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Competition Law, Cartels & Investigations

We have considerable experience advising clients subject to competition investigations. Our competition law team has been involved in a number of the CMA’s recent high-profile investigations.

Our competition law, cartels & investigations expertise

Companies can infringe competition law by engaging in cartels or other restrictive business practices, or through behaviour constituting abuse of dominance. This can lead to enforcement action by competition authorities against individual businesses. With competition authorities’ inspection powers and techniques expanding, companies need more than ever to ensure compliance with UK competition law. Infringements carry severe consequences for companies, directors and staff, including huge fines, criminal prosecutions, director disqualification orders, significant reputational damage and exposure to damages claims.

Freeths has considerable experience advising clients subject to competition investigations. Our competition law team has been involved in a number of the CMA’s recent high-profile investigations. During an investigation, businesses need to make difficult decisions very quickly on how best to protect and defend themselves. Companies under investigation need strategic legal advice and expert support to understand the risks they face and protect their rights throughout. We provide strategic and tactical advice and can help clients navigate the process and practicalities of an investigation. We also use our unique in-house regulatory experience to help clients mitigate both financial and reputational exposure.

Why choose our competition team?

  • We regularly advise clients on complex issues of competition law, including on large-scale investigation strategy
  • We have considerable expertise in advising dominant and non-dominant clients on antitrust risk in relation to their conduct, agreements and business practices
  • We have broad experience of acting for clients throughout antitrust and market investigations conducted by competition regulators. This includes advising on Dawn Raids, leniency applications and cartel investigations

Call any member of our expert competition team to find out how we can help you.

“I’m really happy with the work you’ve done for us and so I hope you don’t mind I’ll be coming to you with anything we need advice on in the future!”

Jenni Richards, Federation Manager, British Glass

“We are very pleased with this outcome and would thank you for your expertise here.”

Jane Hull, Underwriting Director, Tokio Marine HCC

Key contact

Andrew Maxwell's Profile

Andrew Maxwell

Partner and Head of Competition

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Our competition law notable work

  • Advising on major rail project

    Advising a leading construction company on the application of EU and UK competition law to a major rail project.

  • Advising on a leniency application

    Advising a vertically integrated, global business on a leniency application, and on the application of EU and UK competition law to its dealings with competitors and retailers.

  • Advising a food sector client

    Advising a food sector client on an abuse of dominance claim under EU/UK competition law and a procurement challenge, involving complex cross-border competition and procurement issues.

  • Advising grocery retailer

    Advising a grocery retailer on the implications of including exclusivity arrangements within land agreements.

  • Acting for AMEC

    Acting for AMEC (in consortium with Washington and Areva) on the competition aspects of their successful bid to the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority for the £1.3 billion pa Sellafield contract.

  • Actions against major truck manufacturers

    Assisting a number of businesses and organisations in bringing competition damages claims against the major truck manufacturers following the European Commission’s EU truck cartel infringement decisions.

  • High profile cartel/price fixing investigation

    Advising a UK company in relation to a high profile cartel/price fixing investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority in the steel tanks market (including on related follow-on damages claim issues).

  • Antitrust damages claim

    Advising a well-known client in relation to a large antitrust damages claim against the major payment systems operators.

  • Royal and Sun Alliance Insurance plc

    Representing clients throughout CMA investigations, including Royal and Sun Alliance Insurance plc throughout CMA/CC Private Motor Insurance Phase 2 market investigation and OFT Phase 1 market study.

  • Advising a well-known fashion retailer

    Advising a well-known fashion retailer on the European Commission’s e-commerce sector inquiry and its implications for a dispute with a large department store.

Meet the team

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Whatever your legal needs, our wide ranging expertise is here to support you and your business, so let’s start your legal journey today and get you in touch with the right lawyer to get you started.


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