Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

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April 01, 2024 | Tom Ballard

Southeast Shoutouts | Two organizations announce senior leaders

Fifteen start-ups have been selected by gener8tor to participate in one of its three Spring 2024 gBETA programs in the State of Alabama.

From Atlanta, GA:

The Georgia Research Alliance (GRA) has hired Justin Burns as Vice President of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. In that role, he leads GRA’s efforts to turn university inventions into products and companies.

Burns joined GRA in 2024 from Morningside, a Boston-based, global life science investment firm. As a member of the venture investment team, he conducted rigorous due diligence on early stage companies, negotiated and closed new financings, and provided counsel to start-ups throughout their early development, including those seeking to license technologies from universities. Additionally, Burns served as a director on the boards of five life-science and healthcare start-ups and as a board observer for three others. Earlier in his career, he spent five years in the Office of Technology Transfer at Emory University.

From Summerville, SC:

The South Carolina Research Authority has announced several leadership promotions.

  • Russell Cook has been promoted to Chief Program Officer from Director of Academic Innovations. In this new role, he will oversee Academic Innovations, Industry Solutions, the SC Launch program, as well as SC Launch Inc., SCRA’s investment affiliate.
  • Catherine Hayes, who previously served as the Manager of Industry Solutions, has been named Director of Industry Solutions. She succeeds Cole Dudley, who will retire in April.
  • Finally, Lee MacIlwinen has been promoted from General Manager to Director of the SC Launch program. He joined SCRA in 2016 and managed coaching, grants, and investments for technology-based start-ups.

“During this time of growth, these promotions are positioning us to have an even greater impact on the state’s innovation economy,” said SCRA President and Chief Executive Officer Bob Quinn. “While offering different services, our programs are also interconnected to ensure our stakeholders receive the right SCRA and SC Launch Inc. services at the right time.”   

From Across Alabama:

Fifteen start-ups have been selected by gener8tor to participate in one of its three Spring 2024 gBETA programs in the state. According to a report in the Huntsville Business Journal, the programs and participants are:

gBETA is a seven-week accelerator program designed to set a path for start-ups to pursue investment opportunities. Founders receive intensive concierge coaching and access to gener8tor’s national network of mentors, customers, corporate partners, and investors.

The programs are made possible by a partnership between gener8tor, Innovate Alabama, Apollo Foundation by RCP CompaniesBronze Valley, and Innovation Portal, with support from Regions BankAlabama PowerBlue Cross Blue Shield of AlabamaAlfa InsuranceRobins & Morton, and Fuqua & Partners Architects.

From Durham, NC:

GrepBeat, a media outlet that covers the Research Triangle region, has announced that its “Grep-a-palooza 3” focused on early stage tech start-ups in the area will be held June 4 at the Durham Convention Center. The event includes keynote speakers, relevant panel discussions, and networking opportunities, all capped with an after-party at Bull McCabe’s. “Stay tuned for announcements on keynote speakers—led by Jes Lipson, the Founder of Raleigh-based Levitate and before that of ShareFile,” the early teaser noted.

From Raleigh and Durham, NC:

The four-day “Raleigh-Durham Start-up Week” launches next week on April 9. For the first two days, the numerous workshops and other events will be held in Durham before they shift on April 11 and 12 to Raleigh. It’s a jam-packed program. Click here to see the agenda.

From Jacksonville, FL:

FIS, the global financial technology leader headquartered in Jacksonville, will co-locate the ninth edition of its “FIS Fintech Accelerator” in both New York City and Jacksonville, a first for the company.

It is a two-week incubation and 12-week intensive program that offers a unique opportunity for up to 10 handpicked fintech companies to pressure-test and perfect their solutions under expert guidance. Selected companies will have the opportunity to work closely with FIS experts and executives — as well as potential customers and partners — to gain mentorship, refine their product-market fit, enhance their value proposition, and scale their business. Additionally, selected companies will have access to funding to bring their proof-of-concept to life through FIS.

Since its inception eight years ago, accelerator alumni have collectively raised more than $1.5 billion in capital and have been awarded with nine Finovate awards, a spot in the esteemed “GGV Fintech Innovation 50,” and inclusion in the Forbes Fintech 50.

Applications for the “FIS Fintech Accelerator 2024” will close on April 30. To apply, click here.


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