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UK Guide

Franchising — UK-wide

Band 1

第一等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 15 other qualified lawyers
- Office Location: London

What the team is known for Globally recognised as a leading franchising practice that helps household-name brands build and develop national and international franchise networks. Acts for restaurant chains, fashion brands and retailers of all types. Also advises prestigious private schools on international expansion. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Top-class franchising practice." 

"They're wonderful. Very customer service-oriented and they have a broad base of expertise in different markets - exactly what you want in a law firm."

Work highlights Assisting EE with the restructuring of its business from a corporately owned and operated retailer into a national franchise.

Supported Regus with the restructuring of its global franchise, and advised on the marketing and operation of establishments across 30 countries worldwide.

Notable practitioners  

Mark Abell is "one of the doyens of UK franchising." He advises some the world's biggest franchisors on matters such as large scale roll-outs, master franchise agreements and complete business restructurings.

Shelley Nadler offers her expertise to international brands in the leisure, retail and restaurant sectors. Clients say: "She is exceptionally good at providing concise, straightforward and excellent advice and at de-mystifying legal structures."

Graeme Payne acts for prominent brands in the services, retail and healthcare sectors. Clients say: "He is great at coming up with pragmatic solutions."

Victoria Hobbs practices primarily as a litigator, representing domestic and global businesses in complex franchise disputes. Clients say: "Her knowledge of franchising and the associated legal principles is excellent."

Significant clients Costa Coffee, PizzaExpress, Casual Dining Group, Tortilla, Mothercare.

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Band 1

第一等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 18 other qualified lawyers
- Office location: London

What the team is known for World-leading practice able to advise on the most challenging restructuring exercises, M&A, disputes and all commercial issues faced by international brands. Acts for household names in retail, fashion, hospitality and the restaurant trade.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"There is no one else I would use in the UK for global franchising or licensing. The service is outstanding." 

"They have a real knowledge of the industry and provide an excellent service."

Work highlights Engaged by easyHotel to update its template franchise contracts and advise on the contractual relationship with easyGroup, the brand licensor.

Advised Brighton College on its international expansion into a number of new markets, with particular focus on South-East Asia.

Notable practitioners  

Chris Wormald assists an enviable roster of retail and restaurant clients with international expansion strategy. Formerly McDonald's European general counsel before returning to private practice, he is described by clients as "technically awesome, commercially astute and client-focused."

David Bond is a "pragmatic commercial lawyer" with "superb knowledge and skills," according to sources. He serves domestic and international clients from a wide range of sectors and advises governmental bodies on the implementation of quasi-franchise models with third-party providers.

Gordon Drakes advises well-known brands on business growth and protection. One client describes him as an "extremely commercial individual who gets to the point quickly and provides you with precise, expert advice."

Significant clients Carewatch, Arcadia Group, Burger & Lobster, Hamleys.

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Band 2

第二等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 10 other qualified lawyers
- Office Location: London

What the team is known for Celebrated practice able to use its impressive worldwide network to help leading franchises with all conceivable structural, contractual and expansion-related issues. Renowned for its strength in hospitality, fashion, retail and restaurants.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Their performance has been very good indeed. They're very attentive, knowledgeable and experienced, and they have offices internationally where they can get relevant, local information."

"They are really well-positioned to tackle all issues in hospitality - there are only a few firms like that in Europe."

Work highlights Lead counsel to Starwood Hotel and Resorts on a series of multimillion-pound franchise agreements across Europe.

Continues to advise wagamama on the roll-out of its international franchise programme, including on recent deals in Oman, Germany, Austria, Spain and Norway.

Notable practitioners  

Qualified to practise English and German law, Babette Märzheuser-Wood is a "go-to franchise expert" for leading international brands in leisure, hospitality, restaurants and retail. Clients say: "She is kind, considerate and expert in her field. We have complete confidence in her advice."

Significant clients Hilton, Paperchase, Waitrose, Sheraton, Debenhams.

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Band 2

第二等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 1 other qualified lawyer
- Office Location: Warwick

What the team is known for Highly regarded franchising specialists offering the full span of related services to emerging and established businesses. Offers expertise to clients in all industries on domestic and international franchising matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"A fantastic and highly efficient team. Has the capability and resourcefulness to be as flexible as required with our needs."

"Extremely experienced, friendly, willing and able. They have a commercial eye for the best course of action. We have received absolutely first-class service throughout."

Work highlights Advised estate agency Hunters on the franchising implications of its AIM flotation.

Assisted US-headquartered franchisor Lift Brands with the roll-out of a new brand across the UK.

Notable practitioners  

John Pratt is widely considered a franchising "guru." He advises on all manner of commercial matters and is regarded as one of the best litigators in this area of practice. He also has a strong grounding in UK and European competition law.

Associate Emma Lusty advises on the full range of franchising issues, and areas of particularly deep expertise include franchise resales and trade mark registration. Clients remark on her "strong commercial awareness, technical knowledge and can-do attitude."

Significant clients Dyno Rod, Rainbow, Boots Opticians, Belvoir!, Lavazza.

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Band 2

第二等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 3 other qualified lawyers
- Office Location: Slough

What the team is known for Expert advice on all manner of franchising matters, including litigation, resale and master license agreements, sales and transfers. Acts for businesses large and small in traditional sectors such as retail and leisure, but also domiciliary care, commercial cleaning and residential lettings.

Notable practitioners  

Jane Masih leads the franchising department and offers her extensive experience and knowledge to a wide range of domestic clients. Sources describe her as a "positive force in the industry." 

Russell Ford is "a very strong litigator who's got plenty of experience under his belt," according to sources. He also represents clients in alternative dispute resolution, and acts for franchisees as well as franchisors.

Significant clients Bluebird Care, Dream Doors, Ecocleen, Snack-in-the-Box, SIGN*A*RAMA.

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Band 2

第二等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 13 partners 
- 28 other qualified lawyers
- Office Location: Guildford

What the team is known for Full-service outfit providing a multidisciplinary commercial service to major franchisees and franchisors across the EU. Strong retail and IP practices supporting notable brands across a wide range of industries.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"A strong all-round firm. We have also had cause to use their IP and litigation services and we were very happy with the advice given."

"Excellent service, client care and communication." 

Work highlights Assisted Now Boarding Pet Hotels with the establishment of its franchise operation.

Advised Papa John's GB on revisions to its template UK franchise agreement and co-ordination with its US parent.

Notable practitioners  

Nicola Broadhurst is an "impressive" franchising specialist commended for her consummately commercial approach. She advises on the full span of issues, such as master franchise and licensing agreements and international expansion strategy.

Significant clients TM Lewin & Sons, Cook Trading, Ed's Easy Diner, Clarks Shoes, Promedica 24.

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Band 3

第三等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers
- Office location: Norwich

What the team is known for Growing practice servicing clients at home and abroad across the full spectrum of franchising matters. Now offers additional support to franchisors with the launch of its new consultancy arm, Ashtons Franchise Consulting. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They have always gone above and beyond to support us in our plans, providing sound advice."

Work highlights Acted on Behalf of Eddie Rockets in negotiations with Topaz Energy to set up restaurants in Topaz's forecourts in Ireland.

Advised TaxAssist Direct on the appointment of its regional master franchisee for Queensland, Australia. 

Notable practitioners  

John Chambers is a "hugely experienced" franchising practitioner and "provides great guidance" to high-profile and developing franchisors across a wide range of industries. He advises on all manner of domestic and international commercial issues and also on the termination of franchising agreements.

Damian Humphrey specialises in advising new and existing franchises on their establishment and international expansion. Sources say he is "commercially aware and has strong drafting skills."

Significant clients CeX, Tossed, Water Babies, Pitman Training, Harry Ramsdens.

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Band 3

第三等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 7 other qualified lawyers
- Office Location: Southampton

What the team is known for Comprehensive franchising offering to businesses of all sizes in the UK and overseas. Now provides clients with franchisor-specific support on tax, pensions, banking and consumer credit issues.

Notable practitioners  

Sheilah Mackie leads the team and focuses on non-contentious work, and has additional familiarity with IT and data law. Sources remark on her "great subject knowledge, commercial acumen and client relationship-building ability."

Significant clients Costa, Sprinkles Gelato, UK Greetings, The Southern Co-op, Barn-Store.

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Band 3

第三等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
- Office location: London

What the team is known for Advises franchisees and franchisors on all manner of commercial matters and has a particularly fine reputation for litigation. Also recommended for pre-signing services for franchisees, such as financial projection and franchise agreement reviews. 

Notable practitioners  

Andrew Pena is noted for his highly successful franchise litigation practice, and advises on disputes in the UK and overseas jurisdictions. Sources say: "He is really good at strategy and at getting commercial results for the client."

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Band 3

第三等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
-Office Location: Norwich 

What the team is known for Long-established franchising practice providing a comprehensive service to franchisors operating across the UK and increasingly out into the EU, Russia, Australia, China and the Middle East. Also advises prospective franchisees on all aspects of entering into franchise agreements.

Notable practitioners  

Jonathan Chadd is one of the most experienced practitioners in UK franchising law. He advises significant players in retail and other industries on domestic and international matters.

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Band 3

第三等

From the Chambers UK guide

Basic facts about the department
-5 partners
-5 other qualified lawyers
-Office Location: Bristol

What the team is known for Full-service offering with an emphasis on retail and leisure, acting on behalf of significant brands operating in Russia, the EU, the Middle East and South Korea, as well as in the UK. Also advises UK franchised automotive dealership associations.

Notable practitioners  

Bill Hull is a key contact.

Significant clients WHSmith, Peacock Stores, Jane Norman International, Ripples Bathrooms, Merlin Entertainments.

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Senior Statesmen

Leathes Prior

From the Chambers UK guide

Jonathan Chadd is one of the most experienced practitioners in UK franchising law. He advises significant players in retail and other industries on domestic and international matters.

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Senior Statesmen

Ashtons Legal

From the Chambers UK guide

John Chambers is a "hugely experienced" franchising practitioner and "provides great guidance" to high-profile and developing franchisors across a wide range of industries. He advises on all manner of domestic and international commercial issues and also on the termination of franchising agreements.

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Senior Statesmen

Sherrards Solicitors

From the Chambers UK guide

Manzoor Ishani of Sherrards Solicitors is described as "one of the founding fathers of UK franchising" by sources. He has handled every aspect of franchising law and continues to advise major brands on international rollouts.

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Band 1

Bird & Bird

From the Chambers UK guide

Mark Abell is "one of the doyens of UK franchising." He advises some the world's biggest franchisors on matters such as large scale roll-outs, master franchise agreements and complete business restructurings.

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Band 1

Stevens & Bolton LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Nicola Broadhurst is an "impressive" franchising specialist commended for her consummately commercial approach. She advises on the full span of issues, such as master franchise and licensing agreements and international expansion strategy.

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Band 1

Dentons

From the Chambers UK guide

Qualified to practise English and German law, Babette Märzheuser-Wood is a "go-to franchise expert" for leading international brands in leisure, hospitality, restaurants and retail. Clients say: "She is kind, considerate and expert in her field. We have complete confidence in her advice."

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Band 1

Owen White

From the Chambers UK guide

Jane Masih leads the franchising department and offers her extensive experience and knowledge to a wide range of domestic clients. Sources describe her as a "positive force in the industry." 

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Band 1

Hamilton Pratt

From the Chambers UK guide

John Pratt is widely considered a franchising "guru." He advises on all manner of commercial matters and is regarded as one of the best litigators in this area of practice. He also has a strong grounding in UK and European competition law.

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Band 1

Fieldfisher

From the Chambers UK guide

Chris Wormald assists an enviable roster of retail and restaurant clients with international expansion strategy. Formerly McDonald's European general counsel before returning to private practice, he is described by clients as "technically awesome, commercially astute and client-focused."

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Band 2

David Bigmore & Co in association with Goodman Derrick LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

David Bigmore of David Bigmore & Co in association with Goodman Derrick LLP is a franchising specialist remarked on by sources for his "high level of expertise" in franchise law. He assists franchisors and franchisees on all manner of agreements, disputes and property matters.

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Band 2

Owen White

From the Chambers UK guide

Russell Ford is "a very strong litigator who's got plenty of experience under his belt," according to sources. He also represents clients in alternative dispute resolution, and acts for franchisees as well as franchisors.

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Band 2

Bird & Bird

From the Chambers UK guide

Victoria Hobbs practices primarily as a litigator, representing domestic and global businesses in complex franchise disputes. Clients say: "Her knowledge of franchising and the associated legal principles is excellent."

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Band 2

NMW Legal/Franchise Consultancy Services

From the Chambers UK guide

Nina Moran-Watson of NMW Legal/Franchise Consultancy Services is committed to providing legal and operational support to prospective and existing franchisees and franchisors. Sources say: "She knows franchising inside-out and so cuts straight to the chase."

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Band 2

Bird & Bird

From the Chambers UK guide

Graeme Payne acts for prominent brands in the services, retail and healthcare sectors. Clients say: "He is great at coming up with pragmatic solutions."

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Band 3

Fieldfisher

From the Chambers UK guide

David Bond is a "pragmatic commercial lawyer" with "superb knowledge and skills," according to sources. He serves domestic and international clients from a wide range of sectors and advises governmental bodies on the implementation of quasi-franchise models with third-party providers.

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Band 3

DLA Piper UK LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Iain Bowler of DLA Piper UK LLP co-heads the global franchising group of DLA Piper UK LLP and is a commercial contracts expert recommended for the most ambitious international agreements and expansion drives. He recently assisted Odgers Interim in structuring its franchise strategy and drafting its international license and trade mark agreements.

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Band 3

Simons Muirhead & Burton

From the Chambers UK guide

Maninder Gill of Simons Muirhead & Burton has many years of experience advising well-known brands in leisure and retail on international franchising matters. Clients say: "He knows his stuff, is on top of his game and is very good at putting people together."

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Band 3

Ashtons Legal

From the Chambers UK guide

Damian Humphrey specialises in advising new and existing franchises on their establishment and international expansion. Sources say he is "commercially aware and has strong drafting skills."

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Band 3

Blake Morgan

From the Chambers UK guide

Sheilah Mackie leads the team and focuses on non-contentious work, and has additional familiarity with IT and data law. Sources remark on her "great subject knowledge, commercial acumen and client relationship-building ability."

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Band 3

Bird & Bird

From the Chambers UK guide

Shelley Nadler offers her expertise to international brands in the leisure, retail and restaurant sectors. Clients say: "She is exceptionally good at providing concise, straightforward and excellent advice and at de-mystifying legal structures."

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Band 3

Cubism Law

From the Chambers UK guide

Andrew Pena is noted for his highly successful franchise litigation practice, and advises on disputes in the UK and overseas jurisdictions. Sources say: "He is really good at strategy and at getting commercial results for the client."

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Up and Coming

Birketts LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Edward Savory, who has recently moved to Birketts LLP from Leathes Prior, is a Norwich-based commercial and corporate practitioner focused on handling the full spectrum of franchising matters for mainly small and growth-stage businesses. He is noted for his experience and expertise in franchising litigation proceedings.

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Associates to watch

Fieldfisher

From the Chambers UK guide

Gordon Drakes advises well-known brands on business growth and protection. One client describes him as an "extremely commercial individual who gets to the point quickly and provides you with precise, expert advice."

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Associates to watch

Hamilton Pratt

From the Chambers UK guide

Associate Emma Lusty advises on the full range of franchising issues, and areas of particularly deep expertise include franchise resales and trade mark registration. Clients remark on her "strong commercial awareness, technical knowledge and can-do attitude."

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Associates to watch

Birketts LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Victoria Mitman recently joined Birketts LLP from Leathes Prior. She advises potential and existing franchisers and franchisees on franchise agreements, resales and disputes, and also on trade mark matters. Sources speak highly of her "commercial outlook."

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Associates to watch

Mundays LLP

From the Chambers UK guide

Fiona Moss of Mundays LLP has a substantial practice advising franchisees and franchisers on the full span of commercial matters. She is also recommended for the acquisition and sale of franchised businesses. 

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