Monday - Tuesday, 9 – 10 July 2018, Brussels, Belgium

E-mail Tel: +44 20 3780 4137


John Davies

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, London and Brussels

John is a partner in Freshfield Bruckhaus Deringer's antitrust practice and works out of Brussels and London. He is also a former head of the group’s global practice. John founded the Brussels office in 1989 and was managing partner for 10 years.

Bojana Ignjatovic

RBB Economics, London

Bojana Ignjatovic is a Partner based in the London office of RBB Economics. Bojana has more than fifteen years’ experience as an expert in competition economics, in both private and public practice. She has advised on a large number of high-profile cases before the European Commission and many national domestic authorities, in particular in the UK.


Richard Whish QC

Emeritus Professor, King's College London

Emeritus Professor Richard Whish is a legal academic and author. He is a qualified solicitor and was in legal practice in London from 1989 to 1998. He was admitted in 1977. He has been recommended for his contribution to competition law and policy, in the UK, the European Union and in many other countries with competition laws throughout the world.


Day one - Monday, 9 July

13.25: Welcome coffee and registration

13.45: Chairs' welcome

John Davies, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, London and Brussels
Bojana Ignjatovic, RBB Economics, London

14.00: Richard Whish’s The Year in Review

Richard Whish QC, Emeritus Professor, King's College London

Professor Whish will review the year just gone, emphasising the themes and trends behind the headlines.

15.30: Compliance – what is now best in breed?   

  • What are the newest techniques and approaches to improve compliance globally?
  • What can be learned from Reg Tech?
  • How to keep an audit trail:
    - Accessing data from mobile messaging apps (WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger)
    -Best practices in document storage and database management, including data aggregation software
    - Interface with data protection rules and cybersecurity   
  • Using Artificial Intelligence and smart technologies:
    - Immediate detection through real time monitoring of behaviour
    - Improved audits using clustering and predictive coding
    - Targeted compliance
    - Smart contract technology to ensure constant and dynamic oversight, for example of rebates
    - The role of humans: Spotting the forest for the trees and tuning out the noise

16.30: Coffee break

16.50: Deal breaking or mischief making: are non-horizontal theories of harm in mergers back with a vengeance?

In Europe, unlike in the US, the number of cases raising primarily non-horizontal concerns has been on the rise. Does this reflect renewed vigour in relation to non-horizontal theories of harm? How easily can the parties dismiss these concerns with reasoned representations? And what remedies might the regulators expect and accept? We will discuss these and other issues with particular discussion on key cases from the past year, including Qualcomm/ NXP, Essilor/ Luxottica, and Rockwell Collins/ BE Aerospace.

18.00: Conclusion of day one

19.15 onwards: All delegates are invited to attend a drinks reception and all conference dinner sponsored by Shearman & Sterling

Day two - Tuesday, 10 July

8.15: Welcome coffee and registration

8.45: Chairs’ welcome

John Davies, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, London and Brussels
Bojana Ignjatovic, RBB Economics, London

9.00: Keynote Q&A

To be announced

09.40: Coffee break               

10.00: It’s rebatable: Pricing abuses under Article 102 after Intel

As the dust settles on the Intel judgement, what is the regulators’ approach to exclusionary pricing conduct? What role for economic evidence? And how should dominant companies price to run the gauntlet between the risk of excessive price abuses on the one hand and exclusionary ones on the other?

11.10: The role of the individual employee

  • Whistleblowing:
    - High stakes: whistleblowing has become increasingly instrumental
    - Competition authorities are developing whistleblowing tools
    - Businesses have clear interest in ensuring that internal whistleblowing procedures are fit for purpose
    - Mobilising the HR department
  • Recruitment practices:
    - No-poaching agreements
  • Criminal sanctions
  • Employee rights
  • Data protection

12.15: Networking lunch                    

13.20: Deal risk

  • Managing the increased risk of litigation around large scale deals:
    - Third party challenges
    - Increased risk of agencies challenging consummated deals
    - UPS/TNT appeal
  • Navigating the risks in the less transparent world of foreign investment reviews, in particular in large cross-border transactions
  • Avoiding legal and procedural entanglements:
    - Gun jumping.  Impact of Altice and other recent deals
    - Voracious appetite for internal document by competition authorities (in particular the EC) increased risk of liability for providing incomplete or misleading information

14.30: Coffee break

14.50: Cutting it fine: Regulators’ approaches to calculating fines

For companies under investigation, estimates of likely fines are of critical importance, so what can we glean from established practice by the Commission and by national regulators? The challenge for this panel: so, how exactly should one estimate the likely fine?

16.00: Chairs’ closing remarks

John Davies, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, London and Brussels
Bojana Ignjatovic, RBB Economics, London

16.10: Close of conference


Radisson Blu Royal Hotel Brussels, Rue du Fossé-aux-Loups 47, Wolvengracht 47, 1000 Brussels, Belgium