Prepare for rapid growth by leveraging powerful mentors.

IDEAx is a 6-month accelerator program for New Orleans-based founders focused on creating scalable and fundable businesses. Central to the program is a curated network of global business experts available to participating founders.

Applications for our 2017-2018 IDEAx accelerator program have closed. Meet the new cohort here.

The Details

  • Perks of the Program

    IDEAx participants have exclusive access to the following:

    • Coaching: Each IDEAx participant will meet weekly with the program's dedicated Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR), who will help them hone in on key problem areas and action items for their business as well as navigate and prioritize The Idea Village's mentor network.
    • Mentorship: Central to the development of companies going through IDEAx is surrounding them with great mentors whose experience they can learn from. The mentor network is a curated group of the best local and national business experts committed to helping founders accelerate immediate and long-term growth.
    • Peer Learning: A Bootcamp kicks off the IDEAx program, gathering the full cohort together with alumni who share with the new founders what they learned during their time in the program and how to best leverage the weeks ahead. There are also regular cohort dinners, happy hours, and workshops throughout the program to provide participants the opportunity to share experiences and learn from each other in a more social setting.
    • Exposure: IDEAx provides a showcase opportunity for participants during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW), which provides exposure to The Idea Village's network of mentors, investors, professionals, and media. We also educate participants on how to pitch stories to and interact with various outlets as a part of the program’s curriculum.
    • Other Perks: $10K credit and support for hosting through Amazon Web Services, 90% scholarship on HubSpot’s growth stack software, 10% off prices at The Shop co-working space, access to pro bono professional services including legal, and more!
  • Eligibility

    In order to be eligible for IDEAx, your business must:

    • Be organized as a for-profit.
    • Be located in the 10-parish Greater New Orleans region (Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and Washington).
    • Generate less than $1 million in annual revenue.
    • Have fewer than 5 full-time employees outside of the founder/founding team.

  • Selection Criteria

    The IDEAx selection process is meant to assess companies across a wide range of criteria. The goal is to identify founders of integrity and grit with highly scalable ventures who are committed to New Orleans. Specific areas of evaluation include:


    Business Model/Revenue Plan

    • A viable and defensible business model
    • Potential to scale outside of New Orleans market

    Existing Market & Product Fit

    • Strategy for accessing market and gaining traction
    • Captures a substantial market size
    • Demonstrate the competitive advantage and understanding of competitive landscape
    • Pre-launch: proven market research and timeline for gaining traction
    • Post-launch: proof of concept through first customers, users, revenue, etc.

    Data & Key Metrics

    • Demonstrate traction via growth, revenue, and business relevant data


    Founder/founding team must have:

    • Passion and dedication to making New Orleans a better place
    • Demonstrated leadership and domain knowledge
    • Relevant skills and experience to allow the business to grow
    • Appropriate temperament and drive to succeed
    • Openness to feedback and coachability

    Team Size

    • Can be single founder or founding team
    • If single founder: must demonstrate extensive skill in the primary area of need for the business at present and a plan for finding new team members/what roles will need to come in what priority. Advisory board a plus.
    • If team: 2-4 people preferred. Must have key areas of need covered. Must have a CEO/key decision-maker determined and clear roles established for each team member (or that must be a key component they wish to work on through the program).
    • Key decision-maker for the company (typically CEO) must be available to be present at all required program meetings and events

  • Selection Process

    As candidates submit applications, our team reviews them on a rolling basis and invites select candidates for an initial interview.

    First-round Interview: Applicants who are aligned with IDEAx eligibility criteria may be invited in for an initial interview to discuss their business, background, and goals if The Idea Village team feels a first interview is necessary. Not all candidates will be interviewed. If you are not asked to do a first-round interview, it is likely because we felt that your application provided enough information for us to make a determination about your application status.

    Due Diligence: The Idea Village will do some research, follow up with the applicant’s references, test assumptions, etc. as needed to make a determination.

    Selection Day: Select candidates will be invited back to interview with a committee of experts and supporters from our network who will assess their character, business viability, and fit for the program.

    Selection: Strategic committee chairs will work with The Idea Village team and the dedicated IDEAx Entrepreneur-in-Residence to select up to 15 founders to join the program. All applicants will be notified of their selection status in September. We are happy to provide feedback to entrepreneurs who are not selected, and to direct them to other programs run by The Idea Village (and/or by our partners) that may be a good fit.

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