On October 18th, 2018, Acuity was honored to be able to sponsor the 2nd Annual Charlotte Veteran Startup showcase. We were so impressed with this event last year that we had to up our partnership with our hosts, Task Force X Capital and the Charlotte Hornets Foundation. We sent three of our best to the Spectrum Center to represent Acuity: Rebecca Slay, Controller; Tyler Horn, Account Executive; and Todd Serulneck, Managing Director and CFO.
This event allows us to build relationships with veteran-owned businesses. We are proud to work with those who served our country and had a vision to lead a business upon leaving the service. Events like this help the community of business owners grow in Charlotte.
A quick summary:
This pitch event offered a $50,000 award to one of five startups. The judging criteria included the opportunity, the solution, scalability, impact, the business model, and the team. The panel of judges consisted of Karl Hightower from Novant Health, Paul Grim from SunBridge Partners, Kyle Teamey from Breakthrough Energy Ventures, and John Cambier from IDEA Fund Partners.
The five pitches were given by:
- Chris Donohoe from EX-IQ, an app that facilitates life long learning
- Neil Whitney from Menud, an app that allows you to order a week of groceries for home delivery in under 30 seconds.
- Ted Guitierrez from SecurityGate, a risk assessment platform
- Brad Truesdale from Tomahawk Robotics, a tool that makes programming robots easier
- John Alexander from Xchange Post, a peer-to-peer tool rental service
All of the pitches were five minutes long with four minutes of challenging questions from the judges. The judges asked questions about competition, differentiation, sales channels, customer segmentation, and use of funds.
Congratulations go to John Alexander, Will Jackson, and Fred Kestler (all US Military veterans) from Xchange Post for winning the trophy cup and $50,000. We’re looking forward to lending out some tools and having a way to get them back from our neighbors.
All five teams are winners in our book – so, we’re awarding prizes to each. We look forward to helping them out with their startups in the near future.