Nina Moran-Watson is a specialist franchise agreement solicitor and has been involved in franchising for over 30 years. In 2000 she set up her own niche franchise legal practice from home, advising both franchisors and franchisees on all things franchising. Having served as an elected member of the Policy Board of the bfa and being one of only 6 members of the former bfa Legal Committee, Nina is well-deserving of a spot on the judges panel. We spoke to Nina to find out what it means to her to be a judge for this year’s bfa HSBC British Franchise Awards:
What are the reoccurring legislative challenges businesses have faced over the last year and do you believe there will there be any lasting changes as a result?
Businesses are still grappling with changes to data protection legislation and the focus on compliance over the last few years has highlighted poor practice in all sectors with regard to the storage and retention of personal data. I do think that businesses are now far more aware of their obligations and that franchisors in particular are in a position to share best practice with their franchisees.
What legislative changes have impacted the franchise industry as result of Brexit? Can you predict any changes for the industry moving forward?
There has been some concern over the impact of Brexit in relation to the enforcement of competition law in franchising. However the substance of UK competition law is very similar to that of EU competition law so in reality the provisions contained in most franchise agreements restricting a franchisee’s ability to compete after termination will remain enforceable if drafted in accordance with the previous Block Exemption requirements.
In your eyes, why are business awards so important to organisations and why should they apply?
Business awards can lift the self-esteem, motivation and commitment of head office employees as well as franchisees and their staff by recognising that their contribution to both individual success and the success of the network as a whole is valued. This in turn can lead to increased productivity, a boost to the credibility of the business as far as customers and the wider public are concerned, hopefully attracting high quality franchisees and staff and generating more business and more success.
What does being a judge for the British Franchise Awards mean to you?
It is a privilege to gain first-hand in-depth knowledge of the inspirational stories behind each of the entries and to meet the people involved in these successful businesses. It makes me extremely proud of the franchising industry, which I have had honour of being involved in for over 30 years.
Why are you so passionate about franchising?
Where do I start! It provides the opportunity to run a successful business to those who might never have considered it without the support of a franchise network. It is wonderful to see how individuals and businesses can flourish when they work together with mutual respect; the success of the franchise industry in the UK is testament to how, when done properly, franchising can make an enormous contribution to the fulfilment of so many people, as well as to the economy as a whole and it is fabulous that this can be recognised through these awards.
Join us in celebrating this year’s finalists and winners at the prestigious awards ceremony, taking place at the Vox, Birmingham on 30th November.