I work as a strategic communications consultant and head up competition/antitrust within the Legal Services team at FTI Consulting in Brussels.
I am a lawyer by training and spent over 25 years practising competition/antitrust, trade and regulatory law in the Brussels and Washington D.C. offices of various international law firms before joining FTI Consulting in 2019.
In the latter part of my legal career my focus was on helping get global transactions done for multinational clients, by obtaining antitrust approvals from the EC’s DG COMP and other competition authorities around the world. I’ve acted for merging companies and interested third parties in some forty EU Merger Regulation cases across a broad range of industries.
My career has also included two stints as a specialist competition journalist: in 2007/08 when I set up and led the merger reporting team at MLex in Brussels, and again in 2018, when I left private practice to establish and lead the Brussels Bureau of the D.C.-based specialist investigative antitrust news service The Capitol Forum.
Memorable professional moments since arriving in Brussels in 1993:
- Acted for Monsanto in a legal/public affairs role while in legal practice, liaising with media and other stakeholders during the European Commission’s merger control review of its acquisition by Bayer
- Assisted the Mexican government in negotiating its first free trade agreement with the EU
- Lobbied the Australian government to bring about significant changes to Australian citizenship and electoral law for the benefit of the million-plus Australian diaspora
- Overturned EU anti-dumping duties on canned mandarins in the EU General Court in Luxembourg on behalf a Chinese producer
- Drafted new South African pet food regulations to dovetail with EU legislation and help streamline trade under the South Africa/EU free trade agreement
- Worked with CEEC accession countries prior to 2004 to bring their feeding stuffs and food laws into line with EU legislation
My Proudest Achievements
Convincing Icelandic authorities to allow the sale in Iceland of M&Ms produced in the EU. At the time, Icelandic national food law only allowed US food colourings, and not European food colourings, in food sold in Iceland. Iceland had to be reminded in the nicest possible way that it was obliged to apply the EU free movement of goods principle by virtue of its membership of the European Economic Area!
- Australian National University, Canberra
B.A. (History & German) / LL.B. (Hons.)
- Universität Hamburg
LL.M. (EU Trade and Competition Law)
My Interests outside work
- Renovating and furnishing houses and apartments.
- Quentin Tarantino films, especially those featuring Brad Pitt
- Listening to the Dutch version of Nostalgie radio station
My Favourite Brussels anecdote
Years ago I went into a Belgian post office on Avenue Louise during my lunchbreak and stood in line for 20 minutes. When I finally got up to the counter, the clerk told me he had no stamps! I came to a deep realisation at that moment that I had taken up residence in the land of surrealism.