RESOURCES FOR ENTREPRENEURS

The entrepreneurial ecosystem in New Orleans is booming. New Orleans leads the USA by 53% in number of startups-per-capita, and we ranked the 6th Best City for Young Entrepreneurs. We’re also #2 in the country for tech employment growth, and we’re a Top 10 City for Women in Tech (see more stats and rankings from NOLABA and GNO, inc.).

One of the reasons New Orleans is such a great place to be an entrepreneur is that we have a wide range of resources and programs to support our start-up and growing businesses. Check them out here.

AIAA Beyond B2B: Connecting for Growth
Barpreneurs Power LUnch at Soubou
BioInnovation Center
Camelback Ventures
Catapult Fund
Culture-Up Incubator
Fund 17
Good Work Network
Idea Village
Lift Fund
LookFar
New Orleans Startup Fund
NO/LA Angel Network
NxLevel Entrepreneurial Training Class (SUNO)
Power Moves
Propeller
Rising Foundations Small Business Incubator
Roux Carre
StartUp St. Bernard
trepwise
Urban League of Greater New Orleans Women’s Business Resource Center
Venture Pop
VetLaunch Business Accelerator

Know of other entrepreneurship opportunities and resources that we didn’t mention? Email us at 504ward@504ward.com.

 

4.0 Schools

4.0 Schools is an early-stage education incubator that brings educators, entrepreneurs and technologists together to launch ventures that redefine school. To date, 4.0 has launched more than 20 ventures and trained more than 400 in our approach to innovation in education. 4.0 Schools has three programs: the Essentials Program, Tiny Fellowship Program, and Community Catalyst Program.

Website: www.4pt0schools.com
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AIAA Beyond B2B: Connecting for Growth

Explore the opportunities for collaboration in the aerospace and defense sectors, even if your business has never done so before. Large firms are seeking out the innovation happening among small businesses and entrepreneurs, and they are eager to hear what new ideas are out there. The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) will connect the two sides. Join AIAA at a fast-paced, one-day event that lets you learn what the aerospace industry needs and what small businesses and entrepreneurs have to offer.

Website: http://www.aiaa.org/beyondb2b/
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Barpreneurs Power Lunch at Soubou

Soubou organizes every Friday at noon a power lunch featuring a local entrepreneur who is ready to share free advice. It’s face time with a business and start-up pro.

Website: www.sobounola.com/barpreneurs-power-lunch.html
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BioInnovation Center

The Center offers state-of-the-art facilities, subsidized and often free business assistance, educational events year-round, and the BioFund capital program to support growing technology companies. To assist startups in commercializing biotech, digital health, environmental, and clean technologies, NOBIC offers direct technical assistance. We assess promising new technologies, developed within and outside of local universities, and then help propel them toward the market. Our programming also includes seminars and networking events held throughout the year. These explore legal, finance, and other topics of interest to entrepreneurs. In addition, we have several capital offerings for small businesses.

Website: www.neworleansbio.com
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Camelback Ventures

Camelback Ventures aims to address the inequities of entrepreneurship by providing coaching, capital, and connections to underrepresented entrepreneurs. We work with our social impact innovators through our Fellowship with the vision of creating great schools and prosperous, livable communities for all families.

Website: www.camelbackventures.org
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Catapult Fund

The Catapult Fund supports entrepreneurs in the culinary arts, targeting chefs, restaurant owners, caterers, food truck operators, food market vendors, food product manufacturers, cooking schools and others with small, Louisiana businesses in the culinary arts. The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation has partnered with four organizations to provide small business owners in the food industry with training – and grant funding. Detailed guidelines available www.jazzandheritage.org/files/general-uploads/2016_Catapult_Fund_Guidelines.4.2.16.pdf

Website: www.jazzandheritage.org/what-we-do/catapult-fund
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Culture-Up Incubator

The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (LEH), and the Louisiana Cultural Economy Foundation (LCEF) are offering office space in an historic building in Downtown New Orleans, providing a setting for cultural innovators to collaborate with peers and leaders within the creative industries. Become a Culture-Up member and develop your ideas and concepts with the bonus of business development assistance and advisory resources through both LEH and LCEF.

Website: www.culturaleconomy.org/culture-up-initiative
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Fund 17

Fund 17 partners with micro-entrepreneurs or self-employed individuals who are running informal, home-based, or small-scale enterprises. They offer business development relationships to provide the knowledge and support necessary to expand your business and livelihood, and Financial Empowerment seminars on basic personal finance as well as customized workshops based on the requests of community partners.

Website: http://www.fund17.org
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Good Work Network

Good Work Network is a 501(c)3 organization that provides business development services to minority- and women-owned businesses throughout a 15-parish region in Southeast Louisiana. Good Work Network strengthens small businesses by developing members’ skills, enabling them to realize their full potential. We work to increase market connections so small business owners may become active participants in the local economy. 

Website: www.goodworknetwork.org

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Idea Village

Founded in 2000, The Idea Village formalized in 2002 as an independent nonprofit dedicated to engaging our community to embrace innovation, entrepreneurship, and new thinking. The Idea Village has established itself as a globally-recognized leader in developing place-based entrepreneurial ecosystems. As a result, New Orleans is now in the top 10% of best cities to start a business in the country (WalletHub), with startup activity 64% above the national average (The Data Center). We’ve been called America’s #1 Biggest Brain Magnet (Forbes) and 1 of the 20 Hottest Startup Hubs in America (The Kauffman Foundation).

The Idea Village is committed to sustaining the local entrepreneurial movement by providing direct services to entrepreneurs, engaging the community, and supporting initiatives that leverage entrepreneurship to catalyze change. The company has many different programs for entrepreneurs including IdeaX, Digital MediaX, EnergyX,  CapitalX, and Idea Sessions. The Idea Village also organizes the annual New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, a unique festival experience, free and open to the public, that celebrates and elevates the New Orleans entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Lift Fund

Lift Fund is a nonprofit organization that helps small business owners with limited access to capital have a chance to live their dreams. Lift Fund offers services in New Orleans and throughout Louisiana.

Website: www.neworleans.liftfund.com
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LookFar

LookFar develops apps and other software for startup companies. They craft custom user experiences and support them with elegant code, clean design, and scalable infrastructure. Their team works to build and support the next wave of transformative technology. LookFar offers Discovery Workshop sessions with a seasoned LookFar team of developers, designers, and marketers to help entrepreneurs find a way to build their ideas into successful companies.

Website: www.workshop.lookfar.com/discovery-workshop
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New Orleans Startup Fund

The New Orleans Startup Fund provides capital to early-stage ventures located in the Greater New Orleans area. We are seeking to invest in high-growth companies with viable business plans that project growth of at least $20 million in five years. Investment sizes range between $25,000 and $100,000. In addition to providing seed capital, The Startup Fund offers expert technical assistance to its portfolio companies and will connect you to our network of angel investors and venture capitalists for follow-on investment. Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.

Website: www.neworleansstartupfund.com/
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NO/LA Angel Network

The NO/LA Angel Network is a group of accredited investors from New Orleans and throughout Louisiana who work together to evaluate, fund and nurture early-stage companies. Our members make individual decisions to invest in high growth Louisiana based businesses, where the path to exit is understood. NO/LA Angel Network members will invest in the seed or Series A financing rounds of companies based in New Orleans or Louisiana that are in dynamic growth markets, have strong value propositions, a sound business plan, and a strong management team with deep market knowledge. If you feel your company could be a good fit, we invite you to submit your company for consideration. You will need to complete a brief application that details your management team, customer problem, solution, market, etc. along with uploading an Executive Summary, Investor Pitch Deck, and a Video (if you have one).

Website: www.nolaangelnetwork.org
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NxLevel Entrepreneurial Training Class (SUNO)

NxLeveL is a multi-week course for potential and existing entrepreneurs that offers a practical, condensed series of entrepreneurial technical and training sessions. The purpose of the course is to teach entrepreneurs better business planning skills, from business concept development to actual preparation of a comprehensive business plan. The course enables participants to work through the various stages of business growth and development. Unlike other training programs, NxLeveL addresses the special needs of the entrepreneur by providing a practical, hands-on, common sense approach to developing their small business – whether just starting out or ready to grow.

Website: www.suno.edu/services-offered
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Power Moves

PowerMoves takes a comprehensive approach by supporting entrepreneurs of color from the concept stage all the way through the process of growing a profitable business prepared for an acquisition. The “Early Stage Startup Bootcamp” program is a 6-week intensive bootcamp that takes a learn-by-doing approach through providing 20 – 30 startup founders with the information, guidance, and network necessary to build viable business models designed for exponential growth. The “Accelerator for Maturing Companies” program is an annual accelerator supporting up to 6 maturing companies with a founder-friendly investment, free office space, coaching, networking, and expert mentorship. The “Growth Stage Company Showcases” is a program in which their top entrepreneurs compete for cash-prizes in a room full of potential partners and investors to accelerate their fundraising efforts.

Website: www.powermovesusa.org/approach
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Propeller

Propeller is a New Orleans-based nonprofit organization that helps launch social ventures to address local challenges.

Propeller’s Impact Accelerator accelerates established and startup ventures in water, food, health & education to grow and scale their ventures. The Growth Track is a three-month intensive program specifically designed to connect social entrepreneurs with the industry-specific resources they need to grow and scale their ventures. One-on-one mentorship, access to high-level networks and investors, pro bono resources, and free office space are just some of the benefits.

Propeller also hosts several Pitch competitions in the areas of water, food, health & education. The Water Challenge 2017 will award $15,000 in total start-up funding for solutions that will address our urban water, coastal environment, or local water economy. Pitch your solution in front of a panel of judges and 200+ audience members and help make a difference.

Website: www.gopropeller.org/accelerator/www.gopropeller.org/pitchnola/

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Rising Foundations Small Business Incubator

Rising Foundations’ small business incubator empowers formerly incarcerated people to develop small businesses to (at first) supplement their income while they continue working low-wage jobs, with an overall goal for these businesses to grow to provide full time employment for themselves, and eventually other formerly incarcerated people. The program addresses both personal development and business development by meeting people where they are at, respecting their strengths and experiences, and identifying needs.

Website: www.risingfoundations.org/small-business-incubator
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Roux Carre

Roux Carré is an accelerator for emerging food‐preneurs and a showcase for up-and-coming performing and visual artists. A project of Good Work Network, Roux Carré is dedicated to preserving the culture of the Central City community and to serving those who have created and sustained it. The food vendors represent African American, Caribbean, and Latin American influences on New Orleans culture and include: Estralita’s Express, Johnny’s Jamaican Grill,The Pupusa Lady, Splendid Pig, and the Youth Empowerment Project‘s Trafigura Work and Learn Juice Box..

Website: www.goodworknetwork.org/
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Startup St. Bernard Entrepreneur Challenge

Startup St. Bernard presented by the Meraux Foundation and the St. Bernard Economic Development Foundation is seeking out innovative entrepreneurs willing to give 110% to compete for a prize package worth $110K designed to help propel their business to the next level. Entrepreneurs are invited to apply for a chance to pitch their business to a panel of judges in St. Bernard Parish during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week on Monday, March 20, 2017 at the Meraux Foundation’s Docville Farm. Startup St. Bernard is looking for innovative entrepreneurs to locate their businesses in St. Bernard Parish. The Parish is a land of opportunity for businesses, especially startups. While just minutes away from downtown New Orleans, land, labor, and costs of doing business are low — and the business support network is robust. The challenge is being organized by the Meraux Foundation, the St. Bernard Economic Development Foundation and The Idea Village™. Supporting partners include Nunez Community College, St. Bernard Chamber of Commerce, and Leadership St. Bernard.

Website: www.startupstbernard.com
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trepwise

Many organizations have great traction but need guidance as they navigate the challenges of growth, trepwise is an impact consulting firm whose mission is to use entrepreneurial thinking and approaches to grow and sustain for-profit and non-profit organizations by providing innovative and practical solutions.

Website: www.trepwise.com
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Urban League of Louisiana’s Women’s Business Resource Center (WBRC)

The Urban League’s Women’s Business Resource Center (WBRC) provides educational programs, technical assistance, and other support services to existing business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs.  Services provided by the WBRC  are designed to help you improve your leadership and management skills, strengthen your operations, and increase profitability. Signature programs include, “Contractor’s Resource Series”, “The Start-up Institute” and the “Women-In-Business Challenge”. To learn more or to register your business for services, call the WBRC at 504-620-9647. All services are provided by knowledgeable and experienced business consultants.

Website: urbanleagueneworleans.org/WBRC/

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Venture Pop

VenturePOP is a two-day conference designed to gather creatives with the guts and grit to grow their businesses. This Fall, a group of ambitious creative entrepreneurs will join forces under one mission: to take their business to the next level.
Fees: $199- $325

Website: www,venturepopconference.com

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VetLaunch Business Accelerator

Selected Veterans will take part in VetLaunch’s business accelerator program, which will run from the first week of January through the end of March.  This program is specifically tailored to Veterans, and it covers such topics as how to start a business, choose a legal structure, decipher accounting requirements, marketing, social media, and even raising capital.  The selected Veterans will be provided with mentors that have been in the same position and have launched successful businesses.

Veterans are provided one-on-one guidance by Entrepreneurs-in-Residence, Lisa Lloyd, in weekly meetings which will meet the specific needs of each veteran owned company. The participants will also meet weekly as a cohort for interactive discussions with guest speakers who will address various topics related to starting, growing and running a business. In these cohort meetings, the veterans will also develop camaraderie and get a chance to learn from their peers’ experiences.

Website: www.vetlaunch.org/business-accelerator-1.html

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Know of other entrepreneurship opportunities that we didn’t mention? Email us at 504ward@504ward.com.