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We recognise the Retail Sector encompasses many types of business, which is why we have a number of key sub-sectors, all with specialist teams who truly understand the relevant opportunities and challenges and can tailor advice accordingly.

What is involved in retail at Freeths?

Retail is one of the firm’s most important and vibrant sectors; our National Team work with over 400 Retailers and Brands in the UK and internationally. Our dedicated team of lawyers specialising in this fast moving sector understand not only the demands that Retailers face, but also the opportunities the sector presents.

We also recognise the Retail Sector encompasses many types of business, which is why we have a number of key sub-sectors, all with specialist teams who truly understand the relevant opportunities and challenges and can tailor advice accordingly. We have specialists in luxury and high street brands, health and beauty, home, fashion, grocery, sports and betting and gaming.

Whether you’re a luxury brand, a high street favourite, a fast growing start up or an e-commerce business, we can offer you tailor made guidance to help you thrive in your field.

We have an active retail community, running regular events and sharing industry know how, including via our The Future of Retail webinars and roundtables, and our Trending Now vlog series. All of which is supported by horizon scanning, thought leadership and regular update reports on the latest sector trends.

Related expertise

Philippa Dempster's Profile

Philippa Dempster

Senior Partner & London Office Managing Partner

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Why choose our retail team?

  • We offer specialist advice that is to the point, jargon free and balance sheet accountable
  • You will benefit from the reassurance of fixed fee pricing and our market-leading 24/7 service
  • We have an in-depth understanding of retail and can give you advice on the latest trends
  • You can expect speed, accuracy, innovation and cost-efficiency to give your brand the advantage
  • We have developed two dedicated products to help retailers manage their assets – the hub for staff management and portfolio solutions to keep on top of key property dates
  • Our partner-led service is tailored to your requirements, so you get exactly what you want

Recent client case studies

  • Aldi and Marks & Spencer

    We acted for Aldi in the highly publicised claim by M&S that Aldi’s Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake infringed trade marks in M&S’s Colin the Caterpillar cake, or that it amounted to passing off. The war of the caterpillars was hard fought and very public:

    Our team members were required to draw on their commercial and diplomacy skills, in addition to advising on the intellectual property rights at play, in order to defend and ultimately settle a claim with so much press interest. The matter is now resolved on confidential terms. We advise Aldi, often consulting with its advertising agency, on all aspects of its advertising and marketing, including television, online, print, OOH and social media marketing. Seasonal campaigns, sponsorships and events are all areas of particular expertise in addition to associated PR and reputational management advice.

    Image of Aldi store
  • Aldi & Shop&Go

    We advise Aldi UK on a wide range of data matters, including on its first checkout-free Shop&Go where people can shop without having to scan a product. Its checkout-free supermarket is one of the first of its kind in the UK and has attracted considerable media attention.

    We advised on the Data Protection Impact Assessment in relation to the data processing conducted by its new checkout- free Shop&Go concept store. We have also advised on the privacy notices and anti-fraud procedures in relation to this store following launch of the pilot. We have also advised on Aldi’s “BAU” data matters, including: (i) its new customer online customer feedback arrangements; (ii) reviewing and negotiating data sharing agreements with third parties; (iii) its employee data retention policies.

    Image of supermarket trolley
  • Joseph

    Freeths advised Joseph on a significant project to simplify their supply chain for their European and rest of the world business. This involved the closure of their own warehouse facility and the migration to a specialist 3PL provider for all warehouse and logistics requirements. This included wholesale, own stores and online.

    We are appointed as Joseph’s virtual in-house legal team and manage their entire trademark portfolio.

    We’re excited to continue to build upon our existing successful relationship, supporting an iconic luxury fashion brand in the new era of retail.

  • TALA

    Freeths work closely with TALA, the sustainable lifestyle/ activewear brand founded by influencer and entrepreneur Grace Beverley. Freeths acted for TALA on its first fundraise, with lead venture capital investors Active (acting by its fund Active General Partner III LLP), certain funds managed by Venrex Investment Management LLP and Pembroke VCT plc as well as a number of individual angel investors. Freeths have since advised Grace Beverley on the follow-on and angel investment and on various commercial matters.

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  • Scotch Corner

    Scotch Corner Designer Village will be the leading designer outlet-shopping destination in the North of England, due to open Autumn 2023. Blue Diamond are already signed to the home and garden centre aspect and headline exchanged retailers for the outlet include Adidas, Hugo Boss, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, Joules, Dune London, and many others.

    The Freeths team is acting for the landowner/ developer on all aspects, including real estate, pre-lettings, infrastructure, funding and construction. We acted on all land acquisition aspects and continue to deal with option drawdown needed for the home and garden centre. This is most likely the largest single site retail-led project currently advised on by a law firm outside of London at present.

    Image of clothes store
  • PVH

    Freeths have a long-standing relationship with PVH (parent company of Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein), supporting various areas of the business. Freeths recently advised PVH in negotiating contracts with Heathrow Airport and various suppliers in setting up a new retail reserve and collect model for Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger underwear and apparel. This follows the PVH x Heathrow retail vending project completed by Freeths in the previous year. The negotiations and implementation were successful, resulting in a strengthened relationship with Heathrow. We are excited to continue advising PVH on new projects in this space.

    Image of person in airport
  • Leading Retailer

    Freeths have become the “go to” firm of a leading retailer in providing compliance advice in respect of all consumer products which it intends to sell on the UK market. These are wide ranging and include items such as electronic equipment, toys, pet accessories, sports clothing and equipment, detergent and cleaning products, kitchen accessories, make-up and cosmetic products, paints, and home furniture amongst others. This also extends to advising on remedial action, including product recalls, where a non- compliant product has been placed on the market as well as dealing with any enforcement action by Trading Standards.

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More examples of our expertise

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  • DB

    “The Freeths team are personable, flexible, and very business minded, always keeping the commercial objective at the forefront. They’re great at ma...

    Danny Brown, Chief Financial Officer


  • CS

    "Paul Smith likes to adopt a relaxed approach to business. Richard fits into this style with ease and consistently provides us with sound commercia...

    Company Secretary, Paul Smith

  • PH

    "Sarah has acted for Hotel Chocolat for over ten years on most of our property requirements. Sarah is first class, professional, completely trustwo...

    Peter Harris, Co-Founder & Development Director

    Hotel Chocolat

  • PM

    "With close to 300 stores nationwide, The Money Shop frequently faces property management issues such as contested and uncontested lease renewals,...

    Phil Mulroney, Head of Property

    The Money Shop

  • “The team are commercial and pragmatic.”

    Chambers & Partners, 2024

  • “Freeths have a key understanding of the commercialities and practicalities of the development process. They are able to provide sound advice whils...

    The Legal 500

Meet our team

Philippa Dempster's Profile

Philippa Dempster

Senior Partner & London Office Managing Partner

Lisa Gilligan's Profile

Lisa Gilligan

Leicester Office Managing Partner

Simon Barker's Profile

Simon Barker

Partner & Head of Intellectual Property

Luke Dixon's Profile

Luke Dixon

Partner & Head of Data & Information

Rebecca Howlett's Profile

Rebecca Howlett

Commercial Partner & Head of Freeths' Virtual Legal Team

Paul Tomkins's Profile

Paul Tomkins

Partner & Head of Real Estate Litigation

Darren Williamson's Profile

Darren Williamson

Partner & National Head of Real Estate

David Lane's Profile

David Lane

Knowledge Management Lawyer

Fiona Lawson's Profile

Fiona Lawson

Senior Associate Chartered Trade Mark Attorney

Our accreditations

We are celebrating another year of accreditations and rankings.

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