Author Archives: Claire Coulter

Entrepreneurs look for expansion cash in Memphis

By

Racher Fuller was studying elder law when she became aware of a serious problem. “A lot of these agencies have a 90-percent employee turnover rate,” Fuller said. “Talking with the senior care agencies, we realized that they have such a human problem as far as finding the right match for their clients and caregivers.” So Fuller co-founded Care Current, which designs software to help senior care agencies match their clients and caregivers, and now she’s trying to take her Downtown startup to the next level.

August 6, 2015 - Rachel Fuller (right), works at her group space at the Start Co. Start Lab in downtown Memphis while getting ready for next week's Demo Day. Fuller is CEO for a company named Care Current and uses compatibility software for senior care agencies.  (Andrea Morales / Special to The Commercial Appeal)

On Aug. 13, Fuller and Care Current will be one of 14 entrepreneur groups participating in Demo Day at the Downtown Sheraton Hotel from 2-5 p.m. The entrepreneurs will make a pitch to potential investors for expansion money.

Read the full article at The Commercial Appeal

Start-up competition backed by state kicks off in Memphis

By

Memphis will be the kick-off site for the Delta Challenge Pitch Competition which aims to redirect venture capital from the East and West coast into the hands of 36 regional entrepreneurs and organizations.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The series of six pitch competitions are hosted by the Delta Entrepreneurship Network, a sub-group of federal-state partnership Delta Regional Authority. The Delta Challenge will begin on September 16 at Memphis’ Start Co. and it will travel across the Delta region seeking up to 20 entrepreneurs and 15 entrepreneurship organizations for the inaugural DEN fellowship.
Read the full article at High Ground News

Start Co., ZeroTo510, CO.LAB announced as $50K winners of SBA competition

By

The U.S. Small Business Administration announced at the White House Demo Day the 80 winners of the Start Small Model prize in its Startup in a Day competition, and three accelerators in Tennessee won $50,000 each to support entrepreneurial growth.

Chattanooga’s CO.LAB was one of them, and the city is excited. “As a soon-to-be-anchor organization in the Innovation District, CO.LAB is already an excellent example of how Chattanooga is leading the way in the entrepreneurial landscape – and today’s announcement adds to that distinction,” said Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke in the city’s press release. “The Accelerator Growth Fund award will both support more small business development in our area and ensure our city can compete in the global startup economy.” CO.LAB has been on our radar recently since one of their programs is GIGTANK, which had their demo day last week.

Read the full article at Southern Alpha

Start Co. Wins $50,000 SBA Award

By

The Memphis-based startup accelerator Start Co. has won a $50,000 award from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Growth Accelerator Fund.

The winners were announced Tuesday afternoon at the first-ever White House Demo Day. Start Co. got the award for the second time after being named one of the 50 inaugural competition winners in 2014.

Read the full article at The Daily News

Memphis wins SBA prize to speed business startups

By

A $50,000 prize delivered to Memphis by the U.S. Small Business Administration will support efforts to develop an online portal for business information, licensing and registration for startups.

small+business+administration_1438790023530_22324839_ver1.0_640_480

The “Start Small Model” prize won through the SBA’s Startup in a Day Competition is for online tools that will help entrepreneurs learn about business startup processes, including how to register and obtain local licenses for businesses in a day or less.

Read the full article at The Commercial Appeal

High 5: Start Co. receives $50,000 grant for second year in a row

By

Memphis-based startup accelerator Start Co. received a $50,000 award from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Growth Accelerator Fund.

Tuesday, during the first ever White House Demo Day, the grant recipients were named. It started with a pool of 400 applicants who were all seeking funding for their program. A panel of 40 judges narrowed it down to 80 companies.

“It’s an honor and to be a part of this unique celebration of America’s entrepreneurial innovation for the second year in a row, this year at the White House,” said Andre Fowlkes, President of Start Co. “We’re thrilled the Small Business Administration is supporting the startups and accelerator programs that are helping to build knowledge-based jobs in our economy, and happy that Memphis has been recognized as an important market for startup activity.

Read the full article at WALB – TV (NBC/ABC)

Start Co. to Host Delta Pitch Competition

By

The Delta Entrepreneurship Network is seeking its second round of fellows to join the inaugural class of DEN fellows through six Delta Challenge pitch competitions across the region this fall.

Delta Regional Authority Federal co-chairman Chris Masingill announced the six Delta Challenge pitch competitions today to be held throughout the eight-state Delta region, with the first kicking off in Memphis Sept. 18, hosted by Start Co.

Read the full article at The Daily News

Start Co. wins the SBA $50,000 grant for the second year in a row

By

Small Business Administration award will be presented at the first-ever White House Demo Day

Memphis, Tenn. (Aug. 4, 2015) Start Co. today announced a $50,000 award from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Growth Accelerator Fund, a competition between more than 400 applicants, of which 80 received the funds. The winners are being announced this afternoon at the first-ever White House Demo Day focused on inclusive entrepreneurship, a showcase of America’s entrepreneurial potential hosted by President Obama. Start Co. is receiving the award for the second time after being named one of the 50 inaugural competition winners in 2014.

“It’s an honor and to be a part of this unique celebration of America’s entrepreneurial innovation for the second year in a row, this year at the White House,” said Andre Fowlkes, President of Start Co. “We’re thrilled the Small Business Administration is supporting the startups and accelerator programs that are helping to build knowledge-based jobs in our economy, and happy that Memphis has been recognized as an important market for startup activity.”

After allocating $2.5 million in awards in 2014, this year’s competition is awarding $4 million to accelerators in order to continue building the support structure needed to help startups become commercially viable and quickly create jobs. Winners were selected by a panel of more than 40 judges who are experts with entrepreneurial, investment, startup, economic development, capital formation and academic backgrounds from both the public and private sector. The first panel of judges reviewed over 400 applications and presentations and established a pool of 180 highly qualified finalists.  The second panel evaluated the finalists’ presentations and pitch videos they prepared and selected the 80 winners.

“The entrepreneurial ecosystem in America is incredibly exciting and very powerful,” said Javier Saade, Associate Administrator for Office of Investment and Innovation at the SBA.  “Administrator Contreras-Sweet and I welcome this year’s Growth Accelerator Fund Competition winners and the important and inclusive work they do in support of innovative and high-growth small businesses.”

Winning accelerator programs are committing to quarterly reporting for one year, reporting metrics such as jobs created, funds raised, startups launched and corporate sponsors obtained, among others. This allows the SBA to keep a rolling database of accelerators and their impact, and to develop long-term relationships with the startups and constituents in innovative and entrepreneurial communities such as Memphis. This award and event are an integral part of the White House’s TechHire initiative, in which local governments and the private sector are being engaged to help Americans gain the skills needed for a technology-driven workplace.

The full list of winning organizations and their videos can be found here. Those interested can tune into White House Demo Day live starting at 1 p.m. CST at whitehouse.gov/demo-day on Aug. 4 and are encouraged to use the hashtags #WHDemoDay and #SBAAccelerates on social media to share their thoughts and experiences.

 

About Start Co.
Start Co. is a nationally recognized nonprofit 501(c)(3) venture development organization based in Memphis, Tennessee, that relentlessly builds founders and companies, promoting entrepreneurship for everyone with a focus on digital startups. Start Co. is a member of the Global Accelerator Network and aims to advance Memphis’ economic growth through entrepreneurship. The organization is supported by partners including American Airlines, Archer Malmo, Baker Donelson, The Marston Group, Mosaik Solutions and Softlayer (an IBM company).  More information can be found at neverstop.co.

Collaboration a cornerstone of state’s entrepreneurial success

By

While one person may come up with a fantastic concept or innovation, it’s unlikely he or she will go all the way from drawing board to capitalization to market all alone. Collaboration is one of the foundational aspects of entrepreneurialism, and it’s an area where the robust entrepreneur network in Tennessee continues to shine.

In some cases, collaboration is built within an accelerator, as mentors work with participants to evaluate and grow ideas. Other times, it’s when these individuals reach out to other facilities in their area, or even across the state, to boost intellectual capital and innovation.

Read the full article at The Tennessean

Pitch competitions out to show the South can rise up, challenge venture capital’s big 3

By

Memphis will be the first site of six regional startup pitch competitions aimed to take a piece of the enormous amounts of venture capital poured into the East and West Coasts.

The pitch competitions are conducted by the Delta Entrepreneurship Network, which is part of the Delta Regional Authority. DEN is seeking a group of 36 new entrepreneurs and organizations to drive the startup ecosystem in the Delta Region.

Read the full article at Memphis Business Journal