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February 9th, 2016

February 9th, 2016

TENNESSEE INNOVATION IN THE NEWS

@GaryVee: How the Disappearing Photos App Snapchat Changed the Game
Nooga.com
Snapchatting has been making a lot of news lately, which has left many adults wondering how it got to this point. How did Snapchat, an app that first made headlines as the“sexting app,” get to the point of receiving over 100 million active users and 7 billion daily video views today? To be honest, I was surprised early on that people didn’t realize that the way Snapchat works is much closer to how we communicate face to face than any other social network.

Nano Elements Goes from R&D License to Full Commercialization
Teknovation
What began as an R&D license to more fully explore the commercial potential of a technology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has turned into an “all hands on deck” effort to commercialize that technology. Jeff McCay, one of the Founders of Top Five, a private equity company based in Chattanooga, told us recently that Nano Elements Source LLC, one of Top Five’s portfolio companies, has executed a full license to commercialize the unique nanofermentation technology.

Kalatech Partners Reflect on Recent Growth and Expanding in 2016
Music Row
Brittany Wegusen, Kalatech CEO and founder, admits the creation of the company was a very organic process. From her background in the retail industry doing inventory analysis for Abercrombie & Fitch, she learned she had a niche for being the liaison between the business needs and technology needs of a company, and perhaps most importantly, for communicating effectively between the two. She came to Nashville in 2010 and found a home with technology firm DevDigital. From that post, she quickly saw a need to take DevDigital’s booking and touring software, created for specific clients, and license it to other customers. Thus, Kalatech was formed.

The State of Tennessee Entrepreneurship at The TENN Roadshow
Startup Southerner
The eight companies participating in Launch Tennessee’s master accelerator program, The TENN, stopped in Nashville last week as part of a five-city roadshow. Hosted by Emma, the stop in Nashville gave the entrepreneurs a chance to pitch their ideas to a packed house. (Nashville podcaster Clark Buckner was also there to capture some great insights from the entrepreneurs; check out his audio interviews in this post.) Here are some observations I made about the state of Tennessee entrepreneurship after attending this event…

‘The TENN’ Showcases Startups
Kingsport Times News
The statewide roadshow that began at the MeadowView Marriott last Monday was all about showcasing the next big idea. That roadshow, called “The Tenn,” is supported by Launch Tennessee, a public-private partnership funded in part by the state to give new budding entrepreneurs a shot at building their dream. To get things rolling, the minds behind seven new business startups made three-minute pitches inside a MeadowView Marriott meeting room filled with potential investors and onlookers.

Video-Content Monetizer GameWisp Raised $843K, has Runway to Series A
Venture Nashville Connections
GameWisp, the Nashville-based startup that enables Gaming-video owners to monetize their content and personal brands, has raised more than $840K since inception and is likely to consider a Series A raise in 2017, said Co-Founder and CEO Michael Anderson. Other than a matching investment from the State INCITE program administered by LaunchTN, all GameWisp’s funding has thus far come from out-of-state investors, including the TechStars Chicago accelerator, Math Venture Partners and individual Angel investors based in Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco areas, said Anderson.

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