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October 15th, 2015

October 15th, 2015

TENNESSEE INNOVATION IN THE NEWS

3D-Printed Shoes Debut at Startup Week
Nooga.com
Feetz—a company that makes customizable footwear using 3-D printing technology—had its public debut Wednesday at Startup Week. “We’ve been doing beta testing, which is one on one and very private,” CEO and founder Lucy Beard said. ‘What we are doing here [at Startup Week] is our debut. We are actually saying, ‘We’ve been telling you about 3-D-printed shoes; we’ve been beta testing it, but now touch them, feel them, see them.'” The shoes were on display and available for attendees to try out, and Beard said she wanted feedback from potential customers.

AngelSummit in Twelve Tweets
SouthernAlpha
This week, the AngelSummit came to Chattanooga, Tennessee.  More than 100 angel investors, entrepreneurs, and experts on startup investing from over twenty states came together for a two-day conference organized by Startup Angels. We were fortunate to have such a wealth of knowledge and experience right in our backyard, so I took to Twitter to share a few of the most compelling insights.  Here’s what we learned, in twelve tweets: The conference began with a statistic that showed the tremendous opportunity to expand angel investing globally…

Boyd Outlines Refined Vision, Mission Strategies and Metrics for ECD
Teknovation
The old advertising slogan, “This is not your father’s Oldsmobile,” came to mind during the opening session of yesterday’s 62nd annual “Governor’s Conference on Economic and Community Development” in Nashville. I have probably attended more than three dozen of these yearly events, but I do not recall seeing a Commissioner of Economic and Community Development (ECD’s) speak so passionately and extemporaneously for more than 60 minutes, outlining his new strategy in as many details as Knoxville native Randy Boyd did. “Today is the greatest moment in the history of Tennessee,” the always upbeat and charismatic Commissioner told a packed ballroom at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel. The reference was not about the specific day, but rather about this time in Tennessee’s history.

Downtown Memphis Board Approves ArtSpace Grant
The Commercial Appeal
Affordable living and working space for Memphis artists moved closer to a planned February groundbreaking with approval Wednesday of a $200,000 grant from a Downtown development agency. The Center City Development Corp., an arm of the Downtown Memphis Commission, voted to help ArtSpace South Main Lofts close a financing gap for the $14 million project. ArtSpace proposes 58 live-work units in a renovated United Warehouse building at 138 St. Paul and adjoining new construction. Renters must qualify as low income, and preference will be given to artists.

Startup Week’s AngelSummit Focuses on Investment, Community
Chattanooga Times Free Press
Conversation about investing was the coin of the realm for AngelSummit US, the two-day conference in the midst of Startup Week Chattanooga. After all, getting a cash infusion can be critical to launching a company. The summit, held Tuesday and Wednesday, didn’t center on the sizzling visions of budding companies. Instead, it was for investors, to help them learn more about putting money to good use in startups. It brought together accomplished entrepreneurs, business leaders and investors from across the country. Patrick Turns, managing director for Selego Capital, arrived from Nashville Tuesday night. His firm helps families find attractive investments. “It’s an opportunity to network with other investors,” Turns said. He’d made it to a keynote talk or two and planned to attend a session titled “How Investors Think” late Wednesday afternoon.


Nashville Business Journal
Two Nashville startups bulked up their backing in recent weeks, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Neither of them are health care companies, a good sign for Nashville’s continued efforts to grow a robust tech sector outside our traditional health care core. Citizengine, parent company to political tech startup iCitizen. According to an Oct. 13 filing, the company has added another $3 million in a recent raise, the latest of several for the fairly atypical (for Nashville) startup. iCitizen’s been in the news a bit lately, with a recent acquisition, high-profile hires and the addition of a new experienced tech CEO. The Crystal Project, more commonly known as Crystal. In an Oct. 14 filing, this company, described as “creepy”more than once in the national tech press, reports a $1.4 million raise. It’s looking to add another $500,000 to that pot. If you haven’t read about Crystal yet, the company offers a service to analyze the emails of your correspondents and help you communicate with them better.

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