GigTank Winner Sets Up Headquarters In Chattanooga

Thursday, January 03, 2013

CO.LAB on Thursday announced that Banyan, winner of the 2012 GigTank competition, has secured its first round of funding from the Chattanooga Renaissance Fund, as well as Chattanooga and Silicon Valley angel investors.

Banyan CEO Toni Gemayel said the company will move its Florida headquarters to downtown Chattanooga in the coming weeks.

“Chattanooga’s robust startup culture and supportive investment community have played an integral role in Banyan’s early success,” Mr. Gemayel said. “We’re excited to establish our headquarters here, and we’re confident that the city will act as a catalyst for Banyan as we take the company to a new level.”

Banyan is a cloud-based version control system that caters to the research industry, where the U.S. spent $67 billion in 2011. With a modern user interface and integrated productivity tools, Banyan facilitates information sharing between researchers and eliminates the need for countless iterations of a project.

“Last year, 1.5 million research papers were published in the U.S., with an average of 10 collaborators per project. Those researchers need more efficient means of exchanging data,” Mr.Gemayel said. “Our partnership with the Chattanooga Renaissance Fund and other valuable investors will allow us to fill the void we’ve identified in the massive research industry.”

Banyan’s first round of funding comes on the heels of the 2012 GigTank, a summer-long startup accelerator and competition co-hosted by CO.LAB and Lamp Post Group. The company was awarded GigTank’s top $100,000 prize.

Banyan’s GigTank success drew the attention of multiple investors, including the Chattanooga Renaissance Fund. Founded by a group of local business leaders, the Chattanooga Renaissance Fund is a formalized angel capital fund that focuses on the city’s entrepreneurship and economic growth.

CRF has raised more than $3 million from dozens of Chattanooga area investors as well as six general partners, who manage the investments and oversee the vetting process.

“CRF is pleased to contribute to Banyan’s growth, and we look forward to a long and successful relationship with the company’s management team,” said David Belitz, a general partner of the fund. “This investment will help Banyan build a solid foundation, and on a larger scale, will further CRF’s mission to foster Chattanooga’s entrepreneurial culture.” 


Northwest Georgia’s Unemployment Rate Rises To 7.7 Percent In June

The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that the unemployment rate in the Northwest Georgia region increased to 7.7 percent in June, up four-tenths of a percentage point from 7.3 percent in May. The rate was 8.9 percent in June a year ago. The rate increased because of seasonal factors, such as the summer job loss among non-contract school workers and a rise in the labor ... (click for more)

Metro Dalton’s Unemployment Rate Rises To 9.3 Percent In June

The Georgia Department of Labor announced that Metro Dalton’s unemployment rate increased to 9.3 percent in June, up five-tenths of a percentage point from 8.8 percent in May. The rate was 11.1 percent in June a year ago. The rate increased because of seasonal factors, such as the summer job loss among non-contract school workers and an increase in the labor force as graduates ... (click for more)

EPB Files With FCC To Expand TV, Phone, Internet Offerings Outside Electric Service Area

 EPB announced Thursday that it has filed a petition to the FCC "in an effort to respond to neighboring communities’ requests for access to the company’s gigabit enabled high-speed Internet service." Officials said, "EPB offers high-speed Internet access, video programming and voice services using a fiber optic communications network that allows the company to deliver these ... (click for more)

Black Creek Developers Say They "Followed The Rules" On $9 Million TIF: To Continue Project

The developers of the Black Creek project at Aetna Mountain said Thursday they "complied precisely by the rules when we applied for and received approval of the TIF district." Doug Stein said the group plans to continue on with the project, which he said earlier would include the creation of a small town on a huge undeveloped tract on the mountain above Black Creek (formerly ... (click for more)

Pickle Ball? - And Response

Collegedale has done some wonderful things for its residents.  The Greenway is a perfect example of money well spent on helping to give her residents the opportunity to improve their lives, at least from a health standpoint. Having taught at Wolftever Creek for a decade plus, I was fortunate to have opportunity to take my classes on walks from time to time.  It provided ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The NCAA’s “Division IV”

Jonathan Jensen and Brian Turner are two very smart guys. Not long ago the two sports researchers at Ohio State authored a story that appeared in the Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports that focused on the most successful college football teams in the country and, earlier this week, a writer named Ben Cohen broke it down in understandable terms for a fascinating Wall Street ... (click for more)