Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Hunger-fighting mobile app will launch during Charlotte Restaurant Week

PlateShare, a Charlotte-based social enterprise startup, will launch its mobile micro-giving app at the start of this summer's Queen's Feast: Charlotte Restaurant Week July 19-28.

The app - designed for use in restaurants, coffee shops and grocery stores - makes it easy for users to round up restaurant bills to the nearest dollar, donating the difference to help feed the hungry.

After setting up a profile and linking a PayPal account to the app, users can enter a bill total into the app, which will calculate the roundup donation and completes the transaction.

The app is designed for iPhone and Android devices.

Participating Charlotte Restaurant Week establishments will encourage their guests to download PlateShare and donate to benefit Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina, according to a release sent Tuesday.

Plateshare was founded in 2012 by Katie Levans, a local yoga instructor and popular blogger who made headlines when she left ABC's reality-competition show "The Bachelor" of her own accord.

The micro-giving platform advanced as a finalist at Charlotte Startup Weekend 2013, and then Levans completed a three-month business accelerator program through Rev Tech Labs, an incubator at uptown startup hub Packard Place.

"I'm so proud to say that PlateShare was born and bred in Charlotte," Levans said in a statement. "Nothing was outsourced because we have the resources and talent to pull this off right here at home."

Levans says PlateShare is currently filing for 501(c)(3) nonprofit status.