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Lafayette Duo Wins Statewide Entrepreneurship Competition

Lafayette Duo Wins Statewide Entrepreneurship Competition

The high schoolers’ nervousness was palpable, even after a week of practicing their business pitches in the theater at the Opportunity Machine, Acadiana’s premier business incubator. In one- and two-person teams, the students from Acadiana High School and Northside High School, impressed the judges in Lafayette’s first “Trust Your Crazy Ideas Challenge” sponsored by Junior Achievement.

All the work leading up to the competition Tuesday evening paid off for seven students who were survivors from earlier Lafayette competitions that whittled down the number of contestants. 

 

Taylor Randell and Shariss Goodley,

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Downtown Welcomes New Tech Talent

Downtown Welcomes New Tech Talent

When John Miller decided to start The Integration Group of Americas (TIGA) in February 2017, he had the support of his family, a veteran business partner, and a few years of experience working in the tech-industrial space.

He also had the support of the Opportunity Machine, a business incubator whose sole purpose is helping fledgling startups find the road to success and stay on it.

One year and 40 employees later, TIGA graduated from the OM at the Lafayette Immersive Technology Enterprise (LITE) into a private office at 201 West Vermilion St.

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Local Tech Company Pivots Business Model to Make Video Games for Fortune 500 Companies

Local Tech Company Pivots Business Model to Make Video Games for Fortune 500 Companies

For four years, buddies Shane Istre and Jason Perkins have navigated a road that for most business upstarts would be loaded with unknowns: where to find investors; when should sales become a priority; should R&D be constant; how much to charge for goods or services?

Two years ago Shane and Jason moved their business into the Opportunity Machine – Acadiana’s leading business incubator. In August they enrolled in Accelerate Acadiana, a 12-week boot camp at the OM for some of our region’s most promising entrepreneurs. Both decisions have been pivotal to the company’s current success and long-range goals.
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Local Organizations Power Acadiana Accelerator

Local Organizations Power Acadiana Accelerator

Accelerate Acadiana was financed by a $700,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration, and administered by Winrock International. Some of the money was pooled in an investment fund for participating companies. A group of south Louisiana-based accredited investors – Acadiana Angels – also bought equity in the fledgling companies.

An additional $754,000 in program services and office space was provided by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, the Opportunity Machine, and INNOV8, a Community Foundation of Acadiana nonprofit that nurtures innovative companies and individuals.

“We’ve got all the ingredients for innovators to come

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