Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

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March 13, 2022 | Tom Ballard

New food delivery option at UTK tops our “News & Notes”

From Knoxville:

  • Talk about self-service! The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Starship Technologies officially launched a robot food delivery service last week on Rocky Top. A fleet of 40 autonomous on-demand robots will deliver from 16 campus eateries. Students, faculty, and staff can use the Starship app (iOS and Android) to order food and drinks from dining partners to be delivered anywhere on campus. Starship is already providing services to campuses across the country including Arizona State University, George Mason University, University of Kentucky, and Purdue University. Click here to learn more.
  • Lirio, whose Precision NudgingTM solution promotes health through artificial intelligence-powered behavior change, has announced that it has entered a broad-ranging strategic alliance with NTT DATA, a global leader in business and information technology services. Together, they will focus on enabling healthcare providers to empower patients through tailored digital experiences. NTT DATA’s Nucleus for Healthcare is an integrated digital health accelerator that provides a unified patient experience and clinician engagement through personalized communication, consolidated clinical and financial data and predictive analytics. Read more about the alliance in this news release.

From Oak Ridge:

  • Kairos Power, which is investing $100 million to build its Hermes low-power demonstration reactor at the Heritage Center, has been named one of “America’s Best Startup Employers” by Forbes for the third year in a row. Awardees are selected based on an innovative methodology evaluating company excellence by measuring employee satisfaction, employer reputation, and company growth. There were 500 start-ups that made the listing, and Kairos was ranked #171. (See additional listing under Nashville.)
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Amy Elliott is one of 120 women featured in a new exhibit, IfThenSheCan, at the Smithsonian Castle that commemorates “Women in History” month. A life-size 3D-printed statue of Elliott, a Manufacturing Scientist, is on display through March 27. The statues recognize women who have excelled in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics and is the largest collection of women statues ever assembled. Elliot, who leads ORNL’s Robotics and Intelligent Systems Group, specializes in the inkjet-based 3D printing of metals and ceramics, a technology designed to enhance and transform advanced manufacturing in the automotive, aerospace and power generating sectors. Her inventions have been licensed by industry and have won prestigious awards including two “R&D 100 Awards.” She also holds several patents and licenses including a method for 3D metal printing and additive manufacturing of aluminum boron carbide metal composites.

From Cookeville:

Tennessee Tech University recently spotlighted Amy New, one of its alums. She is thecurrent President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Cookeville-Putnam County Chamber of Commerce. Before that, New was a familiar name to many local leaders in her role as Assistant Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. Here’s a link to the feature post.

From Nashville:

  • Cumberland Pharmaceuticals Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company, announced full year 2021 financial results last week and provided a company update. Net revenues totaled $36 million, resulting in $6 million in cash flow from operations. As of December 31, 2021, the company’s total assets were $84 million, including $27 million in cash. Total liabilities were $42 million, including $15 million on its credit facility and total shareholders’ equity was $43 million. “Despite the continued challenges of operating during a pandemic, our diversified product portfolio of FDA-approved brands has helped mitigate its negative effects and allowed us to deliver another steady performance in 2021,” said A.J. Kazimi, CEO of Cumberland Pharmaceuticals. “We closed out the year announcing our acquisition of Sancuso, an oncology-support drug that we believe will be favorable to our financial performance and provide significant benefits to oncology patients being treated for their cancers. We look forward to the year ahead and welcome the return to a more traditional operating environment.” Click here to read the lengthy news release.
  • The second episode of this season’s “Circle Back” podcast series from the Nashville Entrepreneur Center features Sherry Deutschmann. Raised in North Carolina with a strict upbringing, she chose Nashville as home to develop her career. Deutschmann, Founder of LetterLogic and BrainTrust, shares how her drive and empathetic character led her to become one of the most iconic entrepreneurs in Nashville. Click here to access the podcast.
  • Three Nashville companies made the previously referenced Forbes Magazine listing of “America’s Best Startup Employers.” The were: (1) CM Group, an advertising and marketing firm founded in 2017 and led by CEO Wellford Dillard (#281); (2) ClarisHealth, obviously in the healthcare sector, founded in 2013 and led by CEO Jeff McNeese (#398); and (3) Built Technologies, a real estate sector company founded in 2014 and led by CEO Chase Gilbert.

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