GCR 100 - 15th Edition

Charles River Associates

04 December 2014

With over 150 competition economists, Charles River Associates goes from strength to strength and boasts an impressive client list which includes tech giants Samsung and Google

  • Hired a new vice president from a leading competitor
  • Acts for Deutsche Bank in the Libor investigations and Visa Europe in the interchange fee case
  • Assisted in a US$11 billion merger in the airline sector
Global head Margaret Sanderson
Home jurisdiction United States, Europe
Total size of firm 424
Competition economists 152
% of firm specialised 36
Who’s Who Legal nominees 33
Part-time consultants 0
Lateral hires 2
Departures 3
Internal promotions 3

2013 was a year of impressive growth at Charles River Associates (CRA), which welcomed nine economists to the firm. Although it did not welcome quite as many economists last year, it did make two notable senior hires, including that of Philip Kalmus from Compass Lexecon. An expert in communications markets, Kalmus joined the London office where he acts as a vice president in the antitrust and competition practice. Kai-Uwe Kühn, former chief economist at DG Comp, reaffiliated with the consultancy as a senior consultant. They join a highly regarded team that also includes Cristina Caffarra, a GCR ‘Economist of the Year’.

The firm has worked on several of the most prominent matters to face recent antitrust scrutiny, including advising Samsung in the European Commission’s investigation of potential abuse of dominance regarding injunctions, and Google in the US Federal Trade Commission’s investigation of its search function. The team has a number of other big name clients undergoing antitrust probes, such as Deutsche Bank in Libor investigations and Visa Europe on various interchange-fee issues. In litigation, Caffarra submitted expert reports on behalf of Dow in a rare cartel damages trial before the London High Court involving several synthetic rubber producers.

CRA has also had a busy year on the merger front, advising on the Refresco Gerber acquisition of Pride Foods. The European Commission was concerned that the transaction would remove an important competitor from the market of private label bottling of fruit juices, juice drinks, nectars and still drinks in numerous jurisdictions, but approved the deal after a divestment package was proposed. In the United States, CRA economists supported experts retained by the DoJ regarding the proposed US$11 billion merger between US Airways and American Airlines. A settlement agreement was reached that requires the airlines to divest significant numbers of slots and gates at key constrained airports across the country.

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