Lathrop Gage Acquires Three Franchise Attorneys


Firm strengthens Franchise & Brand Development practice

ST. LOUIS (April 14, 2015) –Lathrop Gage has added a group of three franchise, supply and distribution attorneys to its business division in the firm’s St. Louis office. The acquisition of this nationally recognized group bolsters the firm’s Franchise & Brand Development practice team.

Formerly with Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale P.C., Partners Christopher Feldmeir, Eric Riess and Of Counsel, Marilyn Nathanson will enhance the practice and assist with clients’ franchise, brand development, distribution and supply needs at the local and national levels.

“Chris, Eric and Marilyn have broad experience in franchise, brand development, corporate, supply and distribution, and will add to the breadth of client services we offer,” said Scott Malin, partner in charge of Lathrop Gage’s St. Louis office. “These attorneys are well-respected in the legal community and they have significant national and international experience that will position us well for growth in these areas.”

About the new attorneys:

Christopher Feldmeir focuses his practice on franchise, distribution, supply, corporate and tax matters. As a trusted advisor to his clients, he has represented dozens of franchisor and franchisee clients in a variety of industries, including restaurants, health care, employment and insurance. He also advises franchise and non-franchise clients in various aspects of mergers and acquisitions, raising capital through private offerings, traditional credit facilities and bond financing. Feldmeir also holds a Masters in Tax Law.

Eric Riess has 31 years of business and legal experience. He has counseled clients on the purchase and sale of brands, businesses and business units and has extensive franchise, distribution, supply, corporate and national and international brand and brand development experience. As a Certified Public Accountant, he has extensive Big Eight accounting and Fortune 500 finance and management experience. Riess is the co-founder of and serves on the Board of the Franchise Brokers Association, one of the largest networks of franchise brokers in the world. He also serves on the Board of Franchise Athletes and FranVest Management, LLC, which focuses on EB5 investment in franchise brands. 

Marilyn Nathanson has 25 years of experience and represents clients in franchise and distribution and corporate law. She is a nationally recognized franchise advisor and has served as assistant editor for the “Business Franchises” chapter of Rabkin Johnson’s Current Legal Forms; contributed to franchise publications in the Journal of the Missouri Bar; and co-authored a St. Louis Bar Journal publication on franchise and distribution. Marilyn is also a member of the Illinois Franchise Advisory Board.

“As the service needs and geographic reach and of our clients continue to grow, we needed a larger business and geographic platform to keep up with them,” said Riess. “Lathrop Gage gives us and our clients that opportunity while still remaining entrepreneurial to match the characteristics of our clients.”

About the Franchise & Brand Development Practice:

This practice team includes high-level talent with a deep knowledge in both national and international franchise, brand development, distribution and supply issues. With a wealth of business and legal experience and a successful track record representing franchisor, franchisee and franchise broker clients, our team provides strategic planning and counsel in order to address the development and operation of franchising, licensing and business opportunity systems in industries ranging from restaurants to insurance and healthcare to employment. Learn more about Lathrop Gage’s Franchise & Brand Development services. 

About Lathrop Gage:

Lathrop Gage has 320 attorneys nationwide serving clients in the areas of litigation, intellectual property and business. Chambers USA ranks Lathrop Gage’s corporate, environmental, media and entertainment, labor and employment, litigation and real estate practices among the best in their regions. For more information, visit