Chattanooga’s FourBridges Capital Advisors, a middle market investment group that helps business owners make transactions like buying, selling or raising capital, is growing to meet the demands of the Southeast market.
The company just hired its second high-level team member based in Atlanta. Doug Johns, current chairman and former CEO of a tech company that operates Atlanta-based global tech firm NIVIS,has come on as a senior adviser.
Johns-who was born in Chattanooga, has worked at IBM and has years of experience working with tech companies-will help expand the firm’s industry focus to include technology and telecommunication in the Southeast.
Johns will work throughout the region, and Chattanooga’s entrepreneurial and business scene is showing potential for increased business for the firm, leaders said.
Chattanooga companies such as Quickcue and Access America Transport are recent examples of major business transactions here.Third-party logistics company Coyote Logistics-which arranges transport via truck and train-acquired Chattanooga-based competitor Access America last year. And in 2013, online reservations company OpenTable bought Chattanooga’s Quickcue.
“It’s a real testament to the ecosystem [here],”FourBridges managing partner Frank Williamson said of those transactions. “We see this happening in cities like Chattanooga and all around the Southeast.”
And in the next three to five years, there will likely be other major transactions in the region, he said.
“We’ve got good momentum as a firm, and it’s a good time in which there is a need among the people we serve,” he also said.
Most of the company’s clients have sales between $20 and $100 million, Williamson also said.
Johns agreed that Chattanooga is showing strong entrepreneurial and tech development, and people in Atlanta are noticing it. The investment in gig infrastructure makes the city stand out, he also said.
“There are certainly a lot of positive indications in Atlanta that Chattanooga is going to be a significant tech market,” he said.