New York’s ‘Take the H.E.L.M.’ Competition Attracts New Orleans Startups

Take the Helm NYCTake the H.E.L.M., a competition created by New York City Economic Development Corporation, is all about transforming and expanding upon the already thriving business in Lower Manhattan. To make the location even more attractive to startups, the organization was offering up over $1.25 million in cash prizes for the lucky H.E.L.M. 2.0 winners and runner-ups.

Over 300 companies applied for the second year of the competition. The selection committee narrowed it down to 19 finalists, including New Orleans-based Dinner Lab and 4.0 Schools.

“Take the HELM is all about the future – the future of Lower Manhattan, its ongoing transformation, and the creative, technology and international businesses that will soon call it home,” said Arthur Levitt, Chairman of the Selection Committee and Former Chairman, Securities and Exchange Commission.

Lower Manhattan is attractive to all types of businesses including those in the creative and technology sectors.

Dinner Lab and 4.0 Schools competed in the “Domestic / New to New York” category. The category was designed to help non New York-based companies establish roots in Lower Manhattan and continue the neighborhood’s appeal to the world’s best and brightest.

The three other categories were International, Creative and Tech. One winner from each category received a total of $250,000, payable upon occupancy in Lower Manhattan office space as reimbursement for rent payments or working capital grants. Runner ups in each category received $50,000 payable under the same conditions as the grand prize.

Dinner Lab was the runner up in the Domestic / New to New York category. Dinner Lab is a mix between a pop-up restaurant and a vacation, designed to connect undiscovered chefs and foodies across the country to create a dining experience unlike any other. The win will help the company expand to New York, one of the company’s nine new markets after launching in New Orleans.