Murat specialises in competition law. He focuses on mergers and acquisitions, intercompany agreements, abuse of dominance and abuse of significant market power. He is mainly involved in merger notifications at regulators such as the Dutch competition authority ACM, the Dutch Healthcare Authority NZa and the European Commission, as well as investigations by these bodies into violations of laws and regulations such as the cartel prohibition. Murat has considerable experience in healthcare and the application of competition law in this sector. He regularly advises on strategic partnerships between healthcare providers, and assists such parties with informal proceedings before the regulators.
Before joining Houthoff, Murat worked for the Dutch Healthcare Authority as a competition law lawyer and senior counsel.
QUALIFICATIONS & EXPERIENCE
- LL.M. EU Law (cum laude) (University of Groningen)
- LL.B. International and EU Law (cum laude) (University of Groningen)
- Postgraduate Diploma in EU Competition Law (King's College London)
Houthoff represented Sligro before the Rotterdam District Court in a procedure in which Sligro's competitors (through Maxxam) challenged the ACM's clearance of the acquisition by Sligro of a part of Heineken's wholesale activities. This matter concerns a rare appeal of a merger clearance decision, in which Maxxam challenged the methodology applied by the ACM. The District Court sided with the ACM and Sligro and held that the ACM had analysed the consequences of the acquisition in sufficient detail, including the impact on the wholesale market of a related distribution agreement between Sligro and Heineken. Notably, the District Court confirmed the relevance of the economic model developed by Sligro.
Houthoff represented Sligro Food Group in the strategic, long-term partnership with Heineken Netherlands for beer and cider logistics in the Netherlands, and the sale of other parts of the Heineken beverages wholesaler to Sligro Food Group. The partnership makes Heineken Sligro’s number one partner for beer and cider.