Image of Neil Hoolihan

Neil Hoolihan

Competition Managing Associate, Brussels

“I advise on all aspects of EU and international competition law, with particular expertise in international merger control. I provide clients with pragmatic solutions to navigate merger control issues and ensure a smooth process even in the most complex cases.”


Professional experience

Education and qualifications


Qualified in New Zealand, Neil is a managing associate in our global competition practice, based in Brussels.

Neil advises on the full range of competition matters with an emphasis on global merger control, antitrust compliance and co-operative arrangements. Neil is frequently asked to advise clients on a variety of aspects regarding potential mergers/acquisitions and joint venture arrangements and has particular expertise in the healthcare, industrials, private equity and manufacturing sectors.

Neil has assisted clients with merger control filings across numerous European and international jurisdictions, with particular experience involving filings before the European Commission and the UK’s Competition & Markets Authority.

Other antitrust experience includes advising clients involved in European Commission dawn raids and leniency procedures as well as assisting clients in undertaking internal investigations into behaviour potentially subject to Articles 101 and 102.

Between 2015 and 2016 Neil spent time in the firm’s London office.

Work highlights

Neil has been a key adviser in a number of significant merger control and antitrust matters. These include advising:

  • Alent plc on the announced offer by Platform Specialty Products
  • Celesio AG on its acquisitions of Bupa Home Healthcare and the MASTA/Sangers businesses of UDG Healthcare
  • Dixons Retail on its merger with Carphone Warehouse
  • ENI on global merger control issues resulting from the US$2.8bn sale of a 25% stake in its Mozambique liquefied natural gas project
  • Novartis on its transformational restructuring involving three strategic deals with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). This complex deal was cleared around the world and by the European Commission in Phase I following the acceptance of innovative remedies involving the ongoing clinical development of two products
  • TDR Capital LLP on, among others, its investments in LeasePlan and EuroGarages
  • United Technologies Corporation on its acquisition of Riello Group
  • VTech on the CMA’s Phase II investigation into its completed acquisition of LeapFrog Enterprises
  • an automotive parts supplier before the EC, concerning what has been cited as the “largest cartel investigation in history”


Professional experience

Neil regularly publishes updates on recent competition law developments, particularly in the field of merger control.

Education and qualifications

Neil studied law and economics at the University of Otago, New Zealand.  He also holds a Postgraduate Diploma in EU Competition Law from King’s College London.

He speaks English.