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New Nashville-based venture studio launches, announces first investment

Mark Two Ventures is a new venture studio based in Nashville and focused on technology start-ups in the South.

Founded by seasoned tech entrepreneurs Glenn Clayton and Patrick Cooney, Mark Two describes itself as a venture studio that provides seed stage capital in addition to product development, software engineering, and design expertise for new start-ups. Unlike traditional venture capital firms, venture studios take a much more hands-on role in helping founders launch and build new tech startups.

“A studio is basically an institutional co-founder of start-ups,” said Cooney in this news release. “We like to get involved as early as possible with talented founders who have a great idea, often even before a company has been formed. We then provide the seed capital as well as the initial team to build and launch a new product.”

Cooney and Clayton explained that seed stage start-ups in the region often lack access to people with prior experience in skills critical to early stage start-up success such as product development, engineering, and design. Further, the duo cited a lack of sophisticated capital for pre-revenue companies in the South. The opportunity to fill those voids and help launch new tech ventures is what inspired the creation of Mark Two Ventures.

Mark Two Ventures has made its first investment – $1 million in Astound Research, a Birmingham, AL-based start-up developing the first marketplace to allow research institutions and universities to easily find corporate sponsors for important scientific research. Click here to learn more about the plans for Mark Two’s first portfolio investment.

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