Image of Neil Hoolihan

Neil Hoolihan

Antitrust & Foreign Investment Counsel, 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


Neil is a counsel 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, infrastructure, 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 involved in 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
  • Linde AG in relation to its merger with Praxair Inc
  • Novartis on its transformational restructuring involving three strategic deals with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)
  • TDR Capital LLP on, among others, its investments in BCA Marketplace plc, LeasePlan and EuroGarages
  • Vodafone on its network sharing agreements with Telecom Italia in Italy, including the combination of their respective tower infrastructure assets
  • 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.

Neil was ranked by Who’s Who Legal in the “Competition: Future Leaders” 2017, 2018 and 2019 guides.

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.