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The role of public procurement officer is under constant change. The trend is towards design of intelligent procurement, process optimisation and buying groups. For public procurement officers this means larger, more complex and high-profile procurement processes, involving negotiation, competitive dialogue, PPI and framework agreements. For suppliers this changes the premises for participating in tender offers and for the contractual relationship with the public customer.

This poses great demands on legal advice. Public procurement officers must ensure compliance with the procurement tender rules while considering utilisation of the options available to optimise the process and the contract. For the supplier it becomes crucial to ensure compliance with the listed specifications and prepare an offer that matches the public procurement officer's criteria and requirements to the best possible extent. Eventually, it may be necessary to challenge the decisions made by the public procurement officer in the tender process. 

Our team is one of Denmark's largest and most specialised. We assist on all aspects of public procurement from the initial market tests and research to the design and choice of process type and criteria and drafting of the contractual basis. We also assist in any disputes that may arise. 

Regardless of the nature and complexity of the procurement, we provide strategic and operational solutions that consider the rules of procurement law and the commercial and practical aspects of the subsequent contractual basis. 

Our advisory services rely on experience gained from regularly advising numerous clients within national, regional and local government and partially public-owned enterprises as well as from extensive representation of suppliers in tender processes and disputes.

We can help
We are highly versed in the practical, strategic as well as legal part of the tender process. We have experience with all types of relevant public procurement, and we are specialised in particularly complex and agile contracts such as procurement of IT services, concessions, PPP and PPC. We advise clients in all industries and have particularly extensive experience from utilities, defence procurement, foods, waste and infrastructure. Here we render advice on procurement projects subject to either the Danish Public Procurement Act (udbudsloven), the Danish Act on Tendering Procedures for Work Contracts (tilbudsloven) or the Defence, Concession or Utilities Directive.

Our advisory services include:

  • Market research
  • Investigation of duty to invite tenders, including choice of regulatory framework
  • In-house issues and horizontal working relationships
  • Determination of tender strategy and drafting of tender plans 
  • Conducting tender procedures, including negotiations
  • Drafting of tender documents 
  • Evaluation of tenders received, including conformity with specifications 
  • Project management 
  • Contract drafting 
  • Access to documents 
  • Submission of tenders and quality assurance
  • Cases before the Danish Complaints Board for Public Procurement and the courts. 

We also render procurement law advice in connection with business transfers and privatisation.

To ensure all aspects of our legal advice, when relevant we involve specialists from our other areas of expertise, such as Real Estate & Construction, Public Law & Administration, Infrastructure, IT & Digitisation and Financial Analysis.

Procurement

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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