Stephen M Axinn
Office:
114 West 47th Street
10036-1510
City:
New York
State:
New York
Country:
USA
Tel:
+1 212 728 2222
Fax:
+1 212 728 2201

Questions and Answers:

Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders - Competition: Lawyers

Columbia Law, 1962.  First chair of the antitrust and trade regulatory department at Skadden Arps; member ABA antitrust section council; chair, NYSBA antitrust section; co-founder, Axinn, Veltrop & Harkrider LLP; lead counsel in many significant litigations, appeals and merger transactions; Board member and officer of various philanthropic organisations; co-author of acquisitions under Hart Scott Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act; adjunct professor NYU and Columbia Law Schools.

WHAT WAS IT THAT INSPIRED YOU TO PURSUE A CAREER IN COMPETITION LAW? 

A fascination with the ever-changing aspects of the tension between the operation of the market and the policing function of the sovereign.

WHAT IS CURRENTLY THE MOST PRESSING ISSUE IN US COMPETITION LAW?  

Control of private power.

WHAT DOES THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION MEAN FOR COMPETITION LAW IN THE US?  

Uncertainty which leads to abuse.  Also, Trump’s vote in appointing Judges who are selected based on their demonstrated biases.

WHAT IS THE MOST VALUABLE LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNT FROM HEADING YOUR OWN LAW FIRM?

Delegation, delegation, delegation!

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO PRACTITIONERS JUST STARTING OUT WHO WANT TO FORGE A CAREER IN COMPETITION LAW?  

Study viewpoints other than your own.

IS ANTICOMPETITIVE BEHAVIOUR A NATURAL COROLLARY OF A WELL-FUNCTIONING MARKET ECONOMY?  

Yes – see Adam Smith.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENT TO DATE?  

My law firm’s success and my ability to step out of the spotlight to make room for others.

Biography:

Who's Who Legal Competition: Lawyers

In 2015, Mr Axinn represented Caraustar and its parent, HIG Capital in the successful acquisition of Newark Paperboard. He has also represented, Bauer Performance Sports Ltd in its acquisition of Easton Baseball/Softball. He was retained by CircuLite Inc in its acquisition of Heartware. He served as lead counsel to Bemis Company in connection with its acquisition of the assets of Rio Tinto's Alcan Packaging Food Americas' division. He successfully argued and won affirmance in 2011 in the Second Circuit of the summary judgment in favour of the health insurer GHI in connection with its merger with HIP to create EmblemHealth. In 2009, he was lead counsel to Ball Corp in its acquisition of certain Anheuser-Busch Inbev aluminium can manufacturing assets. Other clients have included MasterCard International, McKesson Corp, Zuffa, LLC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) and Hollywood Media. In 2006, Mr Axinn represented BellSouth in the merger with AT&T. In 2005, he successfully represented GameStop in its acquisition of Electronics Boutique and Movie Gallery in its acquisition of Hollywood Video. In 2004, Mr Axinn successfully defended Albert Einstein College of Medicine in securing dismissal of a major national class action complaint against it in Federal Court in Washington, DC. Mr Axinn was lead trial counsel for SunGard in the landmark case of United States v SunGard (Comdisco) (DDC 2001) in which the court held, after trial, that the government had failed in its effort to block the SunGard-Comdisco acquisition. In 1999–2000, Mr Axinn was retained as lead counsel to the antitrust division of the US Department of Justice in connection with the investigation and successful challenge of the proposed merger of MCI-WorldCom and Sprint.

Mr Axinn has published Globalization and Antitrust: The Last 40 Years (Fordham Corp Law Institute, 2014); Towards Neutral Principles of Antitrust Enforcement (Fordham Corp Law Institute, 2007); Milton Handler Annual Antitrust Review 2002: In Search of Congruence Between Legislative Purpose and Administrative Policy (Columbia Business Law Review, 431, 2003); and Merger Review and Litigation Involving the Acquisition of Bankrupt Companies (Antitrust, summer 2002, a publication of the ABA section of antitrust law).

Mr Axinn graduated from Syracuse University with a BS in 1959 and his LLB in 1962 from Columbia Law School. He has served as an adjunct at both NYU Law School and at Columbia Law School.

Mr Axinn has served on the ABA antitrust section council (1984–1985); as chair of the committee on Section 7 of the Clayton Act (1980–1983); as a member of the New York State Bar Association’s antitrust section (1982–1985); as chair of the Practising Law Institute (1991); and as co-chair of White-Collar Crime and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

WWL says: The "exceptional" Stephen Axinn is among the most experienced antitrust lawyers in the New York market and a revered expert in the area.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Competition which can be purchased from our Shop.

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