Clients emphasize their “great working relationship” with Michael High and have described him as “knowledgeable”, “responsive”, and “hard-working”, and illustrating “excellent judgment” in business law matters. One client described him as “a superb corporate lawyer who is really amazing at navigating some very tricky business deals.” – Chambers USA
Michael High was the leader of the firm’s Business and Commercial Services Practice Group for more than 20 years and currently serves as co-leader of the Group. He has extensive experience in representing businesses, investors, lenders and borrowers in a wide range of corporate and commercial matters, including entity formation, shareholder/owner relations, corporate governance, drafting, reviewing and negotiating complex contracts, mergers, acquisitions and dispositions, corporate finance, private placements, venture capital financing (representing both investors and targets), technology licensing and transfers, and the protection and licensing of intellectual property. Michael also represents a number of the state’s largest financial institutions in complex commercial transactions, has represented several Maine colleges and Maine utilities in debt issuances and commercial transactions over many years, and has served as local counsel for a number of national and international firms and their clients on a wide range of complex commercial and project financings.
Recent representative transactions include serving as lead counsel in connection with the purchase and sale of several technology companies (biotechnology and software), the sale of specialty food companies to private equity investors, counsel to senior management in several management buyout transactions, the purchase and sale of seafood businesses, the formation of several investment funds, the representation of venture capital firms and other investors, representing clients in software development and licensing transactions and in the preparation and negotiation of other complex commercial agreements. Michael has a long-established and wide range of business clients and very much enjoys working with them on the contract, governance (including succession planning) and other business issues that arise at every stage of their development, from formation to exit. After graduating from the Cornell Law School, Michael practiced at Choate, Hall & Stewart in Boston, Massachusetts for several years before moving to Maine.
HONORS & AWARDS
Michael has been listed for over 25 years in Best Lawyers in America, a guide to leading lawyers in the U.S., and is currently listed in the following categories: Banking and Finance Law, Business Organizations, Closely Held Companies and Family Business Law, Commercial Finance Law, Corporate Law, Mergers and Acquisitions Law, Securities/Capital Markets Law, and Venture Capital Law. In addition, he has been named Lawyer of the Year by Best Lawyers in the following areas on at least one occasion:
- Banking and Finance Law Lawyer of the Year, Portland, ME
- Closely Held Companies and Family Businesses Law Lawyer of the Year, Portland, ME
- Corporate Law Lawyer of the Year, Portland, ME
- Mergers and Acquisitions Law Lawyer of the Year, Portland, ME
- Securities/Capital Markets Law Lawyer of the Year, Portland, ME
- Securities Regulation Law Lawyer of the Year, Portland, ME
In addition, Michael has been listed in each edition of Chambers USA, an independent guide to the top business lawyers in the U.S., and for many years has been listed at the highest level (Star Individual) in recognition of his expertise in mergers and acquisitions and corporate law, and has been selected by his peers for inclusion in the New England Super Lawyers Directory for Business/Corporate law. Michael is also rated AV® by Martindale Hubbell (Preeminent Level).
Cornell Law School, J.D., 1983 (Articles Editor, Cornell International Law Journal)
Northwestern University (Danforth Graduate Fellow), M.A., 1979
University of New Hampshire, B.A., 1977 (Phi Beta Kappa; Summa Cum Laude)
American Bar Association – Business Law Section
Maine State Bar Association
Business Law Section of the Maine State Bar Association – Former Chair
Maine Bar Association Sub-Committee that oversaw the adoption of Revised Article 9 in Maine – Co-chair
Corporate Law Revision Committee of the Business Law Section that revised and then recommended the adoption of Maine’s Business Corporation Act – Subcommittee Chair
Limited Liability Company Revision Committee of the Business Law Section that oversaw review and enactment of Maine’s Limited Liability Company Act – Subcommittee Chair