White & Case's antitrust group is one of the world's 10 largest competition practices and now has specialists in at least 20 offices worldwide. What's more, its 150-strong group, which includes five Who's Who nominees, grew at the partnership level this year. In the US, the firm promoted two antitrust specialists to partner – Jack Pace III in New York and Eric Grannon in Washington, DC. Grannon formerly served as counsel to assistant attorney general Hew Pate in the DoJ's antitrust division.
White & Case LLP
|Global head: Mark Gidley|
|Home jurisdiction: USA|
|Total size of firm: 2,038|
|No. of competition lawyers: 147|
|% of firm specialised: 7|
|Who's Who nominees: 5|
|No. of lateral partner hires: 1|
|No. of partner departures: 2|
|No. of internal promotions: 2|
In France, White & Case recruited Who's Who nominee Jean-Paul Tran Thiet from CMS Bureau Francis Lefebvre to co-head the firm's Paris-based competition group alongside Jean-Patrice de la Laurencie. In New York, though, two partners joined Linklaters – Lawrence Byrne and Joseph Armao.
White & Case acted on a number of the year's most widely discussed cases this year. In Europe, it advised Microsoft on its landmark appeal against the European Commission's e497 million fine, losing the case at the Court of First Instance in September 2007.
It is also advising Ian Norris, former CEO of Morgan Crucible, in his extradition struggle against the DoJ. His case is the first to test the new US–UK extradition arrangements before the UK's highest court, the House of Lords. If Norris fails, he will return to the US to face criminal charges of price fixing.
Also in Europe, White & Case represented GlaxoSmithKline, obtaining a favourable ruling from the Court of First Instance which overturned a European Commission decision on parallel trade.
In the US, White & Case advised Royal Ahold in connection with the sale of its US Foodservice for US$7.1 billion, and global shipping company Stolt-Nielsen in its quest to enforce its amnesty agreement with the DoJ's antitrust division. In the first US antitrust case of its kind, Stolt-Nielsen has moved to dismiss the division's indictment based on its written amnesty agreement.
Other significant cases that White & Case worked on this year involved Experian, one of the leading US credit bureaus, in connection with a closely watched proceeding brought by Fair Isaac Corporation; Swedish steel producer SSAB Svenskt Stal on its US$7.6 billion acquisition of Canadian steelmaker IPSCO – perhaps the biggest deal in Swedish history; Toshiba in connection with the European Commission's gas-insulated switchgear investigation; and South African Airways in relation to the global air cargo cartel investigation. Conoco Phillips and the Saudi ministry of petroleum are also clients.