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CMA Senior Director of Mergers to join Freshfields’ global antitrust practice as a partner in London

Global law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (‘Freshfields’) has today announced that Colin Raftery, a leading competition specialist, will join the firm’s antitrust practice as a partner in London.

Raftery will join Freshfields from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), where he has most recently been senior director of mergers for five years. He commenced his career more than two decades ago, having previously worked in private practice and for the Scottish Government. Prior to joining the CMA in 2016, Raftery was a senior associate in the antitrust team at Freshfields.

Raftery’s extensive experience extends to all aspects of U.K. and EU competition law, with unique insight gained from his most recent role leading the CMA’s merger control function, including engaging with senior officials at the European Commission, U.S. antitrust agencies and other national competition authorities on high profile global merger control issues. At a time when the CMA has become an ever more prominent agency in the context of global M&A, his unrivalled experience will strengthen the firm’s market-leading antitrust offering and support its growth strategy on both sides of the Atlantic.

Freshfields is the global market leader in all aspects of competition law, including mergers, cartel investigations and stand-alone antitrust litigation. For more than ten consecutive years, the firm is ranked first in Global Competition Review’s Global Elite rankings. The addition of Raftery will further complement the impressive list of former senior officials from multiple government agencies within the team. 

Freshfields Global Head of Antitrust Thomas Janssens said: “Colin is an impressive lawyer and a leading figure in international antitrust circles. Bringing him into the team as a partner will make our unique proposition in relation to global M&A transactions even more compelling and further cement our position as the leading antitrust practice worldwide.”

Freshfields London Antitrust partner James Aitken said: “We’re delighted to have Colin join our practice. At a time of fast-moving developments in CMA merger policy, and in the context of significant proposed reforms in the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill, his unique strengths will play an important role in enhancing our ability to serve our clients’ needs on their most challenging matters.” 

The appointment of Raftery in London follows that of antitrust litigation partners Heather Lamberg and Justina Sessions in Washington DC and Silicon Valley respectively, and Rikki Haria and Jenny Leahy in London, who joined the partnership following the firm’s recent round of promotions.