Industry focus: retail in Netherlands

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's retail team, part of the firm’s international consumer goods and retail practice, brings together a number of areas of expertise, advising clients on franchising matters and assisting them with brand protection, in addition to providing both corporate and restructuring advice and handling all manner of commercial litigation. The latter is Itse Oosterhoff's area of focus, with his practice being centred around supply chain disputes. Benjamin van Kessel specialises in IP matters, assisting retail clients with the full spectrum of hard and soft IP matters, while Wibren Veldhuizen and Harald van Dobbenburgh are sought after for cross-border tax structuring and transfer pricing advice. Laura Rietvelt supports retail clients undergoing international restructuring measures.

Practice head(s):

Itse Oosterhoff; Benjamin van Kessel; Wibren Veldhuizen; Harald van Dobbenburgh; Laura Rietvelt


‘Baker McKenzie stands out because all of the department’s lawyers are highly specialised in the retail and commercial areas, which adds value for clients. The firm has clearly made its mark in this industry.’

‘Itse Oosterhoff is bright and shows an exceptional commercial talent. His skills stand out when advising clients, litigating their cases or when negotiating with the other side. He is experienced, knowledgeable and strong strategically.’

‘A strong team that exudes teamwork, working closely and effectively together.’

Key clients

British American Tobacco




Johnson & Johnson

Rituals Cosmetics Enterprise






Work highlights

  • Acted as a trusted advisor to Rituals on different aspects of its selective distribution systems throughout the world, with a particular focus on improving the effectiveness of Ritual’s strategy to prevent unauthorised sales.
  • Advising Unilever on its trademark prosecution (brand management) matters, on trademark infringement matters and strategic trademark advice regarding the Benelux region.
  • Assisting Mistral on various matters regarding IP distribution and licensing contracts, trademark licences and disputes.

Kennedy Van der Laan

July 2023 saw Kennedy Van der Laan merge its commercial and international trade team with the firm’s EU and competition team, while continuing to be a strong player in matters concerning Dutch franchising law and expanding its work in the e-commerce sector. The retail group is led by the ‘very practical’ Martine de Koning, a leading expert on franchising matters, who also takes on competition issues before the Dutch courts. Jelle Blom, who made partner in June 2023, focuses on franchising and commercial contracts, along with Isabel van Tuyll van Serooskerken, who also joined the firm’s partnership in 2023, combining a civil procedural law practice with matters of franchising, distribution and consumer law.

Practice head(s):

Martine de Koning

Other key lawyers:

Jelle Blom; Isabel van Tuyll van Serooskerken; Renske Sinke; Lisa van Vliet; Lisa Lander; Daan van Lier; Noor de Werd; Tosca Bokhove


‘A very professional and business-oriented team. They have excellent market knowledge, which shows in the advice they give.’

‘Special mention for Martine de Koning, who is an excellent professional to work with: always available, top expertise, very imaginative and creative.’

‘Integrated approach of various legal workstreams helps in educating our sales and marketing people on new legislation. They understand our business needs and speak the language. Highly communicative, young and hungry team.’

‘Jelle Blom brings stress levels down and fixes issues pragmatically and quietly; he is valuable in strategic cooperation with suppliers and B2B customers. Lisa van Vliet is an excellent sparring partner for marketing campaigns and thinks commercially.’

‘Martine de Koning’s expertise is in depth, and she is quick to understand a client’s needs.’

‘There has been a strong connection to the client in handling our case. The way the team connects with us was empathic and pragmatic.’

‘Very accommodating and quickly grasps issues. Easy to work with.’

‘Martine de Koning is very practical, collaborative and razor sharp. Isabel van Tuyll van Serooskerken is smart, creative and collaborative.’

Key clients



Marriott & Starwood


Beter Bed








Bureau Krediet Registratie

Work highlights

  • Represented Azerion in a dispute with its partner Bidstack Ltd concerning the supply and distribution of advertising spaces.
  • Advised Nike in several matters related to its licensed multi- and monobrand operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
  • Acted for Stichting Bureau Krediet Registratie in civil proceedings initiated by the former secretary of its arbitration committee, who sued for specific performance and damages.

Van Doorne

Van Doorne fields a team of ‘high level professionals’ when taking on retail matters, and was able to expand its team with the arrival from De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek of Daan Beenders and his team in October 2022 to head the firm’s litigation practice, assisting the retail team with matters ranging from non-performance to product recalls. On the non-contentious front, the group advises national and international retailers, investors and distributors on real estate, logistics and distribution and e-commerce. Lisette Bieleveld leads the team, handling litigation in the realms of consumer and liability law. Willem van der Ven specialises in contractual matters, assisting with the drafting and negotiating of distribution, franchising and cooperation deals, in addition to taking on related litigation.

Practice head(s):

Lisette Bieleveld

Other key lawyers:

Daan Beenders; Willem van der Ven


‘The team members work together very effectively and efficiently to achieve the best results for us.’

‘The partner we work with is unique in their knowledge of our field (franchising). Never before have we had the opportunity to work with someone who is so familiar and experienced in this area. This offers us opportunities and limits our risks.’

‘Quickly understood the case and our business.’

‘Excellent team – if I need support in the Netherlands, Van Doorne is the firm to go to. Very fast, reliable and service-orientated.’

‘Lisette Bieleveld is a star in the field of trade and distribution law. Very focused and very experienced.’

‘Van Doorne and its team of partners we worked with are high level professionals with the right strengths for our case.’

Key clients

Aberdeen Asset Management


AD International


Albemarle Corporation


Arovo B.V.



Astana Group

AutoBinck Holding


Barry Callebaut Belgium

Bedo Imex

BCC (Elektro-Speciaalzaken)



CBR Fashion Group


Cott Corporation

Creative Craft



Deli Home Holding B.V.

Denon & Marantz Group

Detailresult Groep


Dutch State Lottery

DRC Capital


D.I.O. drogisterijen

Eci Holding

Electronic Arts

Electronic Partner

E & M Holding B.V. (Eyes & More)


FHP Vileda


Green Retail

Green Swan


Hans Anders Retail Group

Hedin Group

Helly Hansen


Hunkemöller International


Intergamma (Gamma and Karwei)

INTRAKOOP, Coöperatieve Inkoopvereniging voor zorg en welzijn U.A.



Klarna Bank AB

Laboratoires La Prairie

LG CNS Europe

Marqt B.V.

M7 Real Estate

McArthurGlen Group/Simon Property Group




North Sails Apparel

North Technology Group

Office Depot



Paradox Interactive


Penders Voetzorg



Princess Stores



QLF Brands


Renault Nederland

Retail Estates N.V.

RetourMatras B.V.


Royal Ahold Delhaize

Royal Sanders

Staatsloterij/Nederlandse Loterij

Schwan-STABILO Schwanhäuber GmbH & Co. KG

Solidus Solutions Holding B.V.



Stella & Dot

Hedin Group


Street One

Tag Heuer

The European Fine Art Foundation

The Livekindly Company

Takko Fashion

Texelse Bierbrouwerij B.V.



Trionios Group International

Tommy Hilfiger Europe

Tony’s Chocolonely

TW Steel Europe


Verdel Bloemenexport


Walt Disney Company

Wishright (Bodilson)


Work highlights

  • Advised Takko on ESG obligations and setting up its Dutch website to comply with Dutch consumer and e-commerce legislation.
  • Assisted Klarna on a variety of legal matters, including regulatory, finance, employment law and consumer law (T&Cs and other contractual) issues.
  • Represented Hornbach in legal proceedings against local authorities and competitors to enable the opening of new stores.

act Fort Advocaten

Real estate and corporate advice form the key pillars of act Fort Advocaten's retail practice, which covers transactional matters, franchising, employment issues and disputes. Members of the team act for clients in the food and household goods sectors, in addition to investors with holdings in the retail sector. Practice co-head and managing partner Katinka Verdurmen handles both transactional and contentious real estate transactions and leases, and acts for both franchisors and franchisees on franchise agreements. Petrol sector specialist Dirk van den Berg co-heads the team, handling leasing matters for retailers.

Practice head(s):

Katinka Verdurmen; Dirk van den Berg


‘Personal, engaged, persistent, accurate, agreements are met.’

‘Katinka Verdurmen is a charming and very persistent lady who can think strategically. She understands well that it is not about one stroke, but about the end result.’

Key clients

Association of franchisees of Albert Heijn

Nespresso Nederland B.V.

Subway International B.V.

Bagels & Beans B.V.

Mirage Retail Group B.V.

Wave International B.V./Provalliance Netherlands B.V.

Association of franchisees of McDonald’s

Oogwereld B.V.

Ball Wholesale ApS

JD Sports Fashion B.V./Sports Unlimited Fashion B.V.

Yves Rocher Nederland B.V.

Søstrene Grene

Den Hartog B.V.

Manhave Investments B.V.

Blauwdruk Investeringen B.V.

Work highlights

  • Acted for the association of franchisees of Albert Heijn on a complex dispute with franchisor Albert Heijn on the annual financial settlements from 2008 onwards and the interpretation of the agreed financial arrangements for the future.
  • Advised leading retail chain Mirage Retail Group (Blokker, Intertoys, MINISO and BCC) on the process of formula transformation and on various rental, real estate and franchise-law related matters.

Bird & Bird

Bird & Bird assists retail clients seeking to optimise their supply chains and IT systems, assisting with a range of projects in that regard and also providing support to clients building up their e-commerce businesses. Brand protection and IP also fall within the team’s capacities, and it further advises on employment, franchising and licensing matters. Practice head Manon Rieger-Jansen specialises in the fashion and luxury sectors, advising on soft IP management and disputes tied to counterfeiting and parallel imports. Roelien van Neck advises retailers on online platform and data regulations, with particular expertise assisting with online business-to-consumer models.

Practice head(s):

Manon Rieger-Jansen

Other key lawyers:

Roelien van Neck; Nina Dorenbosch; Goran Danilović

Key clients

Calvin Klein

Tommy Hilfiger


Holmes Place

AB InBev


Lloyd shoes

Treasury Wine Estates


Dawn Meats



Hello Fresh

Steigenberger hotels


Steak Ranches



Kraft Heinz


Work highlights

  • Advised Karl Lagerfeld on questions concerning ‘green claims’ as well as with the development of their environmental strategy in the EU.
  • Represented PPG in litigation against Dutch designer Eric Kuster in a case that revolved around referential use of third party trademarks in paint mixing machines, a practice that has been customary in the paint industry for years.
  • Assisted adidas in a large project involving the implementation of the new EU e-commerce and pricing legislation in their various sales channels.


Dentons' retail practice places a strong emphasis on real estate matters, including issues around lease renegotiations and on the development of retail space, including shopping centres. Practice head Wendela Raas maintains a notable commercial leasing practice, and is also active before the courts, where she represents investors, retail chains and project developers. Jeroen le Clercq, who made partner in April 2023, is noted for his contentious landlord and tenant work, while Valentijn Leijh advises on the administrative and regulatory aspects of retail site development. IP specialist Marc Elshof left for BarentsKrans in October 2023.

Practice head(s):

Wendela Raas

Other key lawyers:

Jeroen le Clercq; Valentijn Leijh; Bas van der Reep


‘The Dentons team is always very creative. They understand retail and the food and beverage industry, and this makes them easy to deal with.’

‘What we value is their extra mile attitude. They don’t close the laptop when everyone is in an exciting deal mode but keep pushing til the end result.’

‘A broad spectrum of knowledge regarding retail topics, with a team in place that can deal with all necessary topics.’

‘Direct and social approach and a good connection when working a case.’

‘One of the leading specialists in retail law in the Netherlands.’

‘Super strong and flexible team.’

‘One of the leading specialists in retail law in the Netherlands.’

‘Wendela Raas and Jeroen le Clercq are very keen on what they do and keep you informed with the latest case law. This is especially important for helping us choose the right strategy.’

Key clients


Burger King

De Bijenkorf


Foot Locker

Foundation React





Landal GreenPark






Royal FloraHolland

Savills IM

Sonder Holdings Inc.

Under Armour




Work highlights

  • Advised Under Armour on all its commercial leases across Europe and on a range of data protection and competition issues.
  • Acted for de Bijenkorf on all administrative law issues and assisted on drafting and negotiating agreements with brands de Bijenkorf carries.
  • Represented some of the largest real estate investors in the retail sector such as Unibail-Rodamco Westfield, Wereldhave and Patrizia in disputes with some of their tenants regarding the high lease indexation.


NautaDutilh handles a broad range of retail-related issues, including M&As and restructuring measures, franchising arrangements and IP and brand protection matters. The practice is spearheaded by the London-based Willianne van Zandwijk, who focuses primarily on transactions involving national and international retailers,  in addition to acting for private equity and real estate investors. Jeroen Boelens handles hard and soft IP matters, including licensing and high value disputes. Petra Zijp, who co-heads the firm’s capital markets team, is also frequently instructed on matters concerning the retail sector.

Practice head(s):

Willianne van Zandwijk

Other key lawyers:

Jeroen Boelens; Petra Zijp

Key clients


Campofrio Food Group



Fomento Económico Mexicano, S.A.B. de C.V.

Forever 21







Mirage Retail Group





Scotch & Soda

WE/O’Neill/Van Gils

Work highlights

  • Advised the Mexican bottler and convenience store operator FEMSA in its EUR 3.2bn accelerated bookbuild offering of Heineken and Heineken holding shares and its simultaneous EUR 500m offering of bonds exchangeable into Heineken holding shares.
  • Assisted H&M Hennes & Maurits AB & H&M Finance B.V. as the issuer with respect to the yearly update of their EUR 2bn EMTN programme.
  • Acted for Bluestar Alliance on the acquisition of the Scotch & Soda, an Amsterdam retail brand, and other company’s assets out of bankruptcy.

Osborne Clarke

Real estate transactions, including acquisitions and leases, supply chain issues and distribution contract matters, all fall under the remit of Osborne Clarke‘s retail team, which also advises on employment issues and acquisition financing arrangements. Leading the team are litigators Jeroen Bedaux, who advises clients under investigation by the Authority for Consumers and Markets for potential breaches of consumer law, while Paul Brouwer acts for retailers, e-commerce clients and real estate investors on a range of commercial disputes.

Practice head(s):

Jeroen Bedaux; Paul Brouwer

Key clients


AG Beursplein Rotterdam Coöperatieve U.A.


ContextLogic (



Fantini Group Vini




Jumbo Supermarkten




Reckitt Benckiser




Taylor Guitars



Work highlights

  • Advised Schroders on the sale of multiple assets, including the Eijerkamp store in Zutphen.
  • Advised AG Beursplein Rotterdam Coöperatieve U.A. on obtaining a EUR 110m investment and development facilities agreement with ABN AMRO Bank N.V. and Coöperatieve Rabobank U.A in relation to the Beursgallery.
  • Represented Jumbo Supermarkten B.V. in all its litigious matters.


With a team lauded for ‘consistently delivering unparalleled service,’ BarentsKrans is able to advise retail sector clients on commercial leasing arrangements, and is also instructed on commercial disputes concerning retail issues. Ingrid Reimert leads the group, representing both landlords and tenants on the spectrum of leasing disputes. Marlou Timmerman specialises in real estate development, and is also sought after for her skill in contentious matters, which are also areas of focus for Myrte Pielage.

Practice head(s):

Ingrid Reimert

Other key lawyers:

Marlou Timmerman; Myrte Pielage


‘The cooperation between the various colleagues means that you never have to wait long for an answer.’

‘Very hands-on, knowledgeable, flexible. True team members.’

‘BarentsKrans is a shining star in the legal industry, consistently delivering unparalleled service.’

‘Ingrid Reimert and Marlou Timmerman stand out as exceptional professionals in the field, who provide us with a unique and unparalleled legal experience.’

‘Ingrid Reimert is incredibly good at briefly and clearly explaining complicated legal matters. She is able to incorporate the commercial interest in her legal point of view, which allows us to take a decision that is not solely driven by either a legal or business perspective.’

‘Myrte Pielage has pleaded on our behalf in various court cases. Not only is she able to present a clear and convincing case, she can also refute the other party’s claims on the spot or answer questions a judge may have due to her excellent knowledge of the case.’

Key clients

Brilmij Groep B.V.

Pearle Opticiens


Kwantum Nederland B.V.

Leen Bakker Nederland B.V.

WE Netherlands B.V./WE Europe B.V.

Van Gils Retail B.V.

O’Neill Retail Netherlands B.V.

Bever B.V.

Rivièra Maison B.V.

Nelson Schoenen B.V.

Parfumerie Douglas Nederland B.V.

Eichholtz B.V.

Mister Minit B.V.

Tenstone Development B.V.

SH Development B.V.

IEF Capital N.V.

Vlamingstraat Investment C.V.

Koninklijke INretail



Work highlights

  • Advised Vlamingstraat Investment C.V. regarding the redevelopment of Priba in the city centre of The Hague.
  • Assisted Eichholtz B.V. with multiple lease agreements and sublease agreements for the first Eichholtz concept store on P.C. Hooftstraat in Amsterdam.
  • Advised IEF Berlage Amsterdam (Kalverstraat) B.V. on the lease agreement for one of ZEEKR’s first two stores in Europe, situated on the Rokin and the Kalverstraat.


CMS maintains a broad practice, assisting retailers with such matters as commercial contracts, brand protection, advertising and product liability issues. The team has also placed a growing focus on ESG matters under the leadership of practice co-head Aukje Haan, who spearheads the firm’s ESG efforts in the Netherlands, and is also sought after by clients seeking to implement new sales and distribution models. Alongside her is Mark Ziekman, who chairs the firm’s consumer products team and advises retail clients on cross-border mergers and joint ventures.

Practice head(s):

Aukje Haan; Mark Ziekman

Other key lawyers:

Akin Aslan


‘Able to deal quickly and effectively with issues. Approachable.’

‘The team is well-coordinated and the workload is well-distributed; there is clarity on roles and responsibilities.’

‘Pragmatic approach, business-oriented mindset.’

‘Easygoing, good out-of-the-box thinking if necessary, good approach on strategy.’

Key clients

All Nippon Airways


Canada Goose

Christian Dior

Coca Cola European Partners

Colgate Palmolive

Columbia Sportswear Company



Hero Group




Shisheido (BPI)

Universal Electronics



DLA Piper

As part of the firm-wide consumer goods, food and retail team, DLA Piper is well-placed to support both Dutch and international clients on multi-jurisdictional matters, including brand protection, commercial contracts and e-commerce. The practice is jointly led by Khaled Dadi, who is sought after for his experience in overseeing digital transformations and competition law, and Niels Mulder, whose soft IP work covers trade marks, copyrights and anti-counterfeiting advice, as part of a broader brand protection practice.

Practice head(s):

Khaled Dadi; Niels Mulder

Other key lawyers:

Noa Naaman; Rens van Blaricum

Key clients

Apple Inc.



Conair (Babyliss) Corporation

Crocs Inc.

Deckers Outdoor Corporation

Domino’s Pizza

Dutch investment company NPM Capital with retail portfolio companies including Suitsupply

Five Guys




Hugo Boss AG

Inter Ikea


Nike / Converse


Ralph Lauren Corporation

Rituals B.V.


Work highlights

  • Acted for Nike and Converse on IP, privacy, competition and tax matters.
  • Represented Bacardi on a variety of different matters around the world.
  • Advised Rituals on various regulatory topics and data protection matters across the jurisdictions that it operates, including the launch of e-commerce platforms across the EU.


Taking on a diverse range of mandates, Leeway is particularly focused on brand protection in the retail sector, where it assists fashion and leisure clients with the protection of their IP rights. The team is led by ‘problem solver’ Marga Verwoert, who handles the spectrum of IP issues and also advises on distribution and franchise matters, and Michiel Odink, a specialist in media and IP law, with a practice built upon trade mark and copyright matters. Former practice co-head Remco van Leeuwen moved to Arnold + Siedsma, Attorneys at Law and Patent Attorneys in September 2022.

Practice head(s):

Marga Verwoert; Michiel Odink

Other key lawyers:

Jos Klaus; Lotte Rutgers


‘Very engaged team, extensive knowledge, good communication and results.’

‘The Leeway team has a lot of experience across the retail sector, and is a good one-stop-shop for clients active in this area.’

‘Marga Verwoert is a very smart, pragmatic and hands-on lawyer.’

Key clients



Vacu Vin

Jumbo Supermarkten B.V.

Beter Bed

Stox Energy Socks

La Place

easyGroup Ltd.

Royal Boch BVBA

Scotch & Soda B.V.

The Agent-C

Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Wieland Electric

Work highlights

  • Assisted Action Nederland in relation to a wide selection of its soft IP matters, as well as advising this client on several IP-related agreements.
  • Acted for HEMA on a dispute with Lidl concerning an alleged infringement its copyrights in relation to ‘lettercrate,’ a HEMA design for a foldable basket.
  • Represented PAL Sporting Goods in a dispute against international skateboarding & clothing brand Palace Skateboards, which alleged that PAL was infringing a selection of its trade marks.

Russell Advocaten B.V.

Russell Advocaten B.V. has a client roster that includes major players in the luxury goods and fashion sector, which it acts for in regards to corporate and commercial matters, contractual and employment issues and real estate. The team is led by Reinier Russell, who advises on corporate law and issues affecting the day-to-day running of retail businesses, and Jan Dop, whose focus is on employment and real estate law.

Practice head(s):

Reinier Russell; Jan Dop