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March 21, 2013 | Tom Ballard

SensorMed wins latest VEF “After Hours” competition

SensorMed, one of three presenting companies, won the latest “Golden Hockey Stick Award” at last night’s Tech 20/20 Venture Exchange Forum “After Hours.”

The hockey stick is one of the most common symbols of success in a start-up. When a new company has reached a critical inflection point, revenue takes off, and this growth is reflected in the long handle of the hockey stick.

About 40 people attended the latest “After Hours” event that was co-sponsored by Pershing Yoakley & Associates (PYA) and held at Cherokee Mills. PYA is also the sponsor of

SensorMed is located in the University of Tennessee Business Incubator and has been profiled on at In his presentation, Chris Doody, the company’s President and Chief Executive Officer, reiterated that SensorMed is a laparoscopic safety company with two product lines. It uses radio frequency bioimpedance instrument guidance to alert surgeons when a laparoscopic device penetrates the peritoneal space.

The other presenting companies were another medical device start-up and an applications development firm.

  • Chad Seaver, one of three founders of Arkis, described his company’s focus on addressing the “antiquated” manner in which hydrocephalus disease is treated. Nearly 80,000 people, more than one-half of whom are children, have procedures performed annually to treat the disease. Seaver told us the company was founded about two years ago. His partners include a local neurosurgeon and a patent agent.
  • Kyle McClain, Chief Operating Officer of ROAR, told the attendees about his firm that has developed 500 aps in the last year with more than 180,000 active users. The start-up has been focused mostly on non-profits and churches, but plans to expand into other verticals. Its services include access to an “App Maker Platform” as well as customized apps, mobile website development, and social media assistance.

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