By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer, PYA
Mike Hatcher’s partnership with Tim Hill started because they were next door neighbors.
“His daughters and my two youngest daughters were friends,” Hatcher explains. “Also, we threw horseshoes in a lot between our houses.”
The two fathers forged an alliance in 2004 that today is the well-respected Hatcher-Hill Properties, LLC. It started as an experiment, but has grown to include rehabilitation and new construction in downtown Knoxville as well as Bearden, Turkey Creek and now in Blount County around Foothills Mall.
“We both loved downtown, having grown-up here and seen it collapse,” Hatcher says. “We decided if we could develop properties, not lose money and still be friends, we would be successful.”
They started with the old Vine Furniture Company building and have never looked back. Most of their work is commercial or real estate.
“Our first big project downtown was the old S&W Cafeteria,” Hatcher says. The firm also partnered with David Dewhirst and Mark Heinz on the rehab of the old JC Penney Building. “We did retail, they did residential,” Hatcher explained.
A quick review of Hatcher-Hill’s downtown properties shows a number of locations on Gay Street as well as Market Square and Emory Place. One of the firm’s more iconic current projects is the historic, flatiron-style building on Western Avenue.
“We wanted to also be in Bearden,” Hatcher says, adding, “We examined every available piece of property.”
Hatcher-Hill West Knoxville properties start in the 4800 block of Kingston Pike in Bearden and extend all the way to the 9600 block. Most are strip developments, which also characterizes the new buildings in Turkey Creek.
Earlier this year, Hatcher added another role to his portfolio, agreeing to serve as a Senior Advisor with Chattanooga-based FourBridges Capital Advisors, bringing his healthcare and technology expertise to the team. (Click here to read the announcement.)
“I met Andy through a deal he helped me with,” Hatcher says of Andy Stockett of FourBridges. While he will be working with companies across the Southeast, the Knoxville business executive sees a particular opportunity to help the local region.
“I think we have a lot of great technology coming out of UT and ORNL,” Hatcher says. “We are talent rich and asset rich.”
In spite of those strengths, he also sees some weaknesses that he believes FourBridges can help address. His views have been honed through two decades of participation in the Nashville Capital Network and other initiatives including the new Knoxville-based Lighthouse Fund.
“Many companies that could take advantage of the technologies do not have the dollars or management capital,” Hatcher says. “They (FourBridges) could bring capital to the market.”
And like a number of people, he believes that nothing breeds success like success.
“We’re getting a lot of people coming to this market,” Hatcher says. “What we need are some good stories. I’ve dedicated the rest of my life to helping us get the recognition we deserve.”