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July 20, 2022 | Tom Ballard

Two-time CO.LAB program participant selected for “Black Founder Accelerator Program”

You can’t help but love the persistence of entrepreneurs you come across.

We first met Lexington, TN native Victor Brown when he participated in CO.LAB’s “GIGTANK 365” program in 2016 and pitched Xcellent Life, a start-up inspired by his father’s healthcare challenges. As he described his approach in this July 24, 2016 article, Brown wanted to improve individual quality of life by transforming healthcare through the application of artificial intelligence.

Four years later, the West Tennessee entrepreneur was back in Chattanooga where he participated in a newer CO.LAB program. It was the “HealthTech Accelerator” sponsored by Erlanger Health System and Unum. Brown had advanced Xcellent Life significantly in the 48 months.

Victor Brown

As noted in this announcement that we just saw, he’s still pushing forward. Xcellent Life was selected as one of five companies for the latest cohort of the “Black Founder Accelerator Program,” an initiative Northwestern Mutual launched this past year in partnership with gener8tor to provide targeted resources and financing to promising Black entrepreneurs nationwide.

“This next class of five start-ups builds upon the success of the 10 founders we were proud to team up with in 2021,” said Craig Schedler, Managing Director of Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures. “This group was selected based on their unique business models and drive to build tech solutions that help people live longer, better, and healthier lives across multiple areas of focus, including financial services, insurance, and digital health. With such positive momentum coming from last year’s cohorts, including 115 investor introductions and more than 100 full-time employees supported by the 10 start-ups, I’m both excited to see how this group of founders will make a positive impact in their communities and honored to be a part of a company that continues to meaningfully support Black entrepreneurship.”

Here’s a YouTube video that Brown shared from the first day of the gener8tor-managed accelerator. And Xcellent Life’s leader is one of the 51 announced speakers for the 2022 “Nashville Analytics Summit” set for the end of September in Music City.