Austria: Competition Analysis 2015

In 2013 the Austrian Parliament passed a bill amending the competition law regulations. These strengthened private enforcement and the powers of the Federal Competition Agency. Since then, sources have noted that the authority has focused in particular on vertical restraints. With the bulk of these cases being finalised, practitioners are unsure as to what the authority will target next. In this chapter, we select 25 lawyers and four economists who are recognised as leaders in the market.

Schoenherr Rechtsanwälte is a dominant player in this area and has four lawyers listed in this chapter. Franz Urlesberger is a “formidable” practitioner with “impressive knowledge” of cartel law. Hanno Wollmann is “widely reputed” for his economic expertise and boasts a wealth of experience in the competition market. Volker Weiss is the “go-to” lawyer for matters in the automotive and chemicals sectors and is “greatly respected” for his experience in this sphere. Christoph Haid is another “strong presence” in the market and is well known for advising clients on compliance programmes.

Three practitioners from Binder Grösswang Rechtsanwälte are selected, including the “talented” Raoul Hoffer. He represents clients in merger proceedings in Austria and before the European Commission and is “much in demand” for his work in the fields of banking and finance. Johannes Barbist is a “notable” individual who frequently advises domestic and foreign companies in energy and environment-related competition matters. Isabel Innerhofer is “top choice” for many clients requiring expertise in state aid and European competition law.

At bpv Hügel Rechtsanwälte OG, Astrid Ablasser-Neuhuber’s practice encompasses antitrust, merger control and market dominance matters. She is a “popular choice” for many clients thanks to her “user-friendly” nature. Florian Neumayr is noted for the “hands-on approach” he takes with his cases, which is appreciated by clients in a variety of industries.

Wolf Theiss’ Günter Bauer is “one of the best in Austria”. Head of the firm’s competition practice group, he provides compliance training and carries out competition law audits as well as participating in cartel investigations and leniency applications. Jochen Anweiler is an “accomplished” practitioner with “great knowledge” of Austrian and Central and Eastern European competition law.

At Eisenberger & Herzog, Dieter Thalhammer represents clients in merger control cases, distribution law matters and in cartel and abuse of dominance cases. Clients describe him as having “fantastic commercial acumen” and a “great strategic approach”. Andreas Zellhofer is well known for his expertise in unfair competition law and IP rights and stands out for his “technical abilities”.

Saxinger Chalupsky & Partner Rechtsanwälte’s Markus Fellner has an “active” practice encompassing merger filings and consultations relating to cartels and abuse of dominance. Christina Hummer is a “seasoned expert” and regularly advises on antitrust compliance.

Isabella Hartung at Barnert Egermann Illigasch Rechtsanwälte is an “extremely clever” individual with an “impressive record” in the global competition field.

Dorda Brugger Jordis’ Stephan Polster “stands out” thanks to his “phenomenal expertise” in Austrian and European competition law matters. He is a “guru” on cases in the telecommunications and energy sectors.

At Reidlinger Schatzmann Attorneys-at-Law, Axel Reidlinger “continues to impress” both clients and peers with his knowledge and experience in the market. He regularly advises clients on merger control and cartel cases before the Austrian competition authorities and on major competition cases in Central and Eastern Europe.

Dieter Hauck is a “great asset” to the team at Preslmayr Rechtsanwälte, where he advises on compliance, market abuse and merger control. He is praised for his “commitment” and “reliability”.

Bernhard Kofler-Senoner at CHSH Cerha Hempel Spiegelfeld Hlawati Attorneys at Law is a “true star” in the market and enjoys a wide-ranging competition practice. He is known for “always giving 110 per cent”.

At Baker & McKenzie, Andreas Traugott “inspires confidence thanks to his remarkable expertise”. Head of the firm’s competition group in Vienna, he focuses on merger control, licensing, restrictive practices, abuse of dominance, cartel investigations and state aid.

Peter Thyri at Weinrauch Negwer Gurmann Rechtsanwälte is a “great problemsolver” who always provides a “high quality” service to his clients.

Georg Legat at his own firm is an “elder statesman” and boasts a “wealth of expertise” in pharmaceutical and selective distribution matters.

Martin Stempkowski at Haslinger Nagele & Partner is a “trusted advisor” to both national and international clients whom he represents before national authorities.

At Karasek Wietrzyk Rechtsanwälte, Jörg Zehetner is “very well known” in the market. Clients praise his “sensible advice and diligent manner”.

On the economists front, Gerhard Clemenz is “very bright and effective”. He is the “first port of call” for many clients requiring expertise in this area. Also resident at the University of Vienna, Klaus Gugler is an “authority” on mergers, industrial economics and governance. Christine Zulehner is also “highly proficient” in competition economics and clients rate her for her “meticulous approach”.

At the Austrian Institute of Economic Research, Michael Böheim is renowned for his “excellent style of delivery” and “invaluable sector experience”.

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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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