Mike has helped entrepreneurs launch, grow and successfully exit companies for decades. He has extensive experience within accelerator and venture investor communities. His industry knowledge, pragmatism, and cost-effectiveness provide clients excellent value during business formations.
Mike builds lasting relationships with emerging growth businesses ranging from initial formation to late-stage companies preparing for an exit. He also serves the angel, venture capital and strategic investors that fund them.
Mike also helps entrepreneurs structure entities to their best advantage. In addition to choosing entity type, he advises on tax and operational implications and creates key formation and ancillary business documents.
Mike structures and negotiates venture financing arrangements ranging from angel and seed stage investments through late stage equity investments. This includes debt and credit facilities involving royalty or revenue share arrangements structures. Mike represents both entrepreneurs and investors including: angel investors; venture capital funds; academic and government research institutions; and banks and other strategic investors. Mike is an excellent negotiator; it is not uncommon for him to negotiate a dozen deals or more in a single quarter. Mike also represents investors in venture capital fund formation, sized from less than $50 million to more than $1 billion.
Intellectual Property Licensing
Mike advises on copyright, trade secret and patent protection of intellectual property rights. He negotiates licenses of intellectual property portfolios, both inbound and outbound. Mike also has expertise with novel issues arising under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and Open Source software matters.
Mike typically works on 100 or more tech transactions annually. This includes major strategic partnering and closing of deals. He has been involved in every type of deal that emerging and maturing companies undertake. Mike advises clients as they develop, acquire and monetize technologies and creates new business models to bring products to market. In this regard, Mike becomes an extension of the management team and serves as a trusted business adviser, above being a general counsel. Given the breakneck pace of technology-disrupting industries, Mike helps his clients maximize the potential of innovation and make a lasting impact.
Mergers and Acquisitions
Maximizing the value of a business at the time of exit is imperative. Mike has earned a reputation for smart, practical and straightforward deal making. He well understands the pitfalls that can delay, derail, or even devalue an otherwise successful result. Conversely, he knows the business drivers, interests, and priorities of the legal teams representing buyers. This often enables Mike to identify multiple opportunities and solutions. Mike represents clients on both the buy and sell side in asset deals, stock deals, mergers and joint ventures.
Business Succession Planning
Not every business (or business owner) is seeking an acquisition as an exit. Businesses that are family owned, or owned by a few partners in traditional industries, may be more suitable for transfers of ownership to existing partners or family members.
Some of the drivers for ownership transfers are retirement, disability, divorce or other reasons. The issues in each case can be complex and unique. Most private businesses require a robust succession plan. Mike has the experience and expertise to develop a succinct and durable business succession plan that addresses the specific issues of each business.
An estate plan goes hand-in-hand with a business succession plan. It can also be useful for equity holders in a high-tech business that expects an exit through acquisition. From tax efficiency to avoiding probate and protecting one’s estate, an estate plan is essential. Mike’s real-world business experience makes him ideally suited for designing an estate plan that benefits business owners long into the future.