Matt Pickus, Firestarter

Nuclear physics and an MBA. Not a combination you read about everyday, but Matthew is not your everyday consultant. After a BS from the University of Michigan in general ecology, he received an MS from Michigan's School of Public Health, specializing in hazardous materials management and health physics (a Manhattan-era euphemism for those that determined the radiological safety for nuclear personnel). He then worked for the Battelle Memorial Institute, one of the world's largest research and development firm. At Battelle, Matthew performed day- to-day "hazmat" and "radmat" duties, then in a research capacity, developed an NRC-approved tritium decontamination procedure that saved Battelle over $250,000. Matthew then spent a few years with an entrepreneurial startup working as a consultant to help hospitals and medical facilities reduce the cost of their waste streams. This is when the entrepreneurial 'bug' bit Matthew, and like everything he does, he grabbed a cement block and jumped in the pool. Matthew received his MBA from the S.C. Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University, specializing in entrepreneurship and venture capital investing. He returned to Michigan where we worked as an implementation specialist for the software startup Crystallize. After Crystallize, Matthew started a small business consultancy working with numerous small companies in the area.

The great thing about this work is that Matthew gets to learn about a variety of technologies; from a radiological monitoring system for sea-land containers, to a hydraulic hybrid transmission that increased the fuel economy of a military vehicle by over 300%! Matthew has:

• Raised over $10,000,000 from angles, strategic investors and VC firms

• Assisted in the creation of a $6,000,000 community development venture fund

• Received $3,300,000 from State of Michigan’s 21st Century Jobs Fund. (He was responsible for the entire submission process for his client, which resulted in the largest amount awarded.)

• Assisted a client in receiving a $1,600,000 Congressional Add from the 2009 U.S. Congressional Budget (Continuing Resolution H.R. 2638)

Matthew's scientific background combined with his business experience allows him to quickly understand most any technology, perform the necessary translation from 'geek-speak' to everyday speak (never business jargon), and then combine the benefits of the technology with the problems of the marketplace to determine and execute the best strategic market entry to maximize the value! (OK- sometimes there is jargon- we take your product, research the opportunity and help you develop and execute a plan to make big changes in the world!)

Matthew is also an experienced public speaking and motivational speaker. When not working, Matthew is a professional actor and voice actor with numerous appearances in local commercial and independent films.

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