Can boot camp, pitch competition spur investment in north Baton Rouge?

Baton Rouge Business Report

A new partnership of community and economic development stakeholders has formed to help jump-start investment in north Baton Rouge, via an intense day-long boot camp and pitch competition in which $10,000 is up for grabs.

The Baton Rouge Area Chamber today announced that nationally renowned Conscious Venture Lab, which embraces the idea of capitalism as a catalyst for a good society, will conduct a boot camp for early-stage companies and their owners. According to a news release, the boot camp will teach teams of three to five individuals how to operate a profitable, sustainable and purpose-driven business.

The Conscious Capitalism Boot Camp—taking place from 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Baton Rouge Community College’s Ardendale Campus, 1969 N. Lobdell Blvd—is hosted by BRAC in partnership with the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, the newly formed Baton Rouge North Economic Development District and Conscious Venture Lab. LSU and Southern University, in addition to Nexus LA and Louisiana Economic Development, are among the event’s sponsors and partners.

BRAC President and CEO Adam Knapp says in a statement that the boot camp can bring new training opportunities and investment to entrepreneurs who can help transform north Baton Rouge.

Conscious Venture Lab develops companies and entrepreneurs that focus on using capitalism to transform communities. The lab invests in startups and puts them through an intense, four-month immersion program aimed at accelerating their businesses and revenue.

The boot camp condenses the tenets of building a conscious business into a single day.

BRNEDD Interim Executive Director Rinaldi Jacobs says in a statement the boot camp is a result of the partnerships being fostered by the economic development district, which formed last year to spur redevelopment in the city’s neglected north end. “This boot camp is part of what we are calling the ‘Revival of North Baton Rouge,’” Jacobs says.

The district’s board is currently searching for a permanent executive director and saw its first major win in December when voters passed a 2% hotel occupancy tax to fund the district’s operations.

Participants of the boot camp, meanwhile, also will learn about servant leadership and how to build a business model that’s responsive to all stakeholder needs, Conscious Venture Lab Executive Director Jeff Cherry says. They’ll also have the opportunity to take part in “Pitch North Baton Rouge,” taking place after the boot camps sessions.

Companies interested in attending and participating in the boot camp can register online. See tickets and prices for Pitch North Baton Rouge.

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