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Mélanie Bruneau

Mélanie Bruneau is a partner in the firm’s Brussels office. She advises on a broad range of areas in European Law. Her practice focuses on advising clients a variety of industrial sectors, including transport, and aviation, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and cosmetics, manufacturing, chemicals and IT on the legal aspects of their business activities, with a particular emphasis on regulatory compliance.

Mélanie advises large multinationals on all aspects of EU competition law. She has significant experience in cartel investigations and sector inquiry investigations. Mélanie was also involved in the first cartel settlement and in the first hybrid cartel settlement before the European Commission. Mélanie regularly advises clients on global compliance programs regarding antitrust. She performs internal audits and compliance trainings. She frequently advises on the rules and procedures governing State aid and EU public procurement directives. In terms of compliance, Mélanie also advises on anti-corruption (including the OECD Convention, UK Bribery act and US FCPA) and on the anti-money laundering legislation.

Mélanie has significant experience in advising on vertical agreements including exclusive distribution and supply as well as selective distribution and franchising. She also has lots of experience in advising on horizontal issues including joint ventures, collaboration, cooperation, R&D as well as consortium agreements. She frequently advises on resale price maintenance (RPM) and price discrimination issues on behalf of some of the largest companies in the world. Mélanie frequently advises on restrictions of active and passive sales, non compete provisions but also on termination of distribution agreements. She also advises on parallel import restrictions and more generally on free movement of goods. Mélanie regularly advises on commercial agency agreements (including on compensation and termination issues).

She also advises on consumer protection legislation including unfair commercial practices as well as misleading and comparative advertising. She advises companies on distribution agreements including e-commerce cross-border issues and distribution networks in Europe. Mélanie has assisted various clients in the setting up of their commercial websites in compliance with the e-commerce, e-sign and data protection legislations.

Over the past 15 years, Mélanie has developed a strong experience in a wide range of transport, aviation, ground handling and airport related matters where she advises clients on EU and French regulatory issues and complex contractual arrangements. This includes noise reduction, regulatory issues associated with the transportation of chemicals, pharmaceuticals, perishables, jewelry and high-value goods but also on slot allocation. Mélanie has advised on the emissions trading schemes (ETS) for aviation, on the guidelines for State aid to airports and airlines and on passenger rights. She also has experience in EU sanctions, customs and export controls.

Mélanie is a member of the Paris and Brussels Bars. She has contributed to Practical Law Company (PLC) on international sales and marketing.

Prior to joining the firm, Mélanie was a partner in another international firm in Brussels. In terms of project management, she has been on site to manage large projects for firm clients. She spent nine months on the Paris European Hub of one of the world’s largest express transport companies. She also went on the Geneva site of one of the leading international integrated producer of polymers and fibers for project management. Mélanie has also acted as an Expert for the European Commission in the context of the EU Research and Innovation programme “Horizon 2020” (2018).

  • Legal 500 2020, Competition Law-Belgium
  • Chambers Global 2017, Foreign Expert for France, Competition/European Law
  • Member of the association of francophone competition law practitioners in Brussels (L'Entente)
  • Member of the Transportation Lawyers Association (TLA)
  • Member of the Women in Life Science Network (Brussels)
  • Speaking engagement at the Competition Law & Regulation in the Energy Sector conference (Comp Law, Brussels, 10 November 2020)
  • Speaking engagement at the Merger Control Digital Conference (Comp Law, Brussels, 13 October 2020)
  • Speaking engagement at the 3PL Supply Chain Summit on “fulfilment services, new market surveillance obligations to comply with” (Brussels, 15 October 2019)
  • Speaking engagement at the conference regarding the e-commerce sector inquiry (Brussels, Concurrences, 3 March 2016)
  • Speaking engagement at the conference on EU e-commerce (Paris, Concurrences, 21 June 2016)
  • Speaking engagement at the conference organized by ACC on EU antitrust issues, including private damages and e-commerce (Rome, ACC, 24 May 2016)
  • Speaking engagement at the conference on EU antitrust and JVs (Paris, Concurrences, 3 May 2016)
  • Lecturer at the University of Lille (France) on International Transport Law (24 hours) from 2015 to 2019
  • Lecturer at the University of Saint Etienne (France) on Introduction to Competition Law (2016)
  • Lecturer at the University of Leuven (Belgium) on Competition Law and Human Rights (2016)
  • Lecturer at the VUB (Belgium) on Introduction to Competition Law (2017)
  • Speaking engagement on Human Rights at the Venice School on Human Rights (Venice, EIUC, 2015)
  • Speaking engagement at the conference organized by ACC on crisis management (London, ACC, June 2015)
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Legal 500 - EMEA - Competition: EU and Global 2021

K&L Gates GP's international platform allows it to successfully negotiate merger clearances from the EC, US FTC and DOJ, and competition authorities worldwide. The Brussels team is also a strong performer in antitrust investigations and litigation; Philip Torbøl has two decades of experience robustly defending clients' interests in EC investigations into cartels, abuses of dominance and state aid, among other matters. Mélanie Bruneau, who is an expert in EU and French law, handles transactional and behavioural competition matters for clients in industries such as aviation, pharmaceuticals and industrial engineering, among various others. Francesco Carloni is a well-known name among clients in the luxury and fashion industry; he is representing Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana and Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode in the EC's ongoing review of the Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (VBER) and vertical guideline. His wide-ranging experience also spans multiple other sectors.

The Legal 500 EMEA 2021
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