Client Alert

Federal Scrutiny of Private Equity Deals Makes Antitrust Compliance a Necessity for Private Equity Firms

April 23, 2007

Kirby Behre and Keith Miller

Late last year, reports of a U.S. Department of Justice antitrust investigation of private equity clubbing arrangements surfaced. Information about the scope and direction of that investigation remains incomplete and sporadic, but the investigation is just one part of a multi-layered, newfound federal interest in private equity firms and their deals. In addition, a civil suit has been filed in federal court against 13 large private equity firms, alleging that the firms conspired to fix deal prices. Just like the companies that are purchased with private equity funds, private equity firms should have an effective antitrust compliance plan in place to mitigate risk in this area.

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