NC IDEA Newsletter – August 29, 2017

The Summer 2017 cohort of Groundwork Labs was our largest ever with fifteen startup teams participating. The cohort began in early June and wrapped up last week after completing 10 weeks of customer interviews and meeting with dozens of NC IDEA’s network of expert speakers and gurus to accelerate their business. This large cohort brought a variety of industry to Groundwork Labs, including consumer products, IoT devices, and software teams.

Check out the teams below!


Speaking of former Groundwork Labs companies, check out this video of Groundwork Alumni, iScribes CEO Jared Pelo.


Groundwork Labs Alumni, Jared Pelo of iScribes, shares how Groundwork Labs helped him in his entrepreneurial journey.

Company Updates


RevBoss, a 2014 Seed Grant winner, announced it has raised $325,000 in equity. The company previously raised $1.1 million in November 2015. RevBoss helps B2B sales teams grow the sales pipeline and gain customers through outbound sales development. Read more.

Bee Downtown, a 2017 Soar company, will be in the inaugural cohort of Engage Ventures, the largest strategic grouping of major corporations and brands in an independent venture fund. Engage Ventures has selected eight companies to participate. Read more. 

Three NC IDEA Seed Grant recipients and one Groundwork Labs company won matching grants from the One North Carolina Small Business Program. The funding is intended to help these startups “bridge the challenging period between initial development of a new technology and the point where sales revenue from a new product is generated.” The North Carolina Department of Commerce’s Office of Science, Technology & Innovation oversees the program. Congratulations to the following companies! See all winners here.

Cell Microsystems, Inc. of Durham: $65,000 to develop, manufacture, and commercialize products and tools for the isolation, recovery, and analysis of single cells for improvement in genome editing. This project is sponsored by the National Institutes of Health in the Department of Health and Human Services.

FokusLabs Behavioral Solutions, Inc. of Wake Forest: $65,000 to develop intelligent, wearable technology that enhances student attention through personalized monitoring and reinforcement. This project is sponsored by the Department of Education.

Redbud Labs, Inc. of Chapel Hill: $65,000 to improve the existing processes on understanding genetic differences by using less complex instruments, fewer delicate biological samples, and simpler timely protocols. This project is sponsored by the National Institutes of Health in the Department of Health and Human Services.

Video Collaboratory, LLC of Charlotte: $65,000.00 to develop a commercial-ready video collaboratory platform for team-based learning and collaboration using video documents. This project is sponsored by the National Science Foundation.

Ecosystem Updates and Events


Pop-Up Coworking at American Underground
American Underground is welcoming entrepreneurs with a high-scale idea in technology, consumer products or healthcare to try out the space and community for free! Come by on September 6 for Pop-Up Coworking and be an AU member for the day! The day will include breakfast from Rise Biscuits & Donuts, networking with fellow entrepreneurs, time with AU staff, and a video chat with Brad Feld, co-founder of TechStars! RSVP now.

Application Deadline Friday, September 8th at 5PM

LaunchLab Growth is a program of Launch Greensboro, Greensboro Chamber of Commerce’s entrepreneurship program. The Growth Series is an 11-week accelerator program for startup companies and founders looking to grow their businesses and become sustainable.

The series meets every Tuesday evening from September 26 through December 5 from 5:30-7:30 pm and culminates with Demo Day presentations on December 12th. Each week, the program will be led by local experts who seek to help startups define their customer base, develop market strategies, learn leadership and financial skills and how to pitch their business, to investors and customers. Startup founders will learn from local entrepreneurs, have access to free intern and expert assistance, meet and work with a mentor as well as build a community of like-minded entrepreneurs. Learn more and apply here.


Startup Demo Day 2017 New Ventures Accelerator 
See demos and meet over 30 startup tech companies! Since last year’s Demo Day, the 2016 New Ventures Accelerator cohort has raised more than $1M in follow on funding. Come and find out why. Meet other people who want to be a part of something amazing. Register here.

Calling All Startup Companies and Entrepreneurs- Submit Your Company to the All Things Open 2017 Startup Pitch Competition!

All Things Open, the largest open source, open tech, and open web conference on the east coast of the United States, will host its second annual “Open” Pitch Competition on the first day of the 2017 event, which is Monday, October 23, 2017. Five (5) winning teams will be chosen to deliver 5 minute pitches (and 5 minutes of Q & A) presenting their company from the main stage to a panel of VCs, CEOs, and Founders.

The pitch session will be in front of a live plenary audience. More than 1,500 technologists and decision makers are expected to attend the event from all over the United States and the world.

Complete the application by Friday, September 8th to be entered in the pitch competition.

Use code NCIDEA20 when you register and receive 20% off your ticket price.


Apply now to HQ Labs Explorer Edition Fall 2017 in Greensboro
HQ Labs Explorer Edition is designed for people who are currently employed but have been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug. Held on four consecutive Saturdays, the program will help potential entrepreneurs see if they have the “right stuff” to take the plunge and start a business. This program is an abbreviated version of the full 12-week HQ Labs program, designed to get at the basics of starting a business and leading a team of people. The next program will run on four consecutive Saturdays in October, starting on October 7th in Greensboro, NC! Apply here by September 29th.