May 26, 2023
🎉 Major Announcement of the Week | ​⬆️ Company Coming Up | 🗓️ Events | 🍾​ Raise a Glass | 🖊️ Blog Post of the Week

EP52 | Paul Judge | Gridline | Atlanta Startup Convos | Hook Security | Fabrice Grinda

Introduction: Welcome to Five & Thrive: a weekly podcast highlighting the Southeast’s most interesting news, entrepreneurs, and information of the week, all under 5 minutes. 

My name is Jon Birdsong and I’m with Atlanta Ventures.

When we set out to do a five minute podcast over a year ago, said said we’ll need 6 months to get enough data and adjust strategy if needed. Not only did we do six months, we consistently put something out weekly for a year. As we start our 52nd podcast, I’m here to say this will be our last one. In one year, there have been thousands upon thousands of downloads with days worth of listening around each episode. The numbers are good but, I also think we can make an even bigger impact with storytelling and startups, therefore, we’re going to take some time to ruminate on the several ideas brewing around media, podcasting, content, and more. We have seen the power and leverage of short-form content and are hooked, however we can be even better, bigger, and more impactful. If you really miss us, we’re stacking up guests on the Atlanta Story Podcast throughout the summer so follow along with more stories of building and creating over there as well. The next guest is a good one. With all that said, buckle in for our 52nd and final Five and Thrive and thank you, the several thousands of you, who have listened to an episode over the past year. We’re closing this chapter but the next one will be even better, I promise       

Major Announcement of the Week: Major news coming out of Soft Bank’s Open Opportunity Fund, local investor and entrepreneur, Paul Judge is taking the lead as Chairman to invest $150M into minority entrepreneurs. Last year, black founders received 1% of venture capital investment and the Open Opportunity fund is a major step and resource to invest in the best. Congratulations to Paul on this fantastic opportunity and focus. We put a link in the show notes to his interview with TechCrunch.    

Companies Coming Up: Gridline, out of Atlanta, is the company coming up. Gridline helps any accredited investor gain access and insight to alternative assets quickly and easily. Their software provides the individual investor with access to funds typically reserved for institutions and large family offices all while ensuring compliance. Check out Gridline if you’re looking to access more alternative investment opportunities which is led by CEO Logan Henderson. 

Event of the Week: Atlanta Startup Convos passed 3000 members this past week and they keep getting better and better. The next one is on Wednesday, June 21st. The three companies are Ubiquitous, Novel, and Turbine. All of them are products worth taking a look at and putting a save the date on the calendar.  

Raise a Glass: Congrats to Zack Eikenberry of HookSecurity for closing a $5.5M round led by Tampa Bay Ventures. If y’all remember, Hook Security provides modern and engaging approaches to cybersecurity. Their team of 21 is growing and they are tackling the market. Keep an eye on them as the Tampa startup scene is bustling.  

Blog Post of the Week: We have a long blogroll of entrepreneurs and investors we subscribe to and one of my favorites, Fabrice Grinda. He just came out with a great post titled: Timing is Everything. He analyzes how great entrepreneurs and investors are excellent predictors of what will happen in the future. However, what many folks get wrong is the timing. He brings in some examples of the dot com bust including Pets.com and Webvan, both of those markets have created mult-billion dollar businesses today, it was just back in the late 90’s, they were just too early. However, Fabrice goes into a laundry list of markets, ideas, and products he is excited about for any entrepreneur to go build the next great business. I highly recommend it as the opportunities out there are limitless! 

And on that note, that is 5 minutes. 

Major Announcement of the Week: Paul Judge 

Company Coming Up: Gridline

Event of the Week: Atlanta Startup Convos

Raise a Glass: Hook Security

Blog Post of the Week: Fabrice Grinda: Timing is Everything