Crossing Merger Control Frontiers: What Are The New Borders?

The 3rd annual conference was organized by Concurrences in partnership with Paul Hastings and Blakes.


Welcome & Introductory Remarks

Pierre Kirch, Partner, Paul Hastings, Brussels/Paris

Pierre Kirch introduced the main themes of the third annual Global Merger Conference with a rhetorical question on the reasons such a heteroclite group would come together to discuss merger control in a worldwide context thanks to a muted teleconference system open to audio participants worldwide.

According to Mr. Kirch, the response is to be found in the conjunction of three elements: (i), the proliferation of merger control regimes in recent years; (ii), the rapidness of technological change which has a significant impact on the enforcement of merger control rules and (iii), the way merger control is perceived, as a worldwide phenomenon by multinational companies.

Mr. Kirch recalled that three “constituencies” were involved in merger control proceedings: companies, outside counsel and enforcement agencies. All three are obliged to have a worldwide vision of merger control. Companies are “businesses without borders” and therefore, their lawyers should be “lawyers without borders”. Finally, in today’s environment enforcers cooperate with other jurisdictions. At the same time, Mr. Kirch opined that significant divergences between jurisdictions still exist in the way merger control is applied.

Photos © Léo-Paul Ridet.

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  • US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
  • Paul Hastings (Brussels)
  • DG COMP (Brussels)
  • Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
  • Financial Conduct Authority (London)
  • United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
  • French Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications, Post and Press distribution - ARCEP (Paris)
  • OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
  • Dry Mill Consulting
  • German Competition Authority (Bonn)
  • Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
  • Brazilian Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE) (Brasilia)
  • Qualcomm (San Diego)
  • Maersk (Copenhagen)
  • Microsoft (Geneva)
  • Ericsson (Washington)
  • Rödl & Partner (Paris)
  • Blake Cassels & Graydon (Toronto)