Top 8 Resources For Every Acadiana Entrepreneur

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We’re halfway through 2016, and Acadiana is exploding with entrepreneurship!

If you’re just now starting out with the entrepreneurial world, it’s a lot to take in — so we’re prepared a list of resources for you with events and services in the Acadiana region.

Take advantage of these resources to jumpstart your new or existing business. You won’t regret it!

1. INNOV8 Acadiana Pitch Events

summit 7Shameless plug!

INNOV8 Acadiana is here to unite entrepreneurship in the eight parish region known as Acadiana. INNOV8 does a yearly summit, frequent meetups, and pitch events! Is your idea fine-tuned, but you’re looking for partners, co-founders, investors, or more? Register to pitch in any of our pitch events per year, relating to healthcare, the energy industry, or technology.

Our healthcare event has passed, but our LAGCOE energy pitch event is coming in October, and a technology pitch is planned towards the end of the year.

Stay tuned to our website and social media channels for more information on these as the year goes by. You can also check us out on Facebook or Twitter!

2. Acadiana Angels

angel pitchGot a developed idea? Pitched in other places? Need money?

The Acadiana Angels have recently been formed and have already vetted INNOV8 Acadiana businesses! They are an angel investment group based right here in Acadiana, and are working in partnership with the New Orleans Angels.

If you’ve think you got what it takes to stand up in front of investors, give Pete Prados a shout at pete@innov8acadiana.org. Investment capital may be in your future!

3. Acadiana Entrepreneur Meetup/Social

zach chrisWhat are you doing the fourth Wednesday of every month?

INNOV8 and Opportunity Machine have teamed up to bring Acadiana the best monthly entrepreneur social in the region! Join us for a mixer, free food and drinks, and a seasoned entrepreneur guest speaker every month.

Does “founder of Waitr” sound like someone you’d like to meet? Our attendees thought so (and they did!), back in May. We also heard stories from Frankie Russo of Potenza, Inc.!

Join us at our next one for more great networking opportunities and entrepreneurial wisdom!

4. Opportunity Machine / Small Business Development Center

opportunity machineAre you stuck? Need help finding partners? Want insight from successful entrepreneurs? Luckily, Lafayette has an incredible resource in the the Opportunity Machine (a part of Lafayette Economic Development Authority), and the Small Business Development Center.

OM specializes in helping both new and established entrepreneurs get where they’re going. Think of them as providing, as Executive Director Zachary Barker says, “collision points of opportunity.”

5. Incubation, Acceleration and Organization

incubatorGot a developed idea, but need more help in taking it to the next step? Opportunity Machine has just what you need: incubation! Located on the first floor of the LITE building, OM has a fantastic, newly redesigned space for growing startups. Whether you only need a few spots in the open coworking space, or your needs are greater and you need more private space, OM can take care of you.

Not a startup, but need a place for your growing organization to meet? OM can also take care of you and provide space for your meeting!

Apply at their website here for incubation, acceleration or for your organization to use their space in some other way.

6. AcceleRagin’

ULLWant to get into entrepreneurship, but you’re still a student? Not a problem! The University of Louisiana at Lafayette has just what you need: AcceleRagin’, a product of the B.I. Moody III College of Business Administration.

Throughout the semester, you’ll get the opportunity to attend panels with entrepreneurs, listen to captivating guest speakers, and best of all, you’ll get to form connections and grow your network. They’ve got proven success stories, too. Whether you’re wanting to dive into entrepreneurship for the first time, or you just want to catch the eyes and ears of the most exciting people in Acadiana, AcceleRagin’ has the stuff for you!

7. Procurement Technical Assistance Center

ptacPTAC will help you pave the way towards being eligible for government contracts and working with the government in general.

They can assist with getting you registered with SAM (a federal requirement) and other processes involved with receiving bids for projects.

8. Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

sbdcIf you need more specific help, such as preparing projections or getting help with the specific ins and outs of funding, the Small Business Development Center can help you with that.

SBDC is a state-run organization focused on assisting individuals with their new or existing small business. More informatino can be found here.