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Tennessee House at SXSW recap

The Tennessee House was the place to learn more about the state’s tech, innovation and creativity, and we saw more than 2,000 of you over our three-day stay at SXSW this past weekend. 

We hosted six events at Austin’s Electric Shuffle to highlight all Tennessee has to offer.  

The goal was to let the people of SXSW know what’s going on in Tennessee, why they should consider it when doing business, and for founders to make meaningful connections. 

From learning more about Tennessee startups to singing and dancing the night away at Hip Hop Karaoke, the weekend was something special. 

Photos
Check out photos from the Tennessee House. Photos by Michael Ponce

The swag
Launch Tennessee, which produced Tennessee House, came with swag that the crowds coveted, including a tote bag with a raccoon — Tennessee’s state animal. 

Other swag included key chains, koozies, buttons, hats and stickers. 

“Cool merch I will actually wear/use.” — Tennessee House survey response

“A+job on the event. The food was to die for, and everyone was so nice. Just wish I had gotten one of the totes. Word around the street it’s the best tote due to size and the included zipper.” — Tennessee House survey response

Day No. 1
Our first night on Friday, March 8, was a private event based on each guest’s connection to Tennessee, and our friends at Folx Table made the evening extra special by leveling up the conversation topics. 

Folx Table provided cards with meaningful questions — beyond the usual, “So, what do you do?” And it definitely kept the evening interesting! 

Day No. 2
Saturday, March 9, was 901 Day, dedicated to all things Memphis. 

We were thrilled to be highlighted in the SXSW newsletter as the place to be, and the day did not disappoint. 

We heard from founders — Kayla Graff of SweetBio and Idicula Mathew of Hera Health Solutions during our med tech talk. 

And guests met Memphis company Blank Beauty, which uses color-match technology to create signature colors in exact Pantone. The company made three special Memphis-inspired colors and guests got to see how the magic is made at the Blank Beauty kiosk. 

We had custom cocktails during our whiskey tasting event, and then our venue, Electric Shuffle, really got animated as Hip Hop Karaoke took over. 

The night closed with a late-night party, produced by Connect Music, which helps artists retain ownership of their music and shape their careers on their terms through music distribution services, industry guidance, and label-like resources.

Memphis’ own Don Trip and Kendrick P. gave performances that brought the house down. 

Day No. 3
On the final day, Sunday, March 10, we heard from 11 of Tennessee’s top startups, who told the crowd about their innovative ideas. 

The startups gave short speed-pitches from stage before mingling with the crowd to tell more about their companies.

The companies were:

Branch Technology
Branch Technology solves construction and manufacturing problems using a novel process that combines large-scale 3D printing, industrial robotics, and composite materials.

Connect Music
Connect Music empowers independent artists to retain ownership and control of their music by offering music distribution services, label-like resources, and expert guidance.

Giggs
Giggs is the first centralized hub where touring professionals, production companies, and other music industry professionals can connect, collaborate, and discover opportunities more efficiently than ever. Giggs is a comprehensive platform that combines a robust job marketplace with the power of social networking.

Gun.io
Gun.io streamlines the process of hiring vetted contract technical developers by matching the job seeker with the hiring company and facilitating live introductions resulting in a quick hiring decision.

Hera Health Solutions
Hera Health Solutions is a biotechnology company enabling pharmaceutical companies to rapidly increase the efficacy of existing therapeutics through a nanotechnology-enabled drug delivery platform.

Holocene
Holocene removes carbon dioxide from the air, works with partners to store it underground and then sells the environmental benefit of having removed the CO2.

Markify
Markify ensures collaboration across the classroom by streaming a shared whiteboard to student’s devices all with effective tools that aren’t overwhelming or confusing to use.

Personality Pool
Personality Pool is a company that uses advanced technology and artificial intelligence to help employers screen entry-level job candidates based on their personality traits.

Safire Technology Group
Knoxville-based company Safire Technology Group is working to improve lithium-ion batteries — making them safe, ballistically-resilient, and structural for use with the U.S Air Force.

SweetBio
SweetBio is a Latinx + woman-led biotech company transforming wound care with high-performing, affordable products. The company’s collagen + Manuka honey products are designed for performance, ease and affordability, and its innovative channel model is making rapid traction in its first market: dermatology wound recovery.

Whisper Aero
Whisper Aero is pioneering a more compelling and connected future by delivering cleaner, quieter, and more efficient propulsion solutions. Their innovations enable a new generation of air moving products that can blend into the soundscapes of daily life.

Thanks to our sponsors
The weekend wouldn’t have been possible without our partners and sponsors. 

Many thanks to the Greater Memphis Chamber, the Knoxville Chamber, the Chattanooga Area Chamber, Williamson.Inc, NE Tennessee, and the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. 

Thanks, again, to SXSW, Folx Table,  Connect Music and Blank Beauty. 

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