Overview

Mr. Kovner represents clients in complex government antitrust investigations and litigations. He has cleared hundreds of challenging transactions through the HSR process, expeditiously and most often without the need for any remedies.   

Named a “National Litigation Star” for antitrust by Benchmark Litigation (2008–2020), Mr. Kovner is consistently recognized as one of the country’s leading antitrust practitioners by Chambers & Partners USA; The Best Lawyers in America; Washington D.C. Super Lawyers, and The International Who’s Who of Competition Lawyers and Economists. Legal Media Group’s Expert Guide “Best of the Best USA 2013” named Mr. Kovner one of the 30 best lawyers in US antitrust. He has an “AV Preeminent” rating from Martindale Hubbell.

Global Competition Review awarded the complex Teva Pharmaceuticals/Allergan merger clearance, handled by Mr. Kovner and the Kirkland team, as its 2016 Merger Control Matter of the Year - Americas.

Mr. Kovner is an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University Law Center, where he has taught Antitrust Law since 2001, and he sits on the Board of Directors of the Washington Council of Lawyers, a pro bono bar association.

Legal 500 U.S. gives Kirkland a Tier 1 ranking for “Mergers, Acquisitions and Buyouts: Antitrust,” and Kirkland’s antitrust practice has a Tier 1 ranking in U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Law Firms.” Kirkland’s antitrust practice was named a Law360 Competition Group of the Year in 2014 and 2012.

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Thought Leadership

Selected Professional Activites/Publications/Talks

Member, Board of Directors, Washington Council of Lawyers (a pro bono bar association). 

Speaker, Rental Cars and Relevant Markets: Antitrust Review of Hertz / Dollar Thrifty, ABA Antitrust Section M&A Committee Panel Discussion, February 21, 2013. 

Speaker, MergerMarket Antitrust Roundtable 2012: Current Enforcement Trends, in Monterrey, Mexico, October 25, 2012. 

SpeakerIBRAC/IBA May 13-14, 2010 conference in Sao Paolo, Brazil: Global Antitrust Enforcement: The Perspective from Latin America.

Commentator, NPR’s Marketplace, May 11, 2009 “DOJ Wants Monopolists to Play Nicer.”

Editorial Chair, ABA Antitrust Section Monograph Pharmaceutical Industry Antitrust Handbook (2009).

Speaker, Local Government Antitrust Enforcement – What Is It; Does It Provide an Important Public Benefit? (DC Bar Program, May 21, 2008).

Editor, Market Definition chapter, ABA Antitrust Law Developments (Sixth Edition 2007). 

Speaker, Life After Tamoxifen; 10 Questions On My Mind; Generic Pharmaceuticals Association (GPHA) annual meeting, Washington D.C. (September 2007)

Speaker, Generic Pharmaceuticals: An Antitrust Update, featured speaker, Generic Pharmaceuticals Association (GPHA) annual meeting, Washington D.C. (September 2006)

Speaker, Hot Topics -- Second Request Reform, ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, Washington D.C. (March 2006)

Follow-on Private Antitrust Litigation, Competition & Antitrust Guide 2005 (A Corporate Finance Magazine Supplement, May 2005), with Avery Gardiner.

Speaker, The Antitrust Risks of Pharmaceutical Patent Settlements: Recent Developments. ABA Antitrust Section Brown Bag Lunch, Washington D.C. (March 5, 2004).

Applying the Noerr Doctrine to Pharmaceutical Patent Litigation Settlements, Antitrust Law Journal, Vol. 71, No. 2 (January 2004) (with Colin Kass).

Steering Committee, D.C. Bar Antitrust and Consumer Law Section (elected by peers for 1999-2001 and 2001-2003 terms).

Monopolies Take a Hit: Be Careful with Smaller Competitors Or They May Come Back to Haunt You, Marketing Management Magazine (September/October 2003).

Special Pharmaceuticals Task Force, ABA Antitrust Section (2001-2002). Received ABA award for contributions to same.

Merger and Acquisition Antitrust Fundamentals, A Practical Guide, Antitrust Counseling and Litigation Techniques (Matthew Bender) Chapter 18 (1998 and 2002).

Speaker, US Antitrust Law - Pharmaceutical Industry Recent Developments, Hawksmere Conference (London) on International Pharmaceutical Law (September 23-24, 2002).

Patent Litigation Settlements and the Leahy Bill, American Bar Association, Antitrust Section Brown Bag Lunch, January 23, 2002.

Patent Litigation: Antitrust Hot Topics, Kirkland & Ellis New York “PILLS” Seminar, January, 2002.

Mergers & Acquisitions, Understanding the Antitrust Issues, ABA Section of Antitrust Law Treatise (2000) (author, chapters on Market Definition and Remedies).

Non-Merger Vertical Restraints: Recent Enforcement Lessons, D.C. Bar, Antitrust, Consumer Affairs and Trade Regulation Section Recent Developments program, June 28, 1999.

Defending A Subject Or Target Of An Antitrust Grand Jury Investigation, Antitrust Counseling and Litigation Techniques (Matthew Bender) Chapter 55 (1998) (co-author).

Why Sellers Should Be Concerned About Antitrust, 30 Mergers & Acquisitions 4, at 24 (January/February 1996) (co-author).

A Definite Strategic Risk, in Corporate Finance Guide to Merger Control Regulation 1995 (a Supplement to Corporate Finance October 1995), Euromoney Publications Plc. (co-author).

Merger/Acquisition Antitrust Fundamentals, American Management Association Seminars, variously 1993-1998.

Judicial Review and Congressional Tenure: An Observation, 66 Texas Law Review 967 (1987) (co-author).

Credentials

Admissions & Qualifications

  • 1991District of Columbia

Education

  • Georgetown University Law CenterJ.D.cum laude1989
    Editor-in-Chief, Law and Policy in International Business, 1988–1989
  • Brandeis UniversityB.A.

    Honors in Economics

    1986