phone: 1-612-808-8081



Invention Pilot™ is a new service from Invention City that builds on thirty years of proven results in developing and commercializing inventions with companies ranging from startups to Fortune 500, experience that has earned tens of millions in royalty income, 100+ patents and nearly $1 billion in sales worldwide. Three steps maximize the chances of success while controlling costs:

ONE - Preflight: Research and analyze prior art inventions and competitive products. Protect intellectual property. Survey the market.

TWO - Takeoff: Develop and prototype. Create a presentation package.

THREE - Landing: Commercialize through licensing, crowdfunding, start-up.

Each step is customized to suit your particular needs and goals.


You’re in CONTROL with expert help

We’re an award winning crew. Tell us where you want to go and we’ll develop and execute a plan to get you there while helping you avoid expensive mistakes. We do not take a share or a percentage of your invention. You retain ownership and approve and track our progress.



Invention City has won multiple IDSA/Business Week Awards including a Design of the Decade Gold for the Black & Decker PowerShot Forward Action Staple Gun (alongside the Apple iMac and BMW 320i). Our Gator-Grip Universal Socket first gained renown on direct response TV and has continued selling for more than two decades. PaperPro desktop staplers revolutionized desktop stapling. We’ve created apps and algorithms, designed assembly machines and assembly lines, developed perfume and snack food concepts, worked on marine thrusters, arterial blood gas devices, remote control units and oil field wireline tools; we’ve made over a dozen appearances on QVC, run Kickstarters, launched start-ups, closed licensing deals with Fortune 500 corporations, have been granted over 100 US patents and won $5 million patent litigation. We know inventing and product commercialization from end to end because we’ve done it.

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Lies Don’t Fly

We treat your invention idea with the same care and concern as if it were our own - if we don’t think your invention will fly, we’ll tell you. Crashes are common when launching something new. Success is never guaranteed no matter how much effort is made, regardless of how brilliant the idea is. Our promise is to help you proceed responsibly, so that if the effort fails, you’ll be positioned to try again.

Comments on Invention City’s Brutally Honest Review

"Just read through your analysis. Extremely thorough and insightful. Absolutely best $95 ever spent... I have been inventing for years so I do know the route. I got spoiled with my first one... sold it for 1 million $ with NO SALES !! I know, unheard of ! It's my passion but I also know the risks as well.. ESP disappointment and closed doors. I probably will not spend more $ but may keep throwing it out to some companies to see if there was any interest. I will re-read later tonite when I have more time. Many thanks for your review and you guys are invaluable to inventors ...they should at least run ideas by you first before spending thousands." L. Adami

"I have been involved in product development and personal inventing for over 30 years. In that time I have had many good fortunes with my ideas. I have also had my share of encounters with less-than honest and wholly-valueless product review companies (and have had several colleagues also fall prey to their often predatory tactics). I am very grateful to have stumbled upon Invention City and have already passed it along to several friends. There are no tactics, salesmanship or pie-in-the-sky the real world of product development you must leave your wild-eyed optimism at the door and seek out truly objective, insightful and above-reproach reviewers. If you have an idea and are in need of an honest, real-world assessment look no further.... Inventioncity IS your destination." - Dr. J Kennedy

Inventor Bill S.

Inventor John M.

A Sampling of Products Developed by The Invention City Team

Invention City works with inventors from around the world and on projects in all categories. Below are examples of some of the projects we’ve worked on over the years. Our participation has encompassed negotiating licensing deals; founding, financing and managing start-up companies; design, engineering prototyping and testing; manufacturing in USA and internationally; importing and exporting; creating videos, sales sheets, producing and running DRTV marketing programs; making appearances on QVC; running national and international sales organizations; conducting surveys; writing and filing patents, trademarks and copyright; analyizing intellectual property supporting patent litigation; helping with buyouts. Our products are sold by merchants such as Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Amazon, QVC, HSN, Lowes, Target, Dollar General, Canadian Tire, Grainger and thousands of other chains and independent distributors worldwide.


Invention Pilot™ Program Details

Each step is customized to suit your particular needs and goals.

ONE: PREFLIGHT - Research and analyze prior art inventions and competitive products. Protect intellectual property. Survey the market.

  • Review prior art, competitive products and alternative solutions.

  • Identify top potential licensees, consider synergies and conflicts.

  • Analyze invention using Inventicator™ algorithm.

  • Protect intellectual property.

  • Create survey presentation(s).

  • Survey target market.

  • Evaluate survey results.

TWO: TAKEOFF - Develop and prototype. Create a presentation package.

  • Refine and prototype invention.

  • Distill product message.

  • Create 1-2 minute explainer video.

  • Contact target partners, investors, licensees.

  • Confidentiality agreement.

  • Presentation.

  • Follow up.

  • Includes phone/email consultation

THREE: LANDING - Commercialize through licensing, crowdfunding/start-up.

  • Review personal goals and capabilities

  • Determine funding needed for each commercialization option.

  • Estimate potential returns from licensing vs. start-up.

  • Outline key deal points.

  • Presentation to prospects.

  • Write draft agreement or review draft agreement from prospect.

  • Responses and modifications to draft agreement.

  • Close deal.

  • If crowdfunding/start-up, help with manufacturing, marketing, distribution.

  • Includes phone/email consultation

E: phone: 1-612-808-8081


Mike Marks – Founder
Mike has been commercializing inventions for three decades. He's enjoyed the thrill of big successes like Gator-Grip® universal sockets and PowerShot® forward action staple guns and has been well educated by interesting failures. Prior to founding Invention City, Mike worked as a commercial photographer and photojournalist in New York City. He grew up in California and has a degree in economics from UCLA. Away from work he spends as much time as possible outdoors and enjoys surfing, sailing, backpacking and time with his family and friends.

Dan Fulford - Co-Founder
Dan has a creative genius that can find the souls of great products in undeveloped invention ideas and a knack for bringing those ideas to market. Dan joined Invention City to help relaunch the business after serving as head of licensing at Lambert & Lambert and a career in real estate. A dedicated outdoorsman, Dan spent his first adult years as a fishing guide in Alaska in and around Lake Clarke and Kodiak Island. If you can't reach him on the phone the odds are pretty good he's out of range somewhere on lakes near the Canadian border or in the mountains of Montana.

Joel Marks – Senior Inventor
Since the time he could walk, Joel has been inquiring into how things work and how they could be made to work better and more intuitively. As co-founder and chief product designer of WorkTools, Inc., Endeavor Tool Company and Accentra, he has conceived, engineered and designed several award-winning products. In 1999 he was honored with a Gold Design of the Decade Award from IDSA/Business Week for his work on the Black & Decker PowerShot® staple gun (an award shared by the Apple iMac and VW Beetle). His proudest success to date is the PaperPro line of desktop staplers that took the office products world by storm - it sold over 1,000,000 units in its first year of production! Joel has over 75 US patents issued in his name. A 1982 Engineering graduate of UCLA, Joel was formerly employed by TRW in its Spacecraft Engineering Division, where his primary responsibilities were precision fabrication and assembly of spacecraft hardware and the design and management of product tests.

Asa Nadeau - Director of Innovation
An independent executive highly skilled at implementing evidence-based trans-disciplinary approaches to personal development and organizational effectiveness, Asa welcomes challenge as a catalyst, an opportunity for growth. Asa draws from draws from a breadth of expertise spanning the arts and sciences to deeply inform his engagements, helping others harness the creative insight Asa identifies at the heart of every question.  Asa is responsible for maximizing and sustaining growth of the organization and partners through management of elements related to business efficiency and digital transformation including web platform development, business growth initiatives, back-end systems, empathic design, customer success and data analysis, with a particular focus on system disruption and exponential technologies.

Frank Micelli - Director Retail Marketing and Acquisitions
Frank has achieved great success on all sides of retail and in between in roles ranging from Buyer at Zayre corporation (a 435 store New England chain that was one of the models for Wal-Mart) to EVP of National Sales for Endeavor Products. He's run bricks and mortar retail campaigns joined to direct response television advertising as well as online programs with Amazon and others. In regular contact with buyers at chains such as Wal-Mart, Lowes, Home Depot and CVS, Frank has a unique ability to keep new products in front of major buyers so that when they say yes the opportunity is ready to go. When he joined Endeavor he grew profitable sales from $1.6 million to $20 million in just two years. Frank was integral to the success of products like Gator-Grip®, Ab-Roller®, Topsy-Tail®, Triple Edge Wiper®, DiDi Seven®, Marvin's Magic®, Auri® Car Wax and many more.

When he's not busy making money for brands and companies, Frank enjoys eating well, traveling with his wife and telling stories about growing up in Boston's North End.

Brad Golstein - Legal and Business Affairs
Brad manages the growing Intellectual property portfolio at WorkTools, Inc. where he has primary responsibility for financial and legal affairs. He is a co-founder of Endeavor Tool Company and Accentra. Brad has the rare combination of a good legal mind seasoned by real business experience. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from UC Berkeley with a degree in History in 1980 and then received both a JD and MBA from UCLA in 1984. He practiced law for several years representing clients such as Weyerhauser, JVC Entertainment, The SoftwareToolworks and others. Brad joined Mike and Joel to found WorkTools in 1986. 

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or by phone at 1-612-808-8081