The council of state has definitively recognized the legitimacy of the transfer to CHANEL of two shops in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II and the premises of the former Albergo Diurno Cobianchi in Milan. This overturns the decision of the Lombardy Regional Administrative Court, which had granted the right to Damiani.
The case began in 2021, when the city of Milan decided to collect expressions of interest for the redevelopment of various spaces in the gallery. For the historic Cobianchi space, the redevelopment proposal came from CHANEL. Palazzo Marino then put the spaces out to tender with a preemption clause: If the bidder's financial offer was lower than that of other competitors, the promoter would be able to raise its own financial offer and match it with the highest bidder, thus winning the concession.
On 4 April 2010, in an important ruling that sums up the interpretation of Article 12 of the so-called Bolkestein Directive, the council of state ruled that the provision of a right of first refusal in favor of the promoter does not conflict with European and national law on public concessions. In fact, the right of first refusal is granted to the author of the project, in the context of a transparent selective procedure, based on their activity and efforts. This is in parallel with the analogous right of first refusal in favor of the promoter provided for in project financing.
Baker McKenzie assisted CHANEL with a team composed of Prof. Avv. Francesco Goisis, coordinator of the Firm's administrative law practice and professor of administrative law at the University of Milan, Prof. Avv. Miriam Allena, of counsel and professor of Administrative Law at Bocconi University, and Partner Andrea Cicala, head of the competition law practice.