Our Spotlight on our solicitors series showcases the talent of our legal professionals. With these interviews, we get to know more about the experts behind the advice. In this edition, we caught up with one of the newest members of our corporate team, Nikki Reid. Joining the Harper James team in November 2022 as senior corporate solicitor, Nikki is a specialist M&A lawyer. Prior to working at Harper James, she qualified in 2014 with Birketts before moving onto a senior associate position at Mills & Reeves in 2018 – both highly-ranked Top 100 law firms.
How did you start your career?
Nikki previously enjoyed a successful career as a marketeer, working at Aviva for 12 years before diverting her career path to law.
‘I’ve always wanted to be a lawyer, but life initially took me down a different route and I qualified as a marketeer. I spent 12 years working at Aviva in various commercial and business relationship roles. I often found myself working on service contracts and business KPIs’ said Nikki. ‘I became quite good at understanding a business’s legal position and I found myself trying to find more pragmatic solutions for the company. One day I decided to retrain as a lawyer. I completed a law degree, law school and a training contract and here I am today, working at Harper James as a senior solicitor.’
What are the primary areas of your corporate expertise, and will you cover a particular specialist or niche area within the corporate team at Harper James?
‘I’m an M&A specialist, so I have lots of great experience with company and business sales and acquisitions, management buyouts (and ins!), acting ‘seller side’ and ‘buyer side’. This really helps with swift negotiations, but also means that I understand what might be driving the ‘other side’ so I can advise my clients in a rounded way.’ explained Nikki. ‘Equally, I have good experience with group reorganisations, de-mergers, share restructures and shareholder exits and I really enjoy the more complex transactions.’
‘I also like the variety of corporate law. I don’t naturally limit myself to any particular niche, but I’ve found myself helping lots of tech companies, veterinary and health businesses and companies in the food and drink sector… all sectors I personally love!’
Can you recall any key moments from your career?
‘I think without a doubt the moment I decided to retrain as a lawyer was the main key highlight. In truth, I think all the decisions and steps I’ve taken since have in one way or another been key, despite not seeming like it at the time. I admire all my entrepreneurial clients for their vision and drive, and they inspire me to take brave decisions.’
What do you think your clients value most about how you work with them?
‘My clients often say that they know I genuinely care about them. I’ve always got their back and I will do what I can to get the job done. My approach is open and collaborative and whilst I’m focused on delivering excellent quality legal advice, I also enjoy building great day-to-day relationships with my clients and their teams.’
How have you found Harper James so far? Any first impressions?
‘I have been nothing but impressed so far! Coming from a traditional law firm background, I was curious about the accessibility of the services and how that works in practice. I didn’t want to compromise my own client service standards or the quality of my work. From the start, I was reassured to the contrary and it’s been an amazing start!’ said Nikki. ‘I’m already helping some great clients with some interesting transactions and the Harper James team is just brilliant, collaborative, approachable, and really very human.’
Do you have any hobbies?
‘All of my hobbies revolve around eating food and then trying to burn it off. I’m lucky to live in Cornwall with my partner and our Eurasier, so we try to get outside as much as possible. Trail runs, beach walks, hikes with the dog and yoga take up most of my time… but luckily, I don’t have 3-4 hours of commuting time each day.’
What are 3 things on your bucket list?
‘I’d love to stay in a glass igloo, watch the Northern Lights and go husky sledding! I’d also really like to go back to Sicily and climb Mount Etna and perhaps own a small holding with a few rescue animals on board sometime in the future.’