Week in Review: October 28, 2013

The Silicon Bayou has been buzzing with tech and entrepreneurial news. Here are the most popular stories published on Silicon Bayou News in the past seven days:


Entrepreneur and Former LSU Baseball Player Launches App Combining Sports and Social Media

Sqor is a socially-connected app that lets fans compete against friends, publically support favorite athletes and teams and connect earn bragging rights on Facebook and Twitter while also connecting to sports news sites such as ESPN. The app is a groundbreaking new digital sports platform that puts social sports networking, video, photos and original athlete-produced content all in one place. The app has been ranked in the top 10 downloads among free sports apps in the Apple Store since debuting in June 2013.

Global ‘NEXT’ Program, Powered by Google for Entrepreneurs, Debuts in New Orleans

NEXT is a curriculum rooted in Steve Blank’s Customer Development methodology, powered by Google for Entrepreneurs and designed to help startups validate business ideas and build a scalable company. During the five week program, teams do around 20 hours of week a work outside of class in addition to the weekly three hour sessions. “The point of NEXT is to work on primarily developing customers and doing customer discovery,” said Co-organizer Elliot Adams. Week 1 in New Orleans kicked off last Wednesday with the Customer Discovery focus. Week 2 topic is Big Markets, Big Ideas, Week 3 is Fundability, Week 4 is Pitching Your Idea and Week 5 is Go to Market.

Move Over MIT: Tulane BioMed Students Win ASAIO First Annual Student Design Competition

Scott Kleinpeter and his team of four fellow Tulane students and biomedical engineering majors (Gabriela Nunez, Seth Vines, Nick Chedid, and Chris Cover) won the first annual Student Design Competition for their project, “Development of a Novel Instrument for Use in Percutaneous Dilatational Tracheostomy.” The project was presented during the 59th annual ASAIO (formerly known as the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs) Annual Conference in Chicago. The New Orleans-based, student-led team spent over six months designing a better endotrachael tube as part of their capstone focused on a medical technology.

Be Well Nutrition Expands Distribution of Healthy Lifestyle Beverage ICONIC

New Orleans-based Be Well Nutrition, the nutritional beverage startup, has announced the expanded distribution of their healthy lifestyle beverage ICONIC. The naturally filling and low calorie beverage, designed for on-the-go consumers, is now available in additional locations across the Southeast region.

Greater New Orleans Businesses Pitch at “Greaux GNO” Business Plan Competition

Finalists pitched last week (October 18) at the first “Greaux GNO” business plan competition created by Capital One Bank, in partnership with the Louisiana Small Business Development Center Greater New Orleans Region and the Urban League of Greater New Orleans. The competition was designed to help grow small businesses and create jobs throughout the region. Finalists included: 4D Supplements, LLC; Be Well Nutrition, Inc.; Bonne Terre Landscaping; Cook Me Somethin’ Mister, LLC; Dyverse City; Elite Custom Cleaning Services, LLC; Louisiana Sisters; Mondo Murals & Design; and Professional Design Group, Inc.

Baton-Rouge Data Company Venyu Expands Facility

Venyu Solutions Inc., which has been a pioneer in offsite backup, has announced the expansion of their data center in the Bon Carré Business Park in Baton Rouge. “We’re adding to everything we do,” said Brian Vandegrift, executive vice president of sales and innovation at Venyu. “Cloud computing, backup services, power and cooling.” Venyu was founded in 1989 and is currently headquartered in Baton Rouge with roughly 75 employees.

Meet 4.0 Schools’ Launch Program Entrepreneurs

4.0’s Launch Program is designed for those committed to launching a new product, service, or internal venture. These people have already put their idea into the real world and have the most potential for disrupting education. The ideas don’t have to be incorporated or have revenue or donors. Meet some of the newest Launch entrepreneurs here.

365 Connect Takes Home Coveted International W³ Silver Level Award

New Orleans-based online technology platform for the multifamily industry, 365 Connect, has won the international W³ Award for their Mobile Leasing and Resident Technology platforms. The company received the silver level award from the International Academy of the Visual Arts, an organization that received thousands of entries for this year’s competition recognizing outstanding websites, web marketing, web video, and mobile apps created by some of the best interactive agencies, designers, and creators worldwide.

Crowdfunding – Investor participation – What does it mean?

In his latest post, Mark Lewis discusses the benefits of crowdfunding and finding success in the process. “By removing the ban on general solicitation, the SEC will bring a wealth of crowdfunding advertisements to cities across America. While currently only a fraction of Americans will have the opportunity to invest, the rest of us will be able to evaluate the projects and watch this new fundraising platform develop over time.  As it continues to take root, the tool that emerged as a fundraising platform for free merchandise could cause quite a stir in the investing industry in the years to come.”