted practices
Article 6 of ZPOmK-1, modelled on article 101 TFEU, prohibits as null and void agreements between undertakings, decisions by associations of undertakings and concerted practices of undertakings (agreements), which have as their object or effect the prevention, restriction or distortion of competition on the territory of the Republic of Slovenia with some actions stated as examples of prohibition (price fixing, market sharing, limitation of production, discrimination, etc).
There are exemptions to the general prohibition contained in article 6 of ZPOmK-1.
Article 6(3) of ZPOmK-1 provides for exemption in line with article 101(3) TFEU. Burden of proof lies with the undertaking claiming exemption.
Article 7 provides for de minimis exemption for agreements by parties whose market share does not cover 10 per cent in the case of horizontal agreements, 15 per cent in the case of vertical agreements or 10 per cent in the case of mixed horizontal-vertical agreements. Thresholds are decreased by 5 per cent if competition on a relevant market is restricted by the cumulative effects of parallel or similar agreements between other undertakings. The de minimis exemption does not apply to agreements including hard-core restrictions (eg, price fixing).
ZPOmK-1 allows for block exemptions under article 8. In Slovenia, block exemptions applicable in the EC apply directly even if there is no effect on trade between member states. In addition the government can adopt additional block exemption regulation, but has not yet done so.
In case of proceedings of possible infringement of article 6 and/or article 101 TFEU, the CPA can:
- adopt a decision finding an infringement, requiring it be brought to an end and imposing reasonable measures for this (eg, disposal of business or part of the undertaking’s business; division of an undertaking or disposal of shares in undertakings; transfer of industrial property rights and other rights; conclusion of licence and other contracts; or ensuring access to infrastructure);
- adopt decision-making binding commitments proposed by the undertaking against which the proceedings were initiated, with a view to eliminating the circumstances leading to the likelihood of an infringement’s existence; and
- terminate proceedings with an order if:
- it finds no infringement or if specific circumstances indicate that procedure would not be reasonable;
- the EC initiates a procedure for the infringement of EC rules, or has already issued a decision on the same matter; or
- a competition authority of another EU member state has initiated a procedure for the infringement of EC rules, or has issued a decision on the same matter.
In the case of a breach of article 6 of ZPOmK-1 and/or article 101 TFEU, the CPA can impose minor offences fines in the amount of:
- up to 10 per cent of the annual turnover of the undertaking in the preceding business year on a legal entity, entrepreneur or an individual who performs economic activity; or
- between €5,000 and €30,000 on the responsible person of a legal entity or the responsible person of an entrepreneur.
In addition in accordance with the ZP-1 any gains from the infringement are to be reclaimed as well.
Leniency is only granted in cartel cases and applies to undertakings and natural persons. Leniency is granted as full immunity or a reduction of the fine (up to 50 per cent). Full immunity is granted to the first applicant. The second applicant can be granted a reduction of between 30 and 50 per cent of the fine; the third applicant, between 20 and 30 per cent; and any other applicants, up to 20 per cent.
Conditions for immunity are met by the applicant who:
- fully and completely discloses his participation in an alleged cartel;
- is the first to submit information and evidence which enables an inspection in connection with the alleged cartel, or the finding of an infringement in connection with the alleged cartel;
- cooperates with the CPA;
- ends his involvement in the alleged cartel immediately upon cooperation with the CPA, except if the CPA requests otherwise; and
- did not coerce other undertakings to join the cartel or to remain in it.
Conditions for a reduction of the fine are met by the applicant who:
- provides evidence of his participation in the alleged cartel, which represents significant added value with respect to the evidence already in the CPA’s possession;
- cooperates with the CPA throughout the procedure; and
- ends his involvement in the alleged cartel immediately upon cooperation with the CPA, except if the CPA requests otherwise.
Leniency only applies to the minor offences procedure and has no bearing on criminal proceedings.
In 2012 the CPA issued a number of decisions relating to the energy sector. On 14 August 2012 the CPA issued a decision finding companies GEN Energija d.o.o. and GEN-I d.o.o. had infringed article 6 ZPOmK-1 and article 101 TFEU by defining within the framework agreement in advance a fixed price for the sale of electricity to eligible customers in the period from 1 January 2007 until 4 January 2010. The decision is not final yet. In addition, in 2013 the CPA initiated proceedings in the gas sector (the only procedure initiated in 2013 so far) for possible infringement of article 6 ZPOmK-1 and article 101 TFEU. The proceedings initiated on 15 February 2013 against 16 natural gas suppliers and association of undertakings concern alleged exchange of sensitive information and setting of prices of natural gas for household customers.
On 26 September 2012 the CPA issued a decision in administrative proceedings against the Medical Chamber of Slovenia finding infringement of article 6 ZPOmK-1 and from 1 May 2004 on article 101 TFEU for the adoption in 1995 by the chamber of rules setting standards for valuation of medical and dental services (that were in force until 30 May 2012). The CPA found that with the adoption of those rules, which represent a decision by the association of the undertakings, the chamber had set prices and other conditions for conduct of business on the market for dental and medical services. The CPA had with the same decision also imposed on the chamber the obligation to inform its members that those rules were null and void and to change all of its internal acts that are connected to the established infringement of competition rules.
Abuse of dominance
Article 9 of ZPOmK-1, modelled on article 102 TFEU, prohibits the abuse of a dominant position on the market by one or more undertakings in the territory of the Republic of Slovenia, or in a substantial part of it, and gives some examples of what would count as an abuse (setting of unfair prices, limitations of production, discrimination, etc).
Dominance is defined as the ability of an undertaking to act, to a significant degree, independently of competitors, clients or consumers. In addition there is a legal presumption that the undertaking is dominant if its share of the Slovenian market exceeds the 40 per cent threshold and that undertakings are jointly dominant if their share on the Slovenian market exceeds 60 per cent.
The CPA issues the same decisions and imposes the same fines applicable to cases concerning anti-competitive agreements.
The CPA reached two decisions in the energy sector with regard to the abuse of dominance. In its decision from 9 August 2012 the CPA found that SODO d.o.o. had infringed article 9 ZPOmK-1. The CPA found that, in the period from 1 January 2008 until 1 April 2010, the company had abused its dominant position in the market for the management of the electric energy distribution network by discriminating against different electricity distributing companies by only charging some companies for excessive electric energy received. On the other hand, the CPA on 14 August 2012 terminated proceedings against GEN Energija d.o.o. for alleged abuse of dominance by discrimination against other companies in comparison to GEN-I d.o.o. with provision of better trading conditions to the latter.
In May 2013 the CPA issued a decision finding an infringement of article 9 ZPOmK-1 and article 102 TFEU by Pro Plus. The CPA found that Pro Plus had abused its dominant position in the market for TV advertising via exclusivity clauses and conditional loyalty rebates.
In 2012 and 2013 to date, no new cases have been initiated by the CPA. With an order of 25 March 2013, the CPA joined four existing different proceedings into a single proceeding against Telekom Slovenije for alleged abuse of the dominant position.
Concentration, in line with article 10 ZPOmK-1, is a change of control on a lasting basis due to a merger, aquistion of control or creation of a joint venture performing all the functions of an autonomous economic entity on a lasting basis.
Concentration has to be notified if the following thresholds from article 41 ZPOmK-1 are met:
- the total annual turnover of the undertakings involved in a concentration, together with other undertakings in the group, on the Slovenian market in the preceding business year exceeds €35 million;
- the annual turnover of the acquired undertaking, together with other undertakings in the group, on the Slovenian market in the preceding business year exceeds €1 million; or
- in the case of joint venture, the annual turnover of at least two undertakings concerned in a concentration, together with other undertakings in the group, in the preceding business year exceeds €1 million.
Article 41(3) prescribes the alternative threshold for notification in the case that the market share, on the Slovenian market, of the undertakings involved in concentration, together with other undertakings in the group, exceeds 60 per cent. If this threshold is met the undertakings concerned have to inform the CPA of the concentration before its implementation. The CPA has 15 days to decide if it is going to request the undertakings to notify the concentration.
The concentration must be notified within 30 days of the conclusion of the contract, the announcement of the public bid or the acquisition of a controlling interest, whichever is first. Notification must be filed on the form prescribed in the decree, defining the contents of the notification form for the concentration of companies.
After notification or initiation of ex officio proceedings, there is a standstill obligation. In addition, the CPA can issue a special decision banning other companies and public bodies from implementing concentration or exercising rights from the concentration. Companies can request, in individual cases, the permission of the CPA to exercise their rights and obligations from the concentration prior to the deicision of the CPA on concentration, if it is essential for maintainenance of the full value of the investment or for performance of services of general interest.
The test for the prohibition of concentration is in line with EC standards: concentrations are prohibited if they would significantly impede effective competition on the territory of the Republic of Slovenia or on a substantial part of it, in particular as a result of the creation or strengthening of a dominant position.
In merger control proceedings the CPA can adopt the following decisions:
- concentration does not fall within the scope of ZPOmk-1;
- concentration is compatible;
- concentration is compatible if remedies offered by the undertaking are met; or
- concentration is incompatible (only in Phase II).
If the concentration is found to be incompatible the CPA may impose measures on the undertakings involved in the concentration to restore the situation that prevailed prior to its implementation, in particular through the division of the undertaking or disposal of all the shares acquired.
CPA can annul its decision on compatibility:
- within three years of its issuance, if the decision is based on incomplete, incorrect or misleading information supplied by one of the undertakings involved in the concentration; or
- within two years from the time that remedies were to be implemented if an undertaking acts contrary to remedies.
Actions performed in breach of a standstill obligation are null and void. ZPOmK-1 defines as minor offences:
- failure to notify a concentration within the time limit;
- implementation of rights or obligations arising from the concentration in breach of a standstill obligation;
- failure to implement remedies or obligations imposed by a decision;
- actions in contravention of a decision declaring a concentration incompatible; and
- actions in contravention of an enforceable decision imposing measures to restore situation prior to the implementation of concentration.
The CPA can impose fines for these minor offences in the amount of:
- up to 10 per cent of the annual turnover of the undertaking and of other undertakings in the group in the preceding business year, on a legal entity and entrepreneur;
- between €5,000 and €30,000, on the responsible person of a legal entity or the responsible person of an entrepreneur; and
- between €3,000 and €15,000 on a natural person already controlling at least one undertaking.
In April 2012 the CPA initiated three Phase II examinations of cases concerning the energy sector, where energy companies have gained joint control over a company marketing energy in separate territories within Slovenian market. The CPA had decided on all three cases with very different conclusions. In one case the CPA had issued clearance decision, in another case the proceedings were terminated and in last case the CPA issued on 17 April 2013 its second ever prohibition decision.
At the same time, the first prohibition decision issued by CPA in 2009, ordering Delo d.d. to disinvest its share in ČZP Večer d.d., has not yet been fulfilled.
In 2012 Pivovarna Laško d.d. initated a damages claim for illegality of the order of CPO from April 2011 in merger control proceedings, which had than prevented a sale of shares, effectively preventing the sale of a national supermarket chain to a foreign company, against the previous director of CPO and Republic of Slovenia. A decision was issued in ex officio proceedings of alleged concentration between eight banks and a supermarket chain, which were terminated in October 2011 after a finding that no concentration existed. A decision prohibiting the sale of shares was appealed before the Supreme Court. The decision is still pending before the Supreme Court and in the newly initiated damages claim.
In 2013 to date the CPA has not initiated any ex officio proceedings or Phase II proceedings.
Private enforcement of antitrust rules is mainly focused on damages claims. There are no specific rules for enforcement of damages in antitrust cases; general rules for damages apply. There is no possibility of joint actions. ZPOmK-1 only prescribes in article 62 that in follow-on damages actions, courts are bound by the final decision of the CPA, and that the statute of limitations for damages claims is suspended for the period from the procedure’s initiation before the CPA. In 2012 and 2013 there has been increasing focus on private damages claims, with cases in the telecommunications and postal sectors being actively dealt with by the courts.
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