9 August 2021
(New Orleans, LA) - Propeller announces the 20 participants selected for its 2021 Impact Accelerator. This 4-month program equips entrepreneurs with coaching, community building, curriculum, and technical assistance to build or strengthen businesses rooted in financial viability, social impact, racial equity, and a demonstrated commitment to the prosperity of our city and region.
From a stylish boutique, kid’s digital media studio, and holistic dog and cat food business, to ecotourism centered on Louisiana’s wetlands and a roller skating school; these entrepreneurs are working within focus areas of community economic development, education, food, health, and water to create a more equitable New Orleans.
The community economic development focus area is supporting Black entrepreneurs growing brick-and-mortar businesses and creating jobs along Broad Street.
2 B Chic Boutique & Glam Parlor | Collaborative Community Initiative | Eden Project | JB Holton & Associates
Within education, participants are providing equitable, culturally-relevant practices and job skill training.
Be Loud Studios | Ngombo Café and Sanctuary | Reunion Shoe Company | Turning Tables
In food, entrepreneurs with consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands are emphasizing sustainable, healthy, affordable, and locally-sourced products.
Daydream Koffucha | Fresh Hibiscus Tea | Hotties Tamales | Paw Bakery
Health entrepreneurs are providing direct health and wellness services that address the social and physical determinants of health.
CORE Louisiana Counseling & Recovery Center | New Orleans Skate School | Vivify | We Lift LLC
Water ventures are addressing urban flooding issues and coastal loss, while providing meaningful, local employment opportunities.
Glass Half Full | Kost | Nature Study Project | Urbanscapes Design+Build
For the last ten years, Propeller has helped local entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses through the Impact Accelerator. However, a new addition sparked by the pandemic supports food entrepreneurs in packaging goods that are locally-manufactured. This focus towards consumer packaged goods follows Propeller’s recent Food Manufacturing partnership with Greater New Orleans, Inc., Edible Enterprises & St. Charles Parish, the New Orleans Business Alliance, University of Holy Cross, Volunteers of America, Xavier University, and the Louisiana Small Business Development Center to grow the food manufacturing industry within the Greater New Orleans region.
“New Orleans is undoubtedly a global food capital, but why are so few of our food products made locally?” says Kristine Creveling, Director of Strategic Initiatives at Propeller. Entrepreneurs developing food products often lack access to certified, manufacturing facilities and other support infrastructure to begin wholesale production, resulting in business relocations and New Orleans losing out on many successful food businesses with potential to create stable, high-paying local jobs.
The ability to sell a physical food product when “normal” operations were uncertain became crucial to those in the food industry. CPG companies like Propeller Impact Accelerator participants, Hotties Tamales, Paw Bakery, and Daydream Koffucha were conceived of, launched, or formally established during the pandemic.
“The one silver lining to the pandemic is that it forced us to turn inward, take a hard look at ourselves, and ask the question: who am I and what do I really want?” says Dalton Honoré of Daydream Koffucha. “The CPG landscape can be brutal as there are so many facets to it. At any given time, you feel as though you’re juggling ten glass balls and that they could drop at any moment. The support system, expansive resources, and depth of knowledge from both the Propeller staff and lead mentor help you feel a little less scared as you try to keep those balls in the air.”
Prioritizing mission-driven, cutting edge consumer packaged goods (CPG) and supporting those producing them makes for more equitable opportunities, business development, a diversified food sector, and economic advancement right at home.
Read more about the 2021 Impact Accelerator class at gopropeller.org/ventures. To learn more about the program visit gopropeller.org/accelerator.
Propeller is a New Orleans-based 501c3 nonprofit that grows and supports entrepreneurs to tackle social and environmental disparities. Our vision is an inclusive and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem in New Orleans that responds to community needs and creates the conditions for an equitable future. GoPropeller.org