Charlotte, NC (December 10, 2013) – The 2nd Annual Charlotte Venture Challenge Pitch Day featured 12 innovative pitches by early-stage entrepreneurs to a 15-person judging panel from Charlotte’s leading corporate and entrepreneurial innovation-driven enterprises.
The event was organized by UNC Charlotte Research and Economic Development, Office of Technology Transfer and Ventureprise, Inc. The presenters included UNC Charlotte undergraduate students, UNC Charlotte research center technologists and Charlotte community entrepreneurs. The event goal was to accelerate the growth of new technologies by exposing the innovators to business executives, entrepreneurs and mentors.
The competition took place at UNC Charlotte on the Charlotte Research Institute Campus. Each presenter offered a rapid-fire pitch and then responded to questions from the judging panel. Judges included executives from Lowes Inc., Electrolux Inc., Wells Fargo Inc., Belk Inc., MasterCard Inc., Husqvarna Inc., Ingersoll Rand Inc., SPX Inc., Bank of America Inc., Microsoft Inc., Flextronics Inc., Midrex Inc., Areva Inc., T2 International Inc., and CEM Inc.
The category winners included Student category winner Thomas McGurkin, Ben Godsell, Alex Esposito, Kashif Subhan, Nathan Smith for their portable solar traffic light; Research Center Technology category winner Ryan Rutledge for soil remediation technology; and community entrepreneur Dan Cedone for the Boomerang water bottling system.
Cash prizes were awarded to the 1st place winners and runners-up of each category, made possible by the Hauser Family Fund.
1st Place Team – Solar Traffic Light – Thomas McGurkin, Ben Godsell, Alex Esposito, Kashif Subhan, and Nathan Smith ($1000)
2nd Place Team – RedWire Logic – Neil Taylor, Joshua Tyler Cox, Peter O’Connor, and Justin Hinson ($500)
3rd Place Team – Dryer Adapter – Russell Fox ($250)
Research Center Technology Category:
1st Place Team – Soil Remediation – Ryan Rutledge ($1,000)
2nd Place Team – Computational Imaging – Mehrdad Abolbashari ($500)
3rd Place Team – Video Collaboratory – Vikash Singh ($250)
1st Place Team – Boomerang Water – Dan Cedone ($1,000)
2nd Place Team – RRR Tool Solutions – Gordon East ($500)