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Contact details

Allen & Overy LLP
One Bishops Square
E1 6AD
United Kingdom

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  Mark Friend



Mark is head of the London Antitrust group. He has some 30 years’ experience of counselling and representing clients on complex mergers and strategic alliances, cartel, dominance and market investigations, both at EU and national level. His practice also encompasses state aid, economic regulation and antitrust litigation and he has particular expertise in advising on regulatory and competition issues in regulated sectors including energy, water, air traffic control, postal services and rail.

He has acted on several of the ground-breaking and notably complex cases in the UK merger regime, including the landmark Lloyds/HBOS, Co-op/Somerfield and Boots/Alliance UniChem cases. He also has high profile experience in European merger control advising Sun Microsystems on its merger with Oracle, and Thomson on its acquisition of Reuters (and the subsequent appeal before the European Court).

Market investigation work includes acting for one of the Big Six energy firms in the CMA Energy market investigation, and acting for a leading insurer in the CMA investigation into Private Motor Insurance. 

“Mark Friend is a highly regarded practitioner who receives strong praise from clients and peers. One source commented: He is ferociously clever and has an ability to get to the heart of something in addition to excellent sector knowledge.’” Chambers UK 2016 (Competition)

He is described as ‘incredibly astute and insightful’ by Legal 500 2015 (Competition)

Professional qualifications

Admitted as solicitor, England and Wales, 1982

Academic qualifications

Licence, European Law, L'Université Libre de Bruxelles, 1983

BA, Law, University of Cambridge, 1979

Published work

 Friend. M, 2012, “EU State Aids”, Chapter on state guarantees, Sweet & Maxwell

 Friend. M, 2003, “Takeover Frenzy in UK Electricity- How The Map Was Re-drawn”, examining the impact of M&A activity on the development of merger policy in the UK electricity sector, Allen & Overy

 Friend. M, 2003, “The Law of State Aid in the European Union”, Chapter on state guarantees, OUP

 Numerous articles on competition law and economic regulation in leading academic journals

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