Why Launch NOLA?
New Orleans is bursting with entrepreneurial efforts. Many are working hard to bring economic revival to one of America's greatest cities. People love New Orleans for her food, music, culture, architecture, people and more. However, many who are vital in New Orleans being so cherished are often left out and cut off from human ecosystem that is benefiting most from the rapid urban renewal. For us, it's not an "either or" but "a both and" so we are are dedicated to providing business training, support & affordable resources to underserved entrepreneurs, empowering them to create sustainable, successful business in New Orleans.
Entrepreneurial activity is 56% higher here than the national average (Brookings Institute, 3/14). Yet, many people in our city have roadblocks in their lives that make the daunting task of starting their own small business overwhelming. They are often cut off from the human ecosystem that is benefiting most from the rapid urban renewal. Microbusinesses (fewer than 5 employees including the owner) make up 92% of all U.S. businesses and directly contribute more than 26 million jobs. “While microbusinesses are present in all neighborhoods and in all industry sectors of the U.S. economy, they are an especially significant economic activity for those demographic groups that have not always shared fully in the economic good times and have suffered most during times of recession. These groups include individuals who lack the capital to launch larger-scale enterprises, such as people of color and women, especially women heads of household…Microbusinesses can also be vital for income and wealth creation in underserved communities. In 2010, for instance, female-headed family households in which at least one person owned a microbusiness generated $8,000 to $13,000 more in annual household income than similar households without a business owner.” (Association for Enterprise Opportunity BIGGER THAN YOU THINK: The Economic Impact of Microbusiness in the United States)
We feel that with some basic training, a supportive community and connections to various resources and services roadblocks can be overcome. As men and women succeed in starting and growing their own small business, dignity is affirmed, lives are changed, families are change and communities are transformed.