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In a rapidly evolving environment it is flexibility, creativity and collaboration that remain constant attributes for retail success. Part of the response is about achieving the right dynamic between a physical and virtual presence; the answers are as varied as retailers themselves. Our Retail team also appreciates that the most appropriate solution requires an understanding of general consumer behavioural trends and individual customer preferences. Through our work with a variety of retailers - small and large, local, national and international - we apply our experience and expertise to help our clients make an informed response to new opportunities and approaches.
With teams based in London, Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds and Manchester we provide both ease of access for our clients and the flexibility to ensure that the right advice is delivered by the right team at the right price. We have the capacity to handle business as usual and special projects in tandem.
Corporate and Commercial: our team provides advice on a comprehensive range of transactional activity. Tax, banking and competition specialists are an integrated part of this team. Supply chain management will become an increasingly important element of risk management and our team includes procurement and contract specialists who help provide the maximum amount of protection for our clients. Our commercialisation specialists regularly provide advice on in-store entertainment arrangements, the management of franchises and pop-ups.
Dispute Resolution: our team provides dispute support on customer, supply chain and regulatory issues in retail. We handle complex litigation and specialise in dealing with injunctions and those areas of the business where reputational risk, regulatory scrutiny and both civil and criminal law issues combine. In addition, we also help in-house legal teams with managing their caseload of lower value disputes and complaints (which often require pragmatic and efficient solutions). Within the retail, food and drink sector, our team includes expertise in dealing with cases heard by the Groceries Code Adjudicator.
Employment: we have a long legacy of advising many household name retailers, including a global food restaurant chain and extremely well known fashion brands, on all employment issues including complex and sensitive matters that include: discrimination, equal pay, unfair dismissal and whistleblowing; as well as advice on policies and procedures, minimum wage, working time and contractual matters. The matters we are involved in are frequently high profile, with significant implications for our clients’ reputation. Our team is also recognised for its pre-eminent position in the field of industrial relations: advising household name large employer clients on complex IR issues, including recent successful High Court injunction applications which prevented two national strikes.
Information law: the use of advanced data analytics exposes business to new legal risks. Our national team advises on privacy, confidentiality, continuity and the prevention of and response to cyber-attacks. We have strong links with data regulators and provide pro-active guidance on compliance.
Insurance: we are deeply embedded in the sector, having longstanding relationships with many major retailers, high-street names and food and beverage companies. We also work closely with insurers and brokers representing clients across the retail sector. We deliver a comprehensive suite of services including product safety, recall and liability; food safety; fleet management; employer’s and public liability; property and health & safety.
Real Estate: we see retail asset management as a specialist pursuit providing customised solutions to complex problems. We advise on acquisitions, management and disposal for portfolios of every size, from 8 to 8000 units. Advice on lease negotiations, planning, licensing, construction, dilapidations and re-gearing is just part of the regular guidance we provide to public and private developers and occupiers.
Regulatory: we have a deep understanding of the regulations affecting banking and insurance. With this specialist, practical knowledge we are frequently involved in shaping new legislation. For our clients we provide expert advice on compliance, regulatory investigations, enforcement processes and guidance on how to converse with regulators to best effect.
Technology: our team advises on digital strategies and on the application of new software, on major transformation and outsourcing projects; on licensing and data analytics. Our involvement with growing technology businesses ensures that our advice is founded on insights into the latest developments in the Internet of Things, Virtual Reality and AI for example.
'Outstanding all-round team’ Legal 500, 2020
By Nick Knapman
Considering the future of retail
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By Peter Allchorne
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By Christopher Stanwell
This article first appeared in Estates Gazette on 5 November 2020.
Christopher Stanwell, Head of Planning at international law firm DAC Beachcroft considers how far-reaching changes can be made to our urban centres with greater reference to…
The report, “Health on the High Street” resulted from a round table event hosted by the Social Market Foundation and supported by DAC Beachcroft. We are grateful to attendees from local and central government, the planning community and commercial…