This profile and interview with Andrae Marrocco was first published in 1851 Franchise on November 16, 2021.

As part of its annual compilation of great franchise lawyers, 1851 Franchise profiled Andrae Marrocco as a top franchise lawyer.

1851 Franchise writes: “This seasoned corporate finance and franchise law expert finds the entrepreneurial buzz within the franchising industry contagious and exciting.

Andrae Marrocco is the co-chair of The Franchise and Distribution Law Group and a Partner at McMillan LLP, one of the leading firms in Canada, where he focuses on domestic and international franchise and distribution matters. Marrocco has particular expertise in complex franchise arrangements, franchise system mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and cross-border/international transactions.

He started working more closely within the franchising industry when he brought his corporate finance transactions practice together with another senior lawyer who focused on the franchising space. Their niche area of focus became franchise-related mergers and acquisitions.

Now, Marrocco loves working with franchisors who are passionate about their brand. “It’s something I love seeing,” he said. “And unlike an independent business, the community around the franchise space allows international expansion to be a real possibility.”

Marrocco believes a sense of uncertainty is currently plaguing the franchise sector. “Things like the Item 19 or earnings projections are very hard for franchisors to craft in a time of such uncertainty,” he said, alluding to the COVID-19 pandemic. “It makes it hard for franchisors to include pertinent information and comply with the necessary laws.”

His advice to prospective franchisees is to treat the franchisor/franchisee connection as a long-term relationship. “You have to understand what the key terms are and how they will impact your business,” he said. “Also, know your franchisor well. How do they interact with their franchisees? How have they done so in the past? And then speak to franchisees and see how they’re performing. Finally, take your time to find the right fit. Understand the system and see if it fits who you are and what your goals are.”

Watch the full interview here.