Gleiss Lutz boasts one of Brussels’ oldest competition practices; the formidable German firm set up shop in the city in 1962. Who’s Who Legal: Competition nominee Ulrich Soltész is the only resident partner, but EU practice head Ingo Brinker splits his time between Brussels and Germany. Three other partners also frequently spend time in the office, and Christian von Köckritz was recently promoted to counsel. Von Köckritz worked with Brinker on an interesting three-way pan-European music licensing joint venture, with the pair acting for all three companies – GEMA, PRS and STIM. DG Comp cleared the deal after Phase II proceedings. Ulrich Denzel also helped HeidelbergCement get a DG Comp cartel case officially closed, after the enforcer ultimately failed to find sufficient grounds to support price-fixing suspicions, and represented Kühne+Nagel in the blocktrains cartel investigation.
The 48-strong competition practice at Gleiss Lutz is one of two wholly German firms in our Elite band. The team features 10 partners, led by Ingo Brinker, who splits his time between Munich and Brussels. Brinker and six further partners are nominated to Who’s Who Legal: Competition . Brinker says that while the firm is rooted in Germany, it takes on a huge amount of international work.
Brinker adds that just over half of the firm’s recent docket is focused around cartel investigations. To name but a few German matters, Gleiss Lutz defended companies involved in cartels between garage makers, grocery retailers, wallpaper manufacturers, sugar sellers and china manufacturers. At the European level, Wolfgang Bosch acted for SKF, one of five auto parts companies fined a total of €953 million in 2014, and Brinker and Munich partner Petra Linsmeier represented Infineon in DG Comp’s smart card chip cartel probe. Bosch also represented South African oil company Sasol in its EU General Court challenge against a €318 million fine for its role in the paraffin wax cartel. The court slashed Sasol’s fine to €150 million.
The firm has also been involved in innovative German and European merger control work. Brinker, alongside a Brussels team led by counsel Christian von Köckritz, acted for all three parties in a cross-border music licensing joint venture between PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA – the music licensing organisations for Britain, Sweden and Germany respectively. The European Commission approved the deal in 2015. The team also handled global merger control for Bosch’s acquisition of BSH Bosch and Siemens Hausgeräte, which were previously a joint venture with Siemens. The €3 billion deal required merger filings in 17 jurisdictions.
„One of the leading antitrust practices in Germany and Europe.“
Chambers Europe 2012
International Firm of the Year 2011
Legal Business Awards
Law Firm of the Year for Competition/Antitrust
JUVE Awards 2010
Gleiss Lutz is one of Germany’s leading full service international law firms. With more than 290 lawyers, of whom 89 are partners, Gleiss Lutz advises major national and international companies in all areas of commercial law.
Gleiss Lutz has been involved in shaping antitrust law since day one, having played an active role in all major international developments and cases for more than 60 years. The combination of experience, top quality advice and a practice-oriented approach makes Gleiss Lutz one of the leading competition practices in Europe.
- Cartel investigations: With experience gained from participating in more or less all cartel investigations before the European Commission and many cartel investigations all over the globe over the last years, Gleiss Lutz is the law firm of choice for high-profile cases. Especially in the area of the Commission’s settlement proceedings the firm is a pioneer, having participated in all settlement proceedings of the European Commission to date.
- Actions for damages: Gleiss Lutz has been involved in the development of “private enforcement” from the outset. Its leading position is illustrated by the representation of a client in the first follow-on case at the German Supreme Court. In actions covering various jurisdictions Gleiss Lutz plays a coordinating role, working together with law firms across the globe.
- Merger control: Gleiss Lutz is regularly involved in complex cases, such as advising Syngenta on the acquisition of Monsanto’s seeds business and Südzucker on the acquisition of ED&F. In cross-border proceedings Gleiss Lutz provides strategic advice in the run-up to the acquisition, and coordinates the filing of the required notifications worldwide.
- Gleiss Lutz’ antitrust practice also has highly regarded experts for state aid, in particular in the finance sector, and for compliance matters. Because of the significant experience and partner-driven approach to matters, clients regularly retain the services of Gleiss Lutz for international internal investigations, most recently in Brazil, in Pakistan, in Korea, in Turkey and in China.
Dr. Ingo Brinker
T +49 (0) 89 21667-212
E [email protected]