The automotive sector is undergoing major shifts. Today’s fast-changing world means that dealer and repair networks are being restructured, leading to the gradual disappearance of traditional distribution methods and the constant amendment of EU regulations. The increasing demand for electric cars and car sharing as well as the development of an online services market in and around vehicles has led to an increase in new suppliers and new revenue streams. Thanks to specific sector knowledge, Houthoff’s experienced Automotive Team understands this new playing field.

  • Recognised Practitioner
    Chambers Global and Europe, Intellectual Property: Patent (2020 Edition)
  • Recognised Practitioner
    Chambers Global and Europe, Intellectual Property: General - Mostly Trade Mark/Copyright (2020 Edition)
  • Recognised Practitioner
    Chambers Global and Europe, Intellectual Property: General - Mostly Trade Mark/Copyright (2019 Edition)
  • “The practice at Houthoff is recognised for its ‘very strong Supreme Court practice.’”
    Legal 500, Intellectual Property: trade marks, copyrights and design rights (2019 Edition)
  • Advised Lumileds, a global leader in innovative lighting solutions, in its comprehensive financial restructuring. Lumileds emerged from a Chapter 11, resulting in a leadership transition and a funded debt reduction of approximately USD 1.4 billion.
  • Advised Kensington Capital Acquisition Corp. II, a NYSE-listed special purpose acquisition company, on the merger agreement with Wallbox and Wallbox's listing as a Dutch N.V. on NYSE through the merger.
  • Advised OLA Electric on the acquisition of electric scooter company Etergo B.V.
  • Houthoff represented IQ V-Tech B.V., a Quadrum Capital portfolio company, in entering into a strategic partnership with Alois Kober GmbH and mother company Dexcko Global through the sale of a 37.5% indirect interest in the VB-Airsuspension and its group companies.
  • Early 2017, Profile launced a campaign in which it alleged that 'Profile Brand Service' (Profile Merkonderhoud) was much cheaper (up to 28%) than the service of the authorised repairers. It did not use and trademark rights of car manufacturers.

    Again, Houthoff acted on behalf of 18 car manufacturers and made an end to the Profile campaign, as Profile was unable to demonstrate that it was always much cheaper than the authorised repairers.

  • Car importers usually appoint two types of repairers: those that also sell new vehicles on the basis of a dealer agreement and stand-alone repairers, that only repair vehicles. Obviously, the temptation for the latter to also sell new vehicles is big. In a recent case, where a Hyundai repairer sold new vehicles without a dealer agreement, the importer terminated the repairer agreement for cause. The repairer subsequently challenged the validity of the termination, arguing that he acted as an intermediary. Houthoff successfully defended the position of the Hyundai importer; the termination was upheld.


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