Franchising offers an effective expansion strategy for businesses looking to grow in both their domestic markets and internationally. With on the ground franchise experts in our offices in the UK, Europe, Middle East and Asia Pacific together with our global network of specialist franchise counsel across the Americas and Africa, we help businesses operating in a wide range of sectors to achieve their growth objectives via franchising.

At Bird & Bird we understand the core elements and dynamics of a franchise relationship. We provide guidance on how a franchise model can and should be structured depending on whether you are looking to: achieve domestic/international expansion; make use of franchising as a new growth channel; or turn an existing corporate business into a franchise business. We also support with the drafting and negotiation of the core franchise and legal documentation and advise on international franchise market entry regulations. We have developed an international comparative guide to help you navigate the variety of franchise regulations across the globe. Importantly we support you in dealing with ongoing franchise network management issues, including dispute resolution and avoidance.

To further support businesses using franchising as part of their growth strategy, we advise on the key related areas, such as the protection and management of your brand portfolio, as well as your online and social media presence. Due to the importance of the integration of physical and online channels, we provide a range of support relating to e-commerce, m-commerce and the use of technology, including harnessing the power of data. As a franchisor, it is important from the outset to consider not only your own exit and investment strategy, but also the exit options for your franchisees. As part of our strategic planning and structuring advice, we advise franchisors on various tax and corporate structures, as well as helping to implement these.

Whilst we support the global expansion of some of the world’s best-known brands, we are also committed to helping small and medium-sized businesses achieve their objectives. As well as advising franchisors, we also work with developers, master franchisees, multi-unit/multi-brand franchise operators, and groups of franchisees in class actions. We understand the opportunities franchising can bring to your business and are passionate about helping you realise them. It all starts with a conversation. 

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"A team that is top quality and can handle the big work."

Chambers Global 2015 - franchising

“The lawyers gave advice that was very legally sound and took into account practical aspects. They were very responsive. They gave high-quality advice in a very practical way.”

Chambers Global, 2020

“They give incredibly sound legal advice on very complex and technical legal issues, blend it with pragmatic and workable solutions, and present it in a concise and clear manner.”

Chambers Global, 2019

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