Note Bene Episode 2: Big in Europe? What Multinationals Need to Know about Competing on the Continent with Isabelle Rahman


More than one hundred forty nations around the world have their own competition laws addressing how multinationals may compete in their borders. No two are the same. Knowing that, is it realistic to expect multinational companies to understand how policies and economics operate in countries around the world? How can multinationals doing business without borders compete abroad without fear of running into competition violations?

In this episode, we’re focusing specifically on Europe and how companies can compete on that continent. My guest on the show is Isabelle Rahman, a partner in the Antitrust and Competition Practice Group in the firm’s Brussels office. Isabelle has substantial experience in the application of the EU competition rules and represents clients active in the airline, chemical, consumer products, food, life sciences/pharma, fashion, entertainment and media industries, among others.

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What We Discuss in This Episode:  

Which companies received the largest fines for violations of European competition laws?

Is Commissioner Vestager on a crusade against U.S. technology companies doing business in Europe?

Are the amounts of the fines levied against some U.S. tech companies in Europe appropriate?

What are the different social underpinnings to the respective competition policies in the U.S. vs. Europe?

Can your competitor file a complaint with the European Commission against your company?

Why Europe consistently looks to protect against harm to the consumer

Could a lack of similarly powerful and situated companies in Europe be one reason why the European Commission seemingly takes stricter measures against U.S. companies?

What percentage of U.S. multinational companies’ revenues come from overseas?

How has the Trump administration affected U.S. relations with Europe?

How should companies with higher market shares in Europe conduct themselves in order to avoid violations?

Resources Mentioned:

European Commission Directorates General Competition 


Practice Areas

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