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The South’s Competitive Advantage and the Support of Angels: An Interview with Ramon DeGennaro

Ramon DeGennaro is the Haslam College of Business Professor in Banking and Finance at the University of Tennessee – Knoxville. He has served as a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, as the DeGennaroUT[1]Tennessee Bankers Association Scholar and as a William B. Stokely Scholar at the University of Tennessee. He was also a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, and is the author of “How the Stock Market Works,” produced by the Great Courses. His current research involves financial markets, small-firm finance, investments and prediction markets. Professor DeGennaro is also a Luminary Member of the Angel Capital Group, which has an office in Knoxville. He holds a Ph.D. in finance from Ohio State University.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Southeast’s business-friendly climate makes it easier to do business in the region than elsewhere in the country. Despite this, the Southeast still lacks large amounts of organized capital.
  • In order to receive funding from angel investors, entrepreneurs must be willing to accept coaching, have a proven track record of success and outline a clear exit strategy for investors.
  • There are real advantages to being financed by angel groups, but that doesn’t necessarily mean angel groups are the sole source of a company’s success.
  • With the political uncertainty surrounding the 2016 presidential election, investors will likely be more hesitant to invest in the coming year or two.
  • In the near future, evolving technologies will likely alleviate geographical shortages and surpluses in capital.

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