Gowling WLG

Gowling WLG

Advisor Member

– Joined 1997

Gowling WLG is an international law firm with its UK offices in Birmingham, Leeds and London.

Our firm is built on the belief that the best way to serve you is to be in tune with your world, aligned with your opportunity and ambitions for your success.

We have over 1,500 legal professionals across the world who are positioned to help you rise to the challenges you face.

Our services

We support clients working across a broad range of sectors including: retail, leisure and hotels, life sciences, food and beverage, healthcare, sport and automotive, to name a few.

Our strong sector understanding ensures the context of our advice reflects the market in which your business operates.

We are specialists in advising clients on their routine, day-to-day contracts and work closely with several of our clients’ in-house legal and commercial teams as an extension of their team. We help clients achieve pragmatic and commercially focused solutions in relation to both day-to-day contractual matters as well as large and strategically important projects.

We are perfectly placed to help you navigate the legal issues that arise within your franchise business.

How we work with clients

Relationship management is a high priority for our business – we can’t maintain a strong relationship with our clients until we’re sure that we’re delivering excellent service at every level.

Our established relationship management programme is underpinned by our firm-wide service excellence initiative – ONE: this stands for Ownership, No surprises and Extra mile. This is what we will expect of all of our team, at all levels:

  • to take ownership for their work and the service they deliver;
  • to ensure there are no surprises on bills or in respect of the team; and
  • to always strive to exceed client’s expectations.

We take the time to understand:

  • how you like to work with your external lawyers
  • your do’s and don’t’s
  • your appetite for risk and standard contracting positions
  • your internal processes

Our values

Our key values allow us to deliver great client service.

  • The power of teamwork – we collaborate seamlessly across services, sectors and offices.
  • Always striving to be better – we always look for ways to innovate and challenge; we adapt to deliver for our clients.
  • We all bring something different – we’re proud to be recognised as a top employer, and actively encourage equity, diversity and inclusion in our workplace. Not only does it allow us to attract and retain the best talent, it also helps us attract and retain great clients, who know that motivated and engaged people produce higher quality work, approach problems with creativity and ingenuity, and will go the distance to help them succeed.

Franchise Services

Our expertise in commercial law and the franchising industry ensures we will deliver compliance-focused, consistent and enforceable franchising agreements suited to the modern franchising market and incorporating the most up-to-date legal requirements.

We provide strategic advice on contentious and non-contentious matters to UK and global organisations across many sectors including retail, leisure and food and beverage.

We assist clients with expansion overseas as well as growing international brands in the UK.

Services for franchisors include advising on:

  • drafting franchise agreements
  • drafting pre-contractual disclosure documents
  • disputes with franchisees
  • employment – employment contracts, handbooks, health and safety policies, company procedures and policies
  • intellectual property/brand protection
  • real estate
  • sale of franchise opportunities
  • competition law issues
  • preparing documents for agreement renewals or change of terms

Services for franchisees include advising on:

  • the franchise agreement
  • pre-contractual disclosure documents
  • disputes with franchisors
  • termination rights
  • procurement of products i.e. IT services
  • purchase or sale of a franchise business
  • real estate – negotiating/advising on freehold or leasehold properties
  • competition law issues

Work highlights include:

  • Drafting a franchise agreement for an American manufacturer of ice cream, frozen yogurt, and sorbet for use in the UK Market.
  • Anglicising/updating Starbucks US based master licensing/sub-licensing agreements for use in UK/Europe.
  • Helping a major Hollywood studio to set up dedicated branded areas on a franchise basis within a UK supermarket chain.
  • Advising various branded businesses on establishing UK franchise networks e.g. Land Rover, BT, Somerfields, Vodafone and Jamie Oliver.
  • Advising Metro Bank on the acquisition financing of coaching for profit franchises.
  • Advising Metro Bank in relation to the proposed acquisition financing of a number of Domino Pizza outlets.
  • Transitioning Halifax Estate Agency and cash bank franchises from HBOS to two new franchisors.
  • Advising Marks and Spencer on the opening of Simply Food outlets and M&S Cafés on a franchise basis.
  • Advising Argos on its innovative arrangement with Sainsbury’s to launch a series of new Argos digital stores within a number of its UK supermarkets.
  • Acting for the HSBC on financing the acquisition of 26 KFC franchises through a corporate acquisition.
  • Acting for the funder on the financing of the acquisition of several O2 franchises.
  • Acting for the funder on the acquisition financing of a 50% share in a company owning 7 pizza franchised restaurants.

Key Information

Sector Type:




Next BFA Reaccreditation:

Request More Info

We use cookies to track site usage and improve user experience.