LaunchTN announces first investments since creation of Innovation Capital Continuum

Healing Innovations, Hera Health, Hytch, and Possip receive funding totaling more than $626K.

Nashville, TN – Launch Tennessee (LaunchTN), a public-private partnership that fosters entrepreneurship across the state, today announced investments in four Tennessee companies: Healing InnovationsHera HealthHytch, and Possip. The investments demonstrate LaunchTN’s commitment to entrepreneurs and its vision to make Tennessee the most startup-friendly state in the nation.

“We’re proud to make these investments in Tennessee companies,” said Khrys Hatch, LaunchTN Capital Program Manager. “Each team has shown discipline and grit, making thoughtful and informed iterations to arrive at the products they’re taking to market.”

Designed to promote new opportunities for Tennessee startups, the LaunchTN Innovation Capital Continuum provides options for capital-seekers with three equity initiatives:

  • Impact Fund: focuses on Tennessee-based seed-stage ventures in the areas of agriculture, healthcare, sustainability, education, clean energy, financial inclusion, and more

  • Blended Capital Fund: provides a customized investment solution for otherwise under-resourced early-stage companies

  • Follow-on Fund: allows further investments in companies in which LaunchTN already holds an equity position

Healing Innovations is the Nashville-based developer of the Rise&Walk™, which provides locomotor training to patients recovering from neurological injuries.

“The investment from LaunchTN enabled our team to complete product development for the Rise&Walk™,” said Healing Innovations cofounder and CEO Luke Benda. “We were also able to grow our team and prepare for the commercialization of this technology.”

“On a personal note,” Benda added, “the investment from LaunchTN was a huge vote of confidence from a trustworthy organization that believes in our team and our mission.”

Hera Health, based in Memphis, has developed the patent-pending Eucontra, which offers patients an implant that reabsorbs into the body, providing a safe and effective pharmaceutical delivery solution.

“We are truly honored by the support we’ve received from the close-knit Tennessee community,” said Idicula Matthew, CEO and founder of Hera Health. “Our most recent investment round, which totals over $1 million, will be instrumental as we approach our next milestones, including further regulatory development and trials for our innovative drug-delivery technology.”

“We couldn’t have achieved these significant company milestones without the support of the ecosystem,” Matthew continued, “and we’re looking forward to our continued partnership and next stages of growth.”

Hytch, based in Nashville, is an eco-friendly mobile-rewards company that gives users free access to carbon-neutral travel by using carpool, rideshare, or public transportation.

“To have LaunchTN invest in our first round and again in our second is mission critical,” said Mark Cleveland, Hytch cofounder. “Startup investors gain confidence when they see this kind of support — from the additional eyeballs and voices in the underwriting process, to helping deliver resources, access, and connections the way LaunchTN does. It creates and improves the environment for success.”

“The LaunchTN investment helps lend credibility when we build relationships outside of Tennessee,” Cleveland added. “As we expand to serve the Bay Area as a technology tool to help fight congestion, we’re swimming with Silicon Valley, and everything matters.”

Possip, based in Nashville, gives schools and districts the technology, systems, and people to get feedback and information from their large, diverse parent populations and take action.

“The investment from LaunchTN allows us to expand our team and Possip’s reach and impact,” said Shani Dowell, founder and CEO of Possip. “Thanks to this investment, more schools in Tennessee and across the country are getting stronger through the power of their community.”

“The Innovation Capital Continuum investment, when combined with other investments, propels Possip past the $1 million mark, an important milestone,” Dowell continued. “With only .0006% of venture funding going into Black women-led companies, this investment demonstrates confidence in Tennessee’s diverse entrepreneurial leaders to produce positive economic results and impact through scaling their companies.”

With each ICC investment, LaunchTN leverages its complete portfolio of programs, relationships, and other resources on behalf of Tennessee startups, maximizing the potential return in the form of real dollars, jobs, capital investment, and innovation leadership.

About LaunchTN
Launch Tennessee is a public-private partnership that supports entrepreneurs from ideation to exit. We’re guided by a vision to make Tennessee the most startup-friendly state in the nation. Visit LaunchTN.org to discover what makes Tennessee a great state for startups.

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