The team and I are excited to announce the launch of our Founders Camp for early stage startups transforming global trade and commerce. Founders Camp is a four day program focused on helping founders build their business through operator-led workshops and drive meaningful traction through introductions to a variety of corporations. The concept of a “camp” draws from our hometown, Chattanooga’s heritage and strength as a capital for logistics technology and an epicenter for outdoor culture. Camp will start the evening of 10/8 through lunch on 10/12 in Chattanooga, TN.
Founders Camp is informed by our seed investing efforts as well as our previous experiences as accelerator, incubator, and co-working operators. We iterated and evolved programming based on feedback from founders we’ve had the opportunity to engage with.
Founders Camp is best suited on founders building revolutionary businesses across supply chain and transportation. For this cycle, we are also very interested in five thematic areas.
2018 Thematic Areas
- Trucking technology
- Industry-specific applications of blockchain and distributed ledger technology
- Industry-relevant applications of machine learning
- Products/solutions related to agriculture and the food chain
- Warehouse automation
Competitive companies will have a strong team, a product/service built, and early traction with customers/users. Those companies that are looking to raise a seed or Series A would benefit from our focus on relevant operational advice and customer introductions. We encourage companies from abroad who are considering an entry into the US. There is no cost to a startup to participate — we do not take equity or ask for a program fee.
Benefits Of Participation
Founders will be introduced to a global network of founders and corporates who can help them build a valuable business:
Gain operational insights from proven operators and managers who have scaled startups and enterprises. On the journey of building a business, founders often times come to us seeking advice related to one or more functional areas. As a result, we introduce them to founders and operators who are able and willing to provide their expert opinions. At Founders Camp, we will have workshops and discussions with leading minds regarding customer success, enterprise sales, product management, scaling teams, and more. Our programming will address the needs of the founders invited to attend.
Introductions to potential customers and partners at both medium and large, Fortune 500 companies. The best founders know there’s no better dollar than a customers’ dollar — we agree. Founders will spend face-to-face time with both mid-sized and large businesses to gain feedback on their product and discuss opportunities to work together. Founders will leave with a great pipeline of potential customers and partners who are looking to solve problems and capture opportunities with technology.
Over $1M in benefits via the F6S Alpha Card program and other partner benefits. We know that startups must “do a lot with a little” so our friends at F6S have extend their Alpha Card program to participating companies. This includes a free roundtrip flight, discounted lodging, and infrastructure credits. Thank you to the F6S team!
Support From Across The Ecosystem
We have gathered a group of experienced startup operators and forward-thinking corporations as part of our effort.
We are proud to have the sponsorship support of Covenant Transportation, one of the largest full truckload carriers in the country and an anchor of Chattanooga’s claim as an epicenter for logistics technology. Digging into founder, David Parker’s entrepreneurial roots, the team has continually developed innovative products, practices, and operations to better serve their customers.
“We are excited to support Founders Camp and rally forward-thinking corporates to engage and support the up-and-coming stars in supply chain and transportation technologies. We feel strongly that this effort will augment our internal innovation and provide opportunities to offer differentiated services to our customers, over time.” -Ryan Rogers, Chief Transformation Officer, Covenant Transportation
Additionally, we are very excited to have the support of a pioneer in transportation software, Omnitracs. Omnitracs’ perspective as a premiere provider of compliance, safety/security, productivity, telematics, transportation management (TMS), routing, data and analytics, and professional services will be invaluable to founders. It has been extremely exciting to hear some of their initiatives and learning about their approach in building customer-centric products.
A big thank you to our local supporters, EPB and Market Street Partners for helping make this happen.
Startup operators supporting the effort include Jett McCandless, CEO and Co-founder of project44; Lauren Denault, VP Customer Success at SKUPOS; and Sugu Dinakaran, Head of Product at Bellhops, among others. Participating operators are committed to helping the next generation of startups by sharing their expertise.
“Founders Camp connects early stage entrepreneurs with the specific advice they need to build meaningful businesses. I know from experience that those perspectives are often very hard to find, and I’m honored to join a roster of operators ready to share their deep knowledge in areas such as product, customer success, and sales.” -Jett McCandless, CEO and Founder, project44
Rise Of The Rest
Today is a special day as Steve Case, JD Vance, and the Rise of the Rest team are visiting Chattanooga as stop #4 on this spring’s tour. We have spent the day celebrating our success and highlighting ways for us to continue our growth — many that lean on our region’s advantages in supply chain. With that, I am extremely excited that a partner from Rise of the Rest will participate in a Founders Camp session to benefit founders building industry-leading companies in supply chain and transportation.
“We’re proud to have co-invested with Dynamo previously and recognize their passion and expertise in supply chain and transportation-oriented businesses. We’re excited to work with them to provide founders with insight and advice as they seek to build industry-changing businesses.” -Anna Mason, Partner, Rise of the Rest
We believe that Founders Camp will provide a forum for startups and corporates to engage where both can walk away with benefits. Expanding one’s network, getting quality advice, and engaging in thoughtful discussions shouldn’t have to be costly. Founders Camp will help founders build their business and drive meaningful traction.