Hogan Lovells (Paris)

Eric Paroche

Hogan Lovells (Paris)

Eric Paroche is a partner and leads the Paris office’s Antitrust, Competition and Economic Regulation practice of Hogan Lovells. Through his past experience at the European Commission and his diverse practice in many industry sectors, Eric is able to look at issues from all angles and to put forward workable solutions. He provides strategic advice to companies on managing merger control constraints and assists them in their filings with the European Commission, the French Competition Authority and other authorities worldwide. Eric also advises companies in antitrust proceedings before the European Commission and the French Competition Authority, and represents them before the European and French Courts. In particular, Eric helps management teams define the most appropriate strategies to minimize financial and reputational risks in cases of alleged infringements. In State aids, clients benefit from his in-depth knowledge of the European Commission’s practice. Eric lectures on competition law at Sciences Po.


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2291 Bulletin

Eric Paroche, Sabrina Borocci, Casto Gonzalez-Paramo, Mark Jones, Suyong Kim, Falk Schoening, Marc Schweda The EU Commission authorises State aid measure following the COVID-19 outbreak to help companies cover their immediate liquidity needs through bank loans guaranteed by EU member states


The first State aid measures authorized by the European Commission (Commission) following the COVID-19 outbreak were aimed at helping companies to cover their immediate liquidity needs, mainly through bank loans guaranteed by EU Member States. The significant losses incurred by companies as (...)

Falk Schoening, Christopher Thomas, Sabrina Borocci, Myrto Tagara, Suyong Kim, Eric Paroche, Ákos Kovách The EU Commission announces that companies were encouraged to delay new merger notifications until further notice because of the complexities and disruptions caused by the current COVID-19 outbreak


The current COVID-19 pandemic is posing unprecedented challenges on our public health systems and communities. It is also heavily impacting economic activity, including for companies in the midst of M&A or joint venture transactions. Deals that are subject to merger control review in the (...)

Christian Ritz, Eric Paroche, Victor Levy, Myrto Tagara, Alexandra Bray The German and French Competition Authorities find a need for higher compliance standards in their joint study on the competition risks resulting from the use of algorithms


This article has been nominated for the 2020 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Digital ubiquity, and the resulting rules, do not only concern tech giants. To the contrary, digital regulation is relevant for companies in all market sectors (...)

François Brunet, Eric Paroche, Falk Schoening, Stefan Kirwitzke The French and German Governments publish a manifesto calling for a reform of current EU merger rules to shape a "European industrial policy fit for the 21st Century"


Following the European Commission’s prohibition of the Alstom-Siemens transaction, the French and German governments published a manifesto calling for a reform of current EU merger rules to shape a "European industrial policy fit for the 21st Century." This manifesto appears to be directly (...)

Eric Paroche The EU Commission approves, subject to conditions, the creation of 6 joint ventures by two car manufacturers to cooperate in providing car sharing services (Daimler / BMW)


On November 7, 2018, the Commission approved a concentration whereby the two German car manufacturers Daimler and BMW planned to pool their mobility service businesses, including in particular their car sharing services. The two German car makers’ project consists in the creation of six (...)

Eric Paroche, Flora Oriot The French Competition Authority imposes an €80M fine on a telecommunications group and its recently acquired subsidiaries for coordinating their business strategies and commercial behaviour prior to merger control clearance (Alice & SFR / OTL)


This article was first published in Concurrences Review N° 2-2017, Art. N° 83875, pp. 231-239 I. Introduction In November 2016, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) fined French-based Altice/Numericable group and its recently-acquired telecom subsidiaries SFR and Virgin Mobile France (...)

10712 Review

Eric Paroche, Eléonore Castagnet Cross-shareholding : The General Court of the European Union dismisses all appeals against the decision of the European Commission authorizing an acquisition among the two major German energy operators (EVH / enercity / E.ON / RWE)


In March 2018, E.ON and RWE, two major German energy operators, announced a € 40 billion transaction: (i) RWE was to acquire E.ON’s and Innogy’s assets in relation to renewable energy production; (ii) E.ON was to acquire RWE’s networks and retail activities of Innogy (a RWE’s subsidiary), (...)

Eric Paroche, Pierre Chellet Reform: The European Commission adopts the 2023 Simplification Package and aims at reforming merger control proceedings with increased efficiency and flexibility and revolves around a revised Merger Control Implementing Regulation, a new Notice on simplified procedure, and a Communication on the transmission of documents


Since the adoption of regulation no. 139/2004, the European Commission (the “Commission”), has been trying to strike the right balance between (i) reviewing transactions that may have an impact on competition within the internal market, and (ii) limiting the administrative burden on companies. (...)

Eric Paroche, Pierre Chellet Referrals: The French Competition Authority, acting on a referral from the European Commission, authorises a merger between two wholesaler-distributors subject to a behavioural commitment and, on this occasion, three years after its opinion on pharmaceutical distribution, clarifies its analysis of the activities of wholesaler-distributors, both at national and local level (McKesson Europe / Phoenix)


On July 7, 2021, U.S. pharmaceutical distribution group McKesson announced the sale of most of its European operations to its German competitor Phoenix. Commission clears the transaction and refers the analysis of the French markets to the French Competition Authority The scope of the (...)

Eric Paroche, Eléonore Castagnet Injunctions: The French Competition Authority is proceeding, for the first time, with the liquidation of penalty payments that accompanied injunctions issued a few years earlier, in line with the failure to comply with the commitments that had conditioned, in 2014, a merger between two telecommunications operators (Altice)


On October 30, 2014, after noting that the transaction involved two "major broadband players", the French Competition Authority [hereinafter the "Authority"] finally gave the green light to Altice’s acquisition of SFR, subject to the implementation of a certain number of behavioral and (...)

Pierre Chellet, Eric Paroche Theory of Harm: The General Court of the European Union clarifies the principles applicable to the analysis of mergers which have both vertical and horizontal effects (Wieland)


On 18 May 2022, the General Court of the European Union rejected Wieland-Werke’s appeal against the European Commission decision to prohibit its proposed acquisition of (i) Aurubis Rolled Products (“ARP”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aurubis, and (ii) Schwermetall, a 50/50 joint-venture (...)

Eric Paroche, Victor Levy Commitments: The French Supreme Administrative Court confirms the Phase 1 decision of the French Competition Authority to authorize, subject to conditions, the creation of a video-on-demand platform by the main French free-to-air television players (Salto)


In Decision No. 19-DCC-157 of August 12, 2019 [the " Salto Decision"], the French Competition Authority had validated, subject to conditions, the creation by the TF1, M6 and France Télévisions groups of Salto, a full-function joint venture. Context and procedure Salto is active in the (...)

Eric Paroche, Pierre Chellet Interim measures: The European Commission strikes back with interim measures after two companies implemented their merger in violation of the standstill obligation (Illumina / Grail)


The Illumina/Grail (Case M.10188) saga continues before the European Commission [the “Commission”] and the General Court with fierce confrontation in relation to jurisdictional issues and standstill obligation. This transaction was already set to become an unprecedented case as it is the (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Telecommunications: The French Competition Authority authorizes, subject to conditions, an acquisition in the sector of the operation of passive mobile telecommunication infrastructures (Hivory / Cellnex)


Commitments - Telecommunications: The French Competition Authority authorizes, subject to conditions, an acquisition in the sector of the operation of passive mobile telecommunications infrastructures (Aut. conc., dec. n° 21-DCC-197 of October 25, 2021 relating to the acquisition of exclusive (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Clearance: The French Competition Authority clears, after a first phase and without conditions, the takeover of a French magazine group by one of the main French media groups (Vivendi / Prisma media)


Although authorized after an unconditional phase 1 review, Vivendi ’s acquisition of the magazine group Prisma Media has given rise to interesting developments in a sector characterized by ever-increasing convergence between the various advertising markets, which involves the development of (...)

Eric Paroche, Victor Levy Referral: The French Competition Authority authorises, after phase 1 and subject to significant divestiture commitments, the strengthening of one of the main players in the French poultry slaughterhouse and poultry meat marketing markets (LDC Volaille / Ronsard)


The LDC group is one of the main French players in the poultry slaughtering sector and the marketing of poultry meat and products made from poultry meat. It markets its products under the Le Gaulois, Marie, Loué and Maître Coq brands. Context elements The transaction in question concerns (...)

Eric Paroche, Pierre Chellet Jurisdictional thresholds: The European Commission publishes a Staff Working Document on evaluation of procedural and jurisdictional aspects of EU merger control and launches an initial impact assessment


In March 2021, announcement that the European Commission [the “Commission”] would review its assessment of referrals under Article 22 of Regulation n° 139/2004 [the “Merger Regulation”] has attracted much attention from practitioners and academics. Under this new approach, the Commission will (...)

Eric Paroche, Victor Levy Structural commitments: The French Competition Authority clears, subject to the divestment of 9 stores, the acquisition of several hard discount stores while adopting a new approach to take into account asymmetrical competition between hard discount stores and other food retail stores (Franprix Leader Price / Aldi)


The acquisition of the 554 Leader Price stores and 2 Casino stores by Aldi [the "Operation"] was first notified to the European Commission before being referred, at the request of the notifying party, to the Competition Authority ([the "Authority"] on 4 June 2020. Context elements In view (...)

Eric Paroche, Pierre Chellet Notion of undertaking: The General Court of the European Union confirms in all respects the decision of the European Commission prohibiting a merger among several cement companies, clarifies the notion of undertaking concerned where the acquisition is carried out by a full-function joint venture and confirms a broad interpretation of the criterion of substantial effect on trade between Member States (HeidelbergCement)


Case law on merger control is all the more scrutinised as litigation is rare. However, the year 2020 has enabled the Court of First Instance to rule on several occasions on the application of Regulation 139/2004 by the European Commission in prohibition decisions. In particular, by the CK (...)

Eric Paroche, Victor Levy Phase II: The European Commission acknowledges the decision made by two aircraft manufacturers to abandon their planned joint-ventures in commercial aviation and military transportation and leave questions open as to competition on the single-aisle commercial aircrafts’ market (Boeing / Embraer)


On April 25th, 2020, Boeing and Embraer announced that they abandoned their planned partnership which had a long stop date of April 24th, 2020. The partnership consisted in the creation of two joint ventures: (i) a first joint venture solely controlled by Boeing covering Embraer’s commercial (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Phase I: The European Commission authorizes, following a phase I review and subject to remedies, two mergers in the pharmaceutical sector (GlaxoSmithKline / Pfizer Consumer Healthcare Business, AbbVie / Allergan)


The Commission has recently decided on two transactions in the pharmaceutical sector, both of which have been cleared subject to divestitures: the acquisition of Allergan by Abbvie and the acquisition of Pfizer’s consumer health division by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Although they concern very (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Sanction: The French Supreme Administrative Court confirms the French Competition Authority’s decision imposing a EUR 20 million fine on a French electrical household distributor for breach of its commitments undertaken in the context of a merger (Fnac / Darty)


In the context of the acquisition of sole control of Darty by Fnac, which was authorised by the French Competition Authority by a decision of 27 July 2016Fnac had undertaken to sell six stores in Paris and the Paris region before 1 August 2017. However, for three of these stores, namely the (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Commitments: The European Commission clears a merger, subject to several commitments, between two global manufacturers of aluminium flat rolled products (Novelis / Aleris)


On 1 October 2019, the European Commission authorised the merger between two global manufacturers of flat-rolled aluminium products: Novelis, the US subsidiary of the Indian group Hindalco, and Aleris, a US group also specialising in the production of semi-finished aluminium products. Both (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Gun-jumping: The European Commission imposes two fines totalling EUR 28 million upon one of the world major suppliers of optical products for having infringed the Merger Regulation prior notification and standstill obligations (Canon / Toshiba Medical Systems)


Warehousing – or portage – transactions, which consist in parking the target with an interim buyer in view of its onward sale to the ultimate acquirer, are no exceptions to the prohibition of gun jumping: this is, in a nutshell, the conclusion drawn by the European Commission in its decision (...)

Eric Paroche, Victor Levy Clearance: The French Competition Authority considers having jurisdiction to examine, under merger control rules, the creation of a joint venture operating a public transport service concession and approves, subject to commitments, its creation (RATP, Keolis)


In January 2017, the State published a call for tenders for the operation of CDG Express, the future direct rail link between Paris (Gare de l’Est station) and Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport, for a period of 15 years. In November 2018, the State awarded the service concession to the (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Clearance: The European Commission approves, subject to conditions, the creation of six joint ventures by two manufacturers in the sector of mobility services (Daimler / BMW)


On November 7, 2018, the Commission approved a concentration whereby the two German car manufacturers Daimler and BMW planned to pool their mobility service businesses, including in particular their car sharing services. The two German car makers’ project consists in the creation of six (...)

Eric Paroche, Céline Verney Structural remedies: The European Commission approves a $30 billion horizontal merger in the aviation industry, subject to the divestment of several businesses in actuators, pilot controls, ice protection and oxygen systems (UTC / Rockwell Collins)


On 4 May 2018, the European Commission approved the acquisition by United Technologies Corporation (’UTC’) of the whole of Rockwell Collins, after a phase I investigation but subject to important structural remedies. UTC is a provider of high-technology products and services for the building (...)



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