Philly in the Age of the Startup

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ChargeItSpot (Center City)

Call it a first-world problem, but is there anything worse than the moment you realize your cell phone is one text away from dying? Doug Baldasare, 29, founder of ChargeItSpot, is giving businesses the chance to save the day with phone-charging “lockers.” The lockers are outfitted with a variety of charging tips and have a secure locking system, so you can eat or shop while your phone gets some juice. There are about 50 stations around the country; locally, they’re in places like Reading Terminal Market. Nationally, ChargeItSpot has formed partnerships with Whole Foods, Urban Outfitters and Foot Locker. Retailers pay a monthly fee, with the idea of getting more foot traffic in return.

What’s next? Started on bootstrapped funds, ChargeItSpot recently secured some private funding and has 10 employees around the country. The next generation of locker has been redesigned to have a digital lock and a smaller footprint; an app – pointing users to the nearest Spot – is on the way.