Memphis medical device accelerator ZeroTo510 has for the second year in a row been named one of the top startup accelerators in the country.
The accelerator was included in a list of the top 25 business accelerators in the U.S. in rankings announced Friday at SXSW. The rankings are provided by the Seed Accelerator Rankings Project and are based on confidential data that includes metrics like accelerator portfolio outcomes.
The goal of ZeroTo510 – a three-month, mentor-driven program – is to help medical device entrepreneurs navigate the start-up process, refine their business models and achieve the Food and Drug Administration’s 510(k) pre-market notification filing. Applications for the accelerator’s fifth cohort are being accepted until March 15.
So far, ZeroTo510 says the program has accelerated the creation of 20 new companies, $9.2 million in investments, and more than 40 jobs. In addition, 60 percent of graduates have received post-accelerator follow-on funding, at an average of $675,000 per company.
A few executives among the leadership at First Tennessee Bank’s parent company have been singled out for industry awards and coverage lately.
Rhomes Aur, who heads up FTB Advisors, appears in the latest issue of The BISA (Bank Insurance & Securities Association) Magazine. Rhomes is featured as the publication’s cover story, in which he discusses First Tennessee Bank’s wealth team approach to retaining clients.
Meanwhile, Aarti Bowman – senior vice president of investor relations for First Tennessee’s parent, First Horizon National Corp. – has been honored by Institutional Investor magazine as one of the top investor relations professionals in the nation.
Bowman was named to the magazine’s 2016 All-America Investor Team and was voted the No. 1 investor relations professional in the mid-cap banks category. First Horizon’s overall investor relations program was also named No. 1 in the banks/mid-cap category.
One of the things that stood out to me in my colleague Bill Dries’ exit interview with Mayor Wharton is the mayor’s assessment of his political legacy, which Wharton views as the civic pride that’s swept through the city in recent years.
“I would think it’s the intangible of how we changed the attitude of Memphis as we see ourselves, and we also changed the way the larger outside world sees us,” Wharton said. “We were kind of down on ourselves. … We were starting to believe that stuff. We weathered the recession. We had a recession of the spirit about the same time we had an economic recession, and that’s a bad condition.”
Five years ago, when he was still settling in at City Hall, the mayor gave me some insight into what the above quote means.
In this piece I wrote back in 2010, we got a look at the mayor as a sort of one-man chamber of commerce. I caught up with him after he’d just come back from New York City and met with the chairman and CEO of Sharp Electronics Corp., which Wharton was helping encourage to keep Memphis on its radar.
A flurry of out of town trips to Washington and elsewhere followed. And this is what the mayor told me back then, harkening to the pride he was trying to help foment in Memphis, particularly in the business community here:
“I’m coming up on my 40th (wedding) anniversary,” Wharton said. “I don’t take roses home as often as I did. But you’ve got to take something home. Don’t take anything for granted. With our existing employers, it’s like a marriage that’s gotten some age to it. ‘Oh, we’ve got them here, they aren’t going anywhere.’ But there’s people bringing them roses, perfume and sweet music every day. I want to start taking them roses, perfume and sweet music. Whether it’s to southeast Shelby County or Southeast Asia, we’re going to be there.”
This is really cool.
From Kaiser Family Foundation, a tool to find the number of people by zip code (or roughly by zip code … read the fine print) who signed up for Obamacare through the exchanges in 2014 and 2015.
For example, in zip code 38103:
2015: 5,300 people signed up out of 12,800 potential enrollees. (42%)
2014: 3,600 people signed up out of 13,300 potential enrollees. (27%)
And in a world where hard facts on Obamacare are so difficult to find — given the politics and complexity of the issue — Kaiser has all kinds of interesting data. For instance, while Tennessee premiums are up 38%, they’re up “only” 1.5% after tax credits are factored in.
Congratulations are in order to Memphis-based AutoZone, which the organization Americans for the Arts is honoring next month at its annual awards gala as being among 10 U.S. companies honored for their “exceptional commitment to the arts.”
The honor will be formally bestowed at a bash in New York City on October 6.
Reasons cited by the organization for its inclusion of AutoZone are things like the company’s founder and former CEO in 2004 spearheading an endowment campaign that raised $27.2 million for the arts in Memphis. AutoZone, according to the organization, also commissioned Opera Memphis to create two iterations of “AutoZone: The Opera” for the company’s national conferences in 2013 and 2014.
AutoZone was nominated for the honor from Americans for the Arts by ArtsMemphis.