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EU law has great influence on many Danish legal issues as a substantial part of Danish legislation originates from legal initiatives in the EU. The Court of Justice of the European Union plays a vital role in the EU legal system and delivers a great number of important judgments, which contribute to the rapid development of EU law.

Consequently, it requires profound knowledge of EU legislation, institutions and case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union to construe and apply EU law to Danish issues and to manoeuvre within the EU system. This also applies within the field of competition law where navigating and complying with Danish as well as EU competition rules may be a challenging task.  Nonetheless, the trend is towards increasingly severe penalties for violation of these rules.

We assist private enterprises and public organisations in construing and applying EU law in practice. Out team of EU experts have in-depth knowledge of EU legislative and legal systems, and we have long-standing experience representing enterprises before the Court of Justice of the European Union and before the Danish supervisory authorities and courts in EU law cases.

Within the field of competition law, we have in-depth experience advising on merger applications and in assessing agreements and conduct in cases where enterprises are accused of violating competition rules.  We also help enterprises pursue claims for compensation in civil actions for violation of competition rules.

Among other things, we provide advice on:

  • Interpretation of the EU Treaty, TFEU, regulations, directives and case law
  • The right of establishment and free movement of goods, persons, services and capital
  • Contact and negotiation with EU institutions, including the European Commission and the European Parliament
  • Representation of enterprises before Danish supervisory authorities
  • Litigation before the Danish courts and the Court of Justice of the European Union
  • Investigations of cartel formations
  • Cooperation and distribution agreements
  • Pricing structures and discount and bonus schemes
  • Cases before the competition authorities, the EU and the Danish courts
  • Merger control
  • Actions in damages
  • Enterprises with special and exclusive rights.

We have developed several compliance programmes and courses to help our clients handle the most common competition law issues and prevent statutory violations. We always integrate the financial aspects of a case into our legal advice, which is particularly valuable in large actions in damages and cases concerning merger control and abuse of a dominant position.

Our team is made up of highly qualified lawyers with long-standing experience within all areas of EU and competition law. Our wide-ranging expertise implies that all aspects are taken into account at all times, enabling us to provide you with the best possible advice.

In addition, we often work closely together with other practice groups, such as Compliance, Public Law & Administration, Financial Analyses, M&A and Corporate Matters.

EU & Competition

Competition & European Law

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What the team is known for
Market-leading competition law practice covering complex merger filings, compliance and contentious cases. Its lawyers have notable experience in a range of industries, including transport, media, broadcasting and waste. Also represents municipalities in national public procurement cases. Highly active in the energy and renewable energy markets, handling both competition and procurement mandates related to the sector.

 

Strengths
One client praises the department's "very good organisation and a high level of communication," and adds that "they are flexible and there for the client." The same client concludes: "In the area of competition law, they are leading the pack in Denmark."

Interviewees also highlight the firm's "great knowledge of the relevant fields" when handling procurement matters and describe the firm's overall approach as "efficient and service-oriented.

 

Work highlights
Advised Boeing on projects regarding the procurement of supplies to the Danish Ministry of Defence.

Acted for Danfoss on merger control filings relating to its acquisition of Sondex Holding.

 

Notable practitioners
Managing partner Simon Evers Kalsmose-Hjelmborg is an expert on EU law and a broad range of competition law matters. He is also known for his abilities in public procurement and litigation. 

Peter Stig Jakobsen is described by clients as a "good communicator" who is "very passionate about his cases." Particularly well regarded for his activity in contentious matters and competition litigation, he handles both competition law and public procurement mandates. He recently represented Skou Gruppen in a criminal case regarding the violation of competition law following a dawn raid.

Claus Berg is a notable figure in public procurement law who also frequently handles contentious matters relating to procurement in infrastructure and construction projects. His "grasp of construction sector cases" and "knowledge of local authorities" is particularly highlighted by sources.

Tina Braad is a procurement law specialist, assisting a client base predominantly emanating from the public sector. She is experienced in complex tender contracts and procurement processes.

Jesper Kaltoft is favoured by clients for the commercially minded approach he takes to competition matters, with one reporting that he is "very good at understanding complex business matters and at putting himself in our position," adding: "He really understands the commercial side." His expertise includes distribution law, merger control and other EU law issues.

Michael Honoré is well regarded by both peers and clients for his abilities in state aid work. Sources also highlight his litigation skills and his "good understanding of EU legislation and the rules of the EU courts." He defended Energinet.dk against a complaint made to the EC of alleged illegal state aid, as well as a related action for damages brought against the client in the Danish courts.

Chambers and Partners Europe, Competition/European Law

EU & Competition

Bech-Bruun’s ‘very reliable, professional and competent’ competition team is ‘among the best in the country’. Led by ‘incredibly determinedPeter Stig Jakobsen, the nine-partner team regularly acts for private and public sector clients in competition law proceedings and state aid matters. Jesper Kaltoft handled the merger control for Danfoss in the Sondex acquisition. Michael Honoré is recommended and Anne Bergholt Sommer was made partner.

Legal 500, EU and competition

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