Press

Media Coverage of Propeller

2017

Where are they now? A look at 5 New Orleans startups

The Times-Picayune 21 March 2017

Starting a business is tough. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, only about half of all business ventures make it past the five-year mark. This winter, more than a dozen New Orleans startups will complete coaching programs at the Idea Village, Propeller and other business accelerators, hoping to fine tune their ideas and beat the odds.

BlueFin Data Wins Propeller’s Water Challenge

Silicon Bayou News 20 March 2017

The Water Challenge is a collaborative initiative between the Greater New Orleans Foundation, Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation, and The Idea Village focused on solving critical regional water issues through entrepreneurship in Louisiana. The goal is to support ventures who are working to make the region more sustainable.

New Orleans eyes ways to get more fresh food in corner stores

The Times-Picayune 14 March 2017

City officials want to see more fresh produce sold in New Orleans corner stores, unveiling plans to launch a small-scale effort to test whether fresh food sells in small neighborhood venues. Nonprofit leaders told City Council members on Tuesday (March 14) that the absence of fresh, healthy foods in corner stores is largely a consequence of perceptions on the part of store owners.

LSU’s Industrial Innovation Center helps the ‘Louisiana Chemical Corridor’ come to fruition

Greater Baton Rouge Business Report 17 February 2017

Last November, the Louisiana Chemical Corridor partnership notched its first win, when the Department of Commerce granted $498,624 to establish an Industrial Innovation Center at LSU. Of the more than 215 organizations nationwide that applied, LSU was one of 34 to receive a grant meant to “make U.S. communities, businesses and the workforce more globally competitive.”

Tech Park partners with Propeller on water projects accelerator

The Advocate 13 January 2017

The Louisiana Technology Park is partnering with Propeller to expand the New Orleans-based nonprofit’s Growth Accelerator program to Baton Rouge. The partners are accepting applications for a free, three-month program that offers entrepreneurs and small business owners help growing their urban water and coastal ventures. The program offers tailored mentorships, resources and networks to participants.

2016

Propeller, BioInnovation Center and Business Alliance awarded $500,000 by Chase for small businesses

The Advocate 16 December 2016

Three New Orleans-based nonprofits will split $500,000 in grants from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to support programs promoting small business growth, the bank said Friday. The largest award recipient is the New Orleans BioInnovation Center, which is receiving $250,000. Propeller, a business incubator that focuses on ventures planning to tackle pressing issues facing New Orleans, and the New Orleans Business Alliance will each receive $125,000 from the bank.

Local Impact Investment Get $500,000 Boost After Living Cities Announcement

Silicon Bayou News 15 December 2016

During Propeller’s annual Demo Day, which celebrates the accomplishments of social entrepreneurs graduating from the Startup Accelerator program, the organization made an exciting announcement. Propeller and the Foundation for Louisiana will form a new loan fund in 2017, and Living Cities will invest up to $500,000 in entrepreneurs who tackling social and environmental issues in Southeast Louisiana.

Nonprofit launches water challenge initiative

Houma Courier 10 December 2016

A meeting will be held Thursday in Gray on New Orleans nonprofit group Propeller’s competitive initiative focused on solving southeast Louisiana’s most pressing water issues. Water Challenge 2017 seeks solutions that can make a big difference in urban water, coastal environments and water-based industries.

Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down

Gambit 5 December 2016

Propeller and the New Orleans Starter Fund received $250,000 to create the Propeller Social Impact Equity Fund, part of a $15 million national initiative from the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Regional Innovation Strategies Program. The fund will help invest in new local companies through a three-month accelerator program.

A Comprehensive List of New Orleans Co-Working Spaces

Silicon Bayou News 1 December 2016

The word coworking was first used in 1999 to describe collaborative work. Today, coworking spaces are prevalent across the globe. New Orleans has its own crop of coworking spaces. Over the last few years, the number of coworking spaces in the Big Easy has more than doubled. We’ve rounded up as many of the New Orleans spaces and details we could find. Check out the list, in alphabetical order.

5 New Orleans education startups to watch

The Times-Picayune 1 December 2016

New Orleans continues to gain national recognition as a hotbed for innovation in education. This fall, five local ventures are working on solutions to improve educational access from birth to adulthood. The startups shared their ideas Nov. 3 as part of PitchNOLA: Education, a business pitch organized by Propeller, an incubator focused on growing sustainable socially minded ventures.

Incubating Progress, One Small Business At A Time

The Atlantic 29 November 2016

The creation of opportunity isn’t driven by a single sweeping action. It’s more often built over time, the accumulation of a huge number of small but essential efforts and institutions. In America’s inner cities, for example, research from the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) has shown that small businesses (those with five to 249 employees) and micro-businesses (firms with one to four employees) are the primary drivers of job creation and employment rates. Small businesses accounted for almost 100 percent of all businesses in the five major cities surveyed.

Organizations win funding to help education in New Orleans

WWLTV 27 November 2016

First Place Winner in Propeller’s PitchNOLA: Education competition was Flor Serna with the organization, “Electric Girls”. Electric Girls’ mission is to educate young girls about jobs in technology and electronics. Second place went to Derrick Perique’s organization, RisingFoundations. He is raising money to help convicts get an education and develop marketable skills.

Coworking Spaces in New Orleans

Where Y'at Magazine 15 November 2016

Propellor is another space that’s part for-profit and part ambitious nonprofit. Half the building is a coworking space with desks, offices, couches, kitchen, etc. The other half (of both the building and the organization) is an incubator: a program that encourages and enables the growth of small ventures, especially other nonprofits.

Group seeks food alliance

The Hammond Star 5 November 2016

Propeller-launched the Healthy School Food Collaborative organizes a Florida Parish-wide alliance of organizations committed to ensure students who receive free or reduced lunch during the school year can access fresh, healthy, reliable food during summer months.

EDA Annual Report

U.S. Economic Development Administration 27 June 2016

On August 29, 2015, 10 years to the day that Hurricane Katrina made landfall in the city, EDA awarded $300,000 to support the Water Accelerator program, a regional entrepreneurship initiative dedicated to building the city’s water industry cluster. The EDA-funded program will provide business consulting services, technical assistance, mentoring, and other resources as needed to facilitate the growth of an estimated 10 to 20 businesses looking to address regional coastal and urban water issues, especially as it relates to coastal restoration, urban water retention and quality, maritime industries and ports, and fisheries.

2015

Idea Village, Propeller among recipients of federal grants unveiled Thursday

The Advocate 27 August 2015

Two New Orleans-based nonprofits that support entrepreneurs were among four recipients of nearly $2.1 million in federal grants announced Thursday from the U.S. Department of Economic Development. Propeller, which helps launch business ventures that focus on the city’s pressing issues, will receive $300,000 to offer businesses that are addressing coastal and urban water issues more opportunities for consulting, monitoring and other resources.

How Small-Business Growth And Entrepreneurship Have Powered New Orleans’ Post-Katrina Comeback

Huffington Post 13 July 2015

Today, with our partners at GNO, Inc. and the NOLA Business Alliance, New Orleans is diversifying its economy, creating jobs in digital media and bioscience, and fostering an emerging environmental industry focused on coastal restoration and sustainability, all while sustaining foundational industries like energy, international trade, advanced manufacturing and hospitality.

H2 Show

NOLA Defender 22 March 2015

NOLA Defender highlights the upcoming “Living With Water” Civic Design Pitch to take place at the 5th Annual Water Challenge. The pitch will be New Orleans’ first-ever crowd-sourced civic design competition.

Propeller Healthy Food Access

WWLTV 10 January 2015

Part 4 of WWLTV’s series on Propeller features two Propeller Fellows who are organizing businesses that focus on access to healthy food – Healthy School Food Collaborative (Propeller ’13) and Jack & Jake’s (Propeller ’12).

2014

ChangeWorks: Jack and Jake’s

NolaVie 7 November 2014

ChangeWorks, a partnership between Propeller and NolaVie, features Propeller ’12 Fellow Jack and Jake’s, a company bringing high quality, affordable, local fresh foods to schools, universities, hospitals, and underserved communities in New Orleans.

The Water Challenge for New Orleans area environmental startups is moving to the Propeller incubator

The Times-Picayune 12 August 2014

Propeller assumes management of the 2014-2015 Water Challenge, which will take place this March during the 7th Annual New Orleans Entrepreneur Week. This year’s Water Challenge expands to include the 12-week Water Challenge Peer Mentorship, which will include business-scoping, consulting, and support leading up to the $10,000 Water Challenge business pitch competition.

Contest seeking solutions for vacant lots has a Tuesday deadline

The Times-Picayune 14 July 2014

The deadline to apply for the PitchNOLA 2014: Lots of Progress competition is imminent – set for tomorrow, July 15, at 4pm. Applicants are encouraged to turn in their requests for proposals by the deadline for the chance to pitch their ideas live on August 19th and win $7500, access to Propeller’s advisory services, and the opportunity to develop their business on commercial lots around New Orleans.

PitchNOLA 2014: Lots of Progress Application Deadline Nears

Silicon Bayou News 10 July 2014

This year, Propeller partners with the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA) to offer the winner of Propeller’s annual PitchNOLA 2014: Lots of Progress competition the opportunity to rent or purchase vacant lots of land, along with a $7500 cash price provided by Entergy, and access to Propeller’s advisory and technical services. Entrepreneurs and businesses with innovative ideas are encouraged to apply by 4pm on July 15, 2014 to participate in the pitch competition, which will be held at Propeller on 19 August, 2014.

PitchNOLA Looking for Lots of Progress

NOLA Defender 8 July 2014

On August 19, Propeller’s Pitch NOLA 2014: Lots of Progress competition will award the winner the opportunity to rent or buy vacant plots of land – including properties in commercial, light industrial, and business zones – and “activate” economic development in neighborhoods across New Orleans.

Propeller incubator extends deadline, expands its socially minded entrepreneur accelerator

NOLA.com 7 July 2014

Propeller’s Fourth Social Venture Accelerator promises the most robust curriculum to date, incorporating the participation of some of New Orleans’ brightest business leaders and adding a specific track for three Fellows solving water challenges. New major grants, including $1.295 million from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, have helped Propeller deepen its sector impact and offer expanded support to the city’s burgeoning community of social entrepreneurs. With an additional priority sector in water management, Propeller has extended the application deadline to August 1, 2014.

NORA seeks commercial ideas for vacant lots

New Orleans City Business 30 May 2014

New Orleans City Business covers NORA’s second partnership with Propeller and joint launch of PitchNOLA: Lots of Progress. This year’s competition focuses on rehabilitating vacant commercial lots. NORA’s targets lots are valued from $3,500 to $100,000 and were “selected based on the opportunities to foster new development.”

PitchNOLA finalists target health

NolaVie 23 April 2014

Don’t you hate it when Louisiana leads the rankings … in all the wrong categories? Local social incubator Propeller thinks it’s time for this to change. The entreprenurial organization’s PitchNOLA social innovation competition turns its eyes to health and fitness in its fifth year.

PitchNOLA to target health disparities

New Orleans CityBusiness 20 February 2014

Propeller’s upcoming PitchNOLA competition will focus on businesses developing health and fitness products. Sponsored by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the competition will award $10,000 in startup funding and technical assistance toward reducing health disparities, such as the high obesity and HIV/ AIDS rates, in New Orleans.

2013

Wannabe Social Entrepreneur? How to Navigate the Growing World of Impact Accelerators

Entrepreneur 20 November 2013

New Orleans accelerator, Propeller, for example, leverages its local and national policy expertise to help entrepreneurs make an impact on their local community. “Every one of our fellows hits a policy challenge at some point, and we have the resources to support them,” explains Andrea Chen, Propeller’s executive director. “We believe that for social change to happen, grassroots entrepreneurs and policy need to align.”

Creators of social campaigns will take their ideas into competition at PitchNOLA on Tuesday

The Times-Picayune 18 November 2013

Ten ventures seeking to address social causes will vie for prize money at the annual PitchNOLA contest Tuesday in the Freeman Auditorium at Tulane University. The event, produced by the university and the Propeller entrepreneurship incubator, includes a $5,000 prize awarded by a panel of judges after hearing a series of idea pitches and an “audience favorite” prize set by a vote and cash donations from attendees.

Using contests to rehabilitate vacant lots

Center for Community Progress 5 September 2013

In the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans, David Young had been running his Capstone Community Gardens for three years before he heard about the city’s PitchNOLA 2012: Lots of Progress competition. Young supplies free food from the Gardens to a dozen families in what he describes as a post-Katrina “food desert,” but had received many calls for fruit. Lots of Progress awarded him first place, including his choice of two among 49 lots controlled by the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA) to plant an orchard of 30-plus fruit trees: oranges, grapefruit, lemons, limes, bananas and figs.

NORA-Funded Building is New Home for Propeller Incubator

NORA Newsletter 26 August 2013

“As a part of our mission to celebrate and revitalize New Orleans’ neighborhoods with catalytic public investments, NORA has helped fund[…] the renovations of several key buildings near the intersection of Washington and Broad. Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation is one of the newest neighbors in the Broadmoor Community, with its new offices at 4035 Washington Avenue. Propeller is a resource for upstart businesses—particularly nonprofit and socially-minded companies— to help them to achieve organizational and financial stability.”

Shared Kitchen in Shreveport Creates Some NOLA Buzz

Eater NOLA 26 July 2013

Today in the annals of intriguing ideas, let us all get more acquainted with the Shreveport-Bossier City Kitchen Incubator, a Kickstarter project proposed by a nonprofit shared workspace called Cohab. Cohab, much like Propeller and Beta in New Orleans, offers nascent entrepreneurs and start-up companies office space…

Latin American business students counseled New Orleans start-ups through Capital One-Tulane partners

NOLA.com 26 July 2013

A collaboration between Capital One Bank, Tulane University and the Propeller incubator for organizations promoting social causes resulted in business students from Guatemala and Panama counseling New Orleans start-ups on their financial management. The Latin American master’s of finance and management students visited last week to advise Propeller itself and some of its tenants.

BioFund reaches $1 million in small business loans for Hurricane Katrina-impacted parishes

NOLA.com 18 July 2013

A low-interest loan program for small businesses called the BioFund and run by the New Orleans BioInnovation Center business incubator has surpassed the mark of issuing $1 million in financing for entrepreneurs. ….. The BioFund’s first beneficiary was the New Orleans maker of the Iconic health drink and a BioInnovation Center tenant, Be Well Nutrition. It went on to help the incubator for socially minded entrepreneurs, Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation, complete its new building in Broadmoor along with Green Coast Enterprises, an environmentally oriented real estate developer. The Propeller building opened in January.

Capital One Partners with Tulane and Propeller, Announces Plan to Help Local Small Businesses

Silicon Bayou News 16 July 2013

Capital One Bank has partnered with Tulane University and Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation to launch a service project benefiting local small businesses in New Orleans. Project organizers have enlisted help from fifty-four international Master of Finance and Management students and a team of eight analysts from Capital One to strategize and create financial solutions for the businesses.

The Rise of the Public Interest Incubator

Next City 10 July 2013

Writer Bill Bradley examines how Incubator models are being used nation-wide for community development. Propeller is listed as an example of a non-profit whose mission is to incubate social entrepreneurs, thereby helping the community in areas of healthy food access and affordable housing.

Applications Now Being Accepted for Propeller’s 2013-2014 Social Venture Accelerator

Silicon Bayou News 18 June 2013

After a successful second year of its Accelerator, Propeller is ready to bring in another 12 to 15 social ventures. To date, Propeller has incubated 21 new ventures (nine the first year and 12 in the last class), which have collectively generated $5.4 million in revenues and created 45 new jobs. The Social Venture Accelerator is a 10-month program designed to create socially-and-community-driven ventures.

Propeller Accepting Applications for Accelerator Program

City Business 12 June 2013

Propeller, the business incubator for social entrepreneurship, is now taking applications for next year’s Social Venture Accelerator. The 10-month program is designed to help socially conscious, for-profit and non-profit startups become operational and financially stable. Propeller accepts between 12 to 15 early stage ventures each year. Article includes the link to apply.

Meet the 12 Propeller Social Venture Accelerator Fellows

Silicon Bayou News 3 June 2013

Propeller recruits between 10 and 15 early-stage ventures each year to participate in the accelerator program. The Propeller Gala, which was held last Thursday evening at the Propeller Incubator, gave this year’s 12 companies a chance to pitch to crowd. Past and present Accelerator companies have propelled job creation, wealth, and scalable social impact. Beyond that, now over 40 organizations and 75 individuals have signed on as members of the Incubator. It’s currently the only coworking space in the city for socially minded businesses.

Out To Lunch With Kind-Hearted Capitalists

89.9 WWNO 3 June 2013

Peter Ricchuiti explores the new business paradigm of cooperation vs. competition on this week’s Out to Lunch with Andrea Chen and Reid Stone. Andrea’s socially conscious business incubator Propeller: A Force For Social Innovation takes an entrepreneur with a good idea and turns it into good for the community. Reid’s marketing company Hero Farm takes those socially conscious businesses out into the world.

Andrea Chen of Propeller: 5 Tips for Launching a Social Venture

OPEN Forum 30 April 2013

Post-Katrina New Orleans is a hotbed of entrepreneurial activity for a wide variety of young companies. Co-working organizations like The Idea Village and Launch Pad all contribute to a vibrant ecosystem for startups. Propeller, the latest rising-star accelerator and co-working company, is feeding off this momentum, and serving a fast-growing niche in New Orleans: social entrepreneurs.

Coworking: Is It Just A Fad Or The Future Of Business?

Forbes 25 April 2013

The rise in coworking spaces around the world have left more people yearning for work environments that are collaborative, inspiring, and stimulating. The Propeller Incubator is featured as New Orleans’ only co-working office for socially-minded businesses where peer-to-peer learning and collaboration are the norm.

New Orleans Preparing to Host its First Startup Weekend Business Building Marathon

NOLA.com 5 April 2013

In a first-time event for New Orleans, about 50 aspiring entrepreneurs will gather Friday, form teams and spend 54 hours over the weekend molding ideas for new businesses. The event, called Startup Weekend, originated with a non-profit organization in Seattle and has unfolded in almost 500 cities across the country and internationally. The participants will gather Friday night at the Propeller Incubator in Broadmoor.

Business Pitch Contests Booming in New Orleans, But They’re Only an Early Step, Experts Say

NOLA.com 29 March 2013

The custom of holding business pitch contests, where entrepreneurs with ideas vie for prizes before audiences and panels of judges, seems to have reached mania levels in New Orleans. Eleven of them unfolded in and around the Entrepreneur Week business festival this month. Propeller’s annual PitchNOLA competition, where community members pitch their ideas for funding and start-up support, is among the competitions offered. Last year $27,500 was given away to six socially- or environmentally-minded ventures.

Propeller to Host Startup Weekend Pitch Event

New Orleans City Business 20 March 2013

Entrepreneurs are invited to participate in a weekend pitch challenge to be held at the Propeller Incubator next month. Startup Weekend events have taken place in cities all over the world as a way to bring entrepreneurs together to pitch ideas and learn the basics of founding startups and launching successful business ventures. The New Orleans event will take place from April 5-7 and is open to designers, developers, marketing strategists and all types of entrepreneurs. Participants will have three days to develop and pitch their ideas. On Friday, they will form teams, their ideas and plan for the rest of weekend. On Saturday, they will meet with coaches from local business incubators to develop their business plan, and on Sunday the entrepreneurs will have to put the finishing touches on their products and presentations. Propellor is based at 4035 Washington Ave., in the Broadmoor neighborhood. For more information visit the event website. Reporter Maria Clark can be reached at maria.clark@nopg.com.

Super Nola: Insider’s tour of New Orleans

Los Angeles Times 1 February 2013

The Superbowl in the middle of Mardi Gras is bringing a steady steam of visitors to New Orleans for four weeks straight. The LA Times gives tourists the run down of how to make their time action packed with the best New Orleans has to offer. Propeller Fellows, Louisiana Lost Lands, is mentioned on page two as a wetlands tour “worth the price.”

Buses to Offer Dental Services

The Advocate 10 January 2013

Smiles2Geaux, a venture in the Propeller Accelerator Program, will offer free dental care to youth and the elderly by bus. The kickoff event of Smiles2Geaux, led by the organization’s founder Dr. Yaye Sarr, and Andrea Chen, Executive Director of Propeller, explained how a mobile dental clinic model will address the staggering rate of untreated cavities in New Orleans. Read Full Article

Incubator for socially minded entrepreneurs launches in New Orleans

NOLA.com 4 January 2013

The Propeller Incubator opened its doors on January 2, 2013, to house socially minded startups and small businesses in a co-working office facility. Article covers the contribution and influence of Andrea Chen, Founder and Executive Director of Propeller, in making this new initiative possible, as well as profiling the tenants of the Incubator. Learn more about who Propeller is, the impact it is making, and how.

2012

Ruby Slipper Brings Brunch to Burgundy

NOLA Defender 19 November 2012

Kevin Morgan-Rothschild and Doug Jacobs, Propeller Fellows and co-founders of Aquaponic Modular Production Systems (AMPS), will be providing fresh produce to the kitchen of The Ruby Slipper’s third location, which just opened on the corner of Touro in the Marigny. Owners Eric and Jennifer Weishaupt will support local farms and green-minded projects by partnering with AMPS to receive fresh herbs and tomatoes.

Propeller Shares Pro Bono Impact on A Billion + Change Live Webinar

A Billion + Change 4 September 2012

Recorded Webinar: “Hurricane Katrina Seven Years Later: How Skills-Based Service is Supporting a New Orleans Renaissance.” Guest speakers include Patricia Salas Pineda, VP of Toyota USA Foundation, Zack Rosenburg, Director of St. Bernard Project, Geoff Coats, Principal and Creative Director at Zande + Newman Design and Julia Stewart, Marketing Associate at Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation. Discussion covered how skills-based volunteers are being used to support long-term recovery efforts in communities.

A Look Into America’s Fastest Growing City

Forbes 26 July 2012

Data from the U.S. Census Bureau proves that New Orleans is now the fastest growing city in America. Propeller is highlighted for its “Direction & Leadership” in drawing new talent to the city and helping to launch new environmentally and socially-minded start ups.

End of the Line: Losing Louisiana?

Garden & Gun 1 July 2012

Propeller Fellows, Marie Gould and Lindsay Pick, co-founders of Louisiana Lost Lands Environmental Tours, take Garden & Gun Author, Roy Blount Jr., for an educational outboard catamaran tour of the wetlands. Among the sights seen were fields of irises and tiger lilies, roseate spoonbills, and a “hulking corroded pair of left-behind diesel oil pumps.”

Female entrepreneurs are making an impact in 2012

NolaVIE 10 January 2012

Andrea Chen, Executive Director and founding member of Propeller, has quickly expanded her non-profit over the past few years with the creation of several competitions and programs that help social entrepreneurs grow their financially sustainable, innovative, results-focused ventures. This year, the program will continue to expand with the opening of HUB NOLA.

2011

The 2011 Silicon Bayou 100: Alphabetical

Siliconbayounews.com 5 December 2011

Propeller has been selected for the 2011 Silicon Bayou 100. These 111 individuals (some are on the list in teams of 2 or 3) were nominated and selected for the 2011 Silicon Bayou 100 for their efforts over the past year in growing their own companies, supporting the companies of others, and being outstanding ambassadors representing Silicon Bayou around the world.

A Viewpoint: News with a Twisted Perspective

NOLA.com 14 November 2011

Like the Idea Village, Propeller connects innovators with the resources necessary to start and build a business through different accelerator and mentor programs. However, Propeller emphasizes helping social entrepreneurs — individuals who want to start and grow financially sustainable, innovative, results-focused ventures.

2010

2009

Best of New Orleans: 40 Under 40

Gambit.com 2 November 2009

Propeller Fellow, Dr. Arwen Podesta, is nominated for the Best of New Orleans Gambit Award: “40 Under 40” for her psychiatry practice working with the Unity for the Homeless, and for serving as the medical director of Odyssey House Louisiana, where she treats patients, particularly those with substance-abuse issues.

2008

40 Under 40

Gambit 4 November 2008

Andrea Chen, executive director, was nominated to Gambit’s annual look at some of the young people who are making remarkable contributions to the New Orleans metropolitan region.