This is a past Pitch NOLA opportunity

PitchNOLA 2015: Community Solutions

Community Solutions Driven By You

Reserve your seat here and watch the live pitches on January 28, 2015.

Community Solutions Driven by You

We believe community involvement is essential in driving social progress. PitchNOLA: Community Solutions is a live pitch competition brought to you by Propeller and Tulane University and sponsored by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, offering a platform for community members to propose their solutions to local challenges with the chance at seed funding, project support, and media coverage to make it happen. No one knows the community’s needs better than its members, so we’re all ears.

We encourage the community to pitch us any idea that offers support to:

  • workforce development
  • children and families
  • social justice
  • environment

$10,000 in Start-up Funding, Project Support, and Media Coverage

Selected semi-finalists will pitch their ideas in front of a voting audience and panel of judges on Wednesday, January 28, 2015 at Tulane University for the chance at $10,000 in cash prizes.

The “First Place Winner” will receive a $5,000 cash prize, pro bono technical assistance, and consulting through Propeller.

The “Second Place Winner” will receive a $3,000 cash prize.

The “Third Place Winner” will receive a $2,000 cash prize.

The “Audience Favorite Award” will be funded through audience participation.

From Pitch to Impact

PitchNOLA has grown considerably over the last six years, bringing to the stage an impressive selection of highly innovative, early-stage ventures. Over 90 applications were received for PitchNOLA over the last year, and over 550 community members registered to attend.

PitchNOLA has received notable attention from the Times Picayune, The Advocate, Silicon Bayou News, New Orleans City Business, WWLTV, Invade NOLA, Tulane New Wave, and local business blogs.

In the Words of Past PitchNOLA Winners:

“PitchNOLA was a phenomenal platform for JAC to present the expungement issue to the public. The $5,000 1st place prize will increase our capacity to service more clients, thereby helping to break the cycle of recidivism and contribute to a thriving and healthy New Orleans.”

- Ameca Reali, Co-Founder, Justice and Accountability Center of Louisiana

“Birthmark is excited and honored to have won at PitchNOLA! The generous funding will allow us to double the number of families we work with, document the evidence that doulas make a difference, and help build our case for change. We believe that New Orleans can go from having the worst birth outcomes in the country to being a national leader in healthy birth outcomes for women and children.”

- Dana Karen, Co-Founder, Birthmark Doula Collective

Interested?

All New Orleanians are eligible to apply with few exceptions. The first step is to attend a competition overview to get your questions answered!

PitchNOLA Q&A sessions will be held at the Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Ave. *These sessions are optional.

Download the competition and application overview.

The Application deadline is Thursday, January 1, 2015.

Recommended Reading

Eligibility

  • PitchNOLA is a contest open to anyone residing in, or relocating to, the Greater New Orleans Area. This includes individuals or teams, for profit or nonprofit ideas, with or without an incorporated business.

  • No need for 20-page business plans. We’re looking for projects in the start-up phase.

  • We are particularly interested in social ventures that target workforce development, children and families, social justice, and the environment.

  • All organizations that have generated less than $50,000 (including sales, grant funding, capital, earned revenue, etc.) in the previous calendar year (January 2013 – December 2013) are eligible to apply.

  • If your organization has generated more than $50,000 (including sales, grant funding, capital, earned revenue, etc.) in the previous calendar year (January 2013 – December 2013), you are eligible to apply for a new program or idea if the program or idea has generated less than $50,000 total in committed revenues and/or funding.

  • If you are selected as a semi-finalist, you must be present at the Pitch Workshop on Tuesday, January 13, 2015 and the Community Solutions competition on Wednesday, January 28, 2015.

Instructions

Attend a competition overview to get your questions answered (optional)

PitchNOLA Q&A sessions will be held at the Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Ave. *These sessions are optional.

How do I apply?

Fill out the online application by Thursday, January 1, 11:59pm CST.

Criteria

  • Clearly measurable, verifiable, and potentially significant social impacts.
  • Knowledge about the needs of your target markets, both your users/beneficiaries and your buyers.
  • Clear explanation for how your product or service will address these needs.
  • Market research that demonstrates interest from your target markets in using and/or buying your product or service.
  • Clear understanding of what it takes to successfully implement your idea (team credibility & financial understanding).

Process

Qualifying Round — Online Application

  • The first round of the competition is based on an online application, which must be submitted by Thursday, January 1, 11:59pm CST.
  • Semi-finalists will be selected and notified on Tuesday, January 6, 2015.

Final Round — PitchNOLA 2015: Community Solutions!

  • Wednesday, January 28, 6:00-8:00pm, selected semi-finalists will pitch their solutions at Tulane University, Woldenberg Art Center, Freeman Auditorium.
  • Semi-finalists will have three minutes to pitch their ideas and present their slides to a panel of judges and a voting audience.
  • Following the presentations, the judging panel will select three of the semi-finalists for a round of follow-up questions. Judges will then select the First Place winner in front of the live audience.
  • Finally, the voting audience will select the winner for the “Audience Favorite” award, funded by audience participation. All semi-finalists are eligible for this award.

*Pitch Workshop // Tuesday, January 13, 2015, 6:00-8:00pm (Required for semi-finalists). This workshop will assist semi-finalists with the development of their final presentation slides and pitches.

Awards

  • The “First Place Winner” will receive a $5,000 cash prize, pro bono technical assistance, and consulting through Propeller.
  • The “Second Place Winner” will receive a $3,000 cash prize.
  • The “Third Place Winner” will receive a $2,000 cash prize.
  • Winners are expected to use the award money and consulting hours in order to advance their winning ideas.

Audience Participation

Audience members play a key role in this competition as part of PitchNOLA’s goal to better connect social entrepreneurs with networks and resources.

Click here to register as a PitchNOLA 2015 audience member!

  • A suggested $5 donation to become an audience member at PitchNOLA will fund the “Audience Favorite Award.” Additional donations towards this award are greatly appreciated. Votes will be cast via text message on Wednesday, January 28, 2015 at the live competition.
  • Additionally, we encourage audience members to provide relevant contacts, resources, or constructive feedback to assist PitchNOLA’s semi-finalists in pursing their ideas. Feedback cards will be provided at the competition.
  • Seats are available on a first come, first served basis. Doors open at 5:30pm.

For questions, contact Ginny Hanusik, Propeller Programs Coordinator, at ghanusik@gopropeller.org

Key Dates

  • PitchNOLA Application Q&A #1

    Tuesday, October 28, 2014, 5:30pm-6:30pm
    Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Avenue

  • PitchNOLA Application Q&A #2

    Wednesday, November 12, 2014, 12:00pm-1:00pm
    Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Avenue

  • Application Deadline

    Friday, January 1, 11:59pm CST

  • Pitch Workshop (required for semi-finalists)

    Tuesday, January 13, 6:00pm-8:00pm
    Tulane University, Woldenberg Art Center, Freeman Auditorium

  • PitchNOLA 2015: Community Solutions

    Wednesday, January 28, 6:00pm-8:00pm
    Tulane University, Woldenberg Art Center, Freeman Auditorium

Sponsors