13 Startups Selected for VILLAGEx Accelerator Program

Iv Social Image

NEW ORLEANS – The Idea Village has announced the 13 startup companies that will participate in the 2023 VILLAGEx high-growth accelerator program. The four-month, cohort-based accelerator “leverages the passion and expertise of New Orleanians around the globe to provide founders with the connections and resources needed to scale their businesses rapidly,” said a spokesperson.

“The goal of the VILLAGEx accelerator program is to identify the entrepreneurs who are the future business leaders for our region and give them the tools needed to grow their companies,” said Jon Atkinson, CEO of The Idea Village, in a press release. “The results will be more good jobs, more investment in our city and more economic opportunity for the Gulf South.”

The Idea Village’s VILLAGEx 2023 accelerator companies are:    

  • Bea’s Bayou Skincare, an eczema-focused skincare brand that merges Louisiana’s bayou herbs with probiotics for natural relief from itchy scalp and skin.
  • Bomb Ass Fro, a natural hair care company with non-toxic hair products for the perfect wash-and-go hair style.
  • Carmigo, an online vehicle marketplace that connects private-party sellers to dealers in the easiest way possible.
  • Ceres, creator of sustainable, plant-based cereal with an emphasis on making nutrition available to everyone and everywhere, especially historically underserved communities.
  • Glass Half Full, which recycles glass into sand and gravel for coastal restoration, disaster relief, new glass products, and more.
  • iCAN Technologies, a company focused on improving the safety, skills and retention of skilled workforces through a comprehensive, methodical and seamless full cycle approach to training and competency, backed and validated through data analytics.
  • Gnomic, a company making industry-oriented computer science education accessible to high schools, utilizing modern tech like AI.
  • JurisDeed, an online property intelligence platform dynamically connecting real estate’s historical records with interest-holders, empowering professionals with a digital research alternative to static public records systems.
  • Kubanda Cryotherapy, a company revolutionizing veterinary tumor care with minimally invasive cryotherapy for lumps, bumps, and cancers in pets.
  • OS Benefits, a technology developed by Oyster Sunday that connects independent hospitality operators and their teams to affordably priced preventative care, wellness services, and career resources.
  • RCOAST, a sustainability company that automates coastal monitoring and erosion mitigation.
  • Wake Up and Read the Labels, a company that empowers people to feel good by educating them on clean eating with products, community and a coaching network.
  • Safety Pouch, a removable pouch that stores and presents essential driving credentials needed for traffic stops and to prevent active reaching.

These 13 startup companies were chosen from over 60 applicants by a selection panel and senior members of the Idea Village team. The Idea Village is a nonprofit organization that works to build and sustain a vibrant startup ecosystem in New Orleans. As testament to the impact to the local startup ecosystem, the 12 participating startups of last year’s VILLAGEx cohort collectively raised more than $8.4 million, created more than 70 jobs and generated more than $26 million in annual revenue. Participating founders in VILLAGEx 2022 gave the program an unprecedented 100 /100 Net Promoter Score – the highest possible rating and greatest compliment to the accelerator, indicating that every single founder from that cohort would 100% recommend the VILLAGEx accelerator program to another startup founder at a similar stage.

The VILLAGEx 2023 cohort was selected based on market potential, growth trajectory, industry potential, product stage, team readiness and traction. Over the next four months, each company will go through an acceleration program while working with an assigned Entrepreneur-In-Residence, who will provide hours of direct mentorship. Each VILLAGEx company will also work with a curated advisory board, an Investor-In-Residence, and other mentors in The Idea Village ecosystem to both scale their businesses and prepare to raise  capital. Three of the thirteen companies will be selected to pitch their company at IDEApitch, the annual pitch competition that is traditionally the culmination of New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (March 27 through April 1).

“The relationships VILLAGEx founders develop, with each other and with the experienced professionals who will mentor and advise them, will result in a stronger entrepreneurial ecosystem that breeds further economic growth and success,” said Idea Village Program Director Megan Balch. “This impressive group of founders proudly builds on past decades and paves the way for furthering a fast-growing vibrant and diverse startup community across the Gulf Coast. We expect great things from this cohort.”

Categories: Innovation, Technology, Today’s Business News