The Idea Village

FAQs

GENERAL

How much does The Idea Village charge for its services?

The Idea Village is an independent 501(c)3 non-profit organization; we do not charge fees for any of our services.


I am not from New Orleans. What program(s) can I apply for?

If you are an entrepreneur who is based outside of the Greater New Orleans region, you are welcome to participate in our educational programs including IDEAinstitute and New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, but all other programs, including IDEAxcelerator, are strictly for entrepreneurs with businesses located in New Orleans..


What parishes does The Idea Village serve?

We serve entrepreneurs in the following parishes: Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and Washington. However, there are some exceptions to this rule! IDEAinstitute and most public events during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week are open to all entrepreneurs regardless of geographic location.


Does The Idea Village offer internships?

Yes, we do offer internships on a rolling basis. Please email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) for more information.


Can I stop by your office to say hello?

If you would like to meet with our team, please access the Entrepreneur Portal to register for information sessions and to learn more about current programming and sessions that are open to the public.  We are happy to consider taking an appointment, but we are a small team with a busy schedule so it is always best to please contact us in advance to schedule a meeting.


I’m concerned that if I apply, you won’t protect my intellectual property. Should I be worried about this?

We’re certainly not in the business of stealing ideas and we will not show your application to anyone outside of The Idea Village and our strategic advisors. Each year, we see hundreds of applications and many of them include similar ideas. For this, and other practical reasons, please do not ask us to sign an NDA. Our application does not ask for your “secret sauce” and there is no reason you have to disclose this to us if you’re not comfortable doing so. We hope that our reputation speaks for itself on this topic.


Will you take equity in my business?

No, we do not take equity in any of the businesses that we work with. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit that provides all of its services free of charge for entrepreneurs.


Why do you need my personal income, race and ethnicity information?

As a 501(c)3 non-profit that is federally funded, we are required to report on the demographics of the entrepreneurs that we serve. This information is reported in aggregate and is not used to individually assess you or your venture.


I have been assisted by The Idea Village before. Can I re-apply?

Absolutely, ideas and businesses are constantly evolving and progressing.  We encourage applications from any entrepreneur who believes they will benefit from our programs and services.


Does The Idea Village focus on specific industries?

Entrepreneurs from all industries are encouraged to engage in the programming that takes place during the Entrepreneur Season. Our Strategic Challenges do elevate entrepreneurs from specific industries and/or sectors; however, these industries vary from year to year.


Does my company have to be profitable to be eligible?

No, we support entrepreneurs from the idea phase all the way through the revenue generation and later-stage growth phases.


I would like to sign up for New Orleans Entrepreneur Week 2014, what should I do?

The 6th New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW) is taking place March 22-28, 2014 and registration for this year’s event will open in mid-January. In the meantime, please sign up for our newsletter to receive event updates throughout the Entrepreneur Season.


Does The Idea Village offer office space, and if so how can I go about obtaining an office?

No, we do not provide office space.  However, our building mate Launch Pad does! Contact them to inquire about office space in The IP Building, one of the largest entrepreneurial hubs in New Orleans.


I’m interested in IDEAcorps, how can I sign up?

IDEAcorps is The Idea Village’s nationally recognized MBA service learning program that connects university resources to provide direct strategic consulting to New Orleans entrepreneurs during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week. IDEAcorps is invitation-only program, but if you are interested in participating as a student team in NOEW 2014, scheduled from March 22-28, 2014, please contact Sara Thomas at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  explaining why you and/or your school should be considered.


What if I have more questions that are not listed here?

If your questions are not answered in this FAQ, please email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) for more information.


ENTREPRENEUR PORTAL

Why should I register for the Entrepreneur Portal?

The Entrepreneur Portal is the access point for all of our program applications. If you are interested in participating in any of The Idea Village’s programs, you must register with the Entrepreneur Portal. If you are only interested in receiving email updates, please sign up for our mailing list.


Help! I forgot my password!

No worries! Simply click the “Forgot your password” link. This will reset your password and will automatically send you an email with a temporary password and log in instructions.


I registered with The Idea Village but never received a reply with a link to set up an account. What should I do?

We are increasing the functionality of our Entrepreneur Portal. As soon as that process is complete, we will send you an email with your username and password.


I do not see any programs on the Entrepreneur Portal; all I see is a 2014 Entrepreneur Profile?

Completion of the Entrepreneur Profile form is necessary to access enrollment for any of our programs. Once you have completed the 2014 Entrepreneur Profile form you will be able to access all program-specific applications on the Entrepreneur Portal. Please see our application process for more details.


Does The Idea Village share my data?

All information submitted to The Idea Village is considered private and confidential and will not be released to any third party.


IDEAxcelerator

Can I submit multiple business ideas for IDEAxcelerator?

We would prefer that you submit one business or idea for the IDEAxcelerator program application.  So funnel all of those great ideas into one strong venture that speaks to you as an entrepreneur and the viability of your potential business.


When will I know if I’ve been accepted into IDEAxcelerator?

Entrepreneurs that have been officially selected to participate in IDEAxcelerator will receive notification no later than September 27th.


Do I have to quit my job if I am accepted into IDEAxcelerator?

While we do seek entrepreneurs who are fully committed to their venture, it is not a requirement that you quit your job if you are accepted into the IDEAxcelerator program.


How do you choose the companies you accept into IDEAxcelerator?

Initial qualification criteria includes being organized as a for-profit venture, located in the Greater New Orleans 10-parish region, generating less than $1M in revenue. Entrepreneurs who meet all qualification criteria are then evaluated based on their application responses versus a robust list of assessment criteria. For further information regarding qualification and assessment criteria, please click here.


When is the deadline to apply and what’s the overall timeline for the IDEAxcelerator program?

The application deadline for IDEAxcelerator is August 23, 2013. However, we encourage you to submit your application early, as interviews will begin on August 5th and appointments for qualified candidates are issued on a rolling basis. The 2014 IDEAxcelerator cohort will be announced no later than September 27, 2013.


FUNDING

Can The Idea Village provide me with a grant to start my business?

Grant funding is only available to select entrepreneurs participating in Capital Village programming including Strategic Challenges and The Big Idea.


Can your organization help me obtain a small business loan?

The Idea Village does not provide small business loans.  However, through select programs, The Idea Village helps connect entrepreneurs to capital resources including banks, alternative lenders, and investors.


Will The Idea Village give me capital?

The Idea Village does not make direct equity investments.  However, we do provide resources that can assist in preparing you for a pitch for capital investment. The Idea Village does provide grant funding, but grants are only available to select entrepreneurs participating in Capital Village programming including Strategic Challenges and The Big Idea.


Partners