Charlie Brock, LaunchTN CEO Blog
The reasons why more than 900 people opted to attend a two-day conference in Nashville were many, but they boiled down to this: Nashville, Tennessee and the Southeast are the new frontier not just for innovation, but also for setting up shop and growing a business. Time and time again, we heard about the affordability and hospitality of Nashville, but also about the expanding, talented workforce here that makes it possible to turn innovative ideas into reality. All that said, none of it would have happened without the hard work and innovation of Launch Tennessee’s own staff, so I want to call them out for some much-deserted recognition here:
Nashville Business Journal
Nashville serial entrepreneur and Jumpstart Foundry president Marcus Whitney has another company on the way. Earlier this week, Whitney blogged about his plans for The Unlikely Company PBC, a public benefit corporation designed to benefit both shareholders and the common good. According to the post, “The Unlikely Company will create and sell educational products and experiences for those seeking to become (better) entrepreneurs,” then use the profit from those sales to “fund economic and educational programs that will develop social entrepreneurs in low-income or high-risk communities.”
Memphis Daily News
A local entrepreneur has secured $135,000 in funding for her startup company, Pickle. Morgan Steffy, an entrepreneurship fellow at the University of Memphis Crews Center for Entrepreneurship, has secured the funds for the competitive “selfie” and photo sharing application. Users can upload photos to challenge in categories such as “best dog selfie” or “most disheveled morning face” and other users vote for a winner. The majority of the funding came from Wolf River Angels, the investment arm of Memphis-based accelerator program Start Co.
Nashville Business Journal
A Nashville startup called Music City Mise wants a bite of the young, but growing, meal delivery industry. Thanks to companies like Plated and Blue Apron (the latter of which was just valued at $2 billion), a growing number of Americans are unpacking boxes, not grocery bags, and cooking homemade meals from pre-measured, pre-packaged ingredients shipped straight to their doors. While those companies have raised hundreds of millions in venture capital to scale their delivery nationally, Music City Mise has focused on locally sourced ingredients and local delivery, which founder Libby Sibley hopes will differentiate the company.
Nick Holland and Haley Devlin have launched a company to fix growth strategy glitches. The Surge Growth team acts as outside management consultants who align companies that need help implementing growth strategy. But the team doesn’t just barge in and change everything about the business. It does its work by utilizing clients’ current teams and resources to make an organized plan, path and prediction for the long-term. “We don’t just tell you what you are doing wrong,” Holland said. “We work beside you to fix the problem.”
Louisville’s “TechFest” has added a Chattanooga business executive as a featured speaker. Paul Cummings, the visionary behind the soon-to-open TechTown, will serve as keynote speaker at a luncheon on August 21, the event’s second day.
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