From Frazier & Deeter, the regional CPA firm that last year acquired Work & Greer, comes an interesting concept that could find a place in the buzzing Music City entrepreneurial scene. The firm has launched FD Venture Farm, a monitoring service that will track a number of financial metrics of (mostly young) companies looking for growth capital and help them prepare for institutional investment. Check out more info here.
“Our investment criteria are such that we often must pass on companies with interesting and exciting businesses but have not yet reached the milestones necessary for us to move forward,” said Frank X. Dalton, Partner of Atlanta-based Fulcrum Equity Partners. “Assisting companies to be investment ready is a valued service. If they can successfully address a few issues, the chances of getting funded can be greatly enhanced. The FD Venture Farm service will help us keep in touch with these companies as they gain traction and become more suited to our investment profile.”
Yuri Cunza, president and CEO Nashville Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, is one of about 70 corporate supporters who have collectively raised $500,000 to help a team of engineers and researchers in Switzerland design a “toddler robot” meant to walk seamlessly among humans at home and work.
The childlike robot, dubbed Roboy, is a bit of a darling of the international technical journals and trade publications, particularly because of its advanced “tendon-driven” design. While robots conjure images of spidery contraptions that move around with stiff, awkward motions, Roboy moves with a fluid-like motion and is designed to perform human activities such as riding a bicycle. The project is being spearheaded by the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory of the University of Zurich.
Cunza, who is also a filmmaker and the publisher of La Noticia, a local Spanish-language newspaper, said he plans to be involved in similar projects in the future.
“I was very excited to see my logo on the Roboy website and even more excited when I found it printed on the body of the robot itself,” Cunza said. “In these days of the Internet and creative crowdsourcing, it’s amazing that someone in Nashville can participate in a project of this scope in Switzerland. I hope to bring some of the energy and spirit behind this project to the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation.”
For more about Roboy, click here.
Jamplify, the music social marketing venture launched last summer out of JumpStart Foundry, recently raised $600,000 in equity — and plans to keep going to $1 million. Among the investors are notable local names Joe Maxwell and Dave Kloeppel. Maxwell ran and sold Investment Scorecard and now is CEO of Shareholder InSite, and Kloeppel was president of Gaylord Entertainment until last fall. Jamplify made a good impression at JumpStart's investor day last August but is now officially headquartered in New York.
There are a lot of startups trying to reward fans for their word of mouth (and typing) efforts, such as CrowdTwist and Plyfe. Pickens says Jamplify is different because it isn't costly for a brand to run a campaign; they are a Saas solution. And a Jampaign can be turned around quickly. If a label only has two days to promote a new music video, for example, Jamplify can work in that time frame.
HT: Southern Alpha
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