Paul B. Hewitt has more than 30 years of experience litigating and advising on complex, high-stakes antitrust matters. A principal focus of his practice is providing antitrust and Hart-Scott-Rodino representation regarding mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures. In addition, Mr. Hewitt has engaged extensively in private litigation and counseling regarding a wide spectrum of antitrust issues. He serves as the head of the firm’s U.S. antitrust and unfair competition practice.
Practice & Background
Since leaving the Federal Trade Commission to join Akin Gump, Mr. Hewitt has provided antitrust representation in hundreds of transactions involving such diverse industries and products as oil and natural gas pipelines and storage facilities, gasoline retailing, NGL processing and fractionation, liquefied natural gas, petrochemicals, uranium, industrial gases, coal mining, veterinarian hospitals and laboratories, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and testing products, patents and other intellectual property, drill pipe, drill bits, pumping equipment, drilling mud, compressors, valves, steel tubing, electric power, specialty chemicals, polyurethane foam, silicon wafers, plastics, portland cement, ready-mixed concrete, construction aggregates, containerboard, wheat and masa flour, corn wet milling, soybean processing, chocolate, cooking oil, packaged food products, supermarkets, cigars and pipe tobacco, movie theaters, automobile dealerships, buses, RVs, lubricants, avionics and other aircraft parts, autonomous underwater vehicles, defense procurement, hospitals, managed health care, communications equipment, waste disposal, computer software, electronic commodity trading, financial services, respirators, ocean shipping, air transportation, radio stations, billboards, soft drink bottling, carton sealing tape and alarm systems, among others.
From 1974 to 1975, Mr. Hewitt clerked for Chief Justice Horace W. Wilkie of the Wisconsin Supreme Court. From 1975 to 1978, Mr. Hewitt was a trial attorney with the Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Competition, where he principally litigated merger and monopolization cases.
Mr. Hewitt received his B.A. in economics from Northwestern University in 1971 and his J.D. cum laude in 1974 from the University of Wisconsin Law School, where he served as articles editor of the Wisconsin Law Review. He is a member the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Antitrust and Litigation sections and is currently a member of the Antitrust Section’s Advisory Board on Section Reserves.
Mr. Hewitt was chair of the Antitrust Section’s Mergers and Acquisitions Committee from 2012 through 2015, a period in which the committee produced the Premerger Notification Practice Manual (5thed,. 2015) and Mergers and Acquisitions: Understanding the Antitrust Issues (4th ed. 2015). He previously served as vice-chair of the committee, responsible for all committee publications including the M&A newsletter, The Threshold. He was editor-in-chief of the 2005 Annual Review of Antitrust Law Developments, published by the Antitrust Section. He was also a member of the editorial board for the Section’s antitrust law treatise, Antitrust Law Developments and vice chair of the Section’s Sherman Act Section 2 Committee. He has been a co-author or editor of other Section publications, including A Primer on the Law of Joint Purchasing and Handbook on the Antitrust Aspects of Standard Setting.
Mr. Hewitt was one of the principal trial defense counsel in United States v. Archer-Daniels-Midland Co.(S.D. Iowa), one of the longest-running Clayton Act Section 7 cases ever brought by the U.S. Justice Department Antitrust Division. After nine years of litigation, including a two-month trial on the merits, the court dismissed the government’s complaint, and the government did not appeal. In Arnett Physician Group, P.C. v. Greater Lafayette Health Services, Inc. (N.D. Ind.), Mr. Hewitt represented the defendant hospital group and secured Rule 12(b)(6) dismissal, with prejudice, of plaintiff’s entire antitrust case, including both conspiracy and monopolization claims. Other recent antitrust matters he has litigated include an E.D. Pa. Hatch-Waxman patent settlement case and an S.D.N.Y. purported price fixing and RICO case brought against a large investment fund group.
Mr. Hewitt frequently lectures on antitrust topics. His recent presentations include:
- “Hot Topics Under the HSR Act" (panelist, ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting 2016)
- “Antitrust Climate Change in Washington: What In-House Counsel Need to Know” (Houston, Dallas and Austin CLE Programs, 2012)
- “Consummated Merger Challenges: The Past Is Never Dead” (program moderator, ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, 2012)
- “Antitrust, Pharmaceuticals, and the FTC: Recent Developments” (Philadelphia Life Sciences CLE Program, 2012)
- “The Irrelevant Market: ‘Direct Proof’ of Merger Anticompetitive Effects” (program moderator, ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, 2011)
- “Selling the Deal: Can the Media Help or Hinder Antitrust Clearance?” (program moderator, ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, 2010)
- “Antitrust and M&A in the Obama Administration: What Every Deal Lawyer Needs to Know” (California CLE Program 2010, New York CLE Program, 2009)
- “Government Antitrust Enforcement: Recent Developments in the Energy Industry” (Houston and Dallas CLE Programs, 2009)
- “Has Whole Foods Transformed Merger Enforcement?” (program moderator, ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, 2009)
- “Post-Closing Review of Mergers: Recent Developments in the U.S. and Canada,” (moderator, ABA Antitrust Section Brown Bag, 2008)
- “Category Management: Comparing Theories of Potential Liability Under Sections 1 and 2 of the Sherman Act” (ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, 2005)
- “Fraud and Nondisclosure in Standard Setting: When Does It Violate Section 2?” (ABA Antitrust Section Spring Meeting, 2004)
- “Understanding and Managing Upstream Oil and Gas Antitrust Risks” (Conference on Contract Risk Management in Upstream Oil and Gas, 2003).