Jumpstart, Vanderbilt to partner on startup boost

Jumpstart Foundry announced today a new collaboration with Vanderbilt's Center for Technology Transfer and Commercialization to boost Vanderbilt-based proposals into the Foundry's annual business accelerator.

Through the partnership, Jumpstart and CTTC will identify and evaluate select proposals from Vanderbilt faculty, staff and students, and CTTC will nominate select proposals for placement in Jumpstart's top 30 applicant pool. The accelerator will then rank the Vanderbilt group, and approximately the top dozen teams will be given an offer to participate in the business incubation program.

"This new engagement represents a dynamic extension of our growing relationship with Jumpstart Foundry that promises to create new and valuable opportunities for entrepreneurial-minded members of the Vanderbilt community," Alan Bentley, Vanderbilt's assistant vice chancellor of technology transfer and intellectual property protection, said in a release.

Vic Gatto, CEO of Jumpstart, said the accelerator is impressed with the potential at Vanderbilt. Last year the company selected Vanderbilt-based startup InvisionHeart, which was recently selected to pitch at Google Demo Day.

"The combination of Vanderbilt intellectual property and human talent with the Jumpstart Foundry curriculum and mentor network will create successful startups driving disrupting large industries and improving people's lives," Gatto said.

Apr 23, 2014 2:40 PM

HCA signs on as EC sponsor

Hospital leader HCA has signed on as sponsor of the Entrepreneur Center. Beginning this quarter, the two organizations will look to beef up the four-year-old EC's health care programming. HCA last summer also backed the local launch of the Healthbox incubator based inside the EC.

"We are incredibly happy to have the opportunity to work with HCA as we help the startups of this city grow," said EC CEO Michael Burcham. "HCA is an incredible organization that epitomizes the potential successes of entrepreneurial growth in this city, and we appreciate their generous support."

Here is the press release from the organizations.

Apr 8, 2014 2:04 PM

New leader for JumpStart

The backers of Jumpstart Foundry have shuffled the incubator's leadership by bringing in recently named Solidus Principal Chris Poole to be managing director and having COO David Ledgerwood move into an entrepreneur-in-residence role. Poole joined Solidus in 2012 after working at The Work Institute for more than three years.

The moves are intended to sharpen cohort companies' financial focus and get more of them to a revenue-producing stage more quickly. Ben McIntyre at SouthernAlpha writes that Ledgerwood, who joined Jumpstart early last year, also will build a faculty residence team.

Apr 8, 2014 12:12 PM

InvisionHeart lands Case cash

The developers of InvisionHeart, a software application that lets cardiologists access electrocardiogram information through their smartphones or tablets, have received $100,000 from AOL founder Steve Case. The investment came at the end of Google For Entrepeneurs demo day in Silicon Valley and gets the InvisionHeart team several steps closer to its Series A goal of $1.25 million.

Apr 3, 2014 12:30 PM

Healthbox to hire executive director, manager in Nashville

Chicago-based accelerator to operate permanent staff out of EC
Mar 26, 2014 7:03 AM

CapStar climbs on as EC partner

Bank CEO Tucker to join board of incubator
Mar 10, 2014 2:07 PM

NerdWallet ranks Nashville No. 20 for female entrepreneurs

A nerdwallet.com survey ranking major U.S. cities regarding their being receptive to female entrepreneurs show Nashville at the No. 20 spot. To recognize Women’s History Month, NerdWallet analyzed data to find the best cities (of the U.S.'s 50 most populous) for women entrepreneurs by examining the following five categories: business-friendliness, the presence of female entrepreneurs, the earnings of female workers, education levels and economic state. Washington D.C., San Francisco, Seattle, Minneapolis and Portland ranked 1-5. Atlanta (No. 6) is the highest-ranked Southeastern city, with Raleigh (11), Charlotte (14) and Miami (15) also in the Top 20. Check the data here.

 

Feb 20, 2014 6:45 AM

Jumpstart group leads PandoDaily investment round

A group of investors affiliated with Jumpstart Foundry has taken the lead on a $1.2 million fundraising round for PandoDaily, the Silicon Valley news and event company. Sarah Lacy, the editor of the two-year-old site pictured here, says Jumpstart's role in bringing together the "unconventional group of investors" stemmed from her involvement with the Southland conference, which debuted last June.

$1.2 million is more than we initially set out to raise, and we are still wrapping up a few last conversations, so the final total may tick up to $1.5 million before it’s all done (I’ll update this post and our disclosure page if that happens). We were lucky to raise that money at a healthy valuation, which I won’t disclose, because no entrepreneur ever does if she can help it. The new investment brings our total raised to date to $4.2 million.

HT: Southern Alpha

Feb 18, 2014 7:02 AM

Start-up formation gathering momentum

Want another good tell-tale signal that the economy really is on the mend? Research firm Challenger Gray & Christmas says 5.5 percent of former executives and managers launched their own business in 2013, the highest rate since the middle of 2009 and up 31 percent from 2012. Even better: Late in the year, the number was 8.6 percent.

“In the wake of the recession, we saw start-up activity among job seekers drop to some of the lowest levels on record. This was undoubtedly due to a dire lack of confidence; not only in one’s ability to build a client base, but also in one’s ability to find traditional employment if the business venture fails. We are finally getting back to a point where aspiring entrepreneurs have more confidence in both of these areas,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

 

“In the wake of the recession, we saw start-up activity among job seekers drop to some of the lowest levels on record. This was undoubtedly due to a dire lack of confidence; not only in one’s ability to build a client base, but also in one’s ability to find traditional employment if the business venture fails. We are finally getting back to a point where aspiring entrepreneurs have more confidence in both of these areas,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas. - See more at: http://www.challengergray.com/press/press-releases/start-activity-increased-31-percent-2013#sthash.A928n9ts.dpuf
“In the wake of the recession, we saw start-up activity among job seekers drop to some of the lowest levels on record. This was undoubtedly due to a dire lack of confidence; not only in one’s ability to build a client base, but also in one’s ability to find traditional employment if the business venture fails. We are finally getting back to a point where aspiring entrepreneurs have more confidence in both of these areas,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas. - See more at: http://www.challengergray.com/press/press-releases/start-activity-increased-31-percent-2013#sthash.A928n9ts.dpuf
Feb 17, 2014 11:40 AM

Jumpstart raises money, spins out of Solidus

Four-year-old business incubator Jumpstar Foundry is leaving the Solidus nest to become an independent entity. The venture has raised an undisclosed amount of money from an investor group led by Clayton Associates that will fund both its start-up program and its Jumpwerx arm that looks to stimulate innovation in established businesses. Twenty-one of the 27 JumpStart graduates are still around and have gone on to raise more than $11 million.

For Clayton, the investment rounds out the firm's lineup of investment vehicles. Chairman Stuart McWhorter says his firm “has always been passionate about seed and very early-stage investing. Our investment in Jumpstart provides our firm the opportunity to strengthen our presence in the seed stage investment cycle. It further enhances the continuum of venture capital investing by complementing our angel fund, Rolling Hills Ventures, and our venture capital fund, FCA Venture Partners.”

Feb 12, 2014 8:30 AM