The Magic City has upped its game becoming a rapidly growing hub for startups and innovative businesses. From Atlanta, Georgia to Tampa, Florida, we spoke with two of Birmingham’s newest tech startups about why they made the move to our city and how local organization Birmingham Bound is helping their businesses thrive.
Welcome 2 tech startups in Birmingham
When discovering the difficulty of trying to connect a new start-up company to an older banking system, Brian Alvarez-Bailey and Nicole Jimez-Green sought a solution. In 2021, they founded Allison, a tech company that uses cutting-edge software to connect non-banking financial service customers with a network of banking partners.
According to Nicole, a strong bank infrastructure means a strong Birmingham.
“We see Allison as the solution to keep local banks solvent and growing. The stronger community banks are within a city, the more financial support that bank can provide to that area.”Nicole Jimenez-Green, Co-Founder and Chief Sales & Strategy Officer, Allison
With locations in Austin, Texas and Tampa, Florida, what made Nicole and Brian choose Birmingham as their company’s headquarters?
According to Nicole, they really liked Birmingham’s rich history of standing up for those who are underrepresented and felt they’d have an endless stream of talent to help grow their team with educational institutions like the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham-Southern College, Samford University and Strayer University.
They were also impressed with Birmingham Bound.
“The folks at Birmingham Bound have been the connective tissue that solidified our move to Birmingham. Without their kindness, knowledge and leadership, I’m not sure the decision would have happened so easily.”Nicole Jimenez-Green, Co-Founder and Chief Sales & Strategy Officer, Allison
Another cool thing—Allison is a portfolio company for Alabama Futures Fund.
Discover more about Birmingham Bound and how they can help your tech company reach new heights in The Magic City.
2. BrightPay Health Corp
BrightPay Health Corp was founded in July 2021 by Shielvonda Haith. About two years ago, Shielvonda’s daughter had an urgent healthcare need that required more than $7,000 of out-of-pocket costs for her care. Financially unprepared and unable to find any financing options, she experienced first-hand how important access to healthcare financing truly is.
This led to the creation of BrightPay—a tech platform that helps both providers and patients in understanding, planning and paying for healthcare services. It strives to ensure people have access to healthcare, regardless of professional or financial status.
Originating in Atlanta, Georgia, BrightPay’s first experience in Birmingham was during the Prosper Health Tech Accelerator, which allowed them 12 weeks to engage with and test the market. She quickly fell in love with the city.
“I love the way the town comes together to support start-ups and small businesses located here. Birmingham Bound has been a wonderful resource for helping us settle into the area. From receiving invites to local events to meeting new people, the organization has been a catalyst in making me feel include and connected to the ecosystem, both professional and personally.”Shielvonda Haith, Co-Founder/CEO, BrightPay Health Corp.
About Birmingham Bound
All businesses start with an idea. But how do they gain a strong enough footing to truly grow and flourish? Enter Birmingham Bound.
Since 2018, Birmingham Bound has been working to recruit, retain and grow companies to The Magic City, with a specific focus on supporting underrepresented founders. Acting as a concierge in tech service, it helps:
- Business founders looking for a city to establish their first headquarters
- Companies seeking to expand or grow their presence in the Southeast
By partnering with tech and economic development organizations in the city, Birmingham Bound helps new companies easily navigate and connect with key leaders and innovators to make their businesses shine.
“We know that Birmingham is the place to start your company. We have a tech-enthusiastic ecosystem, poised for growth and a community ready to deploy support to help drive success. Birmingham Bound is a differentiator from other tech ecosystems because we want to help founders get immediately connected to decision makers, helping them grow faster.”Maria Underwood, President, Birmingham Bound