Who calls the shots? Minority shareholdings in merger control

Competition authorities across the world are increasingly presented with cases involving partial acquisitions and minority shareholdings. Some jurisdictions, including the UK and Germany, can already address these under their merger rules, but the European Commission cannot, and it is consulting on closing this potential ‘enforcement gap’. What are the differences between minority shareholdings and full mergers from a competition perspective? Is Ryanair/Aer Lingus a typical case?

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Goodfellas? The European Commission investigates pay-TV film deals

DG Competition’s latest probe into the pay-TV industry considers whether contractual terms between major US film studios and Europe’s leading pay-TV providers prevent cross-border competition between broadcasters. What is the current impact of these clauses from the perspectives of consumers, pay-TV operators and content producers, and what are the economic concepts in which these issues can be framed?

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Turbulence ahead? The new state aid guidelines for aviation

The European Commission has recently introduced new guidelines, due to become enforceable by the end of March 2014, on how member states can support airports and airlines in line with EU state aid rules. These guidelines have far-reaching implications for the financing of airport infrastructure, as well as how airports reach agreements with airlines. What does all this mean for the aviation sector?

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Something for nothing? Returns in low-asset industries

The framework for regulating infrastructure is well established, and is designed to provide returns to investors in physical assets. However, market investigations and, potentially, regulation can also arise in other markets where assets are few in number. This article considers whether, and why, a different framework could be more appropriate in such markets

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