Mani Reinert
Office:
Brandschenkestrasse 90
8027
City:
Zurich
State:
Zurich
Country:
Switzerland
Tel:
+41 58 261 52 88
Fax:
+41 58 263 52 88

Questions and Answers:

Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders - Switzerland

Mani Reinert graduated from the University of Zurich in 1994 and was admitted to the Zurich Bar in 2000. After a post as a research and teaching assistant at the University of Zurich, he received his Master of Laws degree (LLM) from New York University School of Law in 2002 and his Dr iur from the University of Zurich in 2003. He joined Bär & Karrer in 1997. His practice covers all aspects of antitrust law in a wide range of industries. He routinely advises and represents clients in investigations before the Swiss Competition Commission (ComCo), as well as in merger control filings before ComCo. He also coordinates multi-jurisdictional merger control filings, and assists clients in dawn raids and the implementation of compliance programmes. Besides this, he advises clients regarding the administration of their distribution networks.

WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO SPECIALISE IN COMPETITION LAW?

I became interested in competition law as a student because it requires you to understand how markets work, in order to come to a sensible legal solution; and because it was a new area of law at that time (in Switzerland). My interest in competition law was further developed during my time as a research and teaching assistant to Professor Zäch at the University of Zurich. Professor Zäch was at that time vice president of the old Cartel Commission and subsequently became vice president of ComCo when the new Act on Cartels entered into force in 1996. During that time I worked on competition law publications and wrote a new textbook on the new Act on Cartels. When I joined Bär & Karrer in 1997 I had the opportunity to work on some major deals involving Swiss companies (one of them being the merger of SBG and SBV to form UBS), which gave me the opportunity to apply and develop in practice what I had learned at the law school.

WHAT QUALITIES MAKE FOR A SUCCESSFUL COMPETITION LAWYER? 

Be creative in finding solutions, not only when drafting contracts and structuring transactions but also in settlement negotiations. In settlement negotiations, you should think about alternative ways to address concerns of the competition authority, but which are less intrusive for your client. Trying to creatively address the concerns of the competition authority will often yield better results than aggressive fundamental opposition.

Develop an understanding of the economics behind the case. You will only be able to give sensible advice if you understand the product of the client and the way the market works. Similarly, you should always become familiar with your client’s products where this is possible, for example, in cases of consumer products. Clients appreciate if they do not have to explain to you how their product, their loyalty programme etc, works.

Be honest about the prospects of successfully appealing a case versus reaching a settlement. While you should always vigorously defend the interests of your clients (which sometimes involves having to fight a case up to the Federal Supreme Court), sometimes a cooperative approach will serve the client better than a litigious one. Things can and have been made worse with an appeal. Be aware that every appeal shapes the case law and may make the case law worse, also for other clients.

Be thorough. Never get complacent. Always ask yourself whether you really got the best solution for the client or whether there is still something you could do to get a better result.

HOW DOES BÄR & KARRER DISTINGUISH ITSELF FROM THE COMPETITION?

We are able to assemble large teams on a case where necessary and demanded. However, we keep the case team lean when this better serves our clients’ needs; for example, we can keep a case low-profile and our firm’s role in the background if this is likely to yield better results for the client. 

We have a broad client base and are active in all areas of antitrust and across all industries.

We are present in all language regions of Switzerland (German, French and Italian).

HOW HAS COMCO INFLUENCED THE MARKET IN THE PAST YEAR?

There is no marked shift in influencing the market in the past year. We generally see a trend for ComCo to reward cooperation. 

INTERNATIONAL FIRMS ARE BECOMING MORE PROMINENT IN THE DOMESTIC MARKET. HOW HAS THIS HAD AN IMPACT ON YOUR PRACTICE? 

Our practice has not been significantly impacted by this as we have a strong and broad domestic client base and are highly specialised. 

But we note that the influence of foreign firms has increased, in both investigations of ComCo and transactions. 

WHAT DO YOU MOST ENJOY ABOUT WORKING IN COMPETITION LAW?

As a competition lawyer you get more insights into how markets work and what the economic challenges of your client are. You also become familiar with a broad range of industries. Furthermore, given that the Swiss competition law market is small, you can shape the competition law practice in Switzerland and have an impact on how the competition law develops.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE SOMEONE STARTING OUT IN COMPETITION LAW? 

Do what you love and be yourself! Show initiative, engage in public discussion (by publishing and speaking at conferences). Get international experience but keep in mind that despite the law becoming more international, the law is primarily national and you have to first become an acknowledged expert in your home jurisdiction before entering the international stage.

WHERE, IN YOUR OPINION, DOES THE FUTURE OF THE PRACTICE AREA LIE?

In investigations and compliance. There is an increasing belief of the public and politicians that the state should regulate and fine-tune markets. Competition law is one of these regulations. For example, in Switzerland, ComCo is under enormous pressure “to do something” against the high prices in Switzerland. As a consequence of the increased regulatory fine-tuning, there will be more enforcement actions and more investigations. This also means that clients need to have robust compliance programmes.

Biographies:

Who's Who Legal Competition: Lawyers

Mani Reinert is a partner at Bär & Karrer, heading the antitrust law practice group. His practice covers all aspects of antitrust law in a wide range of industries.

Mani Reinert routinely represents clients in merger control filings before the Swiss Competition Commission and coordinates multi-jurisdictional merger control filings. Furthermore, he regularly represents clients in proceedings before the Swiss Competition Commission and assists clients in dawn raids and in the implementation of compliance programmes. Besides, Mani Reinert advises clients regarding the administration of distribution networks.

He regularly speaks and publishes on competition law topics and is the co-editor of one of the leading commentaries on the Swiss competition law. He is fluent in German and English.

Bär & Karrer is one of the biggest and internationally best-connected law firms in Switzerland. The firm’s core business is advising their clients on innovative and complex transactions and representing them in cartel and regulatory proceedings, litigation and arbitration. Clients range from multinational corporations to private individuals in Switzerland and around the world. Bär & Karrer was repeatedly awarded Switzerland Law Firm of the Year by the most important international legal ranking agencies in recent years.

WWL says: Mani Reinert is "highly recommended" by sources across Europe for his fantastic understanding of EU competition law.

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

Who's Who Legal Switzerland - Competition

Mani Reinert heads the competition law practice at Bär & Karrer. He is based in Zürich and has been partner since 2007.

Mani Reinert specialises in competition law. He is regularly retained by firms involved in investigations before the Swiss Competition Commission and appeals before the Federal Administrative Court and the Federal Supreme Court. His practice covers cartel investigations, investigations into the potential abuse of a dominant position and investigations into distribution practices in a broad range of industries. He also assists clients in dawn raids, in the implementation of compliance programmes and internal investigations. Besides, Mani Reinert advises clients in setting up and administering distribution networks.

Furthermore, Mani Reinert routinely represents clients in merger control filings before the Swiss Competition Commission and coordinates multi-jurisdictional merger control filings.

Moreover, Mani Reinert represents clients in competition law related civil litigation before Swiss courts.

He regularly speaks and publishes on competition law topics and is the co-editor of one of the leading commentaries on the Swiss competition law. Mani Reinert speaks German, English and French.

Mani Reinert is recognised as a leading competition lawyer by various ranking organisations such as Chambers Europe, The Legal 500 Hall of Fame and Who's Who Legal

Mani Reinert holds a Dr iur from the University of Zürich and an LLM in corporate law from New York University. He is a member of the Zürich and Swiss Bar Association and of the Studienvereinigung Kartellrecht.

Bär & Karrer is a renowned Swiss law firm with more than 150 lawyers in Zurich, Geneva, Lugano and Zug. Its core business is advising clients on innovative and complex transactions and representing them in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings. The firm's clients range from multinational corporations to private individuals in Switzerland and around the world.

Bär & Karrer has been repeatedly awarded Switzerland's "Law Firm of the Year" by the most prestigious international legal ranking agencies.

WWL says: Mani Reinert “should definitely be on the list” according to peers, who commend his extensive experience in the competition law space.

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

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