Rise of the Rest – Spring 2015 Edition: Pitch Competition Participants Revealed!

In just one week, we’ll kick off the third installment of the Rise of the Rest Tour, which will traverse through the Southern U.S. from May 4th-8th. Hot off the presses, we’re excited to briefly introduce the 40 startups who will line up to pitch Steve Case for a chance to win a $100,000 investment. Which promising young startup will rise to the top in Richmond, Raleigh-Durham, Charleston, Atlanta, and New Orleans? Follow our live Road Trip Journal on riseofrest.tumblr.com to find out.

We’re excited to once again be joined by Google for Entrepreneurs and UP Global as presenting partners for the tour, with support from both new and previous tour partners including Salesforce for Startups, Engine, Tech Cocktail, Startup Grind, Village Capital, and Seed Here Studio.

This promises to be one of the liveliest Rise of the Rest tours thus far – we’ll be joined by public and private sector luminaries like Governors Nikki Haley and Pat McCrory, Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, Sallie Krawcheck, Walter Isaacson, and jazz legend Irvin Mayfield. And in addition to the startup crawls, fireside chats and pitch competitions that are the hallmark of every Rise of the Rest stop, on this swing we will tour the Atlanta Belt Line to discuss redevelopment, hold the first ever pitch competition aboard a Navy Ship (the USS Yorktown in Charleston), a live pitch fest on a Mardi Gras style float as it travels through the streets of New Orleans with music playing and beers served (for those over 21), a first pitch at a Durham Bulls Game, and a gathering of college students in Research Triangle – to name a few.

Our tour through the Southern U.S. will put new miles on the Rise of the Rest bus, which has already traveled more than 2,000 miles by bus to nine U.S. cities: Detroit, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Nashville, Madison, Minneapolis, Des Moines, Kansas City, and St. Louis. We’ve met incredible startups and visionary leaders in each of these startup ecosystems who understand the important role that all sectors – public and private – play in helping the entrepreneurial economy thrive. And, Steve has personally invested $1 million in great startups along the way.

So, without further ado, we’re excited to share the list of companies who will have the opportunity to join our growing Rise of the Rest portfolio, along with the names of some of the all-star judges who will join us.


  • Guest judges include: Steve Case, Revolution, Aneesh Chopra, Hunch Analytics and former Chief Technology Officer of the United States, Ting Xu, Evergreen Enterprises, Aaron Montgomery, Carlotz, Tige Savage, Revolution Ventures, and Eric Edwards, Kaleo.
  • Pitching companies:
    Rockin’ Baby – premium baby carriers and clothing brand
    Marilyn & Michelle – products to help comfort women with breast issues
    Painless 1099 – smart bankling platform to help freelance workers save for and file taxes
    Nutriati – plant-based ingredient nutrition company
    WealthForge – solution to make private placement transactions more efficient
    Luminary – multichannel CRM platform
    Hourwise – on-demand back office support for trades-people
    Vibeats – mobile web platform for dining search


  • Guest judges include: Steve Case, Revolution, Frank Stasio, NPR correspondent, J.D. Harrison, The Washington Post, Talib Graves-Manns, and Sarah Yarborough, Raleigh Denim
  • Pitching companies:
    Tom and Jennys – cavity-preventing, sugar-free candy
    Personalized Learning Games – social and emotional learning platform for K-8 students
    ELXR Health – platform for behavioral patient consent and data exchange
    Archive Social – social media archiving, monitoring, and analytics for legal compliance
    Stealz – social media engagement tool that turns customers into brand ambassadors.
    Reveal Mobile – mobile audience platform that improves mobile ad targeting
    Antenna – platform to react to any content or product on the internet
    RocketBolt – platform for intelligent lead tracking throughout a customer’s experience


  • Guest judges include: Steve Case, Revolution, Eric Bowman, Sparc, Sallie Krawcheck, Elevate Network, Bobby Ocampo, Revolution Ventures, Herbert Drayton III, Vertical Holdings, Bobby Hitt, South Carolina Secretary of Commerce
  • Pitching companies:
    Dynepic – creating a playground for smart toys
    Good Done Great – revolutionizing the way corporations and people give back
    Eatabit – API that prints electronic food orders inside restaurants
    Bidr – platform to help fundraiser’s increase performance
    Charleston Gourmet Burger – unique, all natural gourmet burger seasonings
    OpenAngler – platform to find and book fishing charters
    Bublish – cloud-based tools, metrics and resources for authorpreneurs
    Echovate – replicating top performers through data-science machine learning


  • Guest judges include: Steve Case, Revolution, Bridgette Beam, Google, David Cummings, Pardot and Atlanta Tech Village, Paul Judge, Pindrop Security and Monsieur, and David Hall, Revolution Ventures
  • Pitching companies:
    Partpic – visual search technology for replacement parts
    Groundfloor – lending club for real estate
    Cooleaf – employee engagement software for top workplaces
    LocalRoots – mobile marketplace for local farms to sell direct to consumers
    eCredable – leverages alternative credit to connect “no credit” consumers to creditors
    Zyrobotics – provide personalized technology that makes the world accessible to everyone
    Reveal Estate – Turbo Tax-like platform that empowers home buyers and saves them money
    The Village Microfund – helps develop the economic landscape of low-income communities in the US.


  • Guest judges include: Steve Case, Revolution, Jean Case, The Case Foundation, Irvin Mayfield, American jazz trumpeter and bandleader, Zach Strief, New Orleans Saints, and Ti Martin, Commandars Palace.
  • Pitching companies:
    GoToInterview – on-demand video interviewing platform for high-turn industries
    PlantBid – business to business marketplace for the professional horticulture products industry
    WhereY’Art – marketplace and social network connecting artists/buyers
    Servato – industrial internet of things solution provider
    Get Healthy – software and services powering direct primary care revolution
    Million Dollar Scholar – transforming how schools and parents prepare students to pay for college
    Welcome to College – helps colleges optimize the college visit and enroll optimal fit students
    Community Health TV – multicultural, multi-platform health media company

The tour is part of a national effort to shine a spotlight on one of the most important trends shaping the U.S. economy moving forward: a confluence of factors ranging from technological innovation to public policy reforms that are making it easier for high-growth startups to launch and create jobs in cities and towns nationwide, not just in Silicon Valley. Learn more about the previous winners from the tours HERE and HERE.

For a full schedule and to RSVP to public events on the Spring 2015 tour, visit RiseofRest.com, and follow us on Twitter @RiseOfRest and Instagram.