April 3, 2017

With over 100 applications received for the 4th Annual IdeaFest Business Pitch Competition, it has proved to be the toughest competition to date. Applications were received from as far away as California to West Bengal, India and ranged from sensor based training equipment for athletes to a biotech company that gives farmers precise control over their harvesting schedule. Twenty entrepreneurs pitched their business concepts to a panel of judges for a chance to win part of the $10,000 in prize money. The winners are highlighted below:

1st Place: Urinary Catheter Solutions

Urinary Catheter Solutions aims to improve the design of the urinary catheter with a twofold solution. Its’ device improves the cleaning process and reduces the profile within the bladder to reduce high amounts of residual urine. 

2nd Place: Inventory Connection

Inventory Connection's web application transfers retailers' real-time inventory data to each of their vendors allowing them to stock their supermarket's shelves better.

3rd Place: Spira

Spira grows algae and then bottles it as a delicious prebiotic beverage. Spira grows spirulina in a closed-loop process, harvests it, and presents spirulina in a unique way that keeps it fresh, healthy and alive, preserving a neutral flavor that can be used in a variety of custom food products for a delicious nutrient boost. 

Audience Choice: Riveles

Riveles is a commercial real estate data and analytics service provider that will put a wealth of information at users' fingertips, allowing them to make investment decisions faster and easier using unique visual features.


20 Presenting Finalists:

  1. Busy Box, Danville, VA
  2. AgroSpheres, Charlottesville, VA
  3. AthloTech, Research Triangle Park, NC
  4. BlaznTech, Durham, NC
  5. En-counter, Chatham, VA
  6. Just Cause Coffee, Greensboro, NC
  7. Knedia, Elkin, NC
  8. Riveles, Raleigh, NC
  9. CastCade: Your Media, Your Way, Danville, VA
  10. Supervize, Raleigh, NC
  11. Urinary Catheter Solutions, Cary, NC
  12. Intake (formerly Renourish), Raleigh, NC
  13. NEXT Wear: Low-cost smart clothing, Raleigh, NC
  14. Spira, Richmond, VA
  15. SweatHogs, Williamsburg, VA
  16. TechStar Tutors, Midlothian, VA
  17. Mappify, Chalfont, PA
  18. Inventory Connection, Sussex, NJ
  19. Reazone, Durham, NC
  20. HotShoe Instruments, Raleigh, NC


River City TV Video: 


WSLS Coverage:

Software solutions popular at Danville entrepreneur competition
By Colter Anstaett 



DANVILLE (WSLS 10) – Four entrepreneurs now have money from The Launch Place in Danville to help develop their ideas.

Friday, The Launch Place held its annual Idea Fest pitch competition.

20 entrepreneurs were selected from over 100 applicants to pitch their ideas to judges.

The winner, receiving $5,000, was Urinary Catheter Solutions. The company is focused on improving the design of urinary catheters.

Second place, receiving $3,000, was Inventory Connection. It is an app that transfers retailers’ real-time inventory to each of the retailers’ vendors in order to help the retailer better stock its shelves.

Third place, receiving $1,500, was Spira, a company that grows and bottles algae so it can be used as a nutrient boost in a variety of custom food products.

The fourth place winner was chosen by the audience and received $500. The company, Riveles, is a commercial real estate data and analytics service that uses unique visual features to help users make investment decisions faster and easier.

“Most of the applications, or the applicants, are really focused on software solutions for certain problems all across; from healthcare to grocery store solutions to actual manufacturing solutions,” The Launch Place CEO, Eva Doss, said.

The winners will have an opportunity to work with The Launch Place to develop a potential business plan for their ideas.