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John has practiced in the regulatory, commercial litigation and antitrust fields locally and across the African region for over 20 years. He has been recognized as a leader in his field for many of these. Recently, John represented Business at the OECD as the first  regional representative. John has acted in many of the leading antitrust, commercial litigation and regulatory matters in South Africa and the region. He has been a partner in a major South African firm, co-founder of a South African practice and the founder of a Pan-African legal group

Significant Matters

  • Successfully advised Monsanto & Company in relation to the USD 66 billion acquisition by Bayer ATKG before the South African agencies
  • Represented Allergan Plc in the much-publicised proposed acquisition of Allergan by Pfizer Incorporated.
  • Advised Comcast in relation to regional antitrust issues during its bid for 20th Century Fox
  • Successfully advised both Samsung Electronics Company Limited and Harman International Industries Incorporated in obtaining unconditional clearance of the large merger before the South African competition authorities
  • Successfully advised Merck & Co. and Sanofi-Aventis SA in relation to their much publicised animal health joint venture
  • Advised Verizon Business in relation to the disposal of its South African business to MTN Limited
  • Advised Anglo American in relation to the sale of Anglo’s zinc assets to Vedanta Plc
  • Successfully represented Eli Lily Animal Health Elanco in relation to the acquisition of Novartis Animal Health before the South African competition authorities

Commercial Litigation

  • Advising parties before the current Judicial Commission of Inquiry headed by Judge Raymond Zondo into allegations of State Capture
  • Advising a Consortium of Banks in relation to the recovery of proceeds following the Steinhoff fraud in what is among the largest civil claim in South Africa’s history.
  • Advised Monsanto Inc in relation to its litigation against Bowman Gilfillan in relation to conflict of interest allegations before the Gauteng High Court and Supreme Court of Appeal
  • Advising Premier Foods in the precedent setting fist ever class action damages litigation for cartel conduct before the Supreme Court of Appeal, the Constitutional Court, the North Gauteng High Court and the Western Cape High Court, following Premier Foods Limited obtaining the first ever final immunity from prosecution in the much publicised bread cartel (thus avoiding any antitrust administrative penalty) and the ongoing civil damages litigation
  • Successfully advised Nu Metro Filmed Entertainment (Pty) Ltd, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Disney Enterprises, Inc., Warner Bros Entertainment Inc. Videovision Entertainment (Pty) Ltd and Universal Studios before the Cape High Court and Supreme Court of Appeal in relation to infringement of licensing rights.

Investigation

  • Acting in complex competition litigation before the competition authorities in relation to the LPG matters.
  • Advised in numerous of the market inquiries brought by the South African authorities, including advising clients in relation to the South African competition authorities’ investigation into the Auto parts sector; the LPG sector, grovery retail sector; automotive aftermarkets sector.
  • Successfully advised Google Inc in relation to an abuse of dominance complaint before the SA competition authorities

HISTORIC

Competition

  • Advising on the Competition Commission investigation into the milling industry; bran and offal sector; the oil & gas sector; motion picture sector; air cargo sector and the construction sector ad in relation to ongoing antitrust litigation in the agricultural sector
  • Advised Samsung Electronics Company Ltd in the disposal of its printer business to Hewlett-Packard (HP) Inc
  • Currently advising a major international airline on its regulatory and competition affairs across Africa
  • Currently advising clients in relation to the South African competition authorities’ investigation into the Auto parts sector
  • Advising clients in relation to the Competition Commission investigation into the LPG sector
  • Advised the Internet Solutions Providers Association of South Africa (ISPA) in successfully opposing the much publicised and aborted merger between Telkom and Business Connection (BCX), South Africa’s largest IT company
  • Advising Pick n Pay Limited in relation to the Competition Commission’s high profile investigation into the retail grocery sector
  • Advised in relation to the abuse of dominance complaint against the incumbent telecommunications provider, Telkom
  • Successfully advised Google Inc in relation to an abuse of dominance complaint before the SA competition authorities
  • Advised a petroleum client in relation to the investigation and referral by the Commission of the Bitumen cartel
  • Advised in relation to the Commission’s investigation of alleged abuse of dominance in the beer sector
  • Advised an air cargo client in relation to price fixing on fuel surcharges and cargo rates
  • Advised in relation to the investigation and referral of international freight forwarders
  • Advised Premier Foods and Brait Limited in relation to the acquisition of Brait of a controlling interest in Premier Foods
  • Acting on behalf of both parties in the acquisition by Premier Bakeries (Pty) Ltd of the Wheat and Maize Milling Division of Ngwane Mills (Pty) Ltd
  • Representing Eli Lily Animal Health Elanco in relation to the acquisition of Novartis Animal Health before the South African competition authorities in relation to the long-steel sector regarding price fixing allegations
  • Advised Robert Bosch GMBH in relation to the acquisition of 50% of Hytec Holdings (Pty) Ltd before the South African, Namibian and COMESA authorities
  • Advised Premier Foods in relation to the successful acquisitions of the Star Bakeries (Pty) Ltd in the Eastern Cape and Lil-Lets
  • Advised Mahle Gmbh and Behr Gmbh in relation to the acquisition of control by Mahle in Behr
  • Advised in relation to the acquisition by Robert Bosch Gmbh of 50% of the Shares in BSH Bosch Und Siemens Haisgerate Hmbh (“BSH”) and 100% of the Shares in Siemens-Electrogerate before the South African authorities
  • Acting for Premier Group in the acquisition of biscuits and sugar confectionary business of Kraft Foods South Africa
  • Advised Dis-Chem in relation to the successful acquisition of the CJ Williams Pharmaceutical Wholesale Business
  • Advised the Saltzman Trust in respect of the acquisition of Capensis Investments 193 (Pty) Ltd, Billingsleg Properties (Pty) Ltd and Ossington Properties (Pty) Ltd
  • Advised H&R in relation to allegations of an abuse of dominance in the petroleum jelly sector
  • Advised Cargolux in relation to the SA Commission’s air cargo investigation
  • Currently advising in relation to ongoing investigation into the bran and offal sectors;
  • Advising in relation to distribution and manufacturing arrangements in the FMCG sector
  • Currently providing ongoing antitrust advise in relation to clients in the automotive and automotive component parts sector
  • Currently providing ongoing antitrust advice in relation to clients in the pharmaceutical sector
  • Currently advising in relation to ongoing antitrust litigation in the agricultural sector