We all know that Thanksgiving should be a time to slow down and join our family and friends in gratitude, but more often than not, the holiday feels stressful. We cram in a couple of rushed workdays and move straight into organizing, planning, traveling, cooking, and veering away from our normal routines. To save your sanity, we’ve rounded up nine Southern startups that will make this year’s Turkey Day seamless, freeing up time to relax, catch up with loved ones, and eat that second piece of pumpkin pie.
GeoAir, a startup company founded by MBA candidate Alex Adams, won top prize at last week’s fall 2016 Vol Court Pitch Competition. The company beat 18 competitors to take first place at the competition, which was hosted by UT’s Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. GeoAir gives a faster, more precise way to identify mold in fields by using a drone to take airborne samples of the field. That data is used to create a heat map, which identifies mold hot spots. This information allows growers to spot treat the areas instead of the entire crop, saving time, money, and crop production.
By next summer, Mayor Megan Barry wants 10,000 youth in Nashville to have employment — and she’s depending on the private sector to help meet that goal. Barry on Tuesday called on Nashville businesses to partner with a mayor’s office program called Opportunity NOW as she formally launched the employer recruitment arm of an initiative that’s been in the works for months. At a news conference to lay out details, Barry said the private sector needs to account for an estimated 7,500 of the 10,000 jobs, with non-profit organizations and Metro government accounting for the rest.
The Commercial Appeal
The Greater Memphis Alliance for a Competitive Workforce has won a $6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to bolster the medical device manufacturing workforce in the Memphis metro area. GMACWorkforce is one of 23 regional workforce partnerships that competed to win a total of $111 million in grants awarded through President Obama’s America’s College Promise plan to improve the pipeline of skilled workers in industries such as advanced manufacturing.
Nashville Business Journal
Building a business around helping tourists snag the best place to sit and be served on the sandy shore isn’t exactly a walk on the beach. That’s what Matt Houston and co-founders David Stange and Josh Aronson discovered as they worked to grow Beachy, an on-demand beach chair (and other beach services) company the group launched in 2015. After landing investment and advisors from Brand New Matter, a New York City-based venture capital firm whose team includes the founders of Priceline, the Beachy team has followed a pattern similar to many consumer-facing startups outside the big-spending investment world of the West Coast: They’ve pivoted to a B2B focus.
Nashville may be known for its barbecue and honky tonks. But thanks to an ambitious crop of entrepreneurs and support from public-private partnerships, it’s also emerging as a hotbed for the music-technology industry. Whether it’s classical music, meta data or karaoke software, meet some of the startups who are helping to reshape Music City — and the way the world listens to music.