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Past, Present and Future: International Franchising in the time of COVID

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 91 minutes
Recorded Date: June 15, 2021
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  • Discover the proper and often improper use of force majeure clauses-particularly as it relates to supply agreements and leases
  • Review the legal issues that arise when an international franchisor’s "old" model is no longer viable--brick and mortar locations, for example--and franchisors seek to leverage technology in the "new" model
  • Consider franchisors’ current franchise model and proposed development plans in light of the COVID-19 legal landscape, particularly with respect to ghost, dark and cloud kitchens--the contracts that they require to address shared space, confidentiality and competition issues, monitoring and maintaining system standards, consumer protection/food safety
  • Review the legal trends and hot topics, including changes in the way arbitrations will be conducted in the wake of the pandemic
Runtime: 1 hour, 31 minutes
Recorded: June 15, 2021


Early in 2020, when global franchisors were first being affected by COVID-19, many looked to Asia—what worked, what did not work—to try to predict what effect the pandemic would have on other regions. Later in 2020, many global brands saw COVID-19 as something that they needed to "get through", something that would last for a discreet period of time and then there would be a return to business as usual, but as time passed and that did not happen, it became clear that there will be no returning to "normal". Many franchisors are grappling with the continuing effects of COVID-19 on international franchising while others have found opportunities to accelerate international growth and re-invent their business model.

As we look to the future, what lessons can be learned from COVID-19? For the brands that have been challenged by the effects of the pandemic, how can they rebound? For brands that have seen changes to their business model, are those changes temporary or permanent? And most importantly, what do the attorneys supporting franchising internationally need to do to assist franchisors--whether they are facing reductions in their brands' global footprint or seeing growth?

This program was recorded on June 15th, 2021.

Provided By

American Bar Association
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Daniel Waddell

Senior Counsel
Papa John's International, Inc.

Daniel Waddell is Senior Counsel at Papa John's International, Inc.

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Martine de Koning

Partner, Competition Law
Kennedy Van der Laan

Martine combines in depth knowledge of EU and competition law with a deep understanding of commerce and trade. She is praised for her ‘sharp strategic insight, knowledge and creativity in providing solutions’. She handles litigation in a ‘smart, assertive and effective’ manner.

Martine leads cases on abuse of dominance, vertical restraints and transfer of technology. Martine advises and handles disputes on tying, pricing, rebates, trademark and patent licensing and know how. With her lifelong focus on the fashion and retail sector she acts for her clients on internet sales restrictions, third party platform restrictions, geoblocking, dynamic pricing, omnichannel (seamless marketplace), e-commerce, inventory sharing, dual distribution, horizontal and vertical data sharing, loyalty programs and big data.

She structures complex international cooperation such as joint ventures, outsourcing and vertical (channel) agreements. Martine is an ‘outstanding knowledgeable authority on strategic competition law relating to franchising. She represents domestic franchisers in their international expansions plans and also assists foreign clients with establishing a presence in Europe, the Middle East and Africa’.

Martine is a ‘shrewd contract drafter and negotiator’. She handles sales, manufacturing, procurement, logistics, transportation, warehousing, joint ventures, outsourcing and other domestic and international commercial contracts and related disputes. She also practices in customs and trade, and product safety and compliance. Martine’s interests include international trade unions and treaties (EU, WTO, ASEAN, APEC, NAFTA, Caricom) and exports regulations and sanctions.

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Kristin Corcoran

Appleby & Corcorna, LLC

With more than 25 years' experience at the world’s largest franchise brand, Kristin has extensive knowledge on the legal support needed to grow businesses and franchise concepts. For companies seeking to expand domestically and internationally, she understands the issues and will examine each situation with a wide lens, assessing and managing risk, identifying problems, and providing practical legal advice designed to allow clients to implement effective solutions.

Businesses need advice on how to avoid risk, and with her background defending businesses in-house and on behalf of major insurance carriers as outside counsel, Kristin can view corporate matters from a risk assessment and mitigation perspective. Kristin has found that it is critical to not only have a risk management strategy but to proactively review and assess that strategy in light of new and constantly changing regulations.

As franchising involves more than the disclosure document, franchise and development agreements, Kristin regularly monitors changes in the laws that affect franchising, including issues associated with COVID-19, privacy, data protection, competition, and arbitration and dispute resolution. Kristin has provided legal recommendations and guidance on market entry and withdrawal, and developing legal documents, including vendor contracts that were right-sized for the target market. She has provided strategic legal guidance on a broad range of matters from technology to operations to vendor and supply chain matters.

Kristin is also a litigator with first chair jury trial experience. Through tribunals such as International Chamber of Commerce and International Center of Dispute Resolution, she has arbitrated numerous complex arbitration cases, such as disputes involving master franchise agreements and developer agreements as well as vendor and franchise agreement terminations. She has confirmed final arbitration awards and managed local counsel to file actions enforcing judgments in jurisdictions where the contracting party resides, forcing the closure of the business enterprise or ensuring that licenses to the trademarks were extinguished, among other causes of action.

Admitted to practice in the state of Connecticut and the US District Court of Connecticut.

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