Julian Gregory is a competition and regulatory law specialist who is consistently ranked by the directories as a leading senior junior in his field. He is praised by clients for being “extremely good at grasping highly technical and complex legal issues” and communicating them with “great clarity of thought and expression”. He is a “robust advocate and clear drafter” who appears before regulators, the CAT, the High Court and appellate courts.
Julian is instructed by a wide range of bodies, from global multinationals to small local businesses and government bodies. He works with clients to understand their objectives and how their organizations operate, and is credited with having “great commercial awareness”. The directories say “he is very approachable and combines a down-to-earth attitude with strong intellectual ability”.
Julian frequently operates as part of a large team and can help solicitors to manage major, long-running cases. He enjoys working closely with economists: clients say he has a “superb understanding of economics” and he has post-graduate training in econometrics, often used in merger analysis and damages models. He looks to express technical arguments as simply as possible so that they can be understood easily by non-expert judges.
He has particular experience of damages actions, applications for injunctions and challenges to regulatory decisions on judicial review grounds, including in merger inquiries and market investigations. He has an intimate understanding of the major UK regulators, having been seconded to the OFT, CC and ORR in the early years of his practice and has worked extensively in the field of telecoms and regulated utilities, and in the retail, finance, healthcare, sports and media sectors.
Recent case news
Competition, SportNovember 5, 2019EUJune 27, 2019EUApril 17, 2019
- Other news
- Trucks cartel litigation (competition damages claim)
- Saracens v Premiership Rugby (challenge to salary cap regulations)
- NHS v Servier (pay-for-delay High Court damages claim)
- Fox/Sky (public interest merger process)
- Tesco and others v Visa (interchange fee High Court damages claim)
- Avaaz v Ofcom (High Court judicial review)
- Broadband universal service obligation (Ofcom and DCMS processes)
- Hinkley Point C (EU state aid challenge)
- BT et al v Ofcom (CoA and CAT ethernet appeals).
- BT et al v Ofcom (CAT LLU appeals).
- Movies on pay TV market investigation
- BT et al v Ofcom (CoA and CAT MTR appeals)
- Ryanair v OFT (s.120 CAT review and CoA appeal)
- Tesco v CC (grocery market inquiry and s.179 CAT review)
- Lindum v OFT (High Court restitution claim)
- Ofcom investigation into competition issues in the UK TV advertising trading mechanism Ofwat Fairfields CA98 investigation (margin squeeze)
- House of Lords Select Committee on Communications inquiry into the regulation of TV advertising
- Coop/Tesco (merger inquiry)
- adidas v ITF and tennis Grand Slams (High Court injunction application)
- GNER v ORR (High Court state aid judicial review)
- Cooperative Group Limited v OFT (s.120 CAT review of merger decision)
- Celesio AG v OFT (s.120 CAT review of merger decision)
- Re newspaper and magazine distribution (industry request for advisory Opinion)
- Somerfield v CC (s.120 CAT review of merger decision)
- The Racecourse Association & Others v OFT (CA98 decision and CAT appeal) English Welsh and Scottish Railway Limited (ORR CA98 investigation)
- Store Card Credit Services Inquiry (market investigation)
- Re the Orders and Rules of Racing (CA98 investigation and High Court judicial review)
Julian is ranked as a leading senior junior by the directories and is recognized as having “a superb understanding of both economics and competition law” and “an intimate understanding of CAT processes”. He is a competition law specialist with extensive experience in all areas of competition law (see Cases).
Julian’s areas of work include:
- High Court damages actions and applications for injunctions
- CA98 investigations
- Merger inquires, market investigations and sector inquiries
- CAT and CoA appeals against competition and regulatory decisions
- State aid challenges
- Advisory work, including in relation to distribution and franchising agreements, decisions of trade associations and information sharing
- 05 Nov 2019Competition law challenge to Premiership Rugby salary cap rejected – Julian Gregory represented Premiership Rugby
- 06 Jun 2018Secretary of State announces decision and publishes CMA final report on Fox’s proposed acquisition of Sky
- 25 Jan 2018CMA provisionally finds Fox/Sky deal not in the public interest
Julian has acted in numerous challenges on judicial review grounds to decisions by the competition authorities and sectoral regulators. These include challenges to decisions taken by the CMA in merger inquiries and market investigations, and to decisions taken by sectoral regulators such as Ofcom, Ofwat, Ofgem, the CAA and the Rail Regulator.
Julian is the co-author of the chapter on ‘Judicial review in a competition context’ in Sweet & Maxwell’s Competition litigation in the UK.
- Avaaz v Ofcom (High Court judicial review)
- BT et al v Ofcom (ethernet)  CAT 14
- BT et al v Ofcom (LLU)  CAT 8
- BT et al v Ofcom (MTR)  EWCA Civ 154, from  CAT 11
- Ryanair v OFT (merger)  EWCA Civ 1579, from  CAT 23
- Tesco v CC (grocery market inquiry)  CAT 9
- GNER v ORR (East Coast Main Line)  EWHC 1942 (Admin)
- CGL v OFT (merger)  CAT 24
- Celesio v OFT (merger)  CAT 4
- Somerfield v OFT (merger)  CAT 9
Telecoms and the regulated utilities
Julian is ranked by the directories as a leading junior in the fields of telecoms and regulatory law. Clients credit him with being “extremely good at grasping highly technical and complex legal issues”, which often arise in telecoms and regulatory cases, and say that “he gets to the heart of issues quickly and is able to communicate clearly”. His familiarity with economic concepts and econometric analysis helps him to work effectively alongside economists in these areas.
- Broadband universal service obligation (Ofcom and DCMS processes)
- BT et al v Ofcom (ethernet appeals)  CAT 14
- Ofwat Fairfields investigation (margin squeeze regarding inset appointment)
- BT et al v Ofcom (LLU appeals)  CAT 8
- BT et al v Ofcom (MTR appeals)  EWCA Civ 154, from  CAT 11
- GNER v ORR (High Court judicial review of East Coast Main Line decision)  EWHC 1942
- English Welsh and Scottish Railway Limited (ORR CA98 investigation)
Sports and media
Julian has extensive experience of cases involving the application of competition law in the sports sector, most recently in Saracens v Premiership Rugby which involved a competition law challenge to the lawfulness of rugby union’s salary cap regulations. He has advised in relation to the sale of Premier League media rights, the lawfulness of Premier League parachute payments and acted for adidas in its successful application for an injunction to prevent the IFT and tennis Grand Slam tournaments from banning the use of the three stripe design on adidas tennis wear. He advised in relation to the OFT’s investigation into the Orders and Rules of Horseracing and was instructed in the CAT appeal relating to the sale of horseracing media rights to Attheraces.
Julian was instructed by DCMS in relation to the Fox/Sky merger and the related judicial review claim which contended that Fox was ‘fit and proper’ to hold a broadcast license. He was instructed in the Movies on pay TV market investigation which considered the extent to which Sky Movies gave Sky market power notwithstanding the emergence of OTT services such as those offered by Netflix and Amazon.
Julian is intimately familiar with the TV advertising sales market as a result of his role as Legal Adviser to the ITV Adjudicator, established following the merger between Carlton and Granada which formed ITV. He was instructed in relation to Ofcom’s consultation as to whether to make a market investigation reference concerning competition issues in the TV advertising trading mechanism, the inquiry by the House of Lords Select Committee on Communications into the regulation of TV advertising, and the reviews of the CRR undertakings imposed on ITV carried out by Ofcom and the CC.
What the directories say
Competition Law: “Particularly good when working on quantum and testing whether or not the economics behind our argument works.” “He is extremely industrious” and “is willing to explain the situation in a way that is easy to understand.” – Chambers UK, 2020
Leading junior in Competition: ‘‘He has great commercial awareness.’’ – Legal 500, 2020
Leading junior in Telecoms (regulatory): ‘‘He is strong on technical elements with experience across the regulatory and telecoms fields.’’ – Legal 500, 2020
Competition Law: “He is able to assimilate complex material and is impressively diligent.” – Chambers UK and Chambers Global, 2019
Leading junior in Competition: ‘‘A good junior and helpful in supporting a team.’’ – Legal 500, 2018
Leading junior in Telecoms (regulatory): ‘‘His impressive diligence make him a highly valued senior junior.’’ – Legal 500, 2018
Competition Law: “His ability to assimilate complex material and his impressive diligence make him a highly valued senior junior.” – Chambers UK, 2018
Leading junior in Competition: ‘‘A highly regarded junior.’’ – Legal 500, 2017
Leading junior in Telecoms (regulatory): ‘‘A diligent and personable junior.’’ – Legal 500, 2017
Competition Law: “He is very able and extremely good at grasping highly technical and complex legal issues.” – Chambers UK, 2017
Leading Junior in EU and Competition: ‘‘He provides great clarity of thought and expression.’’ – Legal 500, 2016
Leading Junior in Telecoms (regulatory): ‘‘An effective advocate and a real team player.’’ – Legal 500, 2016
Competition Law: “He’s very thorough and he picks up new areas very quickly.” – Chambers UK & Chambers Global, 2016
“He gets to the heart of issues quickly and is able to communicate clearly.” Leading Junior in EU and competition Law. Legal 500, 2015
“He gets to the heart of the issues quickly.” Leading Junior in Telecoms Law. Legal 500, 2015
Competition Law: “He is very approachable and combines a down-to-earth attitude with strong intellectual ability.” – Chambers UK, 2015
‘A robust advocate and clear drafter.’ Julian is a recommended leading Junior in EU and Competition Law. Legal 500, 2014
‘Excellent at preparing a strong piece of advocacy.’ Julian Gregory is a recommended leading Junior in Telecommunications Law. Legal 500, 2014
Under Competition Law: The pairing of his competition and regulatory expertise attracts considerable work from clients in the telecoms space. He is also praised for his efforts in abuse of dominance matters and for his work with the regulators. “He is a very good person to work with who will definitely make an impression.” “He has a superb understanding of both economics and competition law.”Chambers UK, 2014
“Julian Gregory has ‘an intimate understanding of CAT processes‘,” he is a recommended leading Junior in EU and Competition Law. Legal 500, 2013
Julian Gregory is a recommended leading Junior in Telecommunications Law. Legal 500, 2013
“Julian Gregory is a new addition to the table, and is highly praised for his “really strong competition law analysis.” He is noted for his ability to provide “high-quality, commercial advice which is appreciated by clients,” and has been involved in several competition law cases in the last year. He was involved in Ryanair’s appeal of an OFT decision, and also took part in the Competition Commission investigation into pay-TV movies.” Chambers UK, 2013
Julian Gregory is a recommended leading junior in EU and Competition Law. Legal 500, 2012