[Re]Verse Pitch Competition

An Event Series in Austin, Texas for Social Entrepreneurs Where We Pitch To You

October 11-December 6, 2016

Entrepreneurs are used to pitching their business idea to investors, partners, and anyone they might share an elevator ride with. In this competition, the tables will turn. The [Re]Verse Pitch Competition is a social innovation program to help turn valuable raw materials that are currently leaving local businesses, non-profits, and institutions as waste into the foundation of new social enterprises.

Competitors work with mentors & advisors to develop repurposing business ideas and compete for Innovation Prizes to help start this new venture.

Follow along with the competition on HeroX!

Innovation Prize Winners

Congratulations to our 2016 Winners!

Grand prize: $10,000 plus five co-working days at WeWork

Winner: Grub Tubs

Second place prize:  Spot in the 2017 FastForward entrepreneur training program and 2017 Small Business Festival pass ($750 value)

Winner: GRUB

People's Choice Award Honorable Mention

Winner: Austin Cubed

Innovation Prize Supporters

Competition Co-Working Space Supporter

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Competitor teams and mentors are making use of idle restaurant space to work on their ideas during the competition, thanks to Switch CoWork!

2016 Finalists

Congratulations to the 2016 finalists! Click on the finalist names below to see their entries, and join us on December 6th to see the final pitches.

Bard Sustainability MBA Team- Austin Cubed- Street Banner Line

Repurposing: Vinyl street banners & mesh plastic bags

Charles Bradbury- Pulp Fashion

Repurposing: Vinyl street banners, mesh plastic bags, & fabric samples

Gabriel Rocha- ACL Survival Bags

Repurposing: Vinyl street banners

Melissa Meyer: GRUB

Repurposing: Inedible Canned Goods

Quinault Childs- GrubTubs: Table to Farm

Repurposing: Inedible canned goods

Re:3D- 3D Printing from Post-Consumer Waste

Repurposing: Mesh Plastic Bags

Rowan Rodriguez- [RE]Charge

Repurposing: Vinyl street banners

Team E- Austin’s Local Tarps

   Repurposing: Vinyl street banners

2016 Material Suppliers

In-N-Out Burgers

Each location of this national chain produces over 1,000 mesh plastic bags a month from produce deliveries. 

City of Austin Transportation Department

The City's Street Banner Program leads to the accumulation of approximately 300 32"x90" vinyl banners every year, or about 6,000 sq ft of material per month. The department also has open-weave nylon or polyester net over-the-street banners available for reuse.

Download Pitch Presentation

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LIVESTRONG Foundation

This Austin-based foundation has tens of thousands of yellow silicone bands in outdated packaging they would like to see used to support the Austin community in a meaningful way.  View a video of the production process for these bands.

Download Pitch Presentation

Austin Creative Reuse

Austin's non-profit creative reuse center is able to collect 100s of fabric sample books of discontinued fabric from interior design firms and decorators every month. 

Download Pitch Presentation

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Central Texas Food Bank

The Austin area's regional food bank receives some food that is not fit for human consumption and currently has to throw away around 30,000 lbs of inedible canned goods per month. 

Download Pitch Presentation

Half Price Books

A few dumpsters every month at a single location of this national chain with 5 Austin area locations are filled with unsold media, including books, magazine, records, CDs, DVDs, and other material.

View video

Download Pitch Presentation

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INSPIRATION

For-profit and non-profit enterprises across the country are demonstrating the value can be created from waste. Get inspired by these local and national reuse and remanufacturing enterprises:

Logro Farms is an Austin-based full-cycle sustainable farm that specializes in the production of gourmet mushrooms and sustainable food products, using waste products from a nearby brewery.

The Austin Rubber Company manufactures a virgin rubber compound substitute, APX™, using a patented process. The system converts recycled tires and other scrap rubber compounds into a less expensive substitute for virgin rubber compound, which can be used in a variety of new products. Austin Rubber’s patented process produces a material that solves a global environmental waste problem and fills a growing commercial need at the same time.

By turning trash into revenue-producing businesses, St. Vincent de Paul Society (Lane County, Oregon) is simultaneously creating jobs for the unemployed and providing needed services to more than 84,000 people each year.

Granite Recyclers Austin works with local granite companies to collect their scraps and turn them into beautiful stone tiles and other granite products.

The Empowerment Plan is a Detroit-based nonprofit dedicated to serving the homeless community. They mostly hire homeless parents from local shelters to become full time seamstresses to create coats that transforms into sleeping bags at night.

Open Arms is a USA-Made sustainable apparel and sewn goods manufacturer empowering refugee women through living wage employment. This social enterprise is affiliated with the Multicultural Refugee Coalition and has used reclaimed fabric and other textiles from large companies, including IKEA and Build-A-Sign, to create accessories and clothing.