This year the New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW) welcomed the New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University as a presenting sponsor alongside its main event, the IDEApitch Winter Showcase, as recently announced in a Tulane University press release.
This inaugural IDEApitch Winter Showcase is a free virtual event that is open to the public with a live broadcast of the event taking place at Commander’s Palace, and it includes exclusive interviews, fireside chats, and its namesake, IDEApitch, a pitch competition featuring three top-notch local business founders competing for a $50,000 investment prize for their individual emerging startup.
The event is produced by The Idea Village, a New Orleans-based 501(c)3 nonprofit, whose mission was “founded on the principle of supporting regional startups and the big thinkers that power them.” David Barksdale, the chairman of The Idea Village, remarked on the enticing mainstage event by saying, “IDEApitch is an annual snapshot of the incredible up-and-coming startups in our region, and we’re excited to support these founders in 2020 by pivoting to a virtual, live-streaming format. We look forward to seeing what these companies have built to date and awarding the winning company an investment prize of $50,000.”
In addition to its competition that’s spiritually similar to ABC Networks’ Shark Tank, The IDEApitch Winter Showcase will also feature an exclusive interviews with Walter Isaacsson and Steve Case. Isaacson is the Leonard Lauder Professor of American History and Values and a co-chair of the New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University.Isaacson will be interviewed as well as internet pioneer Steve Case who is Chairman and CEO of Revolution LLC, co-founder of AOL (American Online) and the author of The Third Wave: An Entrepreneur’s Vision of the Future.
Following the interviews, viewers will be privy to the 2020 IDEApitch taking place in the courtyard of Commander’s Palace with the three presenting companies being in position for rapid growth in the greater New Orleans region. These three businesses presenting an 8-minute presentation of their business are DOCPACE, Gilded, and Unlock’d, and all three had been selected from The Idea Village’s VILLAGEx 2020 accelerator program.
In addition to the enticing interviews, there will also be a fireside chat with Ti Martin, co-proprietor of Commander’s PAlace on how the landmark New Orleans culinary institution pivoted during the COVID-19 crisis. In a similar pivot, the NOEW, which was supposed to be held earlier in the year, back in March, had altered its plans to be a December-based virtual event. This change from the annual, week-long in person event to a virtual one was done so that The Idea Village could ensure that the three participating founders in the IDEApitch Winter Showcase would still have the opportunity to do so before 2020 ended, thus keeping the spirit of competition alive.
Just before NOEW opened its live-streamed gates, The New Orleans Book Festival had begun the weekend prior to NOEW, and due to the fact that both iconic New Orleans events shared an overlap in incredible thought leaders, the partnership between the collaboration between the two was a natural fit.
Founder of The New Orleans Book Festival and co-chair of The New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University, Cheryl Landrieu told Tulane Press, “The New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University is delighted to partner with NOEW for this exciting IDEApitch experience. The mission of our book festival is to connect quality authors on a variety of topics to the local and national literary communities.”
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