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Author Archives: Tom Ballard

Stealth Mark, focused on authentication, relocates to Oak Ridge

By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer, PYA Oak Ridge is known as the Secret City, and there’s a new company in town with a focus on ensuring businesses and individuals are not deceived by counterfeiters. The business, which relocated from Minnesota in late 2016, is named Stealth Mark, and its President and Chief Executive Officer is Rick Howard. “We had...

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Additional details released on upcoming “AgWorks Demo Day”

The Knoxville Entrepreneur Center has announced additional details associated with next weekend’s “AgWorks Demo Day.” The event is set to start at 10 a.m. Saturday, August 26, on Market Square amid the hustle and bustle of Knoxville’s vibrant Farmers’ Market. It is a collaborative effort with Nourish Knoxville. The festivities start with what is being billed as “a casual coffee...

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Pitchbook reports seed stage valuations hit new high

Pitchbook reports that the value of venture-backed U.S. start-ups has hit a new record during the first half of 2017. According to the well-recognized source, the median seed stage valuation for companies raising their first round of financing hit a new record of $6.2 million. Read more here.  ...

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1804 latest Louisville effort focused on entrepreneur center

It’s named after the year that pioneers Lewis and Clark, who earlier met in Louisville, launched their journey to explore the west. 1804, the name that has been adopted, is the city’s latest effort to establish an entrepreneur center. Read more about the effort that has three years of funding here....

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It’s a big week for Johnson City-based Perserbid with Knoxville event this weekend

By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer, PYA This is a big week for the team at Johnson City-based Perserbid Inc. The company, founded by Edwin Williams and profiled in this April article on teknovation.biz, had its official launch party last Sunday afternoon at Garland Farm Estates in its hometown and will be introducing itself to Knoxvillians starting this Friday at...

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Startup Tri-Cities schedules next roundtable for August 28

Speaking of Edwin Williams and Northeast Tennessee, one of the organizations he helped launch – Startup Tri-Cities – is holding an “Entrepreneur Roundtable” starting at 5:30 p.m. August 28 at Willow Tree Coffee Shop, 216 East Main Street, Johnson City. Two local entrepreneurs – Kyle Long and Brad Batt – will discuss how they decided to answer the question of...

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Memphis “Summer of Acceleration” has some good funding announcements

There was some good news coming out of last week’s “Summer of Acceleration Demo Day” in Memphis. Click here to access the story from the Memphis Daily News....

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Innovate Raleigh, local chamber announce new entrepreneurial initiative

The Raleigh, NC Chamber of Commerce is teaming-up with an organization named Innovate Raleigh to enhance services supporting the region’s entrepreneurial community. Click here to read about the effort....

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Launch Tennessee now accepting applications for new “SBIR/STTR Matching Fund Grants Program”

By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer, PYA Tennessee-based entrepreneurs seeking to commercialize technology with funding from two federal initiatives now have another tool in their toolkit, thanks to funding included in the 2017-18 State of Tennessee budget, and the application window is open. As a result of a more than two-year effort, spearheaded by two statewide organizations – Launch Tennessee...

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SBIR/STTR matching initiative helped by SBA grant to Launch Tennessee

Speaking of Launch Tennessee, the organization was one of 16 recipients of grants announced earlier this week by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) under its Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program. According to the news release from SBA, the “FAST initiative is designed to stimulate economic development with outreach and technical assistance to science and technology-driven small businesses,...

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Henry Ford taught us five entrepreneurial lessons

Henry Ford is recognized as a legend in the automotive industry, but this author suggests that are five key entrepreneurial lessons that he also taught us. Click here to see the list....

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Baby boomers appear to be more entrepreneurial than millennials

Is it the baby boomer generation rather than the millennial era that is more entrepreneurial? This article seems to show that it is the former, noting that the share of people younger than 30 who own a business is now at a quarter-century low....

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