“They are highly specialised, which enables them to be precise in their work. The work is to the point.”
Chambers Europe 2018

“By far the best boutique for antitrust matters”
Legal 500 Germany 2018

“Hidden Champion“
kanzleimonitor.de 2017/2018

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

International

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

  • Rotkäppchen (acquisition of Eggers & Franke)
  • Carglass (acquisition of Junited Autoglas)
  • Aegon (investment in Auxmoney)
  • insolvency administrator (sale of parts of the Pickenpack Group)
  • Asklepios (acquisition of a stake in Rhön-Klinikum)

EU merger control proceedings

  • Magna (most recently: acquisition of Olsa)
  • Sika (intended hostile takeover by Saint-Gobain)
  • Archer Daniels Midland (joint venture with ATR Landhandel)

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
  • steel
  • liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)
  • building industry

Cartel investigations by the European Commission

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

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 against Amazon
  • representing an IT service provider in its complaint to the European Commission and before the EU General Court

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, 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:

We have many years of experience in advising international companies in distribution and contract related competition law issues, especially in the industrial segments of automotive supply, branded consumer goods, cosmetics, sports goods, pharmaceuticals and life science, media/advertising, chemicals and petroleum.

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).

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 EU cartels for bearings and refrigeration compressors in the successful conclusion of settlement proceedings with the German automotive industry

We support our clients in all aspects of competition litigation. This includes defending against fines imposed by the German Federal Cartel Office before the Court of Appeals in Dusseldorf and the Federal Supreme Court of Justice as well as representing clients in appeals to 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 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

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. Based on our extensive experience, our team has published a handbook on competition compliance (Schultze (ed.), Compliance-Handbuch Kartellrecht, 2014). 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.

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 almost all 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.

 
“For a pure antitrust boutique, Commeo is relatively large and can handle complex merger controls, large cartel cases and damages suits. […One of the firm’s] strengths: the large network of partner firms“
JUVE 2017/2018