Michael S. Melfi represents emerging companies and established businesses in matters involving intellectual property protection, technology licensing, tax planning, funding, acquisitions and dispositions, and general corporate matters in a broad range of technology industries including software, big data, pharmaceutical, manufacturing, publishing, automotive, aerospace, transportation, retail, food and beverage, construction, and healthcare.
He has extensive experience mentoring, counseling, and securing funding for entrepreneurs, inventors, startups, and small businesses and their disruptive technology. Utilizing his IP PLUS™ model, Michael works with inventors to secure and protect their intellectual property and creates a roadmap to commercialization. He collaborates in an entrepreneurial manner on the assessment, strategic planning, business development, execution, and fundraising for the ideas and inventions journey to commercialization. To further support the entrepreneurial community, Michael founded Be Investable, an online curriculum for entrepreneurs that provides the tools to build a successful team, develop strategies for raising capital and produce results.
Prior to joining Bodman, Michael was the founder, chief operating officer, and general counsel of a multimedia company where he pioneered experiential digital campaigns for Fortune 500 clients and worked with numerous national industry-leading products and brands to monetize and grow their web-based businesses.
He is active in many organizations that serve the entrepreneurial and general business communities. Michael is a member of the Small Business Association of Michigan and a Board of Director for the Palace Sports and Entertainment's Networking Business League, which helps to enhance business relationships throughout the Palace Sports and Entertainment community. He mentors entrepreneurs at 1871, a technology accelerator and incubator based in Chicago that is the home of more than 400 early-stage digital startups. Michael also serves on the Board of Governors for the University of Michigan's School of Kinesiology's Alumni Society and the President's Advisory Council (PAC) for The Community House in Birmingham, Michigan, a non-profit community center meant for professional, philanthropic, and recreational pursuits.
Michael is the author of a series of four books: The Simple Secrets of Social Media, The Simple Secrets of Crowdfunding, The Simple Secrets of Intellectual Property and The Simple Secrets of Entrepreneurship. He has published numerous articles in the The Huffington Post, Crain’s Detroit Business, and StartUpNation.com. In his role as a contributing writer for the Institute for Continuing Legal Education (ICLE), he has authored materials on social media, crowdfunding, and IP portfolio management.
Michael hosts a weekly podcast called The Trep Talk on the Michigan Business Network, where he interviews entrepreneurs and business leaders and speaks about entrepreneurship and successful behaviors that translate to any business at any stage. He is a frequent speaker at seminars, conferences, and webinars. His recent work and speaking engagements can be viewed at his website, MichaelSMelfi.com.
Civic, Cultural and Community Activities
- The Community House (Birmingham, MI) — President's Advisory Council (PAC), Member
- National Crowdfunding Association, Founding Member, 2012-2016
- Palace Sports and Entertainment Networking Business League, Board of Director
- 1871, Chicago's Center for Technology and Entrepreneurship, Mentor, 2017
- University of Michigan Kinesiology Alumni Society (KAS), Member
- Board of Governors, Member, July 2014-July 2017
- Alumni Engagement Committee, Member
- Student Engagement Committee, Member
- Board of Governors, Member, July 2014-July 2017
- Detroit Regional Chamber, Leadership Detroit, Class XXV
- Oakland County Bar Association, Member
- Small Business Association of Michigan, Member
- State Bar of Michigan, Member
- The Trep Talk Podcast, MICHIGAN BUSINESS NETWORK
- Cybersquatting: How to Protect Your Startup's Domain Name, StartUpNation (Mar. 5, 2017).
- Resourcefulness Allows Entrepreneurs to Succeed Amid Challenges, CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS (Feb. 14, 2017).
- Position for Hire: Business Owner, THE HUFFINGTON POST (Feb. 10, 2017).
- The Guarantee of No Certainty for Entrepreneurs, SMART HUSTLE (Jan. 23, 2017).
- What Does Trump's Tax Plan Mean for Entrepreneurs?, StartUpNation (Jan. 20, 2017).
- Entrepreneur Blueprint, THE HUFFINGTON POST (Dec. 2, 2016 10:23 AM).
- Seven Steps to Success, NOOBPRENEUR.COM (Nov. 17, 2016).
- Is Your Product or Service Revolutionary or Evolutionary?, StartUpNation (Nov. 16, 2016).
- Entrepreneur in Residence: The Role that Will Boost Your Small Business, StartUpNation (Oct. 27, 2016).
- The Entrepreneurial Kiss of Death — Outside Funding, THE HUFFINGTON POST (Oct. 21, 2016).
- Do You Have a Purposeful Passion for Your Business?, MICHIPRENEUR (Oct. 15, 2016).
- If It Ain't Broke, Break It!, YOUNG UPSTARTS (Oct. 7, 2016).
- An Entrepreneurial Mindset Focused on Value Drives Success, CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS (Sept. 6, 2016).
- 'Growth Hacking' Offers Another Strategy for Expanding Client Base, CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS (Aug. 17, 2016).
- Busting the Myths of Small Business Funding, StartUpNation (July 30, 2016).
- Entrepreneurs Benefit from Hiring Like-Minded Attorneys, CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS (July 8, 2016).
- The Anatomy of a Pitch Deck, StartUpNation (June 25, 2016).
- Six Steps to Sales Success as an Entrepreneur, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SALES PROFESSIONALS.
- The Sales Funnel, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SALES PROFESSIONALS.
- The Importance of Sales for an Entrepreneurial Organization, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SALES PROFESSIONALS.
- The Art of Influence, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SALES PROFESSIONALS.
- What They Do Not Teach You about Vision Boards in School, BLOGTREPRENEUR.
- Michael S. Melfi, THE SIMPLE SECRETS OF BEING AN ENTREPRENEUR (2016).
- Michael S. Melfi, THE SIMPLE SECRETS OF CROWDFUNDING (2014).
- Michael S. Melfi, THE SIMPLE SECRETS OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY (2014).
- Michael S. Melfi, THE SIMPLE SECRETS OF SOCIAL MEDIA (2013).
Michael's representative speaking engagements include:
- "Are You Investable?," Presenter, Sales Summit
April 2016, New York, NY.
- "Identity of a Successful Entrepreneur," Presenter, OU INC
September 13, 2016, Rochester, MI.
- "Entrepreneurial Funding," Presenter, Bamboo Detroit
August 18, 2016, Detroit, MI.
- "What Type of Entrepreneur Are You?," Presenter, TiE Detroit
June 15, 2016, Detroit, MI.
- "Identity of a Successful Entrepreneur," Presenter, Ann Arbor SPARK
June 8, 2016, Ann Arbor, MI.
- "Seven Obstacles Entrepreneurs Face," Presenter, TiE Detroit
May 18, 2016, Detroit, MI.
- "The Identity of a Successful Entrepreneur — What's the Secret???," Presenter, DeskHub
December 10, 2015, Atlanta, GA.
- "Global Entrepreneurship Night at the Palace of Auburn Hills," Speaker, Treps Nest
November 21, 2015, Auburn Hills, MI.
- "From Patent to Commercialization," Presenter, Wayne State University
November 15, 2016, Detroit, MI.
- "Habits & Mindset," Presenter, Grand Circus
June 18, 2015, Detroit, MI.
- "Introduction to Crowdfunding in Michigan," Speaker, Institute of Continuing Legal Education (ICLE)
January 29, 2015, Webcast.
- Michigan State University College of Law, J.D.
- Wayne State University, Finance M.B.A.
- University of Michigan, B.A.
- State Bar of Michigan
- Oakland County Bar Association (OCBA)
- Small Business Association of Michigan