Charlotte Company Among Winners at IdeaFest; Other NC Startups Are Finalists

IdeaFest 2019 Winners

Charlotte startup Battery Xchange was among the recent winners at the 6th Annual IdeaFest Pitch Competition, and many other North Carolina startups were finalists. The event was organized by The Launch Place.

In all, 99 companies applied for the competition. The top 20 competitors took the stage to present their innovative business ideas.

Charlotte startup Battery Xchange, founded by Desmond Wiggan, took home third place with a $2,000 cash prize.

Battery Xchange is a rental platform that provides portable batteries to cell phone users on-the-go. Be sure to read StartCharlotte’s founder profile story, The Secret Sauce to BatteryXchange’s Rapid Success.

Presentation recordings

Here is Wiggan’s presentation at IdeaFest, courtesy of The Launch Place.

Several Charlotte-based startups were also chosen as finalists. Here are their presentations:

Drew Bartek presented for Groove Watersports, which brings music to Watersports through a patented vest with integrated speakers. For more information about this company, sure to read StartCharlotte’s founder profile, Wakeboarding vest with waterproof speakers is music to the founders’ ears.

Also, Keith Clithero presented for Gig Connected, a mobile-friendly web application that streamlines the construction staffing process.

As seen in the video below, Chris Phillis presented for Housebyrd, which helps buyers get an immediate answer on buying their dream home.

To see all the presenters’ recordings, see The Launch Place’s Facebook Page.

More IdeaFest 2019 Finalists from North Carolina


  • wirl
    • Presenter: Benjie Davis
    • Description: wirl is the only marketplace which helps everyday people find and hire affordable personal stylists so they can dress confidently. Location: Durham, NC
  • SWELL Systems, Inc
    • Presenter: Derek Schmidt
    • Description: SWELLEnterprise is an all-in-one business management application that allows creative agencies and b2b startups to manage their administrative, sales and production in one integrated system. Location: Wilmington, NC
  • Everywhere Ad
    • Presenter: Dezbee McDaniel & Rashaad Galloway
    • Description: Everywhere Ad is a mobile rideshare advertising platform that pays Uber, Lyft and other rideshare drivers to advertise small and local businesses in their vehicles. Location: Raleigh, NC
  • Chirp!
    • Presenter: Andrew Bowker & Praneet Mocherla
    • Description: Since half of all house fires originate from the kitchen stove, we created Chirp: an IoT-enabled Smart Home device that leverages a combination of sensors guided by a proprietary algorithm to monitor the stove and immediately address threats to help reduce emergency response times by an estimated 50%. Location: Raleigh, NC
  • Kwistr
    • Presenter: Thad “TC” Parker
    • Description: Kwistr is a SaaS based automated regression testing solution for web apps, mobile apps, APIs, and websites. Location: Raleigh, NC
  • Decidedly by Pathos Ethos
    • Presenter: Greg Akinbiyi
    • Description: “Decidedly” is a next-generation productivity intelligence platform that helps organizations automate meetings, streamline their decision-making process, and leverage data to remove bias when measuring performance. Location: Durham, NC
  • Nanomosaic
    • Presenter: Sheeba Dawood
    • Description: Extraction of lithium using nanomaterials: A network of solutions. Location: Greensboro, NC
  • iMonitR 
    • Presenter: Emmanuel Borkor Nuakoh
    • Description: iMonitR is a mobile application for preventing credit/debit card fraud in real time using machine learning and human collaboration. Location: Greensboro, NC

Winners of the competition are eligible to receive twenty-five hours of free business consulting from The Launch Place. The Launch Place assists with business formation, job creation and retention through its business consulting services and investment funding, while having a dual responsibility to recruit and retain entrepreneurs to the Dan River Region.