Fee Earner Focus: Q&A – Robin Hastings Corporate
Robin Hastings (pictured below), qualified as a solicitor in 2011 having trained in London and after a spell at a large regional firm in Manchester joined Bermans in December 2015. He is now a Senior Associate in the Corporate department.
1. Can you give us a brief summary of your career so far?
I studied Law at Leeds University and then went to law school in Manchester. I then trained with a mid-size firm in London, where I qualified into the Corporate department. A couple of years after qualifying, I moved to a regional firm in Manchester and, a few years after that, moved to the Corporate department of Bermans Manchester office.
2. What area of the law do you specialise in and why?
I work in the Corporate department, which involves many varied sub-practices, such as mergers and acquisitions, equity investments, joint ventures, shareholders agreements, option and incentive schemes – essentially, anything to do with the ownership of companies and businesses.
I was quite open-minded about which area I wanted to work in as a trainee but, during my seat in the Corporate department, I worked on a number of large, complex deals, following which my mind was made up – I really enjoyed the level of detail involved and negotiating a deal which works for all those involved, around the framework of the law. Originally, I think I went into the law wanting to be a criminal barrister as I went to Court a few times for work experience when I was at school. I am no way near as outgoing enough to do Court work though so that was never really an option!
3. Is there a case or a particular piece of work you were proud to be involved with, if so why?
Acting on the sale of Cake Solutions in 2017 still stands out as a personal favourite. It was a very technical transaction which had a lot of moving parts to deal with. The clients were great to deal with on all levels though and all the other advisers got on really well, which always helps. It got quite a bit of publicity too and was a good learning experience at the time on how larger deals work and fit together.
4. Away from the law what are your interests and passions?
I enjoy watching and (trying to) participating in pretty much any sport – football, tennis, rugby, cricket, golf – you name it and I will watch it or at least attempt to play it. However, my main interest is following the rather niche sport of strongman. The two main events each year are World’s Strongest Man (shown on TV over Christmas) and the Arnold Strongman Classic (Arnold Schwarzenegger’s own event). Both of these are held abroad but there are a number of smaller events, such as Europe’s Strongest Man and the Giants Live Tour Finals, which get held in places like Leeds and Manchester, which I always go to. So I have been able to watch, for example, Eddie Hall become the first man to lift 500kg and Zydrunas Savickas attempt to break his long-standing record in the overhead log-lift (believe me, much better than it sounds!). It is a rather random sport to follow, but for some reason it has been my number one interest ever since the days of Magnus ver Magnusson winning it every year during the 90s!
Sporting interests aside, I am a big foodie and a lover of fine lager (although I have just finished Sober October!) and I am also partial to spending entire evenings on the PlayStation.
Sports & Teams Supported:
- Strongman – No particular allegiances but I generally look out for the likes of Brian Shaw, Martins Licis, Oleksii Novikov and the Stoltman brothers – and, until their recent retirements, Hafthor Bjornsson and Eddie Hall.
- Football – Manchester United and Macclesfield FC.
- Golf – Again, no particular allegiances but I always enjoy watching Justin Rose and Paul Casey and the big-hitters like Bryson DeChambeau, Jon Rahm and Dustin Johnson.
Films (Top 3):
- Backdraft. My mum still regales how I used to watch it religiously when I was younger – nowadays, it is down to an annual viewing but it has stood the test of time, especially with the special effects and soundtrack.
- Casino. If anyone has ever wondered why the odd mild swear word occasionally pops out of my mouth, there is the answer!
- Forrest Gump. What a film – so many parts to it, and I am sure everyone still thinks of Jenny with complete and utter disdain for how she treated Forrest.
Music (3 tracks/albums to take on Desert Island):
- Notorious B.I.G.: Life After Death. I remember first listening to him when I was 13 and being completely blown away with the lyrics. Absolutely fantastic and a travesty he couldn’t make more music.
- Dr. Dre: 2001. The lyrics are hysterical, along with the little skits between tracks. A timeless album which is regularly on in my car and kitchen.
- Eyeball Paul’s Balearic Mix. Takes me back to the good old days of Kevin and Perry Go Large. Some absolute classics on there and I play it regularly during the summer months.
- Breaking Bad. Gripping from start to finish and you really sympathise with Walter – even though what he is doing is not exactly above board. You really start to like all the characters, even the bad ones like Tuco and Gus.
- Black Mirror. Such a strange series, especially with every episode being its own mini-film. San Junipero, Hang The DJ and USS Callister still stand out as memorable episodes.
- The Inbetweeners. At school, I pretty much was Jay.
Podcasts you listen to: In the car, I usually keep TalkSport on, so do not generally listen to many podcasts. However, I have listened to all the “That Peter Crouch Podcast” episodes and also listen to “Talking Strongman” if there is an event coming up.
Favourite book: American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis. It took me a while to realise that it is meant to be a comedy/satire – once I did, it is actually really funny (ignoring all the gory parts, obviously).
Meal: Tough one – probably steak or curry, although it is hard to beat a really good pizza.
Holiday destination: Mauritius is probably the best place I have been to before, closely followed by Jamaica. Tokyo, Seychelles and Florida are certainly on the list for the near future.
If you could do anything other than being a Lawyer, what would you be and why?
I was obsessed with wanting to be a fireman when I was younger, mainly because of Backdraft!
3 people for a dinner party and why?
Rik Mayall and Robin Williams – because they are absolutely hilarious (imagine those two together in a room!). Those two pretty much made my sense of humour what it is today (i.e. very odd indeed). Zydrunas Savickas, unquestionably the strongest man ever – so I can talk to him about his amazing career. If I could add a fourth, Bill Murray – again, absolutely hilarious.
To get in touch with Robin
t: 0161 827 4619
w: Web Profile