Victoria Hobbs is a partner in the international dispute resolution group at Bird & Bird LLP, based in London. She advises companies who have expanded (whether domestically or globally) via multichannel strategies, including franchising, licensing, distribution and agency relationships on all stages of the dispute avoidance and resolution process. She works with clients on pre-contractual disclosure documents and audits of recruitment materials (to minimise the exposure to misrepresentation and breach of contract claims), termination rights, managing franchisee or licensee performance issues, and strategies to avoid escalation of network-wide franchisee or licensee unrest, as well as general dispute-avoidance strategy advice. She also has extensive experience of mediation and enforcing post-termination obligations and restrictions through injunctive relief, litigation and arbitration.
In addition to her significant expertise in UK disputes, Ms Hobbs also regularly advises clients on disputes arising out of global multichannel expansion programmes and has managed such disputes throughout the EU, Middle East, India, China and South America.
She also has experience of both bringing and defending franchisee class actions and has successfully represented large groups of franchisees to renegotiate their franchise agreements, obtain damages and free themselves from contractual restrictions.
Ms Hobbs is rated as a leading franchise lawyer in the Chambers and Partners, Who’s Who Legal: Franchise and Best Lawyers directories.
She is a regular contributor to industry publications such as Franchise World, Franchising Business & Law Alert, International Journal of Franchise Law and Business Franchise Magazine, and regularly speaks at trade events and seminars.