In a stunning year for technology, 2015 brought us a number of new surprises. Inc. lists 10 of the year’s biggest tech disruptors, including Chattanooga’s Branch Technology.
Times Free Press
Only four years after launching an on-demand moving business, a pair of Auburn University graduates have secured the biggest one-time venture capital investment of any Chattanooga startup company. The Chattanooga-based Bellhops, which got its initial funding from the Lamp Post Group in Chattanooga and raised an initial $6 million of venture funds in November 2014, closed a $13.5 million round of additional funding this month from some of the top startup investment companies in the country.
Venture Nashville Connections
Newly Inc., which will launch this spring in the home goods sector, has not only become the first company to register under the State’s new for-profit Public Benefit Corporation charter option, but apparently aims to contribute to what we’ll tentatively call Nashville’s budding Style sector. Barrett Ward told Venture Nashville today that his Nashville-based company, Newly Inc., was “definitely” intentional about becoming the first company in the state to adopt the B-Corp charter, which to some extent protects the for-profit business from potential shareholder pressure to maximize profits, at the expense of the company’s closely aligned social mission.
The Commercial Appeal
On Craigslist there’s a beautiful oak antique pool table for sale for $2,500. But it’s just a fantasy for most people. To get it from Olathe, Kansas, to Memphis would require a truck, time off from work and several strong backs. Now a Memphis entrepreneur is trying to turn fantasy into reality by creating the freight version of Uber, the ride-sharing service. Logistics expert Chris Cantrell is developing a Web-based business that would mesh the less-than-truckload freight industry to a mobile phone app used by consumers.
Knoxville News Sentinel
There was a big turnout back in September for the first-ever Industry Day at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. More than 350 people registered for the event, which was sponsored by the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, and about 110 companies from around the region and beyond were represented. Industrial visitors got an education on how to collaborate with the laboratory on projects of all types and scales, and ORNL officials asked for feedback on other possibilities. Asked if ORNL had seen any results from Industry Day, communications director David Keim provided this response…
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