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Winner, EU and Competition Law Junior of the Year, 2012,  Chambers and Partners Bar Awards

Meredith Pickford is listed as a star individual under Competition Law: A senior junior whose background as an economist gives him an edge in this field. He has recently played a very significant role appearing in a number of high-profile cases. "He has an unrivalled ability to translate economics into a legal argument and make the complex simple." "He marries an excellent understanding of economics and the law and acts as the bridge between the two." Chambers UK, 2014

Under Telecommunications Law: Relied on by major market operators looking to launch regulatory challenges against Ofcom. He additionally advises on competition issues and operational matters that exist between service providers. "Excellent analysis and good industry knowledge." "He has good understanding of economic issues and the more technical aspects of cases." Chambers UK, 2014

Meredith Pickford is one of the very best competition and telecoms juniors at the Bar and is regularly paired with the best silks both from his own and other sets. He is consisently chosen for the major matters of the day and appeared in both the Sky v Ofcom and Imperial Tobacco v OFT cases. More recently, he has acted in IPCom v Nokia & HTC, and has had a key role in the dispute concerning the alleged overcharging by BT for Ethernet. Solicitors particularly favour the fact that he was trained as an economist and say that he is particularly good as "he is able to turn a hunch as to the right answer into one which has real legal backing." Chambers 100, 2013

The "highly skilled" Meredith Pickford is "calm under pressure" and "always delivers a knock-out performance." His recent work includes BT v SKY & Ors, TalkTalk v Ofcom and Vodafone & Ors v British Telecommunications Plc & Anor The International Who's Who of Telecoms & Media Lawyers 2014

"Absolutely fantastic" Meredith Pickford ... is "very experienced on competition and telecoms issues." Sources particularly note his "ability to advise in a broader commercial context," and his "very strong grasp of economics."" Chambers UK, 2013 (EU / Competition)

"Meredith Pickford is very often the "first choice" for solicitors and their clients looking for a compelling advocate with near-matchless experience in mounting regulatory challenges in the CAT and higher courts. A man who does not need a silk to lead him, he recently acted as sole counsel for Sky and TalkTalk in their intervention against BT in a challenge concerning broadband access charge control." Chambers UK, 2013 (Telecommunications)

Recommended Leading Junior "Meredith Pickford [...] is 'extremely good at handling expert evidence', and is 'at home with the economics as much as the law';". Legal 500, 2013

Meredith Pickford is a recommended leading junior in EU and Competition Law. Legal 500, 2012

Under Competition/European Law "Meredith Pickford wins admiration from instructing solicitors as an "outstanding junior." He is instructed as junior for Sky in its case over Ofcom's decisions to force Sky to license its premium sports and movie channels to its competitors at Ofcom's set rates." - Chambers UK, 2012

"Scarcely anyone can remember a major telecommunications regulatory challenge in which Meredith Pickford hasn't been involved. He originally trained as an economist, and so his commercial and strategic understanding is highly prized by solicitors and their clients. As someone who can very easily lead a case in the CAT without a QC, "he is a compelling choice for such instructions and an assured advocate who comes up with novel approaches as to how to run a case." " - Chambers UK, 2012

EU & Competition states that Meredith Pickford "has 'excellent knowledge, and is good on his feet, genuinely nice and easy to work with'." Legal 500, 2011

"Meredith Pickford has built himself a reputation for being the go-to junior for telecommunications related competition cases [...] Pickford possess an impressive list of blue-chip clients ... keeping his diary packed with instructions. As a trained economist, Pickford is praised by senior silks for his ability to apply statistical thinking to the cases he fights so fervently for clients." - The Lawyer's Top 100, 2011

The "hardworking and creative" Meredith Pickford attracts "significant plaudits".  He "represented Orange and T-Mobile in their telecoms joint venture Everything Everywhere" - Global Competition Review, Barrister Survey, 2011

Recommended under Competition/European Law in Chambers UK, 2011 "Meredith Pickford's background as an economist ensures "he grasps the salient issues in any case with considerable speed," according to sources. He assisted National Grid in obtaining the reduction of a fine imposed by Ofgem for abuse of dominance."

"Renowned leading junior in Telecommunications Law Meredith Pickford is "a bright, practical and hard-working lawyer with considerable telecoms experience." One example of his full caseload was his representation of T-Mobile in its joint appeal with Vodafone against a CAT ruling that charges for mobile call termination should apply with retrospective effect. He also appeared in Nokia v Ipcom. Pickford is described as "an especially good lawyer on the technical side who is a good team player as he is in no way precious." "  Chambers UK, 2011

Under EU and competition the Legal 500, 2010 states that Meredith Pickford "is a master of 'economic arguments' and has incredible 'tactical awareness'."

In competition law, Chambers UK, 2010 regards Meredith as "bright and hard-working - a definite star of the future." He is a former economist and recently acted for T-Mobile in the Court of Appeal in its successful appeal of a decision by the CAT over the scope of licences granted to mobile network operators."

"On the junior front, the "wonderfully bright and creative" Meredith Pickford has "a huge advantage in understanding the dense arguments of telecoms law due to his background as an economist." An expert in public law, he knows the regulatory regime inside out and commands a huge following that includes long-standing client T-Mobile. He represented the company in the Court of Appeal in a successful appeal against a decision by the CAT in a case concerning the scope of licences granted to mobile operators." - Chambers UK, 2010

Legal 500, 2009 recommends Meredith Pickford as a Leading Junior on EU and competition law. 

On Competition and EU law: "Meredith Pickford not only "has tremendous economic skills," but is also "a smooth character and a good opponent." He regularly appears before the Court of Appeal and the High Court, and is seen as "bright, dedicated and a definite star of the future."" - Chambers UK, 2009

On Telecommunications: "Meredith Pickford impresses with his “tremendous economic skill and experience in legal competition matters.” He advises T-Mobile, Samsung and Cable & Wireless, with telecoms matters, making up a significant proportion of his practice. His recent work includes five major telecoms competition cases in the High Court and two appearances in the Court of Appeal." - Chambers UK, 2009

Click here for full details.

MEREDITH PICKFORD

MA (Hons) Economics, Cambridge (First Class), Diploma in Law (City University)
CALL DATE: 1999

SUMMARY

Meredith is ranked as a "star individual" in competition law by Chambers UK, is in the top band of leading juniors for telecommunications, and is listed in the 'Chambers 100' of the best juniors at the UK bar. He is described in the legal directories as "absolutely fantastic", an "outstanding junior", "one of the very best juniors at the bar", "wonderfully bright and creative" and a "stand-out performer". He is "consistently chosen for the major matters of the day". Additionally cited are his:

  • advocacy: "always delivers a knock-out performance", " very concise and just excellent on his feet", "utterly assured" and "calm under pressure", "someone who can very easily lead a case in the CAT without a QC";
  • economic and legal expertise:"an unrivalled ability to translate economics into a legal argument and make the complex simple", "tremendous economic skill and experience in legal competition matters","awfully well informed","a master of economic arguments","an expert in public law, he knows the regulatory regime inside out", "Solicitors particularly favour the fact that he was trained as an economist";
  • tactical ability: "incredible tactical awareness", "[his] strategic understanding is highly prized by solicitors and their clients";
  • commercial awareness: "a competition lawyer with real commercial nous", "[his] commercial ... understanding is highly prized";
  • teamwork: "genuinely nice and easy to work with", "unstuffy", "hard-working", "a good team player".

Meredith appears in damages actions, claims for interim injunctions and challenges to regulatory decisions, and has considerable experience of cases which raise further issues such as conflict of laws and interaction with intellectual property law. In addition to involvement in cases across all main industry sectors he has particular experience in the technology, media and telecommunications ("TMT") sphere, and is described as having "built himself the reputation for being the go-to junior for telecommunications related competition cases", whilst Chambers UK 2012 notes that "scarcely anyone can remember a major telecommunications regulatory challenge in which Meredith Pickford hasn't been involved".

The Lawyer Hot 100 noted that "Pickford possess an impressive list of blue-chip clients ... keeping his diary packed with instructions." They include: (in TMT) BSkyB, Everything Everywhere, T-Mobile, Orange, Vodafone, Telefónica O2, Samsung, TalkTalk, Cable & Wireless, Alcatel-Lucent, Carphone Warehouse, Verizon, Level 3, Gemalto, FA Premier League, ITV, Channel 4, (IP specialists) Sisvel and IPCom;  (in power and water) National Grid, EdF, ScottishPower, Dŵr Cymru (Welsh Water) Scottish Water; (in transport) Virgin Atlantic, P&O, Stena, DFDS, Tubelines; (jn manufacturing, retail and other sectors) Dow Chemical, Morrisons, Intercontinental Hotels and (regulators) the OFT, Ofcom, Ofgem and Ofwat.

Prizes / Scholarships:

  • EU and Competition Law Junior of the Junior, 2012 Chambers and Partners Bar Awards
  • Davies Prize for Economics
  • Winner, Rosamund Smith Cup (Middle Temple Mooting Competition)
  • Diplock Scholarship

 

 

RECENT AND ON-GOING WORK

Court of Appeal

  • BT v Sky & Ors [2014] EWCA Civ 133: pay TV
  • TalkTalk v Ofcom [2013] EWCA Civ 1318: telecommunications regulation
  • National Grid v Ofgem [2010] EWCA Civ 114: abuse of dominance
  • Vodafone Ltd & Ors v British Telecommunications Plc & Anor [2010] EWCA Civ 391: telecommunications regulation
  • H3G v Ofcom [2009] EWCA Civ 683: telecommunications regulation
  • Ofcom & T-Mobile v Floe [2009] Civ 47: telecommunications regulation / competition law
  • T-Mobile & O2 v Ofcom [2008] EWCA Civ 1373: jurisdiction of CAT
  • Welsh Water (Dŵr Cymru) v Albion Water [2008] EWCA Civ 536: competition - margin squeeze / jurisdiction

 

Chancery Division/Commercial Court

  • EDF & Ors v ABB, Siemens & Ors (Ch D): follow-on competition damages
  • Nokia v IPCOM (Ch D): competition / IP / FRAND
  • IPCom v HTC (Ch D): competition / IP / FRAND
  • HTC v Gemalto (Ch D) : competition / IP / FRAND
  • Virgin Atlantic v Contour & ors (Ch D): competition / IP / FRAND
  • Ericsson v Samsung (Ch D): competition / IP / conflict of laws / FRAND
  • H3G v T-Mobile, Vodafone, O2 and Orange (Comm Ct): competition - alleged breach of Art 81 and 82 / damages
  • SanDisk v Sisvel & others (Ch D): competition - interim injunction / conflict of laws / damages / licensing of IP
  • Cooper Tire & Rubber, Shell, Dow, Bayer (Ch D): competition - damages / conflict of laws / price-fixing
  • Truphone v T-Mobile (Ch D): interim injunction / competition - refusal to purchase
  • Cityhook v Cable & Wireless and others (Ch D): competition - alleged collusion / damages

 

Administrative Court

  • Albion Water v Ofwat: judicial review of water pricing decision
  • T-Mobile v Ofcom: regulatory judicial review re spectrum auctions
  • Morrisons v OFT: public law challenge to OFT decision to issue press release (together with related defamation action)
  • Cityhook v OFT, Alcatel & Ors intervening: regulatory judicial review of case closure
  • Excelerate v Ofgem: regulatory judicial review
  • ScottishPower v Ofgem (Admin Ct): regulatory judicial review

 

Competition Appeal Tribunal

  • Sky & TalkTalk v Ofcom: various broadband pricing appeals
  • Groupe Eurotunnel v Competition Commission: judicial review of merger decision
  • Albion Water v Dŵr Cymru: follow-on damages action
  • Siemens & Ors v National Grid: follow-on damages action
  • Sky & Ors v Ofcom: pay TV regulation / competition / interim relief
  • Morrisons & Ors v OFT (tobacco): competition - alleged price fixing
  • BT v Ofcom: broadband pricing regulation
  • TalkTalk v Ofcom: local loop unbundling
  • Telefonica O2 v Ofcom: spectrum licensing
  • Everything Everywhere v Ofcom (Stour Marine): termination pricing
  • Morrisons v Competition Commission: interim relief / divestiture remedies
  • BT v Ofcom (080 numbers): termination pricing
  • National Grid v Ofgem: abuse of dominance
  • Carphone Warehouse v Ofcom: pricing of wholesale broadband products
  • T-Mobile, Orange, BT, H3G et al v Ofcom: termination rate disputes
  • T-Mobile v Ofcom: donor conveyance charge
  • Vodafone v Ofcom: mobile number portability
  • BT v Ofcom, H3G v Ofcom, O2 v Ofcom: mobile call termination regulation
  • Floe v Ofcom, T-Mobile intervening: wireless regulation / refusal to supply
  • VIP v Ofcom, T-Mobile intervening: wireless regulation / refusal to supply / interim relief
  • Wanadoo v Ofcom supported by BT (CAT): margin squeeze in broadband
  • Cable & Wireless, Alcatel et al in Cityhook v OFT supported by Cable & Wireless and others: alleged collusion

 

Competition Commission

  • Sky / TalkTalk v Ofcom: pricing of wholesale broadband products
  • BT v Ofcom: pricing of wholesale broadband products
  • Carphone Warehouse v Ofcom: pricing of wholesale broadband products
  • BT v Ofcom, H3G v Ofcom: mobile call termination
  • Knauf Insulation / Superglass proposed merger
  • P&O / Stena partial merger

 

European Court of Justice / European Commission

  • P&O European Ferries v European Commission: State aid
  • for FA Premier League in European Commission Article 81 EC investigation into sale of media rights for Premier League Football