European Court Victory for Gas Natural in the Ongoing Battle for the Control of Endesa

July 19, 2006

Cleary Gottlieb successfully assisted the European Commission in winning the dismissal of an appeal brought by Endesa before the European Court of First Instance in the ongoing battle for the control of Endesa. The judgment affirmed a European Commission decision declining jurisdiction to review the compatibility of the public bid announced by Gas Natural over Endesa with the merger control rules.

Although subject to appeal, the judgment of the European Court removes a heavy cloud hanging over the transaction by ending a 10-month procedural battle over whether Gas Natural’s bid ought to be reviewed by the European or the Spanish competition authorities. The dispute was widely regarded by commentators as an attempt by Endesa to delay the launch of Gas Natural’s bid.

Cleary Gottlieb represented Gas Natural at all stages of the European proceedings, before the European Commission and the European Court. It previously successfully assisted the European Commission in obtaining the dismissal earlier this year of an interim relief claim brought by Endesa.