GET THE BEST GUIDANCE
EXPANDING DISTRIBUTION IS VITAL TO HELP YOUR BUSINESS GROW BUT YOU NEED LEGAL ADVICE TO HELP YOU THROUGH THE
MAZE OF REGULATIONS AND AGREEMENTS.
Goods produced in our region are in demand both here and abroad. It’s not just the production of the traditional goods commonly associated with Sheffield that are attracting interest either, there are many small businesses emerging into the market and producing a range of goods from beer to bicycle frames, ice cream to wall art.
This is positive news and shows the diversity of the entrepreneurs we have in our region. But for the small businesses producing goods, what are the options for distribution? For a very small producer, selling the goods themselves at local markets may be the preferred choice, but what if you are looking to expand your business or reach a wider audience? To achieve growth, it will be necessary at some point to widen your distribution channels and the internet or sales by a third-party may be the answer.
If you are creating a website for the purpose of selling your goods through this medium, you are likely to be thinking of investing in the creative content. It is also vital to invest in the legal content to ensure that you have effective terms and conditions which will protect your business. As Stacey Pocock, Head of Commercial & Civil Litigation at Best Solicitors advises “There are many rules and regulations affecting the sale of goods to consumers which if not considered properly, can negatively impact your business.”
If you decide that selling your goods through a third-party is your preferred option, there are many things to consider. Relationships between distributors and manufacturers are largely governed by the agreement which exists between them as opposed to specific laws. There are no specific formalities for distribution agreements but it is always advisable for the terms to be set out in writing.
Distribution of Goods
Traditionally, agreements between distributor and manufacturer are more heavily biased in favour of the distributor. “It is all too easy for any business owner to get caught up in the heat of the moment when contacted by a potential distributor but there should be no fear in seeking legal advice before putting pen to paper” advises Stacey Pocock, who regularly deals with small businesses regarding these matters. “Business owners should take time getting to know a distributor as they are the public face who will be associated with your goods. For any manufacturer, it can be an unwise move to become involved with a distributor whose practices do not match with your own vision.”
For any manufacturer, especially where there is heavy financial commitment in bringing goods to market, it is essential to know the terms of any agreement with a potential distributor to avoid costly disputes.
Date: 8 June 2015