757Pitch is a bi-monthly, open-to-the-public pitch competition for new, scalable, high-growth business ideas. Five competitors each have seven minutes to deliver their pitch, followed by five minutes of Q&A. The winner is awarded $757 cash, access to the resources of the ODU Institute for Innovation & Entrerpeneurship, and a one-year membership to BizConnect.
All competitors benefit from candid feedback given by the judges and audience, along with publicity and practice pitching their venture.
757Pitch is organized through a collaboration between StartWheel and Old Dominion University, and sponsored by BizConnect. Special thanks to our hosts, Christopher Newport University.
At the end of the night, there could only be one winner—that spot went to WealthVisors, presented by founder Tyler Chianelli.
Check out Tyler’s pitch video below along with the rest of our lineup or subscribe StartWheel’s YouTube channel.
“WealthVisors is a financial technology company and registered investment advisory firm that deploys managed stock and options strategies for clients. Over 100 million Americans are experiencing significant pain in their financial lives, and our firm aims to solve this issue by implementing both human and robotic investment advisory services with our technology. WealthVisors will help people improve their investment portfolios and overall financial future by instilling education and targeted investment recommendations for our clientele.”
“OutWhere tames the multi-year learning curve of the camping goods market with engaging humor and personality in an online store and educational guide that conveniently and effectively equips customers with information and useful gear.”
“Transsporter is a crowdsourcing package delivery app that puts you in control of your shipping needs. You set the price of delivery and one of our dedicated drivers (Transsporters) picks up your package along his or her daily commute. Want to earn some extra money while driving to places you pass everyday on your commutes? As a Transsporter you will earn 90% of the job’s listed price. Signing up is easy and free. All drivers are vetted through background and DMV checks. All jobs are insured up to $300 for damage and loss. Drivers are not required to have a particular type of vehicle either. Stop paying the prices other delivery companies decide and take charge of your logistic needs.”
VA War Room
VA War Room focuses on firearms safety and training. Customers will be immersed into real life scenarios. To make these scenarios feel real and have a mental effect, customers will be given a real weapon that has been converted for safety purposes. This means the Glock a customer is receiving and using throughout their experience with us is real, but only uses ‘simuition’ rounds which are non-lethal training ammunition. We will enhance citizens’ understanding of and decision making requirements that law enforcement officers endure and the stresses they deal with on a daily basis. Guests can expect an adrenaline pumping experience like no other!
“There’s an enormous issue in our world today. Everywhere I turn, there are people, fellow humans, but they are all silent. They don’t say a word. Why? Because they’re plugged in; they’re trapped. Earbuds, headphones, smart phones, these devices alienate humans from each other. They allow people to not make eye contact, to not look at each other in the face, and consequently, to not capitalize on possible opportunities that enter our lives on a daily basis. Yes, these devices can be useful and convenient and have a place in society, yet they are lacking one thing: Balance. That’s where my product comes in. The Balance is a phone like no other, a phone that encompasses the aspects that people want while getting rid of the distractions they don’t need. The Balance contains four key aspects: texting, calling, a GPS, and a camera. Four balanced tools for a more balanced life to help you look up and realize that less is more.”
We applaud all of our competitors for putting on such a great show, and for their ambitions of starting the next big venture here in Hampton Roads!
Judges for the competition were:
- Dr. William (Willy) Donaldson is Assistant Professor of Management at Christopher Newport University. Willy has over 35 years of experience as a Board member and President and has been CEO of 8 companies including a publicly traded company and an international joint venture and helped start another 20 plus companies.
- Holly Biggers, an operations-oriented business owner with roots in project management. This native of Boulder Colorado has moved here to follow her love of the ocean and sailing in it.
- Blake Luse is the Director of Ferguson Ventures where he is focused on corporate venturing and innovation at Ferguson Enterprises
- Shakir Johnson serves as the Business Retention Coordinator for the City of Newport News Department of Development. His area of concentration focuses on helping business develop through growth and expansion. He also provides assistance to startups and small businesses to help them overcome obstacles standing in the way of their success.
- Originally from the 757, CJ Spady spent her post college years in Atlanta, Tokyo and San Francisco. She graduated from UVA’s McIntire School of Business, worked with Price Waterhouse in Atlanta and then moved to San Francisco where she held a variety of roles within the Barclays organization, including 2 years in Tokyo. After Barclays, she worked directly with small to mid sized San Francisco based businesses in various advisory roles through a firm she started from scratch and sold in 2018 prior to relocating back to 757. While based locally, she is an active partner in a real estate development startup based in San Francisco.
The next 757Pitch will be held on May 21, 2019 from 5:30pm-8:30pm at Zeiders American Dream Theater in Town Center Virginia Beach.
Applications for 757Pitch are accepted on a rolling basis and can be submitted at 757Pitch.org.
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StartWheel’s mission is to centralize and mobilize efforts that foster the growth of entrepreneurism in our regional innovation economy. We aim to support and cultivate an entrepreneurial network in HRVA where talent, resources, information and leadership come together.