Bird & Bird

Franchising Department

UK-wide
Current View:

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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 labels and retailers of all types. Active in the establishment of school franchises in overseas markets.

Strengths One client attests: "It is a proactive and accommodating firm that provides very good value for money."

Sources characterise the firm as "experts in the international franchise space."

Work highlights Assisted Mexican Grill with the negotiation of commercial agreements covering the development and operational aspects of a franchise development deal, which will see the company's brand of tortilla restaurants expand into airports, railway stations and roadside service areas across the UK.

Notable practitioners


Graeme Payne
advises various retailers and food and drink sector clients on portfolio management issues and international expansions. He has additional experience in assisting with terminations and licensing matters that arise as part of international franchise networks.
"Graeme's client service is outstanding and he is business-savvy."


James Fowler
regularly advises on both domestic and international franchise expansions in the education and retail sectors, among others. He also assists with franchise renewals, renegotiations, terminations and restructurings.
"He is very patient and understanding, while his explanations on the negotiating terms of individual contracts are very clear."


Mark Abell
has significant experience assisting clients with the management of franchise networks and international franchise roll-outs. He frequently advises both franchisors and franchisees in the education and retail sectors.
"Mark is a very clever lawyer who provides strategically important advice." "He is one of the premier lawyers in the international franchise space. He is able to connect with his clients, understands the business aspects of the work and inspires a strong sense of confidence."


Shelley Nadler
provides well-known retail and restaurant franchisors with dispute avoidance and risk management advice, in addition to assisting with the termination and renegotiation of franchises. Her experience spans both domestic and international transactions, including franchise arrangements across Europe and the Middle East.
"Her understanding both of our sector and of franchising structures is excellent and she always meets deadlines."


Victoria Hobbs
is well known for her work on contentious matters relating to franchise terminations, renegotiations and roll-outs. She primarily acts for clients in the retail, leisure, and food and drink industries.
"Victoria understands our business structure and the objectives we wish to achieve. She pays great attention to the details, is excellent at time management and has extensive franchising knowledge and experience." "She is very pragmatic in how she provides legal services, and her technical expertise is outstanding."