Ashurst (Paris)

Hélène Fricaudet

Ashurst (Paris)

Hélène Fricaudet is Associate at Ashurst LLP, Competition Law department.

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Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Leniency: The French Competition Authority sanctions three French industrial sandwich manufacturers for cartel practices and clarifies both the interaction of the leniency and settlement procedures and certain aspects of the leniency procedure (Roland Monterrat / La Toque Angevine / Daunat)


By a decision dated 24 March 2021, the French Competition Authority ["the Authority"] sanctioned three companies active on the market for the manufacture and marketing of cold industrial sandwiches sold under private labels ["MDD"] to large and medium-sized food stores ["GSA"] and service (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Visits and seizures: The French Supreme Court clarifies the conditions of seizability of lawyer-client correspondence in the context of visit and seizure operations (EDF / Dalkia, Au vieux Campeur)


In recent times, the Court of Cassation has intervened twice on the issue of the seizability of correspondence exchanged between a lawyer and his client. These two rulings illustrate not only the increasingly strict approach of the competition authorities (the first case concerns the DGCCRF, (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Dawn raids: The Paris Court of Appeal annuls the dawn raids operations carried out in 2014 at a manufacturer’s of household appliances premises after a referral from the French Supreme Court (Whirlpool)


In a judgment dated July 8, 2020, the Paris Court of Appeal ["the Court of Appeal"] cancelled the visits and seizures carried out by the Competition Authority ["the Authority"] at Whirlpool ’s premises in 2014. On 27 and 28 May 2014, the Authority had conducted a search of the premises of (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Business secrets: The French Supreme Court clarifies the conditions under which the General Rapporteur of the French Competition Authority may disclose business secrets, in particular with respect to the obligation to state reasons (General Import, Randstad)


On 29 January 2020, the Court of Cassation handed down two judgments specifying the obligations incumbent on the Authority’s General Rapporteur when he decides to lift the protection previously granted to documents in the investigation file under the secrecy of business. Although the facts (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Behavioural commitments: The French Competition Authority publishes a study on behavioural commitments relating to anti-competitive practices and mergers


As part of an educational approach and to reflect on its practice, the Competition [Authority] published on 17 January 2020 a study dedicated to behavioural commitments, an instrument that has become a major instrument in the implementation of competition law. Written in partnership with the (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Investigations: The French Competition Authority sees its investigative powers strengthened following the publication of the decree implementing the law for the growth and transformation of undertakings (Decree n° 2019-1247)


While Act No. 2019-486 of 22 May 2019 relating to the growth and transformation of enterprises, commonly referred to as the PACTE Act, granted Competition Authority and DGCCRF officials in charge of investigating alleged anti-competitive practices the possibility of accessing the connection (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Commitments: The French Competition Authority submits to public consultation the proposed commitments regarding practices likely to constitute an abuse of dominant position in the sector of control accessories compatible with a video game console (Sony)


In the context of the investigation of a referral by an operator active in the PlayStation 4 compatible control accessories sector of practices implemented by the Sony group on the market for eighth-generation static video game consoles and PlayStation 4 compatible control accessories, the (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Priority question on constitutionality: The French Supreme Court considers that French legal provisions, on the one hand prohibiting abuses of dominant position and, on the other hand, imposing criminal sanctions on individuals, are both in line with the principle of nullum crimen, nulla poena sine lege (M. X e.a.)


Article L. 420-6 C. com. has long been of concern (see Cl. Lucas de Leyssac, L’inquiétant article L. 420-6 C. com., in La sanction des pratiques anticoncurrentielles par recours à l’article L. 420-6 C. com., 5e journée Christian Gavalda, Concurrences No. 1-2008, p. 21). The recent ruling of the (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Leniency plus: The French Competition Authority awards, in the framework of a settlement procedure, a higher fine reduction than the one envisaged in its leniency opinion and applies, for the first time, the concept of ’leniency plus’ (White goods)


The Decision of the Competition Authority (hereinafter the ’Authority’) of 5 December 2018 on practices in the household appliances sector is an important decision in the context of the implementation of leniency at national level. Indeed, in addition to the fact that, in the present case, the (...)

Christophe Lemaire, Hélène Fricaudet Breach of commitments: The French Competition Authority sanctions the breach of commitments made binding by the French Competition Authority in the context of a settlement procedure (Randstad)


The period under review provides a further illustration of a sanction by the Competition Authority for failure to comply with commitments entered into by an undertaking in the context of a procedure for non-contestation of objections. Decisions are still relatively rare, since - unless I am (...)

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