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22nd September 2017

Commercial

Commercial Contracts

The needs of our clients differ and it is always our aim to offer advice based on a thorough knowledge of our clients’ businesses, understanding their commercial priorities and timescales and responding to their needs with prompt, practical and clear advice.

 

Often, we develop such a good understanding of our clients’ commercial operations that they virtually regard us as their in-house lawyers. With larger clients we work with their in-house legal team, assisting in negotiations and ensuring that contracts are up to date and appropriate.

 

In addition to acting for a wide range of SMEs, we also act regularly for multinationals on substantial contracts. We also advise on many international cross border and multi-border arrangements transactions particularly across Europe and in the United States.

 

As examples:

  • A multi-million pound contract for mobile telecoms handsets and accessories.
  • A 3 million Outsourcing Agreement for the supply of Information Technology goods and services.
  • A long term Supply Agreement for the production and supply of chemical products.
  • Advice to multinational clients on Europe-wide direct marketing and sales promotions.
 

Competition law is often overlooked in commercial transactions, intellectual property, dealing with distributors or sources of supply and the merging and disposals of businesses.

Competition Law

We have a good understanding and practical experience in dealing with both National and EU competition laws and can advise on the complexities of the competition law framework, such as;

 
  • Competition Act issues in the UK, European competition issues and US anti-trust issues.
  • Price fixing arrangements, setting recommended retail prices, discounts and other potentially uncompetitive price activities.
  • Prohibitions on collaborative activities under EU Law.
  • Official enquiries from authorities on allegedly anti-competitive practices.
  • Selective distribution systems.
 

With the emergence of new sanctions, it is even more important for directors of companies to ensure compliance to avoid personal liability and possible imprisonment.

 

Case examples: the following are just three examples of where we have assisted our clients;

  • We have helped a collaborative research and development company involved with the creation of 4G (and beyond) technologies in the mobile telecoms industry, restructure its constitution and policies to avoid potential breaches of competition law.
  • We have assisted a manufacturer and supplier of prestige goods with the setting up of a selective distribution system across Europe to avoid anti-competitive practices.
  • We have provided seminars and instruction to the European sales team of a global manufacturer. This was in relation to the ‘do’s and don’ts’ when negotiating prices and implementing pricing policies in order to avoid anti-competitive activities.

IT & E-Commerce

The internet, cyberspace, the virtual market, whatever you want to call it – it is the cheapest way of selling, promoting and marketing goods and services to a potential global market. However, it can be the most complex legally.

 

Laws are lagging behind the advance of technology and, with a global market, it is difficult to know which law applies. It is important to find lawyers who understand the application of traditional laws and the new e-commerce piecemeal laws. We have experience in all aspects of e-commerce.

 

Case examples:

  • Setting up a bespoke website selling portal for both retail and wholesale of products and services.
  • Licensing exclusive rights to conduct an online auction room business in parts of Europe.
  • Setting up online terms and conditions for indirect marketing campaigns i.e. product competitions.
  • Preparing and negotiating the contracts and settling the terms for an online e-skills children’s learning programme which has since been rolled out across the UK.

Regulatory Issues

Most of what we do in life is now governed by regulations. Health & Safety, environmental controls, noise pollution and a host of other pieces of legislation restrict the way in which we conduct ourselves both in the workplace and at home.

 

Nigel has helped many clients steer a path through the maze of regulations and has represented them when their actions (or inactions) have led to court hearings. Sometimes it is too late to avoid a court case but it is often the case that advice given at the outset of any venture can avoid the costs and sanctions which are brought about by a regulatory breach.

"Alec has served as outside counsel for TaylorMade for over a decade and regularly advises the company on all sorts of commercial matters. He is quick to respond, efficient, and has the special ability to communicate with both TaylorMade's American lawyers based in California and also directly with the business groups located in TaylorMade's Basingstoke office, as well as with its various employees distributed throughout Europe."

Sierra Brandis

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