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Launch Tennessee invests $196,400 to support 21 projects statewide

For immediate release
Aug. 31

Nashville, TN —  As part of its mission to make Tennessee the best state for startups, LaunchTN recently invested in 21 entrepreneur-support projects — from a daylong conference for Black women and nonbinary people to an artist entrepreneur training program. 

A total of $196,400 was allocated to the 21 organizations after a rigorous selection process, as part of LaunchTN’s Community Partner Program (CPP). 

“With this second cohort, we more than doubled our investment and the total number of awards across the state,” Partnerships and Development Manager for LaunchTN Ashlin Smith said. “We were thrilled by the number of viable applications and had a tough task in narrowing them down. We’re proud of the cohort we selected and of the impact these projects can make.”

While the Community Partner Program is open to applicants from all 95 Tennessee counties, there was a focus on supporting activities in the Southern Middle region of the state for cohort 2, so organizations from that region were strongly encouraged to apply.

LaunchTN invested $94,250 in seven projects in the Southern Middle region, including entrepreneurial summits and workshops and bringing entrepreneur support program CO.STARTERS to the area.  

“With this second cohort of LaunchTN Community Partner Programs, we put an intentional focus on funding projects in the Southern Middle Region of the state, which will help move us closer to our goal of supporting entrepreneurs in all 95 Tennessee Counties, “said LaunchTN Development Director Emily Masters.   

Director of The Inventor Center, Linore Huss, received funding through CPP’s first cohort for a project that provided free support to entrepreneurs in the Northeast Tennessee region working to sell their work. Huss shared that the Community Partner Program was integral to the project’s success. 

“The program would not exist without funding from LaunchTN,” Huss said. 

The full list of projects are available online.

By the numbers

2023: CPP launched
1,500: entrepreneurs served in first CPP cohort
28: counties served in first CPP cohort
5,244: target number of entrepreneurs to be served through cohort 2
31: target number of counties to be served through cohort 2

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