Jorge is managing partner at the firm. Throughout more than 26 years of experience, he has developed a commercial legal practice with focus on corporate, franchising, distribution, IT and data protection matters, advising clients in a wide range of transactions – from their establishment in Mexico to the management and operation of their business. Jorge is an active member of the International Bar Association, the American Bar Association Forum on Franchising, the International Franchise Association and the National Corporate Counsel Association.
What attracted you to a career in the law?
From an early age I was attracted to the ideals of justice and helping people in a disadvantaged position; I considered that a law career would be the most appropriate means to achieve those goals.
I always wanted to contribute, with my country, towards strong mechanisms of justice delivery, in a humanitarian sense, and to collaborate with people in need in order to help them protect and defend their most basic rights.
After more than 26 years of legal practice, I am convinced that having chosen a career in law was the best decision I could have made for my personal and professional development, since it has allowed me to not only achieve the stated objectives, but also grow as a person and a family man.
What do you enjoy most about working in the franchise space?
To have the opportunity to contribute, from within the legal and business fields, to the start-up, development and expansion of different types of companies and franchise systems, and to be able to witness the achievement of the objectives set forth by clients. In most cases, the results obtained are tangible, and that is something that fills me with professional satisfaction.
How has the franchise market evolved since you first began practising?
I believe the changes that have taken place in the franchise market in recent years have been considerable, especially on two fronts.
The first of these is legal evolution, since several new laws, regulations and other administrative provisions have been issued in order to specifically regulate the different activities carried out by companies in Mexico – including those in the franchise industry, and the activities surrounding it. At the beginning of my career, professional franchising was almost an unregulated market.
The second big change is technological development, as the current era is bringing us digital applications and platforms that are continuously developed. These allow companies to have more intense control, and provide monitoring systems with which companies can operate in a much more efficient manner, and also market their products and services both immediately and remotely. This has been highly successful in several franchise systems – in the past, this was not possible.
What effects have there been, if any, on the Mexican franchise market as a result of the change in administration in 2018?
I believe the franchise industry in general in Mexico has not been significantly affected by the change of administration, unlike other sectors – such as automotive, construction and real estate development, which have had to face an environment of economic slowdown derived from certain policy changes adopted by the new administration.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, in the second half of this year, various economic indicators have pointed to a considerable increase in consumer confidence, which will result in an increase in the consumption of goods and services. This will definitely generate significant benefits to the franchise industry.
Your franchise experience spans a range of sectors from energy to real estate. To what extent is sector-specific knowledge on the part of the lawyer important when practising franchise law?
Undoubtedly, it is very important to clearly understand the various areas of practice that directly or indirectly impact and surround a franchise. However, I do not consider it strictly essential to be an expert in each of those areas. In any case, the ideal is to be able to practise franchising in a full-service firm such as Gonzalez Calvillo, since it is highly beneficial for any company seeking advice in the franchise market to have the support of specialised legal counsel in each of the practice areas that may relate to the relevant franchise system.
Where, in your opinion, does the future of franchise lie?
In the technological evolution and digital transformation of course, since this allows franchises to make use of new connectivity and consumer access platforms, which will in turn make responses from the suppliers of goods and services much easier to obtain, and enable a better-quality consumer experience.
I believe that, to the extent that franchises migrate to the use of digital media and platforms for the development of their daily activities, it will be much more viable to obtain favourable results, while those systems that remain in the traditional channels will only manage to lose ground to their competitors.
What has been your proudest achievement to date?
Having had the opportunity to join Gonzalez Calvillo; to contribute to achieving our firm’s position as a leader in the legal franchise field in Mexico; and to provide legal advice to important national and international companies. Also, I am pleased to have been able to share my experience in the sector with younger, talented lawyers, and to train new leaders in legal advice on the franchise market in our country.
What is the best piece of career advice you have received?
Never lose the humility to recognise that we must continue studying, preparing ourselves and learning from all kinds of people, including collaborators, clients, partners and other law practitioners. We must always have to be open to receiving that knowledge.
Jorge Mondragón is described by sources as “great in distribution and franchise matters”. He has over 25 years of experience with a wide variety of franchising and licensing issues.
Jorge Mondragón is managing partner of the firm, and since 1998 has been active in its franchising, licensing and distribution practice group.
Throughout his 27 years of experience, he has developed a corporate and commercial business-oriented practice with a strong focus on franchising, licensing, consumer protection, information technology and data protection matters. His experience encompasses advising Mexican and foreign clients in a wide range of transactions, from start-ups in Mexico to the management and operation of all kinds of companies and industries.
Additionally, he walks companies through the compliance, regulatory, corporate and intellectual property aspects required for the implementation of franchise systems and distribution schemes, where he designs the appropriate business structure, tailored to the client needs. Jorge is an active member of such national and international legal associations as the International Franchise Association, the American Bar Association's forum on franchising, the International Bar Association (former senior vice chair of the international franchising committee) and Multilaw, where he has served as member of executive committees and participated as an expert speaker on corporate and business law in seminars, symposiums and conferences worldwide.
His practice has been recognised by international legal publications such as Chambers and Partners Global; WWL, which has named him a Thought Leader; Latin Lawyer 250; and Best Lawyers. He regularly authors articles and guides in his fields of expertise, including the Mexico chapter of Getting the Deal Through: Franchise and The Franchise Law Review.
Jorge Mondragon has enviable experience in the franchise space, including assisting international clients from a range of sectors in entering the Mexican market.
Jorge Mondragón has been a partner at Gonzalez Calvillo since 1998.
Throughout his over 25 years of experience he has developed a commercial legal practice with a focus on corporate, franchising, distribution and data protection matters, advising clients in a wide range of transactions, from their start-ups in Mexico to the management and operation of their business.
His experience includes providing legal and business advice to multinational and Mexican companies in all types of franchising, distribution and licensing transactions, including the design of business and corporate structures for the implementation of franchise systems and distribution schemes, as well as all related compliance, regulatory and intellectual property aspects. Moreover, he has developed a practice that focuses on e-business and data privacy, as well as complex corporate matters including joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, corporate controversies, foreign investments and labour consulting.
Jorge is an active member of the international franchising committee of the International Bar Association, where he served as senior vice chair; the International Franchise Association; the American Bar Association's forum on franchising; and the Mexican Bar Association. He has been invited to participate as a speaker at several seminars, symposiums and conferences organised by the aforementioned associations as a franchise and commercial law expert. He has been professor of the negotiation course at the Panamerican University in Mexico City and has been listed in WWL: Franchise since 2004.
He has published several articles and regularly collaborates with Lexology Getting The Deal Through: Franchise published by Law Business Research.