Attorney Profiles

Michael J. Ioannou


Chairman — San Jose


Michael J. Ioannou joined Ropers, Majeski, Kohn & Bentley in 1980 and became a partner in 1987.  He was the Resident Director of RMKB’s Silicon Valley office from 1994 – January 2017, and continues to be the Chairman of the firm since October 2013.  His practice focuses on advice regarding competitive business practices, and prosecuting and defending through trial, business litigation matters, including intellectual property (patent, trademark and copyright infringement), misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition, high-tech software/hardware defect claims, business torts, cyber security and privacy breaches, wrongful termination, unfair competition and anti-trust.  He represents offshore and U.S.-based public and private companies and individuals, including semiconductor, software and hardware design, development, manufacturing, and information technology companies.

He also has extensive experience in employment litigation and claims by employers against former employees for financial malfeasance and misappropriation of intellectual property, private and public directors’ and officers’ fiduciary, shareholder class action and derivative litigation, and financial institution litigation. He provides extensive advice to offshore and U.S.-based businesses for multi-national offshoring strategies, pre-litigation dispute resolution, prosecution, and defense of civil litigation, and various aspects of intellectual property and corporate governance issues.  His clients range from large public companies and small to medium-sized businesses, to founders of start-up companies, and individuals. As lead counsel for plaintiffs or defendants, he has successfully resolved over 1,200 business-related civil lawsuits filed in the state and federal courts, primarily in California, by way of settlement, trial, or appeal. Well over 90% of such business lawsuits were resolved through favorable settlements. Further, over half of these actions involved trademark, copyright, patent, trade secrets, E&O Technology and D&O fiduciary and employment claims, and related business torts.

Over his career, he consulted for the California Continuing Education of the Bar on chapters of Competitive Business Practices involving business torts and unfair competition.  He has published an article in Upside Magazine concerning the “look and feel” copyright protection issue.  Mr. Ioannou was a speaker at the Semicon West conference on “Intellectual Property and the Secondary Market,” and has lectured in India on several occasions from 2004-2014 for the Indian government, including the government of the state of Punjab, Confederation of India Industry, Indo American Chamber of Commerce, and Associated Chambers of Commerce on various topics involving outsourcing, privacy, cyber security, employment, and IP issues.  In 2016, he co-wrote (with the SVP and General Counsel of Wipro Limited, Inderpreet Sawhney and Terry Anastassiou), Successful Partnering Between Inside and Outside Counsel Chapter 34 on Cross-Border Investigations published by Thomson Reuters, 4/2016 and sponsored by the American Corporate Counsel Association.

Mr. Ioannou obtained his bachelor of combined sciences and his J.D. from Santa Clara University in 1977 and 1980, respectively.  He was the recipient for Best Brief, Constitutional Law Question, in Moot Court Competition.  He has been a member of the Board of Fellows of Santa Clara University since 1995.  He is a member of the Santa Clara County Bar Association and is past Chair of the International Section.  He is licensed to practice before all California state courts and the United States District Courts for the Northern, Southern, Central, and Eastern Districts of California.  He has been a Judge Pro Tem for Santa Clara County Superior Court since 1989, having successfully settled over 100 business or high tech-related disputes.  He was invited and has been certified as a federal mediator by the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.  Finally, since 1995 he was awarded and continues to hold the highest personal rating, AV® Preeminent™, from Martindale-Hubbell.  Mr. Ioannou was selected for inclusion in Northern California Super Lawyers® magazine in 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2016-2018 for IP and Business Litigation.