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Mar. 6, 2014 8:30 am

ChargeItSpot to offer charging stations in 20 Urban Outfitters stores

While the startup initially piloted its product in one-off stores in the Philly area, founder Doug Baldasare said that he's only focused on selling large, national retailers now. ChargeItSpot is launching in five Sports Authorities later this month.

ChargeItSpot's charging station inside a New York City Urban Outfitters. Photo from ChargeItSpot's Facebook.

ChargeItSpot is expanding its Northeast footprint.

By the end of the week, the Center City startup’s charging stations will be in 20 Urban Outfitters throughout New York City, New Jersey and Philadelphia, said founder Doug Baldasare. The launch will make Urban Outfitters ChargeItSpot’s single biggest customer. The hope, Baldasare said, is to expand to all Urban Outfitters’ brick and mortar stores.

Launched nearly a year ago, the startup will be in more than 80 locations by the end of the week, Baldasare said. Stores pay a monthly fee (Baldasare declined to share how much) for the charging stations, and they’re free for users.

While the startup initially piloted its product in one-off stores in the Philly area, Baldasare said that he’s only focused on selling large, national retailers now. ChargeItSpot is launching in five Sports Authorities later this month.

The company also released a new version of its charging stations. The stations, designed by Brooklyn firm Sonic Design and made by an undisclosed U.S. company, are no longer key-based. Customers can now use a touchscreen to lock their phone into the station with a code (their phone number). If there are any issues with phones getting stuck, there’s a camera in the station that takes a photo of the user. ChargeItSpot customer service can then verify the owner of the phone and remotely unlock it, without having to bother anyone at the store.

The company’s three-month-old mobile app — for both Android and iOS — has seen more than 2,000 downloads, Baldasare said. It alerts you when your phone is dying and tells you where the closest ChargeItSpot station is.

ChargeItSpot moved out of incubator Seed Philly but remains in the same building. They’re now on the 21st floor, in a 7,500 square foot space that hosts its 10 employees and its charging stations. They used to keep the stations in a warehouse on Washington Avenue.
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Juliana Reyes

Juliana Reyes began as lead reporter at Technical.ly Philly in July 2012. Previously, she was a city services beat reporter for the Philadelphia Daily News, as part of a project called “It’s Our Money.” She is learning to drive, learning to bike (in the city) but is an expert at taking SEPTA. She grew up in North Jersey and Manila, Philippines but she left the tropics for Bryn Mawr College, where she majored in linguistics. She now lives in West Philly.

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