OUR AREAS OF EXPERTISE
Economic arguments – presented clearly and compellingly – frequently make the difference in competition policy investigations, regulatory proceedings and in litigation. Marshalling such arguments requires a thorough understanding of the relevant economic principles, familiarity with the institutional and legal background, and an ability to present complex economic concepts clearly and simply. At Market Analysis we combine these crucial capabilities.
Since our establishment in 1995, Market Analysis has carried out a large number of consultancy and research assignments in competition policy, regulation and market design in the UK, Europe and worldwide. Our clients include many of the world’s leading telecommunications, media and energy companies as well as the major regulatory and competition authorities.
Market Analysis has been involved in many of the most high-profile competition policy investigations and disputes before the UK’s Office of Fair Trading, the Competition Commission, the Competition Appeal Tribunal and the European Commission. These include the Competition Commission’s investigations into the recorded music industry and the supply of films, the Office of Fair Trading’s Competition Act investigation into BSkyB’s wholesale pricing and distribution practices, the FA Premier League’s sale of television broadcasting rights, Wanadoo’s margin squeeze complaint against BT in the UK broadband market, and Hutchison 3G’s appeals of its SMP designations in the UK and Ireland.
We have also advised on a number of important merger cases, including BSkyB’s failed takeover bid for Manchester United, the Airtours merger case before the European Commission, the Endesa/Iberdrola merger in the Spanish electricity market and the BAT/Protabaco merger in Colombia.
We recently provided expert economic testimony in litigation involving a major petrol retailing company and one of its licensed dealers. By applying state-of-the-art economic analysis to the issues in dispute, we successfully placed the burden of proof on the defendant to demonstrate that its conduct had not been anti-competitive.
Internationally, we advised a consortium of Australian energy companies on the competition policy issues surrounding the dissemination of market information in the Australian National Electricity Market, and have undertaken assignments for the European Commission on the application of state aid rules and the competitiveness of markets for sports broadcasting rights.
More recently, Market Analysis advised Al Ezz Steel on the law and economics of vertical restraints as they relate to Ezz Steel’s vertical distribution arrangements in Egypt, and prepared an economic analysis of the proposed merger between Orange and T-Mobile in the UK’s mobile telephony market. We were also consulted on the the BAT/Protabaco merger in Colombia, and participated in the Colombian competition authority’s conference “Perspectivas del Derecho a la Competencia en Colombia” in Cartagena in 2012.
Market Analysis has unrivalled expertise and experience in the privatised and deregulated utility industries, in the UK and abroad. We have carried out numerous assignments for the UK regulators, incumbent firms and new entrants in a number of the regulated industries including telecommunications, gas, rail and electricity, and have worked extensively on competition, pricing and interconnection issues in these industries.
|Electricity Privatisation and Regulation||Telecommunications and Media||Gas Market Design and Regulation|
Market Analysis has extensive academic and consulting experience in the recently liberalised and decentralised electricity industries, particularly in the UK, Scandinavia, Australia and Europe. We undertook a comparative analysis of the electricity reforms in England and Wales and Norway, and have prepared reports for the Australian and Finnish governments and the World Bank on pricing and competition issues in electricity markets.
As economic advisers on electricity reform to the New South Wales Treasury and the Industry Commission of Australia, Market Analysis examined the potential for the abuse of market power in the new Australian electricity market and considered the regulatory options, including the break-up of Pacific Power. Our report was instrumental in determining government policy.
We also completed a study for the Electricity Reform Task Force of New South Wales analysing the regulatory issues involved in the introduction of retail competition in the New South Wales electricity market. Again, our report was a key determinant of government regulatory policy.
More recently, we advised British Energy on its response to the UK energy regulator’s proposed market abuse condition to be applied to UK generating companies, and prepared a report for submission to the Competition Commission. We also submitted expert testimony to the Spanish Competition Court on the proposed Endesa/Iberdrola merger in the Spanish electricity market, and advised the Brazilian electricity company Cemig on the design of power contract auctions. Market Analysis was also commissioned by the Colombian Commission for the Regulation of Energy and Gas (CREG) to provide a detailed analysis of the performance of auctions for Firm Energy Obligations held in June 2008 and December 2011, and to make recommendations for the improvement of future auctions.
Market Analysis’ expertise in the competitive analysis of decentralised electricity markets is unrivalled. In their academic work, David Harbord and Nils-Henrik von der Fehr have published numerous articles analysing the performance of electricity wholesale, contract and capacity investment markets. Their widely-cited 1993 and 2006 articles were the first to systematically apply insights from auction theory to the study of decentralised electricity markets. Their research is now focused on a comparison of alternative designs for electricity auctions.
Our client list includes a large number of the UK’s major telecommunications and media companies. We have prepared expert analysis for the Competition Commission’s inquiry into telephone number portability in the UK telecommunications market and advised on the reviews of British Telecom’s price cap and network charges. We acted as economic advisers to the UK’s OLO Group consisting of more than 30 licensed telephony operators on the implementation of the Fair Trading Condition in British Telecom’s operating licence.
We have provided expert advice to Cable and Wireless and Telewest Communications in the UK Competition Commission’s two investigations into mobile phone pricing; to ITV and Telewest in the Office of Fair Trading’s Competition Act investigation into BSkyB; represented the BBC and ITV in OFTEL’s review of conditional access pricing in pay television; advised ITV and NTL on the FA Premier League’s sale of television broadcasting rights; and ITV on Channel 3 licence auctions.
We advised Orange UK on its margin squeeze complaint against British Telecom in the UK broadband market, and Hutchison 3G UK on regulatory and competition policy issues in mobile telephony. Market Analysis has also worked on telecommunications regulatory issues in Australia, Scandinavia, Colombia, and Mexico and has recently advised the Polish Office of Telecommunications and Post Regulation and 2 Degrees New Zealand on the economics of mobile termination rates.
We completed a study entitled The Introduction of Competition in the Domestic Gas Market and the 1997 Price Cap Review, for OFGAS as part of the project Regulatory Review of the Domestic Gas Market, in collaboration with Arthur Andersen Business Consulting. Many of our proposals for regulatory reform were subsequently adopted by OFGAS. We have also prepared submissions for two major energy companies concerning British Gas’s take-or-pay contracts and the operation of the liberalised UK gas market.
In 2011, Market Analysis, in collaboration with the Brattle Group, was awarded two further consultancy contracts by the Colombian Commission for the Regulation of Energy and Gas. One of these was to design and implement auctions for the Colombian upstream gas market. The second contract involved making detailed recommendations for introducing open and transparent long-term and short-term secondary markets for gas and transport contracts. Our recommended auction design and secondary market reforms are now being implemented via primary legislation.
Market Analysis has been involved in a number of projects concerned with utility industry reform and restructuring around the world. We advised the New South Wales Treasury and the Industry Commission of Australia on alternative market structures for generation in the Australian National Electricity Market. We have also contributed to World Bank-sponsored projects concerned with the reform of the electricity industries in Kenya, Bolivia and Iran.
We advised British Energy on the redesign of the UK electricity market in 2001 and the electricity company Cemig on the design of power contract auctions in Brazil in 2004. We have also worked on Channel 3 licence auctions for ITV plc; on the design and implementation of Hutchison 3G’s successful auction for national roaming services in 2006; on Ofcom’s proposed combinatorial clock-proxy auction for the 3G expansion band; and advised H3G Sweden on auction design and bidding strategy during the Swedish auction for the 2.6GHz band in May 2008.
More recently, Market Analysis was commissioned by the Colombian Commission for the Regulation of Energy and Gas (CREG) to provide a detailed analysis of the performance of auctions for Firm Energy Obligations held in June 2008 and December 2011, and to make recommendations for the improvement of future auctions. In January 2011, Market Analysis, in collaboration with the Brattle Group, was awarded two further consultancy contracts by the CREG. One of these was to design and implement auctions for the Colombian upstream gas market. The second contract involved making detailed recommendations for introducing open and transparent long-term and short-term secondary markets for gas and transport contracts. Our recommended auction design and secondary market reforms are now being implemented via primary legislation.