Maverick Advocaten successfully represents MKB Multifunds: court overturns ACM decision

Martijn van de Hel and Paul Breithaupt have successfully represented MKB Multifunds in proceedings against the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) before the Rotterdam District Court related to a violation of the Wet Markt en Overheid (Public Enterprises (Market Activities) Act) by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (the Ministry). In these proceedings, MKB Multifunds challenged the Ministry’s favouring of its own investment fund, Dutch Venture Initiative (DVI).

After an earlier rejection, ACM ruled in its decision on the objection that MKB Multifunds’ complaint was valid. The Ministry interested investors in investing in DVI, as a result of which DVI was selectively favoured. That was in breach of the Public Enterprises (Market Activities) Act. ACM rejected the remaining objections. MKB Multifunds appealed that rejection.

The Rotterdam District Court ruled in favour of MKB Multifunds and overturned ACM’s decision. According to the court, the Ministry had also provided selective subsidies to DVI. However, the court upheld the legal effects of ACM’s decision, because the European Commission had previously ruled that the loans were at market rate. That ruling was issued in response to a complaint by MKB Multifunds about illegal state aid granted to the DVI by the Ministry.

The EU General Court rejected MKB Multifunds’ appeal. MKB Multifunds subsequently filed an appeal with the Court of Justice; see here for more information. The Court of Justice has yet to rule on that appeal.

The case was also covered in the media. The Financieele Dagblad asked Martijn van de Hel to comment on the ruling: see here and here. See here and here for earlier news on this case.

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Contact details

Martijn van de Hel

T +31 20 238 20 02
M +31 6 21 210 853

Paul Breithaupt

T +31 20 238 20 05
M +31 6 39 177 993