Top Angel Investors in Tennessee

Last updated: February 24, 2024

ChattanoogaNashvilleMemphis, and Knoxville... You may have heard these names among the active cities for startups. Similarly, Tennessee is also a hub for tech-related startups. The state has around 4,000 startups and many angel investors who provide funding to startups.

Do you want to know some of the top-ranked angel investors and venture capital firms in the state?

Well, fear not! I have prepared the list of the top 6 angel investors in Tennessee, along with additional tips.

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    Top 6 Angel Investors in Tennessee

    Following is the list of some of the top angel investors and venture capital firms in Tennessee.

    Josh Epstein

    LinkedIn: Josh Epstien

    Investor Type: Individual Investor

    Investment Interests: Science Tech

    Investment Stage: Early and Seed

    Josh Epstein is a prominent angel investor with a wealth of experience in the startup ecosystem. Through Avondale Partners, he has made over 100 investments and around 15 personal investments in startups. As for his career, Josh Epstein serves as the Managing Partner of UDC Ventures. Prior to joining UDC Ventures, Epstein had an extensive career as a technology investment banker spanning over 20 years. 

    When funding startups, Josh Epstein focuses on startups that are related to OLED, Organic Electronics, displays, lighting, and science technology. He usually invests in businesses through startup events and investor meetings.

    Other than his startup funding, Josh Epstein also utilizes his experience and provides guidance to early-stage businesses. Josh Epstien's investment range is between $100,000 and $2M. Among his investments, some portfolio companies are:

    TINYpulse: An employee engagement platform that helps organizations measure and improve employee satisfaction, feedback, and performance. It provides tools for anonymous employee surveys, pulse checks, and real-time feedback. 

    Markit: Markit (now part of IHS Markit) was a financial information services company. It provided data, analytics, and solutions to financial institutions, corporations, and governments. 

    OpenDoor: OpenDoor revolutionized the real estate industry by simplifying the home buying and selling process. It allowed homeowners to sell their properties directly to OpenDoor without listing them on the market. 

    Clark Landry

    LinkedIn: Clark Landry

    Investor Type: Individual Investor

    Investment Interests: Fintech, Software, and Commercial Services

    Investment Stage: Seed

    Clark Landry is an active angel investor who usually funds Nashville-based startups. He actively invests in startups across various stages, including seed, early-stage venture, and private equity. 

    Similarly, Clark Landry likes to take a focused approach when funding startups. He is very careful with the revenue generation process and prefers businesses that are already securing decent profits. Moreover, Clark Landry attends many startup events, searching for a startup that is growing expeditiously and providing it with the required funding.

    Thanks to his extensive experience in the entrepreneur industry, Clark Landry also provides guidance to his portfolio companies and acts as a mentor. 

    The investment range of Clark Landry lies between $500,000 to $4M. Some of his investments are:

    Acquicent: Acquicent is an innovative platform in the realm of other financial services. While still in beta testing, it aims to transform the way people engage with financial products.

    Qonsent: Qonsent operates in the field of network management software. It has successfully generated revenue and provides solutions for efficient network management.

    EdenFarm: EdenFarm focuses on other commercial services. It generates revenue by connecting farmers with consumers, streamlining the supply chain for fresh produce.

    Pharos Capital Group


    Website: Pharos Capital Group

    Investor Type: Investment Firm

    Investment Interests: Healthcare

    Investment Stage: Seed and Late

    Pharos Capital Group was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in Dallas, Texas. The venture capital firm also has a presence in Nashville, Tennessee. Pharos Capital Group has invested in a total of 57 companies since its inception. They have raised more than $1.2 billion in private equity assets under management.

    Regarding their startup funding, Pharos Capital Group typically invests between $25 million and $50 million in rapidly growing middle-market companies. Their focus is on companies seeking later-stage funding for internal growth, acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, management buyouts, or recapitalizations, predominantly across healthcare sectors.

    The investment group consists of around 20 investors who conduct strict screening tests to identify promising investment opportunities. They serve underserved areas, including rural and urban communities, and focus on small and complex populations.

    Since its inception, Pharos Capital Group has funded a lot of companies; some famous names are:

    TechLab: A company that develops and manufactures diagnostic products.

    They specialize in diagnostic tests for infectious diseases and enteric disease testing. Their products are sold directly to end-users through distributors and direct sales. 

    RhythMedix: RhythMedix offers an Independent Diagnostic Testing Facility (IDTF). Their powerful proprietary algorithms evaluate every heartbeat, providing actionable reporting for healthcare providers. The focus is on cardiac monitoring and diagnostics.

    Atherotech, Inc.: Atherotech developed the VAP Cholesterol Test, a new standard of care for patients at risk of cardiovascular disease. The test is available through national and regional diagnostic laboratories.

    Claritas Capital

    Website: Claritas Capital

    Investor Type: Venture Capital Firm

    Investment Interests: Healthcare, health data, analytics, business services, technology, communications, fintech, information technology, and real estate.

    Investment Stage: Late

    Claritas Capital is an active venture capital firm that was founded in 2002 and is headquartered in Nashville. The venture capital firm has invested in a total of 145 companies and are still looking to expand their portfolio. 

    During the investment process, the investors at Claritas Capital seek opportunities for internal growth, acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, management buyouts, or recapitalizations. They also arrange several pitching competitions throughout the year to select the most deserving startups and provide them with the investment.

    The investment range of Claritas Capital lies between $5M to $40M, as they invest in seed and late-stage startups. Some of their portfolio companies are:

    Team Four Foodservice: Team Four Foodservice operates in the food service industry, catering to restaurants, cafeterias, hotels, and other food-related businesses. Their services include food distribution, supply chain management, kitchen equipment, and consulting.

    Azarus: Azarus develops software solutions for the entertainment industry. Their focus is on gaming, interactive experiences, or content creation. Azarus aims to engage and entertain users. Their funding supports research, development, and marketing efforts.

    Twenty30 Health: Twenty30 Health operates within the healthcare sector, addressing various aspects of patient care. Their services include telemedicine, chronic disease management, wellness programs, and specialized clinics. 

    SilverMark Partners


    Website: SilverMark Partners

    Investor Type: Investment Firm

    Investment Interests: Tech, Healthcare, and E-Commerce. 

    Investment Stage: Early and Seed

    SilverMark Partners is also an experienced angel investment network that focuses on funding growth-staged startups. The network was founded in 2002 and is headquartered in Nashville. With a portfolio of around 50 startups, SilverMark Partners has a strict focus on funding tech and healthcare-related businesses.

    Talking about their investment procedure, startup leaders have to submit a form, and upon selection, they can deliver a presentation. Once the investors like the idea, they will arrange an investor meeting and provide the required funding through the funds.

    Moreover, SilverMark Partners also focuses on arranging mentorship programs. The network arranges 4-5 startup events every year to boost the startup growth and support newly formed businesses.

    The investment range of SilverMark Partners is between $150,000 to $3M. Among their investments, some famous names are:

    Intertek Testing Services Inc.: Intertek is a global company that specializes in testing, inspection, and certification services. They work with manufacturers, retailers, and regulatory bodies to ensure that products meet safety, quality, and performance standards.

    Signature Pharmacy Solutions Inc.: Signature Pharmacy Solutions focuses on providing software solutions to retail pharmacies. Their technology streamlines various aspects of pharmacy operations. specializes in improving search functionality for e-commerce websites. The business provides machine learning and natural language processing to understand user queries better. This results in more accurate search results.

    MB Venture Partners


    Website: MB Venture Partners

    Investor Type: Investment Firm

    Investment Interests: Healthtech and Drugs

    Investment Stage: Late

    MB Venture Partners is also one of the most experienced and active angel investment networks in Knoxville. The firm was founded by Gary Stevenson and has funded around 100 companies. Like most other investment networks in Tennessee, MB Venture Partners also has a strong focus on startups that are related to tech and healthcare.

    The investors fund startups with the criteria of generating at least 5x ROI within 3 years or providing a share in the businesses. 

    Aside from investment activities, MB Ventures also arranges a lot of growth and startup events. Every year, the firm conducts networking events and helps startup leaders find investors with identical interests. 

    The investment range of MB Venture Partners can go up to $120M. Some of their portfolio companies are:

    Focal Point Pharmaceuticals: Focal Point Pharmaceuticals is likely engaged in drug development or pharmaceutical research. As a seed-stage company, they may be working on novel drug compounds, diagnostics, or therapeutic approaches.

    CrossRoads Extremity Systems: CrossRoads Extremity Systems specializes in musculoskeletal products. Their focus is likely on developing innovative medical devices for orthopedic and podiatric surgeries. 

    Lineus Medical: Lineus Medical aims to improve patient care through innovative medical devices. Their flagship products are related to intravenous (IV) therapy and vascular access. 


    With the listing coming to an end, I'll share some important tips on how you can secure investment from angel investors.

    When pitching to investors, know that they also think the same way and want to secure high profits from their investments. That is why you need to do some strong research, understand their preferences, and present your startup idea as the most profitable investment. 

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q: How to pitch to angel investors?

    A: To pitch to angel investors successfully, prepare a concise and engaging presentation about your startup.

    Clearly present your business idea, market opportunity, unique value proposition, and financial projections. Focus on showing the potential for growth and profitability. Most importantly, explain how their investment will be utilized and the benefits they can expect.

    Q: How Do Angel Investors Help Businesses Grow?

    A: Angel investors play a crucial role in the growth of businesses by providing essential funding during the early stages. Their financial support enables startups to develop products, scale operations, and expand their market reach. Moreover, angel investors bring valuable expertise and networking opportunities, contributing to the overall success and sustainability of the ventures they back.

    Q: What is the typical investment timeline for angel investors?

    A: The investment timeline for angel investors can vary depending on the startup's needs and growth trajectory. Angel investments are typically made in the early stages and can last anywhere from a few months to several years. The timeline may include multiple funding rounds as the startup reaches key milestones and scales its operations.

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