Our European communications lawyers are based in Brussels, the United Kingdom and Germany. The interdisciplinary team pools legal know-how and expertise from the regulation of communications markets and antitrust/competition law, to transactions and M&A, national and EU litigation.
We represent major European communications companies in regulatory and antitrust/competition investigations, market analysis proceedings, spectrum/frequency assignment procedures and other matters before the European Commission, the UK Office of Communications, the German Bundesnetzagentur and Bundeskartellamt and other European and national regulators and competition authorities. We also regularly appear for clients from the communications sector before the European Court of Justice and national courts in Germany, the UK and Belgium in regulatory and private litigation. Finally, our lawyers advise on major industry transactions and have negotiated ground-breaking cooperation agreements between telecommunications operators (including agreements concerning infrastructure sharing, mobile virtual network operation, roaming agreements, service provision and the like).
A hallmark of our European communications practice has been the counseling of telecoms operators on strategic responses to the liberalization of the industry (for both incumbents and new entrants), advising on the continuing regulatory reform process and counseling on the resulting commercial challenges for the players in this market. Drawing on the broad legal and policy experience of our lawyers both in and out of government, including senior communications regulatory as well as antitrust and competition officials on both sides of the Atlantic, we are able to provide effective guidance to clients as they navigate at times confusing, overlapping and often conflicting rules and procedures. More information about our global Communications practice can be found here.
In some of our more prominent recent matters, our European communications lawyers have:
- Assisted a major European mobile telecommunications group against the initiative of Commissioner Viviane Reding concerning international roaming tariffs and advised the group on challenging the resulting regulation before the European Court of Justice.
- Assisted a major European mobile telecommunications operator concerning its challenge of the spectrum policy of a national regulator, including the implementation of the future revised GSM Directive.
- Represented a major European telecommunications operator in landmark litigation before the European Court of Justice concerning an alleged margin squeeze in the local loop.
- Represented a major European mobile telecommunications operator before both national and European Courts in litigation against a national regulator concerning mobile number portability.
- Represented major European telecommunications operators in private litigation concerning damages for alleged violations of antitrust/competition law and communications regulation.
- Advised a major European mobile telecommunications operator with respect to the negotiation of an infrastructure sharing agreement.
- Advised a major European mobile telecommunications operator with respect to the negotiation of mobile virtual network operator ("MVNO”) agreements.