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Our Commitment to Diversity

Antitrust, Competition, and Trade Regulation

Our Antitrust, Competition, and Trade Regulation practice helps clients navigate day-to-day antitrust counseling and compliance issues along with bet-the-company matters. We blend our deep regulatory knowledge and experience with our up-to-the-minute understanding of industry and enforcement trends to tackle complex antitrust and competition issues in a practical and cost-effective manner.  

We represent clients in the consumer products, energy, financial services, health care, life sciences, manufacturing, technology, transportation and logistics and other industries, on the full range of antitrust, competition, and trade law issues, including:

  • Abuse of dominance and monopolization
  • Cartel investigations and litigation
  • Civil and administrative litigation, including class action defense and multidistrict litigation 
  • Compliance, antitrust audits, and counseling
  • Mergers and acquisitions, including foreign direct investment, foreign subsidies and national security regulations
  • Resale price maintenance and global distribution strategies
  • State aid

Leveraging our fully integrated global platform, we provide seamless coverage and international reach nearly anywhere our clients face competition issues. Our multinational and multilingual team is consistently recognized as a leading antitrust practice, with group and individual recognitions by Best Law Firms®, Chambers and Partners, and The Legal 500.


Antitrust Litigation

With a deep bench of experienced trial lawyers and litigators, our team regularly represents clients in private litigation, competitor actions, class actions, multidistrict litigation, administrative actions and parallel civil and criminal federal and state court litigation. Our lawyers have handled cases involving price-fixing, bid-rigging, market allocation, output restriction, no-poach and wage-fixing agreements, market manipulation, attempted monopolization, price discrimination, breach of competition rules involving intellectual property, and boycotting, as well as litigation related to distribution, false advertising and promotion, unfair competition, and deceptive trade practices. We are often retained by clients to defend them in class actions under extremely difficult circumstances, such as when they are facing simultaneous proceedings with competing legal and business interests. Our lawyers regularly represent clients before regulatory agencies and courts, including the US Department of Justice, US Federal Trade Commission, EU and member states courts, and Australian competition authorities.

Our team takes a sophisticated yet practical approach to antitrust litigation. Our lawyers have the requisite experience to understand when to take a leading role in the defense or to minimize cost by taking a supporting role, whether to aggressively pursue an exit strategy, such as an early motion to dismiss, or to wait and conserve credibility, and how best to distinguish a client from other defendants to minimize exposure. We combine our comprehensive understanding of antitrust law, significant litigation experience, and firm commitment to managing the whole process in the most cost-effective manner possible to help our clients achieve the best outcome possible.

Cartel Investigations and Government Enforcement

Our experienced White Collar Defense and Investigations team is well positioned to defend clients' interests in criminal antitrust and cartel matters. We have successfully counseled and represented numerous companies and individuals in government investigations and grand jury proceedings across a range of industries. Our team has extensive experience dealing with international investigations and has routinely represented foreign companies and executives before the US Department of Justice Antitrust Division, European Commission and other competition authorities.

We have achieved significant success in numerous jurisdictions around the world, and are recognized by US and international accrediting groups for our strong record in representing companies and executives in investigations and enforcement actions. Matters have included proceedings involving the US Department of Justice Antitrust Division, Canadian Competition Bureau, European Commission, German Federal Cartel office, UK Competition and Markets Authority, competition authorities of several EU member states, Japanese Fair Trade Commission, Australian Competition & Consumer Commission, and other governmental authorities. The strength of our international presence allows us to coordinate responses to the onerous and often conflicting commands of simultaneous investigations in multiple jurisdictions. Our experience also helps us to anticipate and limit follow-on civil damage and securities law litigation. Additionally, the depth and breadth of our team allows us to organize quickly, conduct internal client investigations to determine the facts, and assess potential exposure and minimize risk. We strive to reduce the effect of the resolution and its effect on future business conduct.

Mergers and Acquisitions

We help clients navigate the regulatory compliance requirements associated with large cross-border transactions. Our team takes a highly proactive approach to merger clearance, working with clients to provide an early analysis of potential antitrust issues and then engaging with regulators to efficiently obtain approval as quickly as possible. We help clients structure transactions by isolating or minimizing competition concerns by analyzing substantive competition issues, allocating antitrust risk, advising on merger integration and planning, preparing merger control notification, representing merging parties before competition authorities, and advising on competition issues relevant to purchase, sale, and joint venture agreements. 

For multijurisdictional mergers, we evaluate notification and approval obligations and manage the process across multiple jurisdictions, including with the European Commission and competition authorities globally. We also frequently represent our clients as third-party commenters or challengers to proposed transactions between competitors and have represented clients in high-profile and precedent-setting transactions.

For clients who are opposed to, or concerned about, mergers by competitors or suppliers, we assist in presenting their concerns to relevant enforcement agencies, proposing appropriate divestitures or other relief, and acquiring assets to be divested. 

Our team helps clients manage multiple regulatory regimes to complete their M&A transactions, including foreign direct investment (FDI) and the EU foreign subsidies regulation (FSR) notifications. Our global team provides pragmatic, strategic and efficient advice on regulatory trends and new regimes to minimize adverse effects of screening mechanisms and to deliver successful outcomes.   

Our team handles every aspect of the merger review process, including: regulatory covenants and antitrust risk assessment and allocation; due diligence and integration planning guidance; gun-jumping compliance; merger filings; pre-notification meetings; interaction and advocacy before authorities; working with expert economists as appropriate; and defending mergers in court when necessary.

Pricing, Distribution, and Brand Protection

Our global brand equity and strategic distribution team is a market leader in the development of optimized, global, go-to-market designs which encompass the realities of cross-border trade, ensure compliance with local regulatory and competition law regimes, and account for the bespoke goals and challenges of each brand and its products in several distinctive ways:

  • We go beyond legal compliance to focus on delivering actual business gains and results for our clients regarding marketplace control and brand value. 
  • We work closely with consumer and business-to-business product manufacturers, licensors and licensees in all aspects of a brand and price strategy—from deep-dive diagnosis, though optimized strategy design, market and partner communication strategy, execution and implementation mechanics, and compliance training, to market monitoring and enforcement for long-term value and accountability. 
  • We are comprised of a fully integrated team of dynamic, creative distribution architects with proven experience in designing distribution strategies across regions globally, with a focus on addressing e-commerce and online marketplace disruption as well as resale pricing, store and website criteria, and partner termination. 
  • We make difficult judgment calls in regions where the laws remain unclear or involve greater potential risk, and are at the forefront of developing laws, advocating our clients' interests before legislators and courts.
  • We design structures and mechanisms reflective of each client's business realities and priorities, including business plans, available resources, partner sophistication, retail network size, existing relationships and sensitivities, and risk profiles. 
  • We regularly represent our client before the European Commission, the UK Competition and Markets Authority, and other competition authorities.

We are trusted by some of the world's most successful brands to advise on highly complex distribution and pricing questions and network design. These range from high-tech and high-fashion brands where authorized reseller and pricing strategies have been commonplace for some time, to “branded commodity” manufacturers requiring innovative solutions to tackling brand and price erosion.

Counseling and Compliance

  An ounce of antitrust prevention can be worth millions in investigation and litigation costs, fines, and damages. With constantly evolving theories of anticompetitive conduct and harm alleged by the government and private plaintiffs, as well as increasingly aggressive enforcement authorities in the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, and beyond, antitrust counseling and compliance is more critical than ever to our clients. We blend our deep regulatory knowledge with our understanding of industry and enforcement trends to help our clients identify and mitigate antitrust risk. We provide customized antitrust compliance programs coupled with trusted guidance and training on an array of antitrust issues, from those that impact our clients’ daily operations to those at the heart of our clients’ larger strategic goals and visions. 

Our team has extensive experience conducting internal investigations triggered by whistleblowers, and is developing, implementing, updating, optimizing, and maintaining antirust compliance programs and trainings for our clients. We monitor legal and regulatory developments in newly developed areas, such as environmental social governance (ESG) and sustainability, to ensure that compliance systems remain up to date. 


Competition law plays an important role in the European economy and affects all aspects of doing business in Europe. With a strong bench of Antitrust, Competition, and Trade lawyers across Europe, we are able to assist clients operating in Europe in all matters impacted by competition law. Following is a high-level overview of the numerous service we provide. 


We have significant experience helping clients navigate the regulatory compliance requirements associated with large cross-border transactions. Our lawyers regularly appear before the European Commission, the UK Competition and Markets Authority, the German Federal Cartel Office, the French Competition Authority, the Italian Competition Authority, and other national competition authorities around the world. Among our many services include substantive antitrust assessment, allocation of antitrust risk and SPA negotiations, and bringing antitrust challenges to notified transactions.

Foreign Direct Investment

Our lawyers support clients on foreign direct investment (FDI) screening regimes across the globe and provide strategic advice to minimize adverse effects of FDI screening mechanisms to a proposed transaction. Members of the team are admitted to practice in various member states within the European Union, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere. We regularly file and interact with FDI authorities in numerous European and non-European countries. 

Vertical Competition Law

Our team advises consumer and business-to-business product manufacturers on complex competition law compliance, as well as all on their distribution strategies across regions globally—from the design stage to implementation, monitoring, and enforcement. We assist on matters such as resale pricing, store and website criteria, online marketplace restrictions, partner termination, and more. 

Competition Litigation

Combining technical knowledge with strategic advice, we are highly skilled at pursuing or defending claims on behalf of our clients before national courts across the United Kingdom and Europe before EU courts, US courts, and others. We conduct and coordinate multijurisdictional litigation for clients on matters such as cartel participation, breaches of competition law, and distribution strategies. 

Internal Investigations

Our team offers full-service support for abuse of dominance in cartel investigations on a global basis—from managing dawn raids, to defending clients in competition proceedings, to EU appellate and private damages litigation. We have significant experience in traditional cartels as well as complex antitrust matters such as pay-for-delay cases, abuse of dominance cases, and collective boycotts. 


We help clients develop, implement, and optimize compliance systems, and provide compliance trainings tailored to our clients’ industry and business. We monitor legal and regulatory developments to ensure that the compliance system is and remains up to date. 


We advise clients on ESG-related topics with a special focus on German and European Union legislation, by providing in-depth screenings of current governance structures and counsel on ESG approaches and changes to help avoid undue government, activist, or public scrutiny.  

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National Tier 1 Ranking in Antitrust Law

Best Law Firms® 2024

Superlative and responsive client service and encyclopedic knowledge and practical advice from K&L Gates.

Best Law Firms® 2024

Recognized by Chambers Asia-Pacific 2024 for Competition/Antitrust

K&L Gates clearly has the depth of legal knowledge required, and more importantly is incredibly pragmatic in assisting us with providing a response to a complex regulatory legal matter.

Chambers Asia-Pacific 2024

Recognized by The Legal 500 United Kingdom 2024 edition for EU and Competition

The “proactive” team at K&L Gates LLP attracts considerable praise from clients, who turn to the team for its wide-ranging capabilities in transactional and behavioural competition matters.

The Legal 500 United Kingdom 2024
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