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May 8th, 2014

May 8th, 2014

Tennessee Innovation in the News

Tennessean: Entrepreneurial spirit fuels charter schools’ successOne big factor behind Nashville’s national recognition as the “It City” is a significant cultural shift around entrepreneurship. The trend of talented professionals moving here in large numbers, attracted by a quality of life that’s simply too strong to stay a secret and a popular buzz that Nashville is an entrepreneurial town creating a lot of opportunity, is reshaping the city in many positive ways…Nashville’s entrepreneurial spirit transcends company startups and jobs. It is culturally invigorating and, to the city’s great benefit, extends to civic and public service, arts and culture, and, very importantly, into the education arena via the growth and success of our public charter schools.

Press Release: Northwest TN Accelerator Graduate Accepted To Jumpstart FoundryThe Northwest Tennessee Entrepreneur Center in Martin, TN, is a business accelerator dedicated to helping local entrepreneurs through the process of creating profitable, growing businesses. Beyond Right Now, a graduate business from the entrepreneur center’s NextFarm agricultural innovation cohort program, has just taken the next step toward realizing its dream. Beyond Right Now was recently accepted as a participant in the Jumpstart Foundry 2014 cohort class. Similarly to NextFarm and NTEC, the JumpStart Foundry is a program that helps prospective entrepreneurs take their business idea and turn it into a tangible, successful product.

Nooga: FSG Bank partners to support LAUNCHLeaders with FSG Bank are partnering with LAUNCH—a local organization that aims to empower community members through entrepreneurship, job training and mentorship—to help further the nonprofit’s mission. “We are a community bank, and our CEO and senior management team take that term ‘community bank’ very seriously,” Jeffrey F. Olingy, chief marketing officer with FSG, said. “It’s about more than doing business. It’s about giving back to a community.” This partnership, which has been several months in the making, will have the two organizations working closely together to empower LAUNCH youth entrepreneurs. Olingy said that bank leaders had a list of possible organizations to sponsor, and they were intrigued by LAUNCH’s mission.

Teknovation.Biz: “MediaWorks Demo Day” set for July 11Mark your calendars now for July 11. That’s when the Knoxville Entrepreneur Center plans to hold is “MediaWorks Demo Day.” More details later for the accelerator that kicks-off this week.

National Innovation in the News

Forbes: Doing Everything Is Not a Startup StrategyLast week I participated as a judge for UCLA’s business school Knapp Venture Competition. Every pitch tried to differentiate its company from the competition by showing how it could do lots of extra things that their competitors couldn’t. They would say something like: “Our competitors only do this, but we can do that and seven other things.” All the bright-eyed founders thought that rattling off a list of differentiating features was a good thing. But I thought it was a terrible idea. Why? Because focusing on a single thing—a singular product feature, an outstanding experience, a particular service—means you’re on the right track to standing out in the marketplace.  

VentureBurn: 13 insightful lessons from an inspiring startup failure“They” always tell you that nine out of ten tech startups fail. So you realistically should be prepared in case you’re one of the nine. It’s still hard when it happens. What “they” don’t tell you though, which they should… Is the enormous amount of experience the startup journey provides. You come out a bit sad, but also a bit rougher, tougher and a much more mature businessperson than when you went in.

Huffington Post: 9 Inspiring Tips on Successful Social Entrepreneurship Most people know what it means to be an entrepreneur: one who creates a business at a great financial risk, with a potential large return on successful endeavors. But when you are in the business of bettering the planet, you are often selling an emotion, a change, a clean glass of water, a vaccine, or a new library in Africa. Social entrepreneurship is not defined by the same financial outcomes as ‘normal’ entrepreneurship, but the impact can be just as great.

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