Cleary Gottlieb Wins Global Competition Review Award for the Behavioural Matter of the Year – Europe

March 28, 2012

Cleary Gottlieb won Global Competition Review’s Behavioural Matter of the Year - Europe award for its successful defence of IBM against a series of high-profile antitrust complaints before the EU Commission, in the area of mainframe emulation, mainframe pricing, and maintenance services for mainframes.

The cases closed several years of intense work, on legally, economically, and technically fascinating issues of competition law and policy. The team devised a strategy early on to distinguish the case from the Microsoft case from a legal and policy point of view, highlighting the very significant technical innovation by IBM that would be at risk and the intense competition faced by IBM in server computers. The team implemented the strategy, cooperating seamlessly with client team, technical and economic experts and U.S. co-counsel with respect to parallel U.S. complaints and claims. This ultimately led to the rejection of the complaints. On the maintenance side, in parallel, IBM ensured a practical solution that clarified the conditions under which a limited set of mainframe replacement parts can be ordered from IBM. The cases are among the most significant to have been reviewed by the European Commission in 2011.

The Cleary Gottlieb team was led by Maurits DolmansRobbert Snelders and Thomas Graf.

In addition, the antitrust practice was recognized for its top ranking in GCR’s Global Elite - a group including the best 20 antitrust practices worldwide.

Global Competition Review is a leading antitrust and competition law journal and news service.