On the heels of setting up shop in the downtown tower formerly known as the Regions Center, global bank UBS has committed to be the presenting sponsor of Launch Tennessee’s The TENN master accelerator program for the next two years. The investment has a value of $150,000.
“We are thrilled to partner with UBS for the second and third cohorts of The TENN,” said Charlie Brock, Launch Tennessee CEO. “UBS has a long history of helping Tennessee’s economy grow, including its recent commitment to creating 1,000 news jobs at the company’s Business Solutions Center in Nashville. They are a perfect partner for Launch Tennessee and we look forward to working with them in building on The TENN’s inaugural year successes.”
The TENN gathers a group of promising startups from the state’s nine accelerator programs and exposes them to investors and entrepreneurs around the state (via a bus tour) and elsewhere. (Check out more info here.) The Launch Tennessee team will begin accepting applications for the second cohort in late August.
"We are excited to partner with a first-class organization like Launch Tennessee in support of their incredibly innovative The TENN program," said Lori Feinsilver, head of community affairs and corporate responsibility for the Americas at UBS. "We look forward to supporting and working with early-stage ventures from across the state, as they grow their businesses and create jobs in local communities."
Vanderbilt University's Center for Technology Transfer and Commercialization and the Memphis Bioworks Foundation have agreed to work together to develop medical device technology concepts coming out of the university, most specifically by giving Vanderbilt applicants fast-track access to Bioworks' ZeroTo510 incubator. The partnership also will give VU-based startups better access to investment capital via Bioworks' relationship with pre-seed and early-stage firm Innova.
A data marketing company won a $100,000 investment from AOL co-founder Steve Case in Nashville Friday, the Nashville Business Journal reports.
Locally founded, Checkd.in received the big investment, plus an all-expenses paid trip to Washington, D.C., to meet with additional investors, in a pitch competition among 10 startups. The pitch competition was the final piece of Case's Rise of the Rest tour, a series of events highlighting startup and entrepreneurial activity in regions beside Silicon Valley.
Also on Friday, Case praised Nashville's health care startups and advised entrepreneurs to stay competitive in an increasingly global economy.
A Mexican company marketing a pre-paid debit card that connects to any smartphone or tablet won this week's startup competition at the Southland Southern Culture and Technology Conference. The company will receive $110,000 from the contest's 11 judges — with the stipulation that that money be the final $110,000 of a $4 million round that Sr. Pago executives plan to raising.
Sr. Pago was selected from a group of 10 early-stage companies that pitched at the conference. Its card will be sold at Best Buy or about $50.
“We were pretty surprised,” said Pablo Gonzalez Vargas, CEO of Sr. Pago. “As a Mexico-based company, we knew we would bring diversity to this conference, and it’s a very good thing for Southland to be this open to an international company.”
Separately at Southland, PandoDaily Editorial Director Paul Carr revealed that the staff of the website selected Nashville-based musical instrument maker Artiphon as their favorite company and said they will fork over a financial prize soon.
Sarah Lacy, whose Pando team is co-organizing next week's Southland conference at Marathon Music Works, says she has accidently exceeded her goal of having 10 judges for the event's startup pitch competition. The 11th investor to commit is Paul Judge, an executive at Barracuda Networks, which means the winning startup team will get the opportunity to negotiate for a $110,000 investment.
The organizers of the upcoming Southland Conference have filled out the roster of judges for the confab’s pitch competition. They are Tige Savage of Revolution Ventures, Michael Goldstein of SwitchPitch, Zach Ware of Project100, Erik Moore of Base Ventures and Peter Barth of the Iron Yard. The quintet joins the previously announced group of Josh Kopelman of First Round Capital, Shervin Pishevar of Sherpa Ventures, Kirsten Green of Forerunner Ventures, Kevin Colleran of General Catalyst and Vic Gatto from Nashville’s Jumpstart Foundry.
For more info — including on some of the mentors who will guide the 10 startups pitching at Southland next month — head to southlandse.com.
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