Date: 3 November 2021
Time: 4:00 PM UTC
Duration: 90 min
Language: English
Format: Online
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Worldwide: Mergers in The New Normal: What Populist Antitrust Reform Portends for Mergers

Rising income inequality, the concentration of economic power, and the rise of digital giants to become the most powerful companies in the world have increased the attention of politicians to antitrust policy and enforcement. Against this background, there have been increasing calls among politicians, antitrust enforcers, economists and others for increased antitrust enforcement and regulation, most notably for Big Tech firms which have grown substantially and play an ever bigger role in our lives, but many fail to appreciate that progressive merger enforcement goes far beyond Big Tech, potentially implicating mergers of all sizes in all industries.

Populist merger enforcement initiatives in the US, EU, and elsewhere poses a number of serious challenges and risks for businesses around the world, and may squelch any number of efficiency-enhancing mergers. Our panelists will discuss these important challenges and risks, and provide practical insights for companies considering merger activity in these new, challenging times.


  • Populist Antitrust (Big is Bad) v. Mainstream Antitrust – The Return to Structuralism
  • The key influencers in antitrust - the Legislators, the Enforcers, The Academics, the Media
  • Merger Enforcement Policy Priorities – Acquisitions of Nascent Competitors and Killer Acquisitions in Pharma/Digital Industries, Labor Markets (monopsony), Public Interest Considerations such as Industrial Policy, Sustainability, Data Privacy, and the more elusive notion of Fairness, Parochial Remedies and Acceptable Divestiture Buyers

White & Case LLP is an approved Multiple Activity Provider with the State Bar of California and has been certified as an Accredited Provider by the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board.  Our programs are presumptively approved for California and New York State continuing legal education.
1.5 total hours of CLE will be awarded upon completion of this activity.  The content is appropriate for lawyers of all experience levels.

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David Ernst

David Ernst is Vice President and Assistant General Counsel at 3M Company. He oversees a range of antitrust and competition law matters for 3M on a global basis, including merger control, counseling, and compliance.

Prior to joining 3M, David worked as Senior Counsel in the New York office of a major international law firm. David is active in the ABA Antitrust Section and on the Antitrust Section Council of the Minnesota State Bar Association.

Tilman Kuhn

White & Case Partner Tilman Kuhn is considered one of the leading antitrust lawyers in Germany. His international experience spans across a multitude of jurisdictions focusing on merger control reviews, cartel matters, vertical conduct investigations, dominance matters and civil and appellate litigation for clients across key industries, e.g., oil & gas/chemicals, pharmaceuticals, consumer products, automotive and tech.

He has a significant track record on handling merger control proceedings successfully before the German Federal Cartel Office, the European Commission and a number of other international agencies, including, e.g. Metso's landmark "merger" with Outotec, The Dow Chemical Company's US$130 billion merger of equals with DuPont, The Dow Chemical Company/Rohm & Haas, Henkel/Adhesives & Electronics Business (National Starch), Airbus/Bombardier, and many others.

Strati Sakellariou-Witt

White & Case Partner Strati Sakellariou-Witt advises on European competition law and general European Union law questions.  She represents clients in merger control reviews, abuse of dominance and cartel proceedings.  She has advised companies active in a broad range of industries, including IT, telecommunications, consumer goods, consumer electronics, pharmaceuticals, energy, chemicals, oil & gas, and transport.

She has represented clients before the European Commission in Phase I and Phase II merger control reviews, and has comprehensive experience in representing companies in in-depth investigations which include negotiation of divestitures.

Martin Toto

White & Case Partner Martin M. Toto has over 25 years of experience representing clients in antitrust and complex commercial litigation matters. Marty has substantial experience counseling companies in the Hart-Scott-Rodino pre-merger review process, and in the implementation of antitrust compliance and training programs.  He has gained approval for numerous mergers from the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice and routinely coordinates worldwide competition approvals in cross-border deals.

Recently, Marty obtained quick clearance from US antitrust authorities for Metso Corporation’s €4 billion consolidation with rival Outotec in the mineral processing industry.  The deal was cleared with no “second request” (Phase II) investigation, despite the companies recombining business that had been subject to a prior forced divestiture.

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