The three-day NEXT Venture Pitch 2020 concluded by announcing Base as the winner of its conference pitch contest.
The tech startup billed as “the first software built specifically for assistants” beat out competitors by highlighting its streamlined platform aimed as creating a faster, more efficient workload for executive assistants, whether working in an office or remote.
“The panel of judges were blown away by their product,” conference organizers said of Base in an internal wrapup report of the event. “With their tools, assistants are putting an average of eight-plus hours back into their week and increasing leverage for the executives they support.”
Base will now go on to compete in the Venture Atlantic Live Online showcase in October.
The NEXT Venture Pitch conference was held from Tuesday Sept. 15 through Thursday Sept. 17.
The second-place runner-up was Spiffy, an on-demand car care technology and mobile services company with the mission to disrupt the car care experience. Spiffy offers on-demand services that include washing and detailing, oil changes, tire install and repair, decontamination, exterior restoration, fueling, defueling and more.
Rounding out third place was Debtbook, a company that creates software to help governments and nonprofits better manage their billions in outstanding and growing debt.
The conference was unique this year in that it was fully virtual, with pitch contestants showcasing their companies via recorded video submissions.
“Not only does this strike the best balance between providing safety and spearheading new business initiatives, it has given us the opportunity to learn new ways of gathering and connecting companies to capital,” the NEXT Venture Pitch Committee said in a statement.
Christy Ashkettle, NEXT Upstate director of communications and culture, said the response from participants was more positive than she or other conference organizers could’ve anticipated, with many noting their appreciation for the flexibility the virtual format allowed.
“We never expected the overwhelming support and engagement of a virtual NEXT Venture Pitch 2020,” Ashkettle said. “It has turned out to be a format that many appreciate due to busy schedules, as well as attracting brilliant speakers and pitch companies.”
In addition to the contest competitors, the conference also included deep-dive educational sessions and coaching from a collection of experts focused on advancing the entrepreneurial community in the Carolinas. These came in the form of fireside chats, keynote speeches, workshops and panels.
“Our entrepreneurs need to hear from people who have done this before, have seen it all and can help guide them in building and scaling their startup,” Ashkettle said. “We want startups to succeed, and we are doing all we can to facilitate their growth.”