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Michael Braun - professor, university of montana

Mike is the Poe Family Distinguished Fellow in the Department of Management and Marketing at the University of Montana’s College of Business. He received his Ph.D. in strategic management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 2006.  He has an MBA with a finance concentration from the University of Southern California, a Master’s degree in Publishing and Media from New York University as a Hearst Fellow, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Asian Studies from Cornell University. Mike was born in Zurich, Switzerland and holds dual citizenship, U.S. and Swiss. He speaks fluent German and Italian and is conversational in French. 

Mike currently teaches strategy, entrepreneurship and international business to graduate and undergraduate students at the University of Montana, Franklin University Switzerland (adjunct) and the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (visiting). His book, Mastering Strategy: Workshops for Business Success, based on his award-winning courses, was published in January, 2014. Mike’s primary research is focused on the management of family-owned firms, innovation strategies for companies and industries, and organizational decline and corporate turnaround. In 2017, Mike was recognized for his teaching innovation on organizational decline and corporate turnarounds by the National Academy of Management. His research is published in a wide range of journals, including Academy of Management ReviewJournal of ManagementFamily Business ReviewJournal of Private Equity, and the Harvard Business Review. As an advisory member of the Blackstone Launchpad, a program designed to support economic development and venture creation throughout Montana, Mike has assisted dozens of entrepreneurs launch and grow their businesses.

Prior to joining academia, Mike was a Director with Stephens & Partners, a Los Angeles-based merchant bank that specializes in buy-side mergers and acquisitions across multiple industries.  Mike’s clients included corporations looking to grow through acquisitions as well as private equity funds with strategic investment intent. Mike was responsible for raising over $150 million in equity commitments for buyout investments, which in one case led to the founding of Intelligrated, the largest U.S.-based materials handling company.