INNOV8 Acadiana Announces Business Accelerator Following EDA Grant

Louisiana’s Acadiana region is getting a brand new business accelerator program following a grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA), totaling $700,000 to several organizations in the area. The Accelerate Acadiana business accelerator will support the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Acadiana, an eight parish region in Louisiana.

The grant went to Winrock International, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and the Community Foundation of Acadiana (CFA) to fund the accelerator. Additionally, UL Lafayette, Community Foundation of Acadiana and Opportunity Machine contributed $754,000 in program services and office space.

The announcement was made this week by INNOV8 Acadiana, an organization dedicated to accelerating the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem along with Louisiana Economic Development Secretary Don Pierson and CFA.

“This is an exciting addition to the economic development landscape of the Acadiana Region,” said Secretary Pierson. “Business incubators can broaden economies by nurturing new companies, supporting research and development, and fostering innovation.”

INNOV8 plans to launch two $400,000 investment funds that will provide seed capital to each of the companies chosen for the accelerator program. Both programs will run for 14 weeks, providing technical assistance to the selected startups.

“Accelerate Acadiana will spotlight our region as a nationally-recognized entrepreneurship hub, further showcasing Acadiana as a great place for innovative new companies to launch and thrive,” said INNOV8 Director Pete Prados.