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 here, to accelerate and to really flourish. Plus we’ve got generational DNA of entrepreneurs who can mentor teams like these to go through acceleration and take their businesses to the next level.” – Pete Prados, director of INNOV8
“What the Opportunity Machine has done is helped us clarify what is important, what is that one thing you have to do every day to move the needle forward.” – Wayne Nix, co-owner of Rnvention
“We’re taking this knowledge that we’ve learned … and we’re applying it to logistics for the people we work closely with.” – Tara Guidry, co-owner of Cajun Crate
“Fitness is our passion. But to turn it into a business takes a whole other group of skills. The Opportunity Machine and Accelerate Acadiana have propelled us, given us that path along with guidance and mentors.” – Krystal Chevis, co-owner of Correxercise
“The magic of putting us all together, and seeing how our businesses are kind of similar and how we can help each other, it’s just phenomenal.” – Nicole Johnson, owner of CPR 2Geaux