Editor’s note: Local Tech Wire is profiling each business day a venture or investment firm operating in the Carolinas and Georgia. Each firm was asked to fill out a survey submitted by LTW. Matthew Burns, Worth Civils and Daniel Pearson compiled the series. Low-key is the best description for Chapel Hill, N.C.-based Tryon Capital.

The firm, which has a $5 million fund invested in young technology companies such as YellowBrick Solutions and eTrials, has no website to tout its investment philosophy and successes, and the firm and its principals receive scant attention in the business press.

Yet Tryon has a broad focus, providing debt, equity and bridge loans to companies in just about any industry. Potential portfolio companies need to have a proven concept and the opportunity for quick liquidity before the firm will commit to funding them.

Here’s the skinny:

Featured Firm: Tryon Capital

Mailing address: 100 Europa Drive, Suite 455, Chapel Hill, NC 27517

Phone number: (919) 933-2720

Web site: www.tryoncapital.com (Under construction)

Management Team:

Michael Hillerbrand (Managing Director)
Peter Coker
Peter Wilson

Focus of firm: Proven companies in all industries.

Size of current fund: $3 million

Money under management: $5 million

Companies funded:

YellowBrick Solutions
E-Trials Inc.
(Five others not listed)

How many new deals do you expect to fund in 2002: Three

In what size range: $500,000 to $1 million

Sweet Spot (types of deals, stage of the company): All financing types: debt, equity, buyouts, bridge loans, etc. Companies with a proven business model.

Most important attributes for companies seeking funding: Proven concept, short-term liquidity.

What differentiates you: Our investment banking and operating backgrounds have given us experience in all industries, companies, and transaction types. We do deals others can’t and have a proven track record in standing by our companies through tough times.

Friday’s profile: Venture Capital Solutions

Note: previous profiles can be found by searching the Venture Watch category.