Another class of budding entrepreneurs is entering the Village Launch’s Business Entrepreneur Academy (BEA), and partner IBERIABANK donated $9,000 to continue to support the program’s efforts.
Since Village Launch began BEA in 2016, there have been 75 program graduates. BEA equips entrepreneurs with necessary tools to jump-start their business and educates them on market research, customer development, business and financial planning and marketing, among other concepts.
IBERIABANK’s $9,000 donation will support Village Launch’s grassroots entrepreneur development programs. These resources help grow each entrepreneur’s business as well as their capacity to employ others.
“Village Launch is an ideal partner for us since it focuses on entrepreneurs just starting their small businesses and is a mechanism to reduce poverty, create economic opportunity and eventually, a path to contribute back to our community,” Sam Erwin, IBERIABANK’s Carolinas Regional President, said in a press release.
Village Launch began in 2012 as a micro-lending organization to support under-resourced entrepreneurs. More than 90% of the community-based entrepreneurs are women and 75% are African American-owned businesses.
In a press release, Village Launch Director Mallory Boyd said that while it is exciting to see the evolution of relationships formed in the program it is most important “how one business owner can grow and in turn return to their work reenergized and reinvigorated.”