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October 13th, 2015

October 13th, 2015

TENNESSEE INNOVATION IN THE NEWS

CBI Starting Accelerator Named “100 Days to Launch – Tourism”
Teknovation
The Cumberland Business Incubator in Crossville (CBI) has announced plans for a new offering named “100 Days to Launch – Tourism.” As the name implies, the business accelerator that will launch in January is focused on capitalizing on the region’s robust tourism industry, according to CBI Director Holly Hanson, who cites data from the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development. “Tourism in Tennessee represented $17.7 billion in 2014,” she says. “Tourism-generated jobs reached 152,900. Travelers to Tennessee topped 100 million, and Tennessee is ranked in the Top 10 destinations in the U.S. for total travel.”

Law Gives Investors Entry Into the Music Royalty World
The Tennessean
Despite recent industry turmoil, music royalties have been creating local millionaires for decades. Now, you don’t have to be a talented writer or a music power broker to have access to the action. Nashville Royalty, a new music catalog company, is looking for investors in the form of everyday Tennesseans. The state passed a law in 2014, Invest Tennessee Exemption, that makes equity crowdfunding possible. “We have had the idea to do crowdfunding for this particular item for a long time,” said Jeff Tweel, music industry veteran and Nashville Royalty founder. “It’s a new spin on how people, the average citizen, can invest in the music business, buying shares in songs.”

Meet Tejas Manohar, Lead Engineer of a Silicon Valley Startup. And a Brentwood Teenager
SouthernAlpha
AutoLotto, a Silicon Valley startup making it possible to play the lottery right from your smartphone, already has $600,000 in funding since its launch this year. “AutoLotto is going to eliminate the pain points of the traditional lottery, such as finding a gas station, waiting in line, dealing with lost tickets, and forgetting to (or actually) checking your numbers,” said Tejas Manohar, the lead engineer of the company who lives in Brentwood, Tenn. Manohar will be giving his lecture on Koa.js at the upcoming meeting of the Javascript user group, NashJS. Working remote and giving talks as a software developer may not sound so out of the norm, except for the small fact that Manohar won’t even be able to consume the adult beverages often available at the meetups.  Tejas Manohar is a 16-year-old from Brentwood.

Startup Week: A Slice of Q&A with Vaynerchuk
Nooga.com
Vaynerchuk is a proven angel investor and venture capitalist; event information said that he has even invested in Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Uber. In 2009, Vaynerchuk and his brother began VaynerMedia, a social media-first digital agency. Vaynerchuk opened a VaynerMedia office in Chattanooga in June 2014, one month after visiting the Scenic City for the first time. Now, he heralds Startup Week Chattanooga. Linked is an edited version of exchanges between the audience and Vaynerchuk.

Vaynerchuk Says This is the Best Time Ever to Build a Business
Chattanooga Times Free Press
This is the best time in history to be an Internet entrepreneur, and there’s no better place to be one than in Chattanooga. So said self-described “storytelling entrepreneur” Gary Vaynerchuk on Monday as he kicked off Startup Week Chattanooga, the city’s second-annual, multiday “celebration of Chattanooga’s entrepreneurial community.” Roars of applause came from an almost capacity crowd at the 505-seat Roland Hayes Auditorium at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga as Vaynerchuk sang the Scenic City’s praises. “I’m absolutely convinced that there will be an incredible $100 million business that starts here,” he said. That’s one reason why Vaynerchuk, 39, said he chose downtown Chattanooga as the fourth location for VaynerMedia, his social media-focused marketing business that also has offices in New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles.


Nashville Business Journal
Nashville startup Nerdwax didn’t leave ABC’s “Shark Tank” with a deal from any of the celebrity investors. Its founders are OK with that. Nerdwax, one of two companies with a local tie appearing on the Oct. 9 episode, did get offers from two of the sharks: Kevin O’Leary and special guest shark Troy Carter. But Hejny said both offers were more designed to get the sharks their money back quickly, not to help the company grow. The Hejnys were interested in finding a partner willing to offer them advice and connections to grow the company, not just a capital supplier. Their ideal targets were Mark Cuban or Lori Greiner, neither of whom bit. “We didn’t go in just wanting the money,” Hejny said, pointing to the sales boost from a national television appearance.

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