“The firm offers an excellent level of quality and knowledge in their field“

Chambers Europe 2021

“Every client can count themselves lucky to have such friendly and great advisors.“
Legal 500 Germany/EMEA 2022

“The highly specialised antitrust law boutique covers the full spectrum of antitrust law.”
Legal 500 Germany 2020

 

 

 

 

“high commitment […] proven expertise“

Legal 500 Germany 2020

European competition law made in Germany

COMMEO is an independent law firm specialized in competition law. Founded in 2010 in Frankfurt, Commeo has become one of the leading competition law firms of Germany. Merger control, penalty proceedings, litigation, contract related competition matters or compliance: our established team of experienced lawyers advises clients on all aspects of German and European competition law.

In addition to our non-forensic advice, we defend our clients in proceedings before the German Federal Cartel Office and the European Commission. Our international network of partner law firms means that we can provide services to our clients beyond the borders of Europe and support them in multi-jurisdictional competition matters.

Merger Control

Cartel Investigations

Abuse of Dominance

Distribution Agreements

Damages Claims

Competition
Litigation

Competition Compliance

Foreign Direct Investment Control

International

Merger Control

We provide comprehensive advice to parties in transactions or third parties involved in merger control proceedings before the German Federal Cartel Office and the European Commission. Our services often start with an initial risk assessment and strategic advice in advance of the transaction. Our transaction services cover the entire due diligence process, including guidance on exchanging information and setting up clean teams, the preparation of merger control notifications and compliance following the closing. Our international network of partner law firms enables us to coordinate complex multi-jurisdictional merger control proceedings.

Some of the matters we have handled:
German merger control proceedings

  • Semikron (joint venture with Danfoss)
  • Carglass (acquisition of Junited Autoglas) (2nd phase proceeding)
  • Nord Holding (numerous acquisitions and divestments)
  • Rotkäppchen (acquisition of Eggers & Franke)
  • Loomis (acquisition of Ziemann) (2nd phase proceeding)
  • Aegon (investment in Auxmoney)
  • Asklepios (acquisition of a stake in Rhön-Klinikum) (2nd phase proceeding)

EU merger control proceedings

  • Magna (joint venture with LGE)
  • Magna (acquisition of Olsa)
  • Sika (intended hostile takeover by Saint-Gobain)

Cartel Investigations

We advise and defend companies in German and European cartel investigations. Our services include support in the event of dawn raids at companies by the antitrust authorities, developing defence strategies, including the submission of leniency applications to the German Federal Cartel Office and the European Commission, as well as the coordination of such applications on a European and international level. We support and defend individuals in cartel investigations by the German Federal Cartel Office.

Some of the matters we have handled:
Cartel investigations by the German Federal Cartel Office

  • automotive components
  • stainless steel
  • quarto steel
  • liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)
  • industrial building
  • technical building equipment
  • shaft covers
  • paving stones
  • bicycles

Cartel investigations by the European Commission

  • bathroom fixtures and fittings
  • international freight forwarding
  • paraffin wax
  • international roaming

Abuse of Dominance

Our services in connection with abuse of market dominance issues under German and European law include the determination of a company’s market position as well as the examining and advising on unilateral sales strategies (especially complex rebate schemes), supply management, industry-specific sales strategies, licensing models and discrimination issues. We act before the German Federal Cartel Office and the European Commission on behalf of both dominant companies and claimants. We also represent our clients in non-forensic enforcement of, or defence against, claims based on abuse of market dominance.

Some of the matters we have handled:

  • successful complaint to the European Commission in the e-Books sector
  • representing an IT service provider in its complaint to the European Commission and before the EU General Court
  • defending a media company against a complaint before the German Federal Cartel Office
  • defending different companies against supply and data access claims inter alia in the pharmaceutrical and data security industry

Leading companies in the IT and travel industries, media/advertising, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, chemicals, lifestyle products, toys and repair services sectors are among our clients in this area of competition law.

Distribution and contract related competition law issues
Our team is especially well known for its focus on distribution and contract related competition law issues. Our services include especially the creation, examination and (re)structuring of distribution systems such as franchising, selective distribution, online distribution, platforms, commission and agency models. We also advise on license strategies and contracts relating to technology transfer as well as on complex joint ventures and other cooperation agreements between competitors, e.g. in the area of research & development, specialization, purchasing and marketing.

Some of the matters we have handled:

Differen assignments from international companies in distribution and contract related competition law issues, especially in the industrial segments of automotive supply, fashion and life style, sports goods, branded consumer goods, pet food, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and life science, medical equipment, media/advertising, chemicals and petroleum, e.g., establishing selective distribution systems.

The partners at our firm are editors/authors of practitioners commentaries on the Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (4th edition 2019) and the Technology Transfer Block Exemption Regulation (2005) and are co-editors of a handbook on Distributor Agreements (5th edition 2015).

Commeo was appointed by the EU Commission to draft an expert report on information exchange in dual distribution as part of the reform process for the new Vertical Block Exemption Regulation.

 

Damages Claims

We represent clients in legal proceedings on competition related damages actions, especially follow-on claims, before German and European courts. We act on behalf of plaintiffs as well as defendants and regularly cooperate with recognized competition economists in order to determine the amount of potential damage.

Our range of experience also includes the successful negotiation of many out-of-court settlements, for plaintiffs as well as defendants.

Some of the matters we have handled:

  • Representation of plaintiffs against the German sugar cartel
  • Representation of a defendant airline in the European air freight cartel case
  • Representation of members in the different German steel cartels
  • Representation of members in the EU cartels for bearings and refrigeration compressors in the successful conclusion of settlement proceedings with the German automotive industry

Competition Litigation

We support our clients in all aspects of competition litigation. This includes defending against fines imposed by the German Federal Cartel Office as well as representing clients before the European courts against fines imposed by the European Commission. We also act for clients in complaints filed against prohibiting decisions in merger control proceedings and in proceedings initiated by third parties when transactions are approved. We represent clients in proceedings involving the enforceability of contractual restrictions, especially in distribution and license contracts, and we defend clients when they are accused of competition related misconduct, such as in cases involving refusal to supply.

Some of the matters we have handled:

  • Representation of a member of the German drugstore cartel against private damage claims filedby several customers before the Regional Court of  Nuremberg/Fürth and the Higher Regional Court of Nuremberg as well as against joint and several compensation claims filed by a co-cartelist before the Regional Court of Hamburg
  • Representation of a financial information agency against an interim injunction claim for access to business related sensitive data
  • Representation of a company in litigation before the Regional Court and Higher Regional Court of Berlin concerning the German Green Card car insurance system
  • Representation of a company from the liquefied gas cartel in appeals proceedings up to the Federal Supreme Court of Justice
  • Representation of two companies before the EU General Court in appeals against the E-Plus/Telefónica Deutschland remedy imposed by the European Commission
  • Representation of a publishing company in civil proceedings against Telekom for abuse of market dominance before the Regional Court and Higher Regional Court of Frankfurt

 

“Dedicated competition law boutique highly active on follow-on damages litigation and cartel defence work before national and EU courts”

Chambers Global 2021

Competition Compliance

Our team has a broad range of experience in all aspects of competition compliance. Our services include conducting internal investigations (audits) in order to determine the company’s position and to disclose any violations as well as the advice on the creation, implementation and improvement of compliance programmes. We regularly conduct training sessions for employees, legal departments and compliance officers (train-the-trainer) and support and advise companies and trade associations in sensitive meetings and discussions between competitors, in order to avoid competition violations.

Some of the matters we have handled:
We advise numerous leading national and multinational companies and associations on compliance issues, ranging from national compliance efforts to the establishment of a global antitrust compliance structure. Based on our extensive experience, our team has published a handbook on competition compliance (Schultze (ed.), Compliance-Handbuch Kartellrecht, 2nd edition 2021). The handbook provides information about the necessary content of compliance programmes, describes how to implement them and what to do in the case of investigations by the competition authorities.

Foreign Direct Investment Control

We advise parties in transactions on the German foreign direct investment regime, in particular concerning possible notification obligations in proceedings before the BMWK. We also coordinate multi-jurisdictional investment control proceedings in cooperation with our international network of partner law firms.

Some of the matters we have handled:

German foreign direct investment control

  • representing multiple vendors, inter alia in the sectors IT, marine, engineering and healthcare

Multi-jurisdictional foreign direct investment control proceedings

  • representing a company active in the power semiconductor industry

 

Our international network
Commeo stands for competent advice covering the entire spectrum of German and European competition law – in Germany, in Europe and worldwide. Due to our existing contacts and well-proven cooperation with leading competition law experts in all relevant jurisdictions of the world, we are in a position to offer advice in transnational competition matters and ensure seamless coordination. This includes, for example, assisting in multi-jurisdictional merger control or cartel proceedings, reviewing pan-European distribution agreements, advising in proceedings involving abuse in license or patent disputes and implementing global compliance structures.

 

Commeo has an excellent best-friends network
Chambers Europe 2020

 

very good international networking
Legal 500 EMEA 2019

 

“ large network of partner firms“
JUVE 2022/2023