Memphis, Tenn. (Jan. 30, 2014) – Start Co., a venture development organization that focuses on building startup companies and their founders, today announced more than $700,000 in angel investments for three Memphis-based Seed Hatchery graduate startups from the 2013 cohort. These investments, made by the Start Co. Angels, represent the largest percentage of a cohort that has received post-accelerator validation funding.
“This is a significant milestone for startups in the Memphis community and we’re proud of the graduates and our role in building out an angel fund and network in Memphis, something the community has not seen in nearly a decade,” said Eric Mathews, founder and CEO of Start Co. “We see these funding rounds as a tipping point for our current programs, where later-stage investment will be less of an exception and more of an opportunity for the teams that move through our programs and utilize our resources.”
The three Memphis-based startups receiving funding are:
- MentorMe ($175,000): MentorMe is an online mentoring platform that matches mentors with mentees and provides management and measurement tools throughout the program. Founder Brit Fitzpatrick began utilizing Start Co. resources at the idea stage and participated in the first Women’s 48-Hour Launch program in the fall of 2012. She is also a graduate of the NewMe accelerator program in San Francisco.
- Musistic ($200,000): Musistic is an innovative music networking plug-in that defeats the limitations of geography and technology, allowing musicians to collaborate with anyone, anywhere, on virtually any digital audio workstation. Founders are Justin Olita, Vince Rogers, and Brian Wentzloff. The company is led by CEO, Jim Lattimore.
- Screwpulp ($330,000): Screwpulp is an e-book publishing and purchasing platform. Founder Richard Billings began utilizing Start Co. resources, such as 48-Hour Launch, at the early idea stage.
“These startups have proven worthy of investment over the last seven months with enough revenue generation, customer acquisition, and traction to warrant more funding to run more experiments for validation for future growth and sustainability,” said Andre Fowlkes, co-president of Start Co. “They are evolving in this post-accelerator phase, a phase that Start Co. Angels intends to continue to support to advance startups and the ecosystem around them.”
Start Co. offers office hours, mentorship, technical assistance and access to great programming for its graduating teams post-accelerator and the organization will continue to build out accelerator programming in 2014. All Start Co. accelerator programs are accepting applications for their programs through March 15.
More information on becoming an investor, mentor or accessing the organization’s resources can be found at www.neverstop.co.