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Covington Continues Expansion of European Capabilities

June 30, 2016

BRUSSELS—With the latest addition of Ambassador Péter Balás, Covington has further enhanced its global Antitrust and Competition and Public Policy and Government Affairs practices. The firm’s strategic growth in Europe includes the addition of the following professionals in recent months:

  • Ambassador Péter Balás, the former Deputy Director-General of DG Trade at the European Commission between 2005 and 2014;
  • Carl Bildt, the former Prime Minister of Sweden and Minister for Foreign Affairs;
  • Sophie Bertin, a former senior official who served as Head of Unit in the “Financial Crisis” Task Force within the Directorate-General for Competition at the European Commission;
  • Kevin Coates, a former senior official who served as Head of one of the Cartels Units at the Directorate-General for Competition at the European Commission; and
  • Erika Mann, a former Member of the European Parliament and policymaker.

“To help our clients address the increasingly complex and dynamic regulatory environment in Europe, we have made a focused effort to continually enhance our antitrust, international trade, and government affairs capabilities in the region,” said Timothy Hester, the firm’s chair. “With our recent additions, we look forward  to providing our clients an even deeper set of experience in these areas.”

The largest public policy and government affairs practice of any law firm in the EU, Covington’s European team advises clients on a range of European public policy issues, including the EU policy-making processes and the functioning of the European institutions. The team includes a range of former policymakers:

  • Ambassador Jean De Ruyt, one of the most experienced diplomats in Europe, who was most recently the Permanent Representative of Belgium to the European Union;
  • Ambassador Karel Kovanda, the former Deputy Director General of External Relations (now the European External Action Service) at the European Commission;
  • Paul Adamson, a pioneer and leader in European public affairs; and
  • Stuart E. Eizenstat, former U.S. Ambassador to the EU.

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