Compass Lexecon economists have been recognized by Global Competition Review for their work in the winning matters in the GCR Team Awards 2021. Compass Lexecon teams globally advised in Google/Fitbit (merger control matter of the year – Europe), Fiat Chrysler Automobiles/PSA Group (matter of the year), ZF Friedrichshafen/WABCO (merger control matter of the year – APAC, Middle-East, and Africa), European Commission’s Aspen commitments (behavioral matter of the year – Europe), the Blue Cross Blue Shield antitrust litigation (litigation of the year – cartel prosecution), and FTC v Qualcomm (behavioral matter of the year – Americas). View on the GCR website
Merger Control Matter of the Year Europe – Google/Fitbit
We advised Google during merger proceedings before various competition authorities, including the European Commission, U.S. DoJ, and Australian ACCC. Our European and U.S. economist team assisted Google in allaying concerns of vertical foreclosure and the aggregation of personal data. Their analysis of Fitbit’s data showed that it was not unique and of limited value to Google, and a quantitative analysis demonstrated that it would not make sense for Google to attempt to foreclose rivals given the long-term damage it would cause to Google’s open Android ecosystem.
Matter of the Year – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles/PSA Group
We advised the Parties throughout the European Commission Phase II investigation. We analyzed closeness of competition and price effects across nine EEA Member States to demonstrate that there would be competitive constraint on the Parties post-merger. We also showed that the deal could lead to material market efficiencies to the benefit of consumers, and supported the Parties in designing a remedy package. We advised the Parties in their interactions with several other competition agencies, including Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, Mexico, Brazil, and Chile.
Behavioral Matter of the Year Europe – European Commission’s Aspen Commitments
We advised Aspen throughout the European Commission’s investigation of an alleged breach of Article 102 through excessive pricing of certain cancer drugs.
In a Q&A, expert economist John Davies describes the challenges of defining what is fair and what is excessive in an excessive pricing probe. Regarding the Aspen case, John discussed the complexities in carrying out calculations across products and countries, accounting for rebates that needed to be allocated on consistent and defensible principles.