In a wide-ranging interview with our colleagues at The City Paper, former Gov. Phil Bredesen covered plenty of economic development ground and discussed initiatives he undertook both as governor and mayor of Nashville. Among the topics discussed were the necessity of incentives to play with the big boys when it comes to recruiting major companies and Bredesen's idea that a new Nashville Sounds stadium may not be the downtown anchor some envision it to be.
But he saved some of his clearest words for critics of the TNInvestco venture capital program.
I really think there was no favoritism. I mean my former chief of staff [Stuart Brunson] was mad at me because he didn’t get an award. I mean he applied with a bunch of people, and I think, but it wasn’t — he didn’t win. And there were a few people that didn’t get awards that thought they should have, and they’ve been keeping [controversy] alive for, you know, a long time now.
Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty on Wednesday told a legislative committee that his team is devoting more resources to the oversight of the TNInvestco venture capital program. The beginnings of "a management structure" are being put in place to supplement the less than one FTE who had been tracking the TNInvestco paperwork.
An East Tennessee medical imaging company received a shot in the arm Thursday with the announcement that a couple of TNInvestco participants — including Nashville's Council & Enhanced Tennessee Fund — have combined efforts to contribute $6 million to support the development efforts of ABT Molecular Imaging.
“We have ambitious goals and are driving forward to achieve them,” said Tom Welch, president and CEO of ABT Molecular Imaging in a company release. “This capital will allow us to continue developing critical biomarkers while rolling out our Generator to the many organizations that are interested in making PET scans more accessible for their clinical and research needs.”
ABT's Series C round was led by River Cities Capital Funds and also included Limestone Fund and Intersouth Partners, the company’s first institutional investor.
Chris Thompson and Will Green have secured more than $2 million from a handful of investors for their SplitSecnd car crash notification system. The company has filed a notice with the Securities and Exchange Commission; Milt Capps reports that TNInvestco fund Tennessee Community Ventures now owns a majority of the company launched some two years ago with the help of the JumpStart Foundry team.
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