Three Roots Capital is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) working to raise and deploy capital in communities in East Tennessee and the greater Appalachian region. 3Roots’ innovative financing provides loans and equity investments to small businesses and real estate projects and supports economic development.

3Roots was founded to support small businesses, entrepreneurs, real estate projects and communities in the region. With a focus on capital, coaching and connections, 3Roots helps its clients and partners grow and succeed, which positively impacts the community.

Supporting Knoxville’s entrepreneurial ecosystem

3Roots supports companies and projects in the region primarily by providing capital to empower and enable expansion and growth, and sometimes to fuel the creation of new products, services, and facilities. We do this by collaborating with small businesses, real estate developers, entrepreneurs, banks, co-investors, and a variety of community partners.

Why entrepreneurs matter

Entrepreneurs are the spark plugs in the engine that is our economy. Capital is the fuel in that engine. Our economy is more powerful when it has more entrepreneurs and more capital, analogous to an engine with more cylinders and more fuel.

Regardless of how much science, technology, and innovation we have in this region, if we don’t have entrepreneurs and access to capital, we will fail as a community to fully realize our economic and social potential.

The Innov865 Alliance highlights successes, acts as a convener of organizations and resources and continues to beat the drum about the necessity of increasing the amount of capital available locally.

I love the analogy of hot coals. If you’ve ever really watched a campfire or fireplace burn, you’ve noticed how placing hot coals next to each other has the potential to produce a flame. Conversely, when hot coals are separated from each other, they cool off and burn out. 3Roots is a hot coal in this entrepreneurial ecosystem, and we want to be around other hot coals in this ecosystem because together we can make great things happen.

Continuing to support East Tennessee communities

We are continuing to raise more capital for lending and investing as we continue to deploy more capital to companies and projects in our community. When we launched 3Roots in 2016, we had less than $100,000 of capital, and today we have more than $126,000,000 under management. In the past 90 days, we’ve invested more capital in young, local companies than we had on our balance sheet when we launched 3Roots in 2016. We intend to do more of that. Contact us today to learn more at