Chris Watson is Partner and Head of the Telecoms team at CMS Cameron McKenna.
Chris focuses his international practice on commercial matters in the communications, media and technology sectors, particularly in areas where competition and regulation overlap and on EU law arising in cross-border and complex telecommunications transactions. He also has extensive experience in other regulated network sectors, such as postal and other utilities as well as broad experience on commercial, corporate, and financial matters.
Chris works extensively with clients in the global telecommunications industry and has been named one of the world’s top six lawyers in Telecoms in the 2008 fourth edition of the ‘Guide to the World’s Leading Technology, Media and Telecommunications Lawyers’.
Chris has a strong interest in the Middle East, having lived for a number of years in Iran. Since qualifying, he has worked extensively in the region and has developed a global practice with approximately half of his clients based outside the UK.
Chris is a regular contributor to magazines, a sought after speaker and is frequently quoted in the media. He is dually qualified as a solicitor in England and as an avocat in France.
Chris is vice chairman of the Communications Law Committee of the International Bar Association (IBA). His memberships also include Supreme Court of England and Wales, Paris Bar and board membership of the Space Law Committee.
Chris on Marketplace Morning Report discussing the recent controversial 'opt out' solution for home owners and renters in Germany who do not want photos of their property on Google.
Chris is interviewed on BBC News regarding recent issues on the use of Google in China:
Relevant experience includes advising:
- Macquarie Communications Infrastructure Group (MCG) on the acquisition of NTL’s broadcast business for a purchase price of £1.27 billion
- T-Mobile/One2One in the inquiry by Oftel and the Competition Commission into the charges made by UK mobile operators for call termination
- National Grid on the replacement of its electricity operational telecommunications (OpTel) assets
- The World Bank with regard to reform of the Lebanese telecommunications law, including drafting the new Law and Decrees in English and in French
- KPNQwest on the rollout of its pan-European network (including property, IT procurement and issues relating to co-ordination with other operators) and drafting sales contracts for sale of fibre, capacity and services on the network.
- The Communications and Information Technology Commission, the Saudi Arabian telecommunications regulator, on the successful auction of a second GSM licence and, separately, of voice and data licences for a global consideration of $3.5 billion
- The Office of the Telecommunications Authority in Hong Kong on the 3G licensing process.
- The Jordan Telecommunications Regulatory Commission on the implementation of a new licensing/regulatory system
- FMC (USA) on the purchase of the alginates business of International Specialty Products (USA). The OFT decided not to refer the matter to the Competition Commission for further investigation. This was a first of its kind in this scenario and is likely to be a leading case reference by the OFT in years to come
MA Modern Languages, New College, Oxford.
BTI Client Service All-Star Award