Investigations, inquiries and enforcement proceedings by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) can place intense pressures on boards, management and internal counsel alike. Having a trusted adviser who has been there before, keeps a cool head and can help you make tough judgment calls is vital.
We have acted on many of the largest global and domestic cartel investigations in recent years, securing immunity or leniency for multiple clients and conducting major antecedent internal investigations. We also regularly represent clients in other high-profile ACCC investigations and industry inquiries, and are unwavering in our commitment to achieving the best possible outcomes for our clients while minimising the burden of the investigation on their businesses.
Where an ACCC investigation or private allegation can’t be deflected or resolved on favourable terms, our team also acts on competition and consumer law litigation. We have an outstanding track record in complex litigation and have acted on numerous important test cases regarding issues such as price information exchanges, consumer guarantee obligations and the extraterritorial reach of Australian cartel laws.
We also have a comprehensive understanding of the complexities involved in related issues such as managing exposure to third party claims and class actions, mitigating reputational damage, and coordinating the response to parallel investigations in multiple jurisdictions.
Representing BP on the defence of an ACCC prosecution of five petrol retailers and a data intermediary in relation to the alleged anticompetitive effects of an industry price information exchange scheme. This litigation, which was the culmination of a three-year investigation, was an important test case regarding the application of Australian competition laws to price information sharing arrangements. The matter was settled without admissions or penalty shortly before trial.