Smart Business Atlanta Interviews Mike Rotondo, CEO of Tropical Smoothie Café
Mike Rotondo joined Tropical Smoothie Cafe Inc. as vice president of operations in 2008 – and climbed the corporate ladder about every two years.
PlayOn! Sports Featured in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
If most Americans love high school football — and not many games are broadcast — then there's money to be made by making it easy for people to watch as many contests as they wish.
Enter David Rudolph, the chief executive officer of Atlanta-based PlayOn! Sports, who's trying to fill that void — by broadcasting games and other events, and streaming them live on computers and other devices.
Tin Drum and BIP Opportunities Fund featured in QSR Magazine
For brands seeking outside investment, strong momentum and the perfect partner are a must.
Steven Chan’s business was at a crossroads last year. His Atlanta-based fast casual Tin Drum AsiaCafé launched in 2000, sold its first franchise in 2001, and was growing slowly due to Chan’s determination to keep it debt-free. At the beginning of 2012, Tin Drum had 10 franchises in Georgia and Alabama that highlighted its pan-Asian menu.
BIP Opportunities Fund Announces Investment in Emerging Brand
Atlanta-based investment firm adds beat to Tin Drum Asiacafe
(ATLANTA) Sept. 30, 2012 -- Atlanta-based BIP Opportunities Fund LP (BIP) announced today that it is taking a minority interest in the rapidly growing Pan Asian fast casual chain Tin Drum Asiacafe (Tin Drum). The investment in Tin Drum, also based in Atlanta, will provide the necessary capital to fuel the emerging brand's expansion strategy announced in early 2012. Founder and CEO Steven Chan began franchising Tin Drum, his popular Asian-street food concept, in 2011 and expects to double the company's corporate and franchise unit base by the end of 2012. Tin Drum is actively pursuing franchisees in the southern states of Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida and the Carolinas.
Shareholder InSite, Inc. Acquires Venture Services Division of Quist Valuation
$4.25 million equity investment fuels acquisition of national valuation services offering and growth plan for Shareholder InSite
Nashville, TN, Boulder, CO and San Francisco, CA- August 14, 2012 - Shareholder InSite, Inc. (http://www.shareholderinsite.com), the premier provider of shareholder management and analytics solutions to venture capital (VC)/private equity (PE) firms and private companies, announced today that it has acquired the Venture Services Division of Quist Valuation (formally known as Quist Financial, Inc.), a national valuation services provider. Shareholder InSite is not acquiring the Tax & Transaction Services Division of Quist Valuation, which will remain independently available through Quist Financial, Inc. www.quistfinancial.net, a 28-year-old company headquartered in Boulder, CO. Moving forward, Shareholder InSite will offer FAS 157 and IRC 409A valuation services through a division called Quist Valuation Services.
BIP Opportunities Fund purchased controlling interest in Tropical Smoothie Café
ATLANTA, August 17, 2012 – Atlanta-based BIP Opportunities Fund, LP (BIP) announced today that it has purchased controlling interest in Tropical Smoothie Café (TSC), a 315 unit food and smoothie franchise. Scott Pressly, partner at BIP, assumes the role of Chairman of the Board, and Mike Rotondo has been promoted to Chief Executive Officer.
Both Pressly and Rotondo lend extensive franchise industry experience to Tropical Smoothie Café and the efforts to grow the company. Pressly has held a variety of leadership and board positions with the International Franchise Association, and has a strong track record of financial investments in franchise brands. Rotondo has led the Tropical Smoothie Café brand for the past four years as Chief Operating Officer and personally steered the effort to expand TSC’s healthy menu options with the introduction of flatbreads resulting in a MenuMasters Award by Nation’s Restaurant News.
“We were attracted to TSC’s passionate franchisee base and fresh, ‘better-for-you’ product offerings. We feel the company is well positioned for substantial growth,” said Pressly. “Our expansion plans will be to increase franchise sales by driving franchisee economics. When the franchisee wins, everyone wins.”
“We have won national awards for our food offerings but many consumers still perceive us as a smoothie concept,” said Rotondo. “Our job is to spread the word about our menu variety in addition to our renowned real-fruit smoothies, to further drive our franchisees’ success.”
Capitalizing on increasingly healthy trends in the marketplace, Tropical Smoothie Café’s franchisees currently generate over 50% of their sales from its signature line of sandwiches, wraps and flatbreads. To further build on this trend, the marketing strategy will continue to focus on promoting the bold flavors and healthy food options at the cafés.
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About Tropical Smoothie Café
Founded in 1997, Tropical Smoothie Café provides diners with healthier food choices with a tropical twist. Tropical Smoothie Café franchised locations offer made-to-order toasted wraps, flatbreads, sandwiches and gourmet salads, while continuing to provide consumers with a variety of high-quality real-fruit smoothies. Tropical Smoothie Café includes dine-in, take-out and catering menu options for breakfast, lunch and dinner, available through online ordering. For more information on Tropical Smoothie Café, please visit www.tropicalsmoothiecafe.com, www.facebook.com/tropicalsmoothiecafe or call 888-292-2522.
About BIP Opportunities Fund
BIP Opportunities Fund is an Atlanta-based investment firm focused on providing capital and operational support to emerging, high-growth companies. The firm seeks to invest between $2 million to $5 million in companies with revenues up to $15 million. Investments will generally be based within the Southeast but BIP remains opportunistic to other domestically-based investment opportunities. Industry sectors covered include technology, healthcare, business services, franchising, and specialty finance. For additional information on BIP Opportunities Fund, please visit www.bipfund.com.
Buckhead Investment Partners Latest to Adopt strategicplanningMD’s Strategy Execution Software
As strategicplanningMD’s suite of cloud-based applications continues to attract clients in the healthcare market, it has also caught the eye of companies from a variety of other industries. Buckhead Investment Partners is the latest non-healthcare company to move to strategicplanningMD’s strategy development and execution management platform.
HIStalk Interviews Steve Liu, Founder, Ingenious Med
By Mr. HIStalk On April 18, 2012
Steven T. Liu MD, SFHM is founder, executive chairman, and chief medical officer of Ingenious Med of Atlanta, GA.
Give me some background about yourself and about the company.
I was an engineer first and earlier in life - electrical - and it's just it wasn't for me. I couldn't see myself doing this for a long period of time. I decided at the last minute to do what I really wanted, which was become a physician.
PlayOn! Sports and When We Were Young Productions Announce Merger Completion
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
PLAYON! SPORTS AND WHEN WE WERE YOUNG PRODUCTIONS ANNOUNCE MERGER
COMPLETION Combined Company is Largest in High School Sports Media
StrategicplanningMD Receives $1.5 Million Investment to Develop Next Generation of Strategic Planning Software Solutions
strategicplanningMD Receives 1.5 Million Investment to Develop Next Generation of Strategic Planning Software Solutions
Investment Firm to Raise $50 Million to Grow Companies
Yet another Atlanta firm is prepping to plow millions of dollars into the next generation of tech companies.
Atlanta-based Buckhead Investment Partners, LLC will launch a $50 million dollar venture capital fund, just three years after raising its first fund.
PlayOn! Sports Raises $7 Million
An Atlanta firm — consider it the ESPN of high school sports — has scored $7.2 million to expand its geographic footprint and enter the white-hot mobile market.
PlayOn Sports, which bills itself as the largest producer and distributor of high school sports content over television and the Internet, covers more than 5,000 high school championships across 30 sports.
The BIP Investment Team Announces the Sale of its Interest in Vendormate Inc. Generating a 6.6x Cash-on-Cash Return to Investors
Atlanta, GA, ( January 12, 2011 ) - The BIP Investment Team, managers of BIP Opportunities Fund, announces the sale of its interest in a pre fund investment, Vendormate Inc., to Primus Capital, a Cleveland based private equity firm. The sale generated a 6.6x gross cash-on-cash return in 3.5 years for the BIP team and its investors.
"From the start, Vendormate presented an excellent investment opportunity," said Mark Buffington, partner at BIP Opportunities Fund. "The management team's operating prowess, the strength of Vendormate's products and the vast need for effective vendor management systems in the healthcare industry combined to make Vendormate one of the fastest-growing software companies in its industry."
PlayON! Sports Raises $2.8 Million in Series B Financing
ATLANTA, GA ( August 2, 2010 ) - Atlanta based 2080 Media, Inc., which operates as PlayON! Sports, today announced the completion of a Series B round of financing totaling $2.8 million. New investor Hamilton Ventures joined the round with existing investors Buckhead Investment Partners (BIP Opportunities Fund, LP) and Imlay Investments. PlayON! will use the funding to support its rapid growth and leadership position in the high school sports category.
Through partnerships with state high school athletic associations and individual high schools within those states, PlayON! Sports is the nation's leader in producing, distributing, and monetizing video content in the high school category. PlayON! provides value to its partners through rights management, high quality video production, television and Internet content distribution, and incremental revenue creation.
BIP Opportunities Fund Invests in Tropical Smoothie Cafe
-- Capital infusion to finance buy-back of targeted franchised territories and to fuel franchise growth --
Atlanta, GA, ( May 17, 2010 ) – BIP Opportunities Fund (BIP) announced a $4.4 million growth capital investment into Tropical Smoothie Café (TSC) enabling the company to accelerate its franchise development efforts. The BIP investment will allow TSC to begin the ‘buy-back’ of certain franchised territories operated by area developers providing those franchisees a direct link to TSC’s corporate office support. In addition, the capital infusion will allow TSC to invest in new technologies, personnel and operational infrastructure to significantly ramp up their franchise sales and support efforts.
Buckhead Investment Partners Raising $30M Fund
Atlanta-based Buckhead Investment Partners LLC. is raising an up to $30 million venture fund, hoping to capitalize on tumbling corporate valuations. BIP Opportunities Fund will invest in early-stage firms in the technology, specialty finance, clean tech, media, franchising and health-care sectors. BIP plans to do 18 to 25 deals, investing $500,000 to $4 million in each, Partner Mark Buffington said.
The new pool of money comes at a time when VC bucks are hard to find. The number of U.S. venture firms raising new funds in the third quarter tumbled about 29 percent compared with the same period a year ago, according to the National Venture Capital Association and Thomson Reuters.
Atlanta's venture firms have had better fundraising luck in recent months. In the fall, TechOperators LLC launched a $30 million fund, raised from the partners' money and wealthy individuals. Arcapita Ventures, meanwhile, plans to raise a $400 million fund this year by tapping Bahrain-based parent Arcapita Bank and a group of Middle East institutional investors, corporations and individuals.