Special Counsel

We can help you with all aspects of franchising and related legal issues, including:

  • Establishing or expanding a franchise system
  • Bringing an overseas franchise system into New Zealand
  • Taking a franchise system overseas
  • Purchasing a franchise system or business
  • Selling a franchise system or business

Setting up a franchise or buying into one requires robust due diligence, and understanding the business and market you are entering. We work with a range of franchise clients across all industries to mitigate risk and achieve success. We can advise you on all stages of your franchise journey, from set-up through to expansion and exiting.

When working with a legal advisor you need a firm that understands the unique benefits and challenges of franchising and has expertise in all franchise related issues. Our franchise support model ensures that you benefit from having one legal point of contact who can manage all your needs, utilising the specialist advice available across our firm for specific matters. This includes providing guidance on employment, health and safety, immigration, banking and finance, privacy, property, general commercial law and dispute resolution, and ensuring compliance with relevant changes to the law.

Helping you achieve your business goals is our priority. We can help you build and maintain your competitive advantage and operate your business successfully.

As a full-service national law firm, we have strong local and nationwide industry and community connections to support our clients. You will be able to respond with confidence to opportunities and challenges that arise with your franchise.

Whether you are already a franchisor or franchisee or looking to buy into or establish a franchise system, we would be happy to talk you through how we can help you. 

Watch Partner Hamish Walker talk about our services for Franchise clients.

Commercial Advice, Strategy and Planning

We advise both franchisors and franchisees at any point in their franchise journey on:

  • Establishing a new franchise system, from conception through to launch, including purchasing, drafting contracts, reviewing contracts and due diligence
  • Expansion advice, including franchise system restructuring, joint ventures and partnerships, corporate roll-ups and strategic acquisitions
  • Property acquisition and retail leasing
  • Raising capital and advice on appropriate funding structures
  • E-Commerce and digital support, including advertising and marketing requirements, data protection and privacy
  • Franchise exit, extraction and sale strategies
Expansion Models

Our team gives advice on the most effective expansion strategies and structures for businesses. Our experience with franchising systems enables us to offer alternative expansion ideas that may not otherwise be considered. We can assist you with:

  • Franchising
  • Company outlets
  • Licensing
  • Joint ventures or partnerships
  • Distributorships
Establishing a Franchise System

Establishing a franchise system requires in-depth understanding of your business, systems and processes. A successful franchise system distils the key components of your success for others to invest in.

We work with businesses looking to set up a franchise system, either based on the success of their business in New Zealand or introducing an international brand to New Zealand. We can also help you expand across New Zealand and internationally. We can support you with:

  • Drafting franchise, dealer and licence agreements and documents required by applicable codes and other relevant requirements
  • Franchise Association of New Zealand (FANZ) code compliance
Buying into a Franchise System

Buying into a franchise system or buying from a current franchisee requires specialised due diligence. We can support you with:

  • Due diligence advice and market assessment, including asset ownership and intellectual property
  • Review of franchise agreements, manuals and contracts
  • Exit planning and strategies
Competition and Consumer Law

It is important to understand where your likely risks are, and how you can remain compliant with all relevant legislation. We can help you with compliance and set up best practice processes:

  • Complying with relevant laws and requirements for the sale of goods and services, such as competition and consumer law compliance, trading terms and consumer guarantees
  • Advice regarding restrictive trade practices, such as in supply chain relationships
  • Competition and consumer law training for you and your team
  • Responding to the Fair-Trading Act and upcoming changes, including unfair contracts advice
Marketing, E-Commerce and Digital

We provide advice on sales and marketing regulations and ensure you are operating safely and competitively in a digital world. We can provide advice on:

  • Big data analytics and data driven marketing
  • Data protection and security
  • Privacy compliance, both domestically and internationally
  • Marketing, selling and operating safely online
Intellectual Property Strategy

Intellectual Property (IP) is an intrinsic part of a franchise system. Having an IP strategy and protection in place is important. We deliver strategic advice to help clients profit through identifying IP property opportunities and protecting their IP rights.

  • Intellectual property exploitation and licensing
  • Protection of brand including clearance, protection and enforcement
  • Trade mark registration and protection (both for international franchise brands and domestic)
  • Licensing agreements and copyright
  • Protection of IP in transactions
Health and Safety and Employment

Our specialist team assists clients to navigate their employment and health and safety issues. We believe the best advice is given by analysing the people involved, the situations at hand and the wider context of your business objectives. We can support you with:

  • Employment contracts, policies and grievances
  • Restructuring
  • Employment law changes such as holiday pay, sick leave, minimum wage increases
  • Health and safety advice, audits and investigations
  • Responding to the Covid-19 pandemic
  • Providing guidance on modern day slavery and worker exploitation issues
Immigration Accreditation and Visas

With strengths in all areas of immigration law, we pride ourselves on the ability to provide an end-to-end service for our clients. We can support you with:

  • Initial eligibility scoping
  • Visa or work permit applications
  • Confirmed residency
  • Employment assistance for businesses with trading status in New Zealand
Litigation and Dispute Resolution

We help to both prevent disputes and to resolve them and can navigate the complexities for you, getting to the heart of the issue and putting in place strategies to ensure the most appropriate solution for your commercial needs. Our specialist team can support you with:

  • Dispute resolution services including arbitration, mediation and adjudication
  • Franchisor/franchisee disputes and property disputes including leasing issues, resource consent issues, insurances, employment and health and safety, liquor licensing, insolvency and intellectual property
  • Navigation of all levels of the court system, and support with international litigation

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