Accelerate with Propeller

Launch your idea, grow your business

Our Accelerator Programs

Propeller offers accelerator programs that help local entrepreneurs get the resources they need to launch and grow their business and nonprofits tackling inequities in New Orleans. Our programs are designed to meet the specific needs of each participant, from early-stage startups, to established businesses looking to expand, and small business owners working in our local neighborhoods.

Our Startup Accelerator helps startup businesses and and nonprofits in food, water, health, and education currently in the idea, pilot, or development phase work toward achieving their first paying customers.
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Our Growth Accelerator supports established businesses and nonprofits in food, water, health, and education to achieve strategic growth and expand their impact. Applications will open in Fall of 2017.

Our South Broad Business Initiative provides business owners of color located on and around South Broad Street with short-term technical assistance and long-term comprehensive support in areas including marketing, financials, legal assistance, and updating technology.
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Are you an entrepreneur looking for more information about one of these programs? Sign up here to receive more information from one of our staff members!

Startup Accelerator 2017

Propeller offers four concurrent Startup Accelerator programs focused on food, water, health, and education. Each sector-based accelerator is a three-month intensive program specially designed to support entrepreneurs from idea, to beta, to growth. One-on-one weekly mentorship, access to high-level networks and investors, pro bono technical support, and free office space, are just some of the benefits.

How to Apply

Applications are now closed for Propeller’s 2017 Startup Accelerator. All applicants will be notified of acceptance by August 18, 2017.

Key Dates

Startup Accelerator Program Dates: September 8th, 2017 – December 15th, 2017
Startup Accelerator Selection: Announcement by August 18th, 2017

Selection Criteria

  1. Leadership & dedication: You have the vision to motivate, the experience to guide you, and the grit to get it done. Applicants must devote a minimum of 20 hours per week towards their business or nonprofit.
  2. Potential for financial growth and sustainability: You have the proven traction, resources, and strategy to move your business or nonprofit forward and meet ambitious goals to grow and scale. Revenue-generating and pre-revenue ventures meet all respective eligibility requirements.
  3. Potential for significant social impact: The challenge is clear; your strategy is sound; scalability is possible.

South Broad Business Initiative

Applications are open on a rolling basis for the South Broad Business Initiative (SBBI), a free business assistance program designed to provide neighborhood business owners of color with assistance, resources, and professional experts to help grow for-profit businesses. Benefits include free workspace, mentorship, and assistance with marketing, financials, taxes, legal assistance, and technology updates.

Businesses must be located in or in the process of relocating to the Broadmoor-Hoffman Triangle-Zion City-B.W. Cooper neighborhood area. Time commitment is based on business owner availability. We offer a short-term program ranging from one week to three months, as well as a long-term six month program. For more details, download our full program overview.

Not sure if the program is right for you? Contact Trace Allen at, (504) 264-1360. You can also visit us 9am-5pm at our offices at 4035 Washington Avenue.

Growth Accelerator

Applications will open in early 2018.

This three-month long program offers tailored mentorship, resources and networks to help entrepreneurs working in water management, food access, health, and educational equity to grow and scale. This program is designed for established and startup businesses and nonprofits with proof-of-concept and/or a track record of success. During the program, participating entrepreneurs will be working towards scaling their impact, raising external investment (debt/equity), and increasing revenues, customers, and contracts.

This program is tailored to meet the needs of each of its participants. Based on your specific goals and priorities, Propeller’s seasoned Lead Mentors will work with you one-on-one to assist in the development and implementation of ambitious goals for the three-month program. Our goal is to accelerate your business or nonprofit’s growth by connecting you with strategy experts, subject experts, high-level networks, investors and funders, and a like-minded community of successful entrepreneurs.

Through a partnership with the New Orleans Startup Fund, the top two for-profit participants of the Growth Accelerator can receive up to $25,000 in pre-committed equity investment, determined by fellow Accelerator participants through Village Capital’s peer-selected investment approach. All Accelerator participants will be trained using an award-winning curriculum in which entrepreneurs assess one another, provide feedback, and otherwise collaborate with each other and local experts.

5 Reasons Why Propeller

  1. Join New Orleans’ hub for social entrepreneurship
    Propeller offers deep sector expertise and connections to a community whose knowledge, passion, and dedication is moving the needle for underserved populations. We’re eager to connect you with our network of customers, advocates, and strategic partners. Read more about Propeller’s Impact.
  2. Work directly with internationally successful executives and coaches
    Experienced coaches are committed to your business or nonprofit’s growth and to your personal leadership development. Coaches serve as a valuable thought partner and strategic advisor, and are often willing to contribute their networks to ensure your success. Each week, they devote two hours of time to each Venture. This includes a one-hour in-person meeting and one-hour of general follow up. Lead Mentors for the 2016 Growth Track will be announced at the conclusion of the Startup Track.
  3. Benefit from a robust network of experts and resources to help you reach your goals
    Network and strategize with our team of 30+ Executive Mentors like John Elstrott, Chairman of the Board of Whole Foods Market, Charles Rice, CEO of Entergy, Dr. Pat Quinlan, CEO of Ochsner Clinic and Ochsner International Services, and Karen Carter Peterson, Louisiana State Senator and Chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. Utilize support from contracted subject experts in high-need areas like financial modeling, legal advice, graphic design, marketing strategists, and PR specialists, as well as 180 pro bono professionals including PwC, Morgan Stanley, FSC Interactive, EMH Strategy, Baker Donelson, and more.
  4. Enjoy free office space at our co-working facility
    Collaborate with a community of 65+ like-minded companies, while benefiting from free access to desk space, WiFi, printing, mailing address, conference room meeting space, locker storage, and parking. See the space!
  5. Receive increased visibility and attention from local and national thought leaders
    Propeller and its accelerator graduates have received notable attention from The New York Times, TIME, WIRED, Fast Company, Los Angeles Times, Entrepreneur, Forbes, and many others. Read Propeller’s press.

We Get You Results

  • 130 businesses and nonprofits launched since 2011 through Propeller’s accelerator programs, including a local food hub, a health clinic, an education software company, and a company building floating islands to prevent coastal erosion.
  • 310 full- and part-time jobs created, contributing to an expanded workforce in New Orleans.
  • $82 million in external financing and revenue collectively generated by Propeller Ventures and Alumni.
  • Over $100,000 in seed funding awarded to ventures through sector-based pitch competitions.
  • Collaborated to pass and implement state policy for universal school lunch participation and Benefit 
Corporation legislation providing an alternate corporate entity for social ventures.

Learn more

Our Graduates: Read about the missions of our graduated entrepreneurs.

Testimonials: Hear what graduates have to say about the program.

Our Impact: Learn how we’ve moved the needle on the city’s toughest challenges.

“Propeller has been a tremendous resource for JAC. With the support of our consultant and the pro bono network, we’ve been able to increase our impact from 30 clients to 450 clients in less than 12 months.”

Ameca Reali
Co-Founder, Justice and Accountability Center of Louisiana ('13)


  1. To read more or determine eligibility, download the program overview below.

Accelerator Sponsors