Lefkothea has deep experience of competition law, both in Greece and across the EU. She served for 15 years with the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) and spent five years on its Board. Lefkothea was a member of the EU Council’s negotiation team for the adoption of the Directive on antitrust damages actions and of the legislative committee for the transposition of the Directive on antitrust damages actions in Greece. She was also a member of the legislative committee for the transposition in the Greek legal order of the Directive on the effective enforcement of competition rules by national Competition Authorities (ECN +), and a regular delegate-representative at the OECD and the European Competition Network.
Since leaving the HCC she has worked in private practice, focusing on EU and competition law across a range of sectors. Her practice focuses on supporting clients – both domestic and international – in identifying and addressing issues with Greek and EU competition law, regulatory compliance and structuring transactions and commercial agreements to satisfy antitrust and competition laws.
Lefkothea advises clients across a wide range of deals and commercial matters including privatisations, cross-border and domestic M&A and joint ventures, cartels and abuse of dominance, distribution networks, vertical agreements and restrictive practices, investigations and compliance, state aid, procedures before administrative authorities and litigation before courts.
She works closely with practice area and sector teams across the firm, particularly Banking & Finance, Capital Markets, Corporate, M&A, Energy, Utilities, TMT & Intellectual Property and Litigation. Lefkothea has advised on matters across a wide range of sectors including energy, construction, banking, commodities, oil & gas, consumer and retail, motor vehicles, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, ports and infrastructure, TMT, and gaming.
During her long career in competition law, Lefkothea has advised on numerous high-profile cases including:
- Bid-rigging: HCC issued record fines of €80m to a construction cartel comprising 15 companies using its leniency programme and the recently introduced settlement procedure for the first time.
- Abuse of dominance: A pharmaceutical company was fined over €4 million for restricting supply of two drugs to Greek wholesalers.
- Commitments: Far-reaching commitments by the Greek incumbent gas supplier to increase and support competition, including an auction system for gas and access to infrastructure obligations.
- Phase 2 merger: HCC cleared with commitments a merger in the shipping sector.
In addition to consulting on regulatory issues Greek business and industry associations, Lefkothea also serves as a senior international expert on competition law in competition capacity-building programmes, including the EU-funded project Training of National Judges on Competition Law, under the framework of the OECD-GVH Regional Centre for Competition.
Notable Antitrust & Competition cases
- Advised a Greek subsidiary of a multinational group active in the agrochemicals sector, in the ex-officio investigation initiated by the HCC regarding alleged infringements related to abuse of dominance and/or restrictive vertical agreements.
- Advised an oil products company in the ex-officio investigation initiated by the HCC regarding alleged infringements related to abuse of dominance and/or restrictive horizontal and vertical agreements.
- Advised a Greek subsidiary of a multinational group active in home appliances, in the ex-officio investigation initiated by the HCC regarding alleged infringements related to restrictive vertical agreements.
- Advised a Chinese company, the parent company of a multinational group active in the sector of wholesale and retail markets of telecommunications and teleconferencing equipment, spare parts and software, in the ex-officio investigation initiated by the HCC regarding alleged infringements related to restrictive vertical agreements.
- Advised a POS network provider in the investigation initiated by the HCC in the banking sector regarding alleged infringements related to restrictive agreements between competitors and/ or abuse of dominance.
- Advised Greek construction companies, in the ex-officio investigation initiated by the HCC regarding bid-rigging practices in public works.
- Advised one of the leading television and media companies in Greece, on a commercial dispute involving allegation of breaches of competition law provisions.
- Advised an electricity and gas supplier on an ex-officio investigation launched by the HCC in the market for the retail supply of electricity to small consumers (low voltage) involving 18 companies operating in the market.
- Advised an electricity and gas supplier on an ex-officio investigation launched by the HCC in the market for the wholesale supply of electricity.
- Advised two industrial investment portfolio companies on the acquisition of joint control over a leading Italian glass producer.
- Advised SwitzGroup, a multinational group active in the bakery value chain, on a merger notification for the acquisition of IONIKI Sfoliata.
- Advised PPC (Public Power Corporation), the public electricity producer, on the acquisition of 51% of the share capital of a company active in the production of electricity.
- Advised a leading group in electricity generation, building storage systems and energy trading in aid received through the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) for the development of renewable sources of energy.
- Advised the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) on a number of projects.
- Advised a leading global financial services group in a number of transactions both in the primary and secondary markets of securities.
- Advised Miele on the design of an antitrust compliance program.
- Advised Cardlink S.A., a leading POS network provider in Greece, in the design of commercial products.
- Advised Athenian Brewery, a subsidiary of Heineken International, in the design of its commercial policy in different segments of trade.
- Advised Goodyear on commercial contracts from a competition law perspective and trained personnel on inspection of business premises by a competition authority.
- Advised LINDE S.A. on commercial practices and compliance with new provision in Competition Act.