Franchising & Distribution

Franchising and distribution are effective expansion strategies for businesses looking to grow in both their domestic markets and internationally. With on the ground experts in our UK, Europe, Middle East and Asia Pacific offices, 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 or distribution

At Bird & Bird we understand the core elements and dynamics of both franchising and distribution relationships. We provide guidance on how a franchise or distribution model can and should be structured depending on whether you are looking to achieve domestic or international expansion, make use of franchising or distribution 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, distribution 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 and distribution network management issues, including dispute resolution and avoidance.

To further support businesses using franchising and/or distribution 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 and businesses looking to expand via distribution, we also work with brands, developers, master franchisees, multi-unit/multi-brand franchise operators, and groups of franchisees in class actions. We understand the opportunities franchising and distribution can bring to your business and are passionate about helping you realise them. It all starts with a conversation.

We are delighted to offer a free 30-minute consultation to businesses looking for advice on franchising, or manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and logistics matters. Please contact us via this form and we will be in touch to arrange a time to discuss.

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"Bird & Bird is responsive, efficient and, most importantly, offers pragmatic answers to complex issues."

Chambers Global 2022

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Chambers Global, 2020

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Chambers Global, 2019

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