Gibson Dunn Expands Brussels Office with Two Competition Lawyers

July 1, 2013

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP is pleased to announce that competition lawyers Dr. Jens-Olrik Murach and Lena Sandberg are joining the firm’s Brussels office.  Murach, who joins the firm as a partner, previously practiced at Flick Gocke Schaumburg (FGS) in Bonn, Germany, where he headed the EU and competition practice.  A former Senior Officer with the EFTA Surveillance Authority in Brussels, Sandberg joins the firm as of counsel.

“Jens-Olrik and Lena will be strong additions to the firm.  Both lawyers are highly regarded by the European competition bar and will complement our strengths in this area,” said Ken Doran, Chairman and Managing Partner of Gibson Dunn.  “Our competition practice is thriving, and we have expanded our competition practice in the UK, US and now Brussels to meet client demand.”  Gibson Dunn received the Chambers USA Award for Excellence in the Antitrust category in May 2013.

“My antitrust partners welcome Jens-Olrik and Lena on board,” said Peter Alexiadis, Partner in Charge of the Brussels office.  “We think they are both fabulous individuals and terrific lawyers.  They provide us with the opportunity to add both scale and scope to our practice, which will really bolster our ability to deliver for our clients both at the EU and national levels.”

Alexiadis said, “In Jens-Olrik, we have a gifted antitrust lawyer who brings substantial expertise in German competition law and will add to our depth in dealing with the EU competition authorities.  With his very broad skill set, he will enhance our capacity to offer antitrust advice to our clients in Brussels and Germany, as we have done in relation to Brussels and the UK through the hires of Ali Nikpay and Deirdre Taylor.  Lena complements his practice perfectly and gives us a ‘go-to’ EU practice offering for Scandinavian clients, which focuses on energy regulation, state aids and public procurement.  We are very excited to have them on board, as will be our clients.”

“Lena and Jens-Olrik are both high-quality, commercially focused and well-rounded antitrust lawyers whom we are delighted to welcome to our team,” said Michael Walther, Partner in Charge of the Munich office.  “We look forward to working with them to continue expanding our pan-European antitrust practice. With Germany being one of the key players in the European economy, we are particularly thrilled that we are now even better positioned to serve German and international clients concerning all antitrust issues with a German nexus.”

About Jens-Olrik Murach

Murach is a German-qualified lawyer with more than 10 years of experience in practicing antitrust law in Brussels and Germany.  He will practice from both the Brussels and Munich offices and will focus primarily on the German market. 

His practice covers the complete range of EU and German antitrust law, including merger control, restrictive practices, market dominance, cartel investigations, sectoral investigations, compliance, and private antitrust litigation.  He also advises on EU State aid and public procurement matters.  He has worked on many complex transactions in his career, including Bayer/Aventis CropScience, Siemens/VA Tech, Areva/Alstom, MTV Networks/VIVA, E.ON/Ruhrgas, Salzgitter/Norddeutsche Affinerie (now Aurubis) and Amadeus/TravelTainment.  He has particular sectoral expertise before both the German Federal Cartel Office and the European Commission in the insurance, food and retail industries.

He is a frequent author and speaker on antitrust issues.  He authored a handbook on German Merger Control (Deutsche Fusionskontrolle, Erich Schmidt, 2011) and contributes to a leading German commentary (Frankfurter Kommentar zum Kartellrecht, Otto Schmidt, 1982/2011) on EU antitrust law.  He lectures on German and European antitrust law at University of Osnabrück in Germany.

Murach previously practiced in the Bonn office of Flick Gocke Schaumburg, where he headed the EU & competition practice.  He started his career at Shearman & Sterling in the Düsseldorf and Brussels offices and trained in the firm’s New York office.  He received his law degree in 1995 from the University of Bonn, where he later earned a doctorate in law.

“FGS is a great firm, and I have enjoyed my time there very much.  I wish the firm well for the future,” said Murach.  “This is an opportunity I simply could not resist.  Gibson Dunn has an elite antitrust practice, which is continuously growing in Europe.  The firm is a great fit for my practice and for me culturally.  I’m looking forward to contributing to the further strengthening of Gibson Dunn’s profile in Europe.”

About Lena Sandberg

Sandberg served as Senior Officer in the Competition and State Aid Directorate at the EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) from 2004 to 2011.  While at the ESA, she handled cases and drafted decisions and policy legislation relating to energy and environmental regulation, State aids, public procurement, and free market principles.  She also has significant experience in litigation before the various European Courts.  She is a regular contributor and a member of the Editorial Board of the European Energy Journal and is a frequent speaker on energy and State aid issues. 

Sandberg studied law at the University of Copenhagen and completed her master’s degree in law in 1992 at the Vrije Universiteit in Brussels.  She is fluent in Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, German and French.

“I am delighted to be joining Gibson Dunn’s Brussels office and such a capable team of lawyers,” said Sandberg.  “For me there are clear synergies in the move: the combination of Gibson Dunn’s strength in competition and regulatory policy with my expertise in State aid, energy and public procurement will serve the needs of clients and expand the scope of the Brussels EU regulatory practice.  I am looking forward to bringing a new dimension to this practice and to making a valuable contribution to Gibson Dunn.”