Startup Talk: Tech firms embracing sustainability initiatives, study says

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 180 views 

Editor’s note: Each Thursday, Talk Business & Politics provides “Startup Talk,” a round-up of startup, technology and entrepreneurial news.

TECH FIRMS EMBRACING SUSTAINABILITY INITIATIVES, STUDY SAYS: The consumer technology industry is advancing and succeeding across numerous sustainability initiatives including responsible product recycling and more energy efficient devices, according to a new report from the Consumer Technology Association. The new report, an update to CTA’s 2013 edition, explains the consumer technology industry’s leadership in promoting and implementing sustainable practices and initiatives. The report compiles stories and insights from companies including Apple, Best Buy, Google, LG, Lyft, Samsung and Uber that illustrate accomplishments in various environmental challenges, such as lowering energy consumption, advancing eco-friendly design and implementing practices that lower the industry’s total carbon emissions.

ATLANTA TECH VILLAGE SEES $250 MILLION IN NEW STARTUP CAPITAL, FOSTERS DOUBLE-DIGIT MEMBERSHIP GROWTH: Atlanta Tech Village, the tech park hub that is one of the models for the Little Rock Technology Park‘s recently unveiled downtown development, announced this week that startup membership grew by 26.5%, more than $250 million in new startup capital was raised, and 43 startups achieved “six figures” in annual funding in 2015.

Billed as the Southeast’s largest co-working and office environment for emerging technology companies and tech startups, Atlanta Tech Village founder David Cummings said the Village is dedicated to fostering innovation and collaboration and driving economic development in the Atlanta community and beyond. In late November, the Little Rock Tech Park invited Cummings for a presentation and Q&A session with the authority’s board. Learn more about the Atlanta Tech Village’s 2015 achievements at the tech hub’s blog here.

TECH PARK BOARD EXPECTS TO CLOSE REAL ESTATE DEALS FOR DOWNTOWN TECH VILLAGE BY FEB. 1: The Little Rock Technology Park Authority on Wednesday (Jan. 13) moved two steps closer to jump-starting the first phase of the downtown development the city hopes to market to attract startups, entrepreneurs and establish a tech focus to the city’s Creative Corridor.

In two separate actions, the board unanimously approved a $17.5 million consortium-back financing package to fund project and later OK’ed a resolution to approve the purchase price for three real estate deals are expected to close by Feb. 1. Following the votes, several board members expressed relief that final negotiations on the controversial project are near an end and construction on the downtown tech village will soon begin. Read more here.

PFIZER TO EXPAND STARTUP INVESTING WITH ADDITIONAL $46 MILLION FOR EARLY STAGE BIOTECH FIRMS: Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc. announced it is expanding its research & development (R&D) investment strategy to include early-stage companies on the leading edge of scientific innovation, providing them with both equity and access to resources for research in promising areas aligned with Pfizer’s core interests. The first four investments of the newly focused initiative include $46 million in financing to companies at early stages of the discovery process that are actively exploring Conditionally Active Biologics (CABs), immuno-oncology, neurodegenerative technologies and gene therapy.