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Colin Hoffman retires after 50 years’ service to Kuits

13 Oct 2017

Respected intellectual property lawyer Colin Hoffman has retired following half a century with Kuits.

Colin started at Kuits in 1967 as what was then an articled clerk, now a trainee solicitor.  His principal was Vivian Steinart, one of the most accomplished lawyers of his generation in Manchester. Colin was a quick learner, qualifying in 1970 before becoming a partner of the firm in 1971.

Born in Rhodesia, Colin’s formative years saw him graduate from the University of Cape Town after which he was called to the Bar in South Africa and Rhodesia, where the system was Roman Dutch law.

In 1965 he came over to the UK as a Rhodes Scholar to study English law at University College Oxford.  Notable Rhodes Scholars from the past include Prime Ministers of Canada and Australia, and famously Bill Clinton, the 42nd President of the United States.

Once at Kuits, Colin specialised in commercial work, in particular the acquisition of medical product licences for the sale of over-the-counter (OTC) products.  He acted on numerous cases for some of the firm’s biggest clients and connections, working on brand acquisitions, share acquisitions, flotations on the stock market, complex IP structures and patent licensing.  His outstanding reputation and desire to develop the firm’s practice saw him travel extensively in his career, including visits to the USA, Russia, China and Malaysia.

Colin has taken great pleasure in watching Kuits develop and grow over his 50-year tenure. He was particularly proud of the firm’s merger with Hammelburger Marks in 1997 and has been delighted to witness the businesses’ growth in reputation over the years.

Beyond Kuits, Colin is a former council member of the UK Licensing Executive Society and helped to form the North-West committee, of which he became Chairman.  He was also a keen supporter of the Manchester Law Society and sat on a number of its committees

Outside of his professional career, Colin met his wife, Ros, when studying at Oxford.  They moved to Manchester together after graduating and they were married in August 1967 just before he began working at Kuits.  They have two sons, David, who practises as a barrister in Manchester and Michael, an IT consultant in Edinburgh.

For a number of years Colin served with the Manchester Artillery in the Territorial Army, ending his service with the rank of Captain. He is a keen philatelist and has been a member of the Council of the Royal Philatelic Society London since 2010.  He has signed the Roll of Distinguished Philatelists in South Africa. Colin plans to spend his retirement writing a book on the stamps and postal history of
Rhodesia and enjoying his garden.

Robert Levy, executive partner for Kuits, said: “We have a people-focused culture and therefore are committed to helping our talent reach their full potential throughout the lifetime of their career. As such, we have a number of exceptional lawyers that stay with us from trainee all the way up to partner level – although Colin sets a very high record to beat!

“It has been a true delight to work with someone as exceptional and admired – both on a personal and professional level – as Colin, and we wish him all the best in his retirement after five decades of developing and practising law in Manchester.”

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