Achieving a flawless finish


High street conditions remain challenging and fashion and beauty brands and retailers have not been immune. If general retailers are feeling the pressure of adapting to new technologies and consumer habits then this is only intensified in the fashion & beauty sector. Personalisation, and the brand voice are at the forefront of the industry - online or offline consumers don’t just want to shop they want an integrated experience.

But those who nail it reap the benefits. We have deep retail sector experience and our speciality practices have evolved as the needs of our clients in the sector have adapted.

Extensive experience
  • Advising Primark on its legal requirements across its real estate portfolio.
  • Advising Kurt Geiger on sale to private equity firm.
  • Acting for REN Skincare of the sale of natural beauty products to Unilever.
  • Providing a full range of corporate and commercial work to PZ Cussons including the acquisition of the Charles Worthington, Sanctuary Spa, St Tropez and Fudge brands.
  • Advising high-street retailer on direct marketing opportunities and data protection issues
  • Advising a sports retailer on the recall of its hooded sportswear following an identified breach of Regulations
  • Representing Stockport-based Natalie Roche Ltd in an arbitration brought by the Estee Lauder subsidiary, GlamGlow LLC, which went all the way to hearing in Los Angeles
  • Advising Hobbs on a full range of employment issues, from day-to-day advice to advising on all senior executive appointments
This season's key trends

There are a number of issues affecting Fashion & Beauty businesses today. We have created a series of PDF guides which give an overview of various issues and how we can help our sector clients to overcome these challenges and make the most of developments and opportunities within their market.

Giving Retail Real Estate a makeover

The surge in online shopping has changed the way that all retailers view and manage their real estate portfolio. Retailers with significant real estate are continuously reviewing and refreshing their store portfolio as they seek to optimise their physical outlets.

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Ever-changing workforce

The workplace is changing. "Offices" are decentralised, working hours are no longer "9 'til 5" and job-for-life employees are a thing of the past with the average retail worker moving on after 2 years.

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Intellectual Property: Always in style

Intellectual property exists in many aspects of fashion and beauty products. But if protective steps are not taken then brands can find themselves suddenly out of fashion and unable to take effective action against copycat products. In a competitive market, retailers may find themselves accused of infringement for following the latest trend – but – where is the line drawn?

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Sharing the love: Loyalty schemes

Building a relationship with customers that goes beyond ad hoc purchases has obvious benefits for any fashion or beauty brand. The Boots Advantage Card is the most obvious example in the sector. But of course, it's also about generating data to create deeper understanding of customers and drive increased revenue.

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Stylish ways to pay

Payment can now be made using a "wearable" fashion accessory that can enable payments as securely and innovatively as a phone.

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The complete palette: Well-tailored contracts

In an inherently uncertain world, we bring clients the certainty and protection they need in their commercial agreements.

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Funding & acquisition: Getting the deal done seamlessly

Despite the ongoing squeeze on margins, regulatory uncertainty, weak consumer confidence and a decline in discretionary spend, deals are still being done in the fashion and beauty sector.

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New opportunities, new challenges

Fashion and beauty is a UK export success story as more and more businesses turn their attention away from a challenging home market, and take their brands overseas. With the fallout from Brexit yet to be fully realised, the European market is uncertain and strong demographics and growing prosperity in emerging markets makes the latter a particularly tantalising opportunity.

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Supply chain vigilance and transparency

Many retail companies, particularly in the Fashion & Beauty sector, will source products overseas in emerging markets. However, increased scrutiny from consumers, competitors, customers, activists and the media means that retailers need to pay extra attention to the composition and behaviour of their supply chain.

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Smoothing contours: Managing disputes

Fashion and Beauty is a rapidly evolving sector with the potential for a variety of contractual disputes. Our aim is to help you to avoid and resolve business disputes at an early stage. Where this is not possible, we look to robustly support you in litigation and ensure the best possible result for your business.

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Product Litigation, Safety & Recall

Whether you manufacture, supply or distribute fashion items & accessories, care & beauty products onto the market, or sell those directly to consumers, your reputation as a business is inherently tied to your products. We understand that you have no greater responsibility than to consumers who use or buy your products.

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Protecting integrity

Media enquiries, pressure groups, aggrieved customers, disaffected employees, sensitive litigation, and operational and supply issues can all put at risk the reputation of your business, your brands and your directors

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Key contacts

Meet the team
Emma Armitage

Emma Armitage

Partner, Dispute Resolution, Intellectual Property
London, UK

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Paul Medlicott

Paul Medlicott

Partner, Private Equity
Manchester

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Rachel Cook

Rachel Cook

Managing Associate, Dispute Resolution
United Kingdom

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