Leading Antitrust lawyer Karel Bourgeois joins Crowell & Moring in Brussels

Karel Bourgeois, a leading antitrust lawyer, is joining Crowell & Moring’s Brussels office, expanding the firm’s capability to counsel clients on their most complex Belgian and European competition and state aid matters.

Bourgeois joins the firm from Allen & Overy, where he served as chair of the Belgian Legal Technology Team. He brings over 15 years of experience representing a wide range of clients in merger control, abuse of dominance, and cartel cases before the European Commission and the Belgian Competition Authority.

Bourgeois has significant experience working with clients in a broad range of industries, including technology, media and telecommunications, infrastructure, energy, financial services, and consumer goods. Bourgeois also has significant experience counseling clients on a wide range of antitrust compliance matters and developing effective compliance programs.

Crowell & Moring has built a stellar reputation and thriving practice for EU and Belgian competition law work,” Karel Bourgeois said. “I look forward to assisting clients with their most pressing antitrust issues and state aid matters.

Bourgeois’ arrival comes on the heels of Vassilis Akritidis, a leading international trade lawyer who joined the Crowell & Moring’s Brussels office in September.

Growing need for state aid support

Bourgeois’ practice also involves representing clients in strategic state aid cases. He assists private companies and authorities in high-profile state aid procedures before the European Commission, including in-depth investigations. Bourgeois has been involved in state aid cases related to some of the highest profile renewable energy projects in Belgium and other EU Member States, and has experience assisting clients on the application of the European Commission’s new COVID-19 state aid framework.

Given the major impact of COVID-19 on the economy, the need for state aid support is rapidly growing. In addition, state aid will continue to be a big focus in the coming years due to the EU’s digital and green transition, which will involve state support to many industries and companies,” said Thomas De Meese, co- managing partner of the Brussels office. “Karel’s experience will be of great benefit as we work to guide clients through these new regulatory initiatives.”

Compliance continues to be very high on the agenda of international and national companies,” said Philip T. Inglima, chair of Crowell & Moring. “Karel’s extensive experience building competition compliance programs and conducting antitrust health audits will greatly benefit our clients. In addition, as a well- recognized state aid expert in the Brussels bar, Karel will expand the firm’s capability to represent clients in strategic state aid cases.”

Bourgeois received his LLM from the University of Chicago School of Law and his master of laws degree, magna cum laude, from the Catholic University of Leuven.

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