The EU General Court finds financial investors liable for anticompetitive conduct of portfolio companies (Goldman Sachs / EU Commission)

The General Court of the European Union recently held, in Goldman Sachs v. Commission [1], that purely financial investors such as investment funds may be held jointly and severally liable for competition law violations implemented by their portfolio companies when they can exercise “decisive influence” over the company, irrespective of whether they were aware of the infringement or actually influenced the market behaviour of the subsidiary. This decision has several major practical implications for investment funds and private equity funds. Key Aspects and Consequences The investor was held liable for antitrust violations implemented by one of the portfolio companies held by its private equity divisionWhile the legal presumption of parental liability already existed, the General Court

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Alec J. Burnside, Mélanie Thill-Tayara, Laurence Bary, Clemens York von Wartenburg, The EU General Court finds financial investors liable for anticompetitive conduct of portfolio companies (Goldman Sachs / EU Commission), 12 juillet 2018, Bulletin e-Competitions July 2018, Art. N° 88956

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