Friday, November 13th marks the eleventh semi-annual RAISE (Retention and Advanced Investment for the Southeast at Emory) Forum, presented by Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. This invitation-only virtual event brings together startups and investors from across the Southeast with the goal of closing the region’s funding gap at higher levels of funding.

“Our unique approach to connecting investors and startups has fostered 24 successful funding stories since we founded the RAISE Forum five years ago,” states RAISE Forum Founder, Barry Etra. “In addition, all of those companies are still here in the Southeast, fulfilling one of our key goals of keeping companies local by funding them at higher levels in the region.”

Call for Startups

The Forum is accepting applications from in-revenue startups based in the Southeast (Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina – other SE states considered) seeking funding between $500 thousand and $5 million. Seven startups will be selected to present to active, accredited investors at the November event. To be considered as a presenting startup, a company must have some revenue, as well as participate in a short training afternoon which will prepare applicants for investor presentations. Applications will close Friday, September 25th.

RAISE is the only forum in the SE focused solely on funding companies. Roughly one in five presenting companies get funding through the Forum’s efforts, and all remain in the Southeast. Startups in any field are encouraged to apply to present at the Forum by visiting

Investor and Community Support

Current investor support for the Forum comes from across the region, with investors from Alder Asset Management, BIP, VentureSouth, AIM Group, Fulcrum Equity, 11-11 Ventures and many more.

Advisory support includes a mix of the region’s most influential startup ecosystem influencers and investors, including:

  • Larry Steele, Breakout Ventures
  • Jim Corman, AIM Group
  • Frank Dalton, Fulcrum Equity Ventures
  • Keiretsu Forum Southeast
  • Paul Lopez, 11-11 Ventures
  • Charlie Goetz, serial entrepreneur, investor and Distinguished Lecturer in Entrepreneurship at Goizueta

Additional support comes from Georgia Bio and other influential Southeastern startup incubators and influencers, as well as sponsors. Active investors or regional organizations interested in supporting the Forum should visit or to learn more about sponsorship opportunities and registration.

About RAISE Forum
RAISE Forum was founded in 2014 by Barry Etra as a vehicle for bringing together startups and investors from across the Southeast —fostering collaboration within the region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. RAISE was honored by Atlanta Inno and the Atlanta Business Chronicle in 2019 as one of its 50 on Fire in Atlanta, and the Forum was one of 11 ‘Blazer’ winners.

The Forum, now an integral piece of the Entrepreneurship program at Goizueta, will be held in November 2020 at Emory University. To learn more about the event, visit