Introduction of Speakers
Petr Mlsna has been the Chairman of the Office for the Protection of Competition since 2 December 2020. During his professional career he has held a number of positions at the Government of the Czech Republic and the Government Legislative Council. At the turn of the years 2012 and 2013, he was Minister without Portfolio and Chairman of the Government Legislative Council. Subsequently, he served as Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports. From 2015 until his appointment as the Chairman of the Office for the Protection of Competition, he was Deputy Minister at the Ministry of the Interior in charge of the Legislation, Public Administration and Local and Regional Authorities Section.
Petr Mlsna graduated from the Faculty of Law of Charles University, where he specialised mainly in constitutional law, in which he also holds JUDr. and Ph.D. degrees. In 2021, he defended his associate professorship in constitutional law and state science. He also graduated from the Faculty of Social Sciences of Charles University, where he majored in modern history within German-Austrian Studies.
Margrethe Vestager is the Executive Vice President of the European Commission for a Europe fit for the Digital Age and Commissioner for Competition. She previously served as Minister for Economic Affairs and the Interior (2011-14) and Minister for Education (1998-2001) of Denmark, and as President of the ECOFIN Council (2012). She was Political leader of the Danish Social Liberal Party (2007-14), and has worked for the Danish Ministry of Finance (1993-95). Ms. Vestager holds an MSc in Economics (University of Copenhagen).
Pavel Blažek was born in Brno where he graduated at the Faculty of Law of Masaryk University. During 1992–2002, he worked as an internal lecturer at the Faculty of Law at Masaryk University in the field of administrative law and science. He has been an attorney since 1996, although his practice has been suspended at his own request since 2012.
He entered into politics in 1998 and became the Minister of Justice in 2012. He has been a Member of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic since 26 October 2013. In the last parliamentary elections in 2021, he defended his parliamentary seat in the South Moravian Region and later became the Minister of Justice in the current Government of the Czech Republic.
Kamil Nejezchleb graduated from the Faculty of Law of the Masaryk University in Brno and the Faculty of Business and Management of the Brno University of Technology. He completed the doctoral program at the Faculty of Law of the Masaryk University. His dissertation focused on the modernization of legal instruments for detection of cartel agreements. In November 2008, he joined the Office and since then has served in several positions. For five years, he worked as the Head of the Cartels Unit and the Deputy Director of the Cartels Department. Since 2021, he is appointed as Vice-Chair responsible for the Competition Division of the Office. He is engaged in long-term cooperation with the Faculty of Law and the Faculty of Economics and Administration of Masaryk University and is active within the European Competition Network and International Competition Network.
Olivier Guersentgraduated with distinction from the “Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Bordeaux” in 1983. He joined the French Ministry of Economy and Finance in 1984, where he carried out many investigations for the French Competition Authority.
He joined the European Commission in 1992, initially with the "Merger Task Force" in the Directorate-General for Competition. Since then, he has alternated between the private offices of a number of European Commissioners (Karel Van Miert, Michel Barnier and Neelie Kroes) and DG Competition (successively Deputy Head of Unit in charge of cartels, Head of Unit in charge of policy and coordination of cases, Head of Unit in charge of merger control, Acting Director “Transport, postal and other services" and, from 2009, Director responsible for the fight against cartels. From 2010 to 2014 he was the head of the private office of Michel Barnier, Commissioner for Internal Market and Services. Having held the position of Deputy Director-General since July 2014, Olivier Guersent has been Director-General of the Directorate-General for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union from 1 September 2015 to 31 December 2019. As of 1st January 2020, he is the Director General of the Directorate General for Competition.
Married and a father of three children, Olivier Guersent is a member of the board of the non-profit organisation Aremis which provides medical care in the home, primarily to cancer patients in the Brussels area. He is a regular lecturer to postgraduate university students.
Frédéric Jenny is professor of Economics at ESSEC Business School in Paris. He is Chairman of the OECD Competition Committee (since 1994), and Co-Director of the European Center for Law and Economics of ESSEC (since 2008). He was previously Non-Executive Director of the Office of Fair Trading in the United Kingdom (2007-2014), Judge on the French Supreme Court (Cour de cassation, Economic Commercial and Financial Chamber) from 2004 to August 2012, Vice Chair of the French Competition Authority (1993-2004) and President of the WTO Working Group on Trade and Competition (1997-2004). He was Global Professor of Antitrust in the New York University School of Law’s Hauser Global Law School (2017 and 2014), visiting professor at University College London Law School (2005-2012), Haifa University School of Law in Israel (2012), University of Capetown Business School in South Africa (1991), Keio University Department of economics in Japan (1984), North-western University Department of Economics in the United States (1978).
Professor Jenny holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University (1975), a Doctorate in Economics from the University of Paris (1977) and an MBA degree from ESSEC Business School (1966).
Margarida Matos Rosa
Margarida Matos Rosa is President of the Portuguese Competition Authority, Portugal’s antitrust agency, and Vice-Chair of the ICN, the international antitrust agencies’ network. She previously worked for the Portuguese Securities Markets Commission (CMVM), heading the investment management supervision department. Prior to this, she worked for the financial private sector at BNP Paribas, Santander Investment and UBS Bank, in the areas of economic research, investment banking and investment management. Margarida Matos Rosa holds an M.P.A. from Princeton University and an undergraduate degree in Economics from UC Louvain (Belgium).
Dr. Thibault Schrepel, LL.M., is an Associate Professor of Law at VU Amsterdam University where he co-directs the Amsterdam Law & Technology Institute, and a Faculty Affiliate at Stanford University CodeX Center where he has created the “Computational Antitrust” project which brings together over 60 antitrust agencies. Thibault also holds research and teaching positions at the University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and Sciences Po Paris. He is a Harvard University Berkman Center alumnus, a member of the French Superior Audiovisual Council’s scientific board, also, a blockchain expert appointed to the World Economic Forum and the World Bank. Thibault is the Network Law Review’s creator.
In 2018, Thibault was granted the “Academic Excellence” Global Competition Review Award, which recognizes “an academic competition specialist who has made an outstanding contribution to competition policy.” He has published a first manuscript (Bruylant ed.) on the subject of “predatory innovation in antitrust law” and articles at Harvard University, Stanford, MIT, Oxford, NYU, Berkeley, and Georgetown, among others.
These last couple of years, Thibault has been focusing most of his research on blockchain antitrust and computational antitrust. He has written the world’s most downloaded antitrust articles of 2018 (“The Blockchain Antitrust Paradox”), 2019 (“Collusion by Blockchain and Smart Contracts”), 2020 (“Blockchain Code as Antitrust”), and 2021 (“Computational Antitrust: An Introduction and Research Agenda”). His latest book, “Blockchain + Antitrust”, was published in September 2021.
Michal Petr is currently the Head of the Department of International and European Law at the Faculty of Law of the Palacky University in Olomouc, Czech Republic. He works there as a senior researcher focusing on economic aspects of the EU integration, in particular competition law, State aid, public procurement and regulation of network industries. He gained his experience while working for the OECD in 2011 and 2012, and, especially, at the Czech Competition Authority, where he worked since 2003, in 2010 – 2015 as its Vice-Chair responsible for completion law and policy.
Michal authored numerous publications concerning EU law, regulation of network industries and due process. He is a member of the advisory appellate committee of the Czech Competition Authority and the Czech National Bank.
Michal Bobek holds a master's degree in law and master's degree in international relations (Charles University in Prague) as well as diploma in English law and the law of the European Union (University of Cambridge) and Magister Juris (University of Oxford, St. Edmund Hall).
Other long-term study stays include the Université libre de Bruxelles (Belgium) and the University of Queensland (Australia). He received his doctorate in law from the European University Institute in Florence. From 2005 to 2009, he worked as Assistant to the President of the Supreme Administrative Court, and between 2008 and 2009 he was also Head of the Documentation and Analytics Department. Between 2011 and 2015, he researched and taught at the Institute of European and Comparative Law at the University of Oxford Law School. From 2013 to 2015, he was Professor at the College of Europe in Bruges, Belgium, and from 2015 to 2021, he held the position of the Advocate General at the Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg. Unfortunately, his publications have left a significant carbon footprint, especially in European Union law, human rights, comparative law and legal theory. He has taught continuously in a number of other interesting places in Europe and overseas. He is currently a visiting professor at the Institute of European, International and Comparative Law at the University of Vienna.
Renato Nazzini is Professor of Law at King’s College London and a partner of LMS Legal LLP, London. He is the Director of the Competition Law LLM at King’s. He published widely on substantive and procedural competition law and policy, including, in particular, three fully authored books: Competition Enforcement and Procedure (Oxford, OUP 2016), The Foundations of European Union Competition Law: The Objective and Principles of Article 102 (Oxford, OUP 2011) and Concurrent Proceedings in Competition Law: Procedure, Evidence and Remedies (Oxford, OUP 2004). Prior to moving to academia and private practice, Renato was Deputy Director of Legal and Policy at the UK Competition Authority (currently the Competition and Markets Authority, but at the time known as the Office of Fair Trading) where he led on major areas of enforcement and policy, including financial services, damages actions in competition law, and the review of the policy on abuse of dominance under Article 102 TFEU, as well as advising across the whole range of antitrust and merger enforcement. Renato holds doctorates from the Universities of London and Milan. Among other academic appointments, he has been Visiting Professor at the University of Turin, the University of Zurich, and the FGV School of Law of San Paulo, Brazil, a Senior Research Fellow at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law, and Professor of Competition Law and Arbitration at the University of Southampton. As a dually qualified practitioner in England and Wales and in Italy, Renato focuses on cartels, abuses of a dominant position, vertical agreements, mergers, litigation, arbitration and ADR in the EU, Italy, the UK and globally. For many years, Renato has been a non-governmental adviser (NGA) to the International Competition Network (ICN). Renato also has a busy practice as arbitrator and is a member of the ICC Arbitration Commission (Italy).
Csaba Balázs Rigó
Csaba Balázs Rigó graduated from Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) as a software engineering mathematician. He obtained his second degree in economics at the College of Finance and Accountancy, qualified as a public procurement manager at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics, then graduated as an economist with an English MBA at Corvinus University of Budapest. He started his career in the oil industry and later worked as a software developer. From 2002 to 2010, he was a municipal councillor in Zalaegerszeg, where he chaired the city's Economic Committee and Public Procurement Board. From 2010, he was a member of the Public Procurement Authority and from 2012 he became its vice-president. In 2011, he became head government official at the Zala County Government Office and between 2015-2020 he was named president of the Public Procurement Authority. On 15 April 2020, he was appointed as president of the Hungarian Competition Authority. Since 18 November 2021 he serves as vice-president of the Concessions Board of the Supervisory Authority for Regulated Services. He taught economic policy at the University of Pannonia and public procurement as part of the postgraduate legal studies programme at ELTE. He is currently a guest speaker at Corvinus University of Budapest.
Petr Solský graduated from the Faculty of Law of the Masaryk University in Brno in 1998. He worked in public administration on a number of managing positions, for example at the Ministry of the Interior or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. From 2003 to 2010 he gained extensive experience at the Permanent Representation of the Czech Republic to the EU in Brussels where he was responsible for management of the division of justice and interior including the coordination of preparations of the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU. Back in the Czech Republic, he worked in the private sector in a law firm. Consequently, he focused in particular on the area of information and communication technology, among others as a Deputy Minister of the Interior for this area in the years 2013 and 2014. Petr Solský has been focusing on a number of issues of criminal and administrative law including the regulatory framework for public procurement and prohibited State aid. He is a long-term member of the Regulatory Impact Assessment Commission of the Government Legislative Council (RIA Commission).
On 5 April 2016, Petr Solský was appointed to the position of the Vice-chair of the Office for the Protection of Competition and entrusted with the management of the Legislative and Public Regulation Division.
Caroline Buts is professor of competition policy and European economic integration at the faculty of Social Sciences and Solvay Business School and the Brussels School of Governance at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Within the Department of Applied Economics, she works on different aspects of competition policy with a focus on government support policies. She is managing editor of the ‘European State Aid Law Quarterly’ and editorial board member of the ‘European Competition and Regulatory Law Review’. In addition, she is advisor in Belgian’s Price Observatory and frequently advises public and private partners on competition matters. Caroline is a founding member of the Brussels Center for Competition Policy and supervises multiple PhD students and projects, in both fundamental and applied research.
Preben Sandberg Pettersson
Preben Pettersson is the head of State aid division at the Danish Ministry of Business, industry and Financial affairs. Since 2020 he has been responsible for coordination of the Danish State aid cases and negotiations during the COVID-19 lockdown and EU approval of + 80 notifications of Danish COVID-19 compensation cases, the Danish Mink compensation schemes and public financing of Danish COVID vaccine. Prior to his position at the ministry, he was the head of State aid division at the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority and before that he worked at the Danish Permanent Representation to the EU and other Danish public authorities.
He holds a Master of Arts degree from the University of Copenhagen, a Bachelor of Administrational science degree from the Roskilde University Center and a Master of Business Administration from the Scandinavian International Management Institute at Copenhagen Business School, CBS.
Karl Soukup works in the Directorate General for Competition (DG COMP) of the European Commission, which is in charge of competition policy in the European Union. He is the head there since 2013, a Directorate in charge of State aid control in a number of areas. Besides aid for regional development, research, development and innovation, Important Projects of Common European Interest, climate and environment, he is in charge of fiscal aid (including the work on aggressive tax planning) and aid in the areas of agriculture and fishery. He has been heavily involved in the DG’s response to the COVID-19 crisis as well as the crisis created by the Russian aggression against Ukraine.
He has an economic background and joined the Commission in 1996, after a few years as Assistant Professor at the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration. He worked in DG COMP in various positions in the areas of State aid and merger control. Amongst others, he was instrumental in building up and running the financial crisis task force, which was established late 2008 in order to scrutinise public support schemes established by Member States in response to the financial crisis as well as state aid measures and restructuring plans for individual banks. From 2001 to 2004, he was member of the private office of Commissioner Mario Monti, then responsible for competition policy, advising him in particular on State aid policy. From May 2021 to February 2022, he fulfilled the function of Acting Deputy Director General for State aid, overseeing the overall work on State aid in DG COMP.