Tennessee’s innovation economy invites everyone to join in

  • Margaret Dolan is the President and CEO of Launch Tennessee.
  • 36
  • The 86 Entrepreneurship Festival will take place August 28-29 in Nashville. Tickets and information on attend3686.com.

When Marcus Cobb met Steve Case at the 36 | 86 Entrepreneurship Festival in 2017, it’s unlikely either of them had any idea that two years later Cobb’s Jammber would join the Rise of the Rest portfolio. by Case.

Today, Nashville Music Technology Startup and AOL Founder’s Seed Fund “Partnered… to Rethink the Music Business” as Cobb tweeted. “3 exits, hundreds of jobs, millions raised, billions of transactions.”

It’s the kind of connection that happens at 36 | 86 – the confluence of entrepreneurs, innovators, startup founders and investors from across the country to network, learn and maybe even find their next unicorn. .

At LaunchTN, we are proud to showcase the successful Tennessee entrepreneurial ecosystem. Our seventh annual festival highlights our state’s thriving innovative spirit.

Entrepreneurship is not just for startups

From a groundbreaking breakthrough energy discovery at Oak Ridge National Laboratory to a software and virtual reality developer in Jackson, from a life-changing medical device invention in Chattanooga to a sustainable heating pioneer in Johnson City, entrepreneurship gives everyone the opportunity to participate in the prosperity and wealth expansion that takes place in Tennessee.

We are especially excited that for the second year in a row, our 36 | 86 Scholarship for Under-Represented Founders will allow over 100 women, minorities and seasoned entrepreneurs to attend.

And entrepreneurship isn’t just for startups. Well-established powers like Eastman, Asurion, and Nissan are also on the hunt for great ideas – and talent – to bring back to their businesses.

Steve Case, AOL co-founder and venture capitalist, chats with TechCrunch's Jon Schieber at the 36 | 86 Entrepreneurship and Technology Conference

At six Nashville locations, more than 1,200 attendees will experience dynamic programming and a mix of investors, entrepreneurs, executives and educators.

Among the highlights: Apple’s Jeffrey Brigham will explore his work in applying artificial intelligence (AI) to solve accessibility issues. Sarah Bellos, founder of Stony Creek Colors in Tennessee, will participate in a panel discussion on circular economy innovations taking place in NGOs, government and industry.

AllianceBernstein CEO Seth Bernstein will share his take on the state of our FinTech industry following his company’s move to Nashville. And Governor Bill Lee, whose administration has made innovation a priority, will discuss the essential role of entrepreneurs and startups in economic growth.

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Pitch contests offer over $ 100,000 in prizes

Beyond speakers and panel discussions, investors and start-ups will have the opportunity to organize formal meetings using My Business Matches.

In a more organic way, guests will come together in several co-working lounges – and as happens in a gathering of creatives, draw their energy from the innovative vibe and mutual interest in starting a business.

We are also running two pitch competitions with over $ 100,000 in prizes for our winners. The first features nine startups nominated by our Partner Entrepreneur Centers around Tennessee, and the second is made up of 12 companies from eight Tennessee universities and colleges vying for the top spot. We are proud of all of this year’s competitors; their caliber illustrates the excellence of our state’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Of course, the job of building a vibrant ecosystem doesn’t happen in a week in August. LaunchTN and our network of partners will be with you throughout the year, helping you reach scale by giving you access to capital, markets and talent to grow your businesses.

And for investors, we will provide opportunities throughout the year to put your capital to work in Tennessee’s robust business environment.

36 | 86 is your opportunity knocking – will you answer the door?

Margaret Dolan is the President and CEO of Launch Tennessee. The 36 | 86 Entrepreneurship Festival will take place August 28-29 in Nashville. Tickets and information on attend3686.com.

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