Top 10 Influential Competition/European Law Lawyers in Netherlands 2023

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Despite its comparatively small size in landmass and population, the Netherlands occupies a significant place on the international stage as a leader in competition and European law. The reputations of Dutch lawyers in this sector are bolstered by their firms’ influential roles in high-profile cases and thorough understanding of the complexities in this field of law. This article will highlight ten exceptional practitioners of competition and European law practicing in the Netherlands today.

The European Union’s intricate statutes and regulations governing competition policies create a distinct area of legal practice. Lawyers specializing in it are often tasked with obtaining merger clearance approvals, handling dominant abuse and cartel investigation and advising clients on state aid issues. Equally important are familiarisation stay with Dutch competition laws and their enforcement by the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM).

The following selection of ten leading lawyers in competition/European law exemplifies the breadth and depth of legal practice in the Netherlands. Each bio provides an overview of the attorney’s role, significant accomplishments, and the respective law firm.

Winfred Knibbeler

Practicing at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Winfred Knibbeler is a stalwart in the Dutch competition market. He is particularly adept at asserting clients’ interests during abuse of dominance and cartel investigations and handling high-profile follow-on damages claims.

Bas Braeken

Another notable figure in the field is Bas Braeken of bureau Brandeis. He is highly regarded for his expert counsel on state aid matters, merger clearance approvals, and competition law matters for sports federations. Bas Braeken also advises clients on cartel proceedings before the ACM and follow-on damages claims.

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Rein Wesseling

Stibbe’s Rein Wesseling is known for his expertise in representing clients in European Commission investigations, with a focus on cartels, abuse of dominance, and information exchanges. He also assists clients in obtaining clearance for mergers.

Bart de Rijke

Rising star Bart de Rijke of De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek excels in advising clients on high-profile merger clearance mandates and representing clients in behavioural investigations. His proficiency extends to dealing with state aid matters.

Bram Nijhof

As a representative lawyer for Taylor Wessing, Bram Nijhof regularly handles contentious cases related to abuse of dominance and cartel investigations, as well as merging prohibitions litigation. He also has experience with procurement matters.

Joost Fanoy

At BarentsKrans, Joost Fanoy is known for dealing with a variety of competition issues, such as follow-on litigation and ongoing investigations representation. He further exhibits expertise in merger clearance and regulatory compliance work.

Annemieke van der Beek

Annemieke van der Beek from Kennedy Van der Laan is especially known for assisting financial institutions with competition cases, which often involves compliance procedures, and proceedings before the ACM.

Joost Houdijk

Joost Houdijk of AKD is specialized in advising clients on merger clearance matters and ACM investigations. His primary work involves compliance mandates, particularly regarding distribution agreements.

Kees Schillemans

Respected competition lawyer Kees Schillemans of Allen & Overy LLP has a wide range of expertise. Known for his work on high-value merger control matters, ACM investigations, and state aid issues, Schillemans also shines in challenging ACM fines and follow-on damages proceedings.

Sarah Beeston

Operating at Van Doorne, Sarah Beeston executes investigations, deals with state aid situations, and files mergers with the ACM. Her clients span a variety of sectors, including electronics, manufacturing, and financial services.

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The ten legal experts featured in this article represent only a fraction of the vibrant scenery of competition and European law in the Netherlands. Their legal acumen, adherence to professional ethics, and commitment to protecting their clients’ best interests certainly warrant recognition and set the standard for practitioners worldwide.


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