Monday, January 31, 2011
Solidus-backed JumpStart is in TechStars' new network, which, it turns out, is also allied with the Obama Administration's new StartUP America initiative. The VNC story's here. Vic Gatto, at left, is Solidus' pointman.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
Despite disappointing analysts on Amazon's recent earnings, the company's expenditures for warehousing and logistics in Chattanooga and abroad position the company for further growth. The TFP reports.
Friday, January 28, 2011
Shelby County politicos and others are pushing to allow local units of government to conceal business data, the disclosure of which could dampen industry recruitment. The CA reports.
Sharp Manufacturing in the Memphis area donated a solar panel to the Christian Brothers University School of engineering, to support education related to sustainability and green technologies. The CA reports it. Can you imagine how quaint this scene will seem in 20 years?
US Energy Secretary Steven Chu visited Memphis to promote the President's clean-fuel agenda and tour Sharp and Fedex facilities. The CA reports.
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Rock Morphis and allies have launched the Heritage Group's new healthcare innovation fund, with help from a number of familiar faces. Details here.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Fortune's Best Companies include Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in the ranking (50, 80 respectively). The MBJ reports.
The Tennessee Solar Institute and ARRA funding have helped spawn a new course at the University of Memphis and elsewhere, designed to give students better math and science preparation for jobs in solar-panel installation and related fields. The CA reports.
A new University of Tennessee program with Oak Ridge National Laboratory is designed to generate more Ph.D.'s to address domestic energy issues. The KNS reports.
Monday, January 24, 2011
More details this morning on the earlier-announced co-marketing and -development collaboration by HealthStream, the e-learning and research company; and, publisher Laerdal Medical. They're allowing developers to collaborate through a tool called SimDeveloper, with goods sold through SimStore. No word yet on who owns what. Initial collaborators include "National League for Nursing, American Academy of Pediatrics, Belmont University and Health Care Simulation South Carolina (USA); Oxford Brookes University and SAFER Simulation Center (Europe); and Edith Cowan University (Australia)," among others. The joint release is here.
University of Tennessee Prof. Larry Taylor has a theory supporting existence of water molecules on the Moon, and a scenario for creating lunar gas stations to help propell missions deeper into space. The KNS reports.
Nashville-area HQ'd Healthways is backing Boston-based MeYouHealth.com, which uses gaming to drive engagement in healthier lifestyles and practices. HT: NashvillePost.com. Mass High Tech reports.
Using patient simulators and advanced medical technology, the Medical Education and Research Institute has become a renowned center for training for physicians. Memphis Daily News reports it.
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Counterpart Communications Design in Memphis discusses with the CA what's it's like being a small agency in an interactive world, during a down economy.
Gov. Bill Haslam and University of Memphis leadership are talking about something short of autonomy from Tennessee Board of Regents for the university, but the Governor does want to allow UM more influence on tuition and other matters. The CA reports.
President Barack Obama is pressing his case for a jobs and competitiveness agenda, exhorting Americans to treat the challenge from India, China and other rapidly growing economies as something akin to the space race in contest with the then-USSR, in the '50s-'60s. The TFP has the AP story here.
Nashville Technology Council President Tod Fetherling reminds us of the more than 1,000 recent IT jobs listings in this area, the fact that local universities generate about 400 IT/CS undergrads per year and that key sectors, including healthcare, are booming. The Tennessean reports it (though it may be archive$ by the time you get there).
Friday, January 21, 2011
Memphis’ biotech industry may have a role in personalized medicine, via the city’s logistics sector. Simon Tripp, senior director of Battelle Technology Partnership Practice, said devices, drugs and biomarkers could be opening Memphis needs. The MBJ has it.
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Reporter Ellis Smith of the Times Free Press does a great job detailing how the FIRST LEGO League encourages students to use LEGOs to build and program "robot solutions" using the LEGO Mindstorm kit, then playing a robot-and-board game that presents problem-solving challenges (e.g., improving the environment. The piece is here. The FLL World Festival is in April in St. Louis. Seems this would be good for process engineers and strategic-planning groups, in your office, eh?
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Raleigh-based Etix announced it bought Rockhouse Partners, the Nashville digital-marketing agency or its technology or both, and makes a reference to continuing to "utilize" Rockhouse's marketing-agency services. The release is here.
Volkswagen will draw news coverage, daily it seems. First, there's the TFP's report on that VW building is definitely ontrack. And, there's word of new academic research fellowships being set-up with VW backing at Oak Ridge National Labs. Say the release, "Examples of research projects interns would be assigned to include low-cost carbon fiber, battery storage, biofuels, engines and emissions, intelligent transportation systems, and sustainable manufacturing."
KNS Columnist Frank Munger writes, "As was the case throughout 2010, the future still hangs on DOE acting on USEC's application for a $2 billion loan guarantee -- which would help USEC complete construction of the American Centrifuge Plant and move forward with new uranium-enrichment capabilities." Read more here.
The Administration of Gov. Bill Haslam will not require officials to reveal amounts they earn from pursuits outside State employment, though they must disclose the relationships, themselves. The KNS reports.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Dalcon Communications, an e-health alerting provider, has teamed with Vanguard Health's C7 Communications unit to lash its alert software to other infrastructure that supports EHRs. Right here.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
The America COMPETES Act was reauthorized and signed into law by President Obama, Jan. 4th. U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (left) said the program is crucial to cultivating American brainpower. The program advances funding for DOE Science, NIST and NSF, as well as STEM education. AIP reports here.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index for December is interesting, but it's the findings discerned at the point of the survey netting its 1 Millionth respondent that are absorbing.
CredenceHealth announced its CHlive 1.0 earned CCHIT certification for Meaningful Use in Clinical Quality Measures. CredenceHealth is the first real-time Clinical Surveillance solution to receive this stand-alone certification. CEO Justin Lanning (left) made the announcement. VNC's previous coverage of CredenceHealth. Lanning's earlier comments on Nashville's Tech environment.
Vanderbilt University says, "Seven Vanderbilt University faculty members have been elected Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), an honor bestowed upon them by their AAAS peers." The new honorees will be recognized next month in ceremonies in Washington, D.C. The release is here.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Hamilton County, home of Chattanooga and Volkswagen, is one of only 20 of the nation's 3,143 counties to raise its S&P bond rating during the Recession and today is one of 67 with the coveted AAA appraisal. The TFP reports.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
In the wake of the Detroit Auto Show, comes word from the Times Free Press the Volkswagen plant at Chattanooga could actually produce 500K vehicles per year. U.S. Sen. Bob Corker is among those celebrating American production.
Without the tax incentives enjoyed by wind and solar energy applications, Biofuels may need to rely on Uncle Sam to contract for biofuels. The KNS reports.
Weeds could thwart Tennessee plans to develop and produce biofuels from switchgrass. More from Larisa Brass of the KNS. More from Larisa about logistics of getting switchgrass from farm to gaspump.
Nashville's JumpStart Foundry, a fund/program backed by Solidus, is starting a continuing education series, and Ruby on Rails instruction is first up. The release is here.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Gov.-Elect Bill Haslam visited Kingsport's Protokraft today, underscoring the importance of higher-tech jobs, such as those associated with the company's optoelectrical components.
John Doerr, the Kleiner Perkins guru who has also recruited Nashvillian Gary Ferguson to head ClearPractice in the health IT sector, has added former Morgan Stanley Internet analyst Mary Meeker (left) to the KPCB stable, suggesting to some that he's shifted some energy away from cleantech.
The Times Free Press reports: Chattanooga's success in luring companies leaves it short of developed lands for future relocations. Meanwhile, 'Marquee names' help Chattanooga stand out as a corporate destination.
Former Tennessee Cable Telecommunications Association President Stacey Briggs is planning the next phase of her career, after stepping down at TCTA. And, over at Tennessee Association of Broadcasters, Whit Adamson is getting a new VP. Read about it.
Boston startup Krush is, by some accounts, getting some money from Nashville. The new venture has reportedly attracted Music City's Eric Satz, who also runs a TNInvestco fund. Read about it.
Skoodat, the Chattanooga-based education performance software-as-service venture led by Ken McElrath, will debut its software in New York City this week, if all goes according to plan. Read about it in NewsBits now.
Entrepreneur investors Rock Morphis, Glen Marconcini and Austin-based investors with long health sector histories are organizing for a push on healthcare outcomes and cost-effectiveness, with services from Precedent Health. The VNC story's here.
Qualifacts, the healthcare services software-as-service firm owned by outbound Gov. Phil Bredesen, reported a record year for subscriber signups (no financial details). The release is here.
Nashville's Plumgood Food went out of business, ending its online-bricks-mortar hybridge grocery business, and sending entrepreneur Eric Satz off on a new trajectory, as co-founder of the TNInvestco-certified Tennessee Community Ventures Fund (TCVF). Redfin CEO says in TechCrunch that the hybrid model has a great future, nonetheless.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee announced the new president of subsidiary Riverbend Government Benefits Administration is Debra Rittenour. She'll focus on a partnership with Cigna Government Services centered on Medicare fee-for-service business and certain public-health initiatives in Kentucky and Ohio. Rittenour was previously chief market strategist for BCBSTN sub SecurityCare, which supports insurance fraud, waste and abuse detection. HT:TFP.
Middle Tennessee's Angel Capital Group investor relations director Jason Denenberg's (left) comments on the importance of Angel investing in this economy are welcome enough, but it's his colleagial mentioning of Nashville Capital Network and the Nashville Entrepreneur Center that is perhaps most encouraging. See his piece in The Tennessean.
Sunday, January 09, 2011
Gov.-Elect Bill Haslam announced 9 January his appointment of private-equity investment executive Bill Hagerty to be his commissioner of economic development. Read more on VNC here.
Saturday, January 08, 2011
An adverse FDA ruling against GTx may actually have helped spur the Memphis company to take a useful anti-breast cancer drug, Fareston, off the shelf and market it more aggressively as an alternative to Tamoxifen. The CA reports.
Friday, January 07, 2011
Gov.-Elect Bill Haslam this afternoon announced he's named Richard Roberts (left), a lawyer and corporate securities expert, a director of auto parts supplier Miller Industries, and a former SVP with ForwardAir among other transportation-industry roles, to be the new Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Revenue. Roberts' Forbes profile says he was a keyman for Friends of [former US Senator) Fred Thompson. His bachelor's, MBA and J.D. are all from University of Tennessee. Haslam also recently named former Bridgestone Americas Chairman and CEO Mark Emkes to head Finance & Administration, succeeding Gov. Bredesen's David Goetz, who joined tech contractor Ingenix. Let's see, that's Bill Haslam from the Pilot fuel-services area, Roberts with auto aftermarket and logistics experience and Emkes from Bridgestone. Could there possibly be an Auto/Logistics relocation candidate with whom these three couldn't speak with some authority?
Gov.-Elect Bill Haslam has made a number of interesting Cabinet appointments, but has not yet announced -- and, our hunch, is holding for greatest pre-Inaugural effect -- his plans for Revenue and Economic-Community Development. Under Gov. Phil Bredesen, those posts have held great sway in crafting incentives and tax deals to attract companies' investement in Tennessee and jobs-formation. With the General Assembly now somewhat gathered, candidates for the posts can easily be shopped among legislators and caucuses. With the Inaugural just 8 Days away, perhaps the next Governor will release those linchpin Cabinet names, soon..say, somewhere between tonight and the moment the Governor finishes his Inaugural Address.
Nashville Technology Council and Vaco present their latest quarterly summary of IT and software help-wanted postings, showing healthcare the perennial hotspot in town. The accompanying press release is here.
Country Music Association added Chris Epperly (left) as director of strategic brand-building partnerships. Epperly'd been with Mirrus, a Huntersville, N.C., brand-management house. MusicRow reports.
Brentwood-based FAB and Cali.-based Environmech, with Element Partners helping capitalize the deal, have merged, forming Agility Fuel Systems. They provide natural-gas and other fuel systems have heavy vehicles. The release is here.
National Science Foundation funding of the Tennessee Solar Conversion and Storage Using Outreach, Research and Education (TN-SCORE) project has produced a $20MM grant shared by Oak Ridge National Lab, Tennessee Technology University, Tennessee State University, King College, Middle Tennessee State University, Fisk University, UT Space Institute, UT Knoxville, Vanderbilt University and East Tennessee State University. The MBJ has it.
Volkswagen's investments, 10-brand synergies and strategy have prepared the company to be one of the world's top two auto companies in the next few years, says a report from KPMG, reported by the TFP. China is the other top-gainer.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory carbon-fiber technology's contributions to new lighter-weight autos got The Wall Street Journal's attention. Here's our earlier post on out-going Gov. Phil Bredesen's recent visit with the scientists behind it all.
[Updated Jan. 6] Chattanooga-based and newly elected U.S. Rep (3rd District) Chuck Fleischmann (left) gives every indication he'll be at least as sensitive to the needs of Oak Ridge National Laboratory as his predecessor, Republican Zach Wamp, who stepped down to pursue the governorship, unsuccessfully, as it turns out. The KNS reports. The congressman announced Jan. 6 he is a member of the U.S. House Science, Space and Technology Committee. The OakRidger has it.
Former Nashville Banner reporter-cum-longtime Vanderbilt science and medicine writer, Bill Snyder, reports in the VUMC Reporter on on the $148MM that gones to VUMC scientists in the past 18 months, "to buy major equipment, hire additional staff and accelerate their research."
Thursday, January 06, 2011
Nashville-based Universal Robotics, brainchild of VU Prof. David Peters (left), has periodically expanded its team, last year hiring Hob Wubbena to lead marketing. Yesterday, UR announced it's chosen Ross Duncan to lead sales, and here's the release.
Cumberland Pharmaceuticals (Nas:CPIX), which has gotten some tough scrutiny from analysts, added former Pyschiatric Solutions CEO Joey Jacobs to its b.o.d. Cumberland recently announced its voluntary recall of Acetadote. The Jacobs release.
Chattanoogans and others are not quite frenzied, but definitely excited about the imminent unveiling of the name of the new Volkswagen sedan that will be produced in Chattanooga. A big event is set in Chattanooga next week. The TFP reports.
Memphis and Shelby County plan to unify one-stop industry recruitment efforts in something called EDGE, economic development and growth engine for Memphis. The MDN reports it. The City and County mayors share a byline for a column in the CA explaining their rationale for EDGE. Memphis gets the eye of relocating companies, but must compete with Des Moines and other smaller cities with lower costs, the CA reports.
Knoxville-based Atmospheric Glow Technologies co-founder Reece Roth has lost his appeal and will begin serving a 4-year prison sentence previously handed-out for his alleged compromising of sensitive technology information in dealings with Chinese. The KNS reports.
A Pigeon Forge e-marketing consultant protests the city's plan to create a booking portal for area attractions, saying it'll give the city an extra $12MM per year and create unwanted competition for current online booking companies. Music City's apparently successful use of such a portal is mentioned. No word on how many of those companies are his clients. The KNS reports.
David Nichols, an esteemed Purdue pharmacologist has published a high-profile paper describing his ethical struggle with the reality that drugs he creates for use in studying brain operations are being diverted and perverted into illegal drugs that are killing people. The AP via TFP.
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
Keith Cox (left), who has already had a busy career in health IT -- with McKesson, Microsoft, A.D.A.M. and others -- is the new CEO for the Health Information Partnership for Tennessee (HIP-TN). The release is here. Here's some interesting background on the relationship between HIP-TN and the Governor's office of E-Health Initiatives. Pending Cox's appointment, the HIP-TN has been run by staff of C3 Consulting, a Brentwood IT and business-process consulting firm. Here's the job description offered while Cox was being recruited. The Buffkin Group was retained for the search, originally. A key resource in all this has been Vicki Estrin.
Capital Confirmation, the Brentwood secure confirmation-audit Internet solutions provider, announced being awarded its second U.S. patent, expanding its intellectual property estate. The release is here.
Health IT Services Group, a unit of Fresenius, announced its EHR has been certified by CCHIT. The release is here.
Population gains within the city limits of Chattanooga are outpacing resident gains in the suburbs, for the first time in years. The TFP reports. Earlier, a report on creating a "Beale Street" in the Noog.
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
Franklin-based Navigator Group Purchasing has been bought by Managed Health Care Associates. Brentwood Capital Advisors was sole advisor to Navigator. The release is here.
The statewide University of Tennessee system is now led by President Joe DiPietro (left), a University of Illinois-trainined academic and scientist, a veterinarian, who was previously chancellor's of UT's Institue of Agriculture, from which he helped launch biofuels and other initiatives. His bio's here. And, we see he's addressing Nashville's Rotary downtown, Jan. 10. Keith Carver has been named DiPietro's exec asst, the KNS reports.
Investors in Tennessee-based Natural Energy Group are funding Meridian's Solar project at Jackson, the MBJ reports.
Monday, January 03, 2011
Here's the Times Free Press' report on Lauren Templeton's (left) new 'Finance for the Future' program at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. We reported on formation of this story earlier here.
Knoxville-based Provectus Pharmaceuticals announced a $1 million investment in the firm by Lincoln Park Capital Fund. Lincoln has promised an additional $30MM in equity investment, says the KNS.
This oughta be interesting: Coleman Insights is releasing results of a study March 3 here in town regarding the digital-media habits of Country fans. The release is here.
The New York Times' DealBook suggests a really big IPO (Facebook, Groupon, LinkedIn, etc.) could reignite the slumbering giant of technology, or not.
Thought-provoking TechCrunch editor Sarah Lacy (left) says neither her hometown of Memphis nor Nashville should worry about Silicon Valley approval or credentials, but should instead use un-Siliconian traits and perspective to create ventures that perhaps could not be invented in the Valley. As a Memphian, it is perhaps inevitable that in comparing Nashville and Memphis, she finds Memphis more "soulful." We wonder whether Nashvillians see it that way. After all, we're Country Strong, or something, right? Read about it here and comment here on the VNC Blog, if you're feeling...soulful.
Michael Burcham (at left), the often celebrated director of the Nashville Entrepreneur Center, discusses not how he ticks, but why he ticks, right here on VentureNashville.
Scott Massey, long a figure in creative and educational circles in Nashville, is director of the quietly launching Cumberland Center, which aims to unit University, Business and elected officials at the C-level intersection of their roles. Read the VNC story here.
A Tennessee healthcare and education e-learning startup that began life as iCare Academics is rebranding and focusing on its next targets, after selling its first offering to Dutch-flagged Wolters Kluwer. Read about it here.
Saturday, January 01, 2011
Startup openfilm says its edge over YouTube is that it's selective in what it takes. Actor James Caan (The Godfather, etc.) is the much-ballyhooed chairman of openfilm's board, which was created by a Russian tech entrepreneur Dmitry Kozko.
Kevin Paul's Technology Lifecycle LLC in Chattanooga hopes to have 20 employees within a few years and is helping keep discarded computers out of landfills, while recycling salvageable components. The TFP has it.
Dr. Jeff Cornwall, author of The Entrepreneurial Mind blog, observes that it's wise to view your business as certain to fail, an approach known among scientists as 'the null hypothesis', to open your eyes to vulnerabilities. The TSN has it.
In announcing Pugh & Co.'s acquisition of Bacon Howard cpa's, Pugh President Larry Elmore noted that competitive pricing of services has made things tough on accountants. Pugh is 2nd-ranked in Knoxville to the cpa's at Pershing Yoakley, according to the KNS.