Accelerate South Healthcare Business Services

Accelerate Your Healthcare Business


If you are the founder or co-founder of a healthcare startup company looking for access to the right resources then Accelerate South may be the perfect opportunity to accelerate your business to the next level. Accelerate South is a 12-week long business acceleration program that focuses on accelerating innovative healthcare companies. Ten startups will be accepted into the program. These ten companies will receive access to titans of the healthcare industry who are willing to open their facilities' doors to test innovative products/services, mentor startups and potentially invest, as our investing partners. What's more is that if selected, you and your team will have access to our medical expert mentors, business expert advisers, professional service grants, MBA candidate interns, tailored curricula, travel/lodging reimbursements along with office space in the progressive Opportunity Machine located in Lafayette, LA - the tastiest, happiest city in America.

The time is right to solve major healthcare challenges in America. Louisiana is a 'Living Lab' of healthcare innovation, open to entrepreneurs ready to solve healthcare's critical needs. If you’re up for the challenge, we invite you to learn more or apply now for Accelerate South.


How Accelerate South Works


Up to ten companies will be chosen for Accelerate South, a healthcare-focused business accelerator program. Each company will receive office space, tailored curricula, networks of highly engaged subject matter expert mentors, professional services as well as open-door access to our many “living labs” to test their products or services.


Step 1

A company applies HERE by JULY 15TH, 2018. We are looking for businesses with strong founders, industry traction, intellectual property or trade secrets, strong marketing potential, and exit strategies.


Step 2

Our team of healthcare investing partners and grant partners vet the applications and choose potential finalists. Founders are then called for initial interviews. If the fit is right, we will ask each business to pitch their ideas to our vetting team in person or via Skype.


Step 3

The vetting team will invite up to ten companies to commit to our accelerator. Each institutional and individual investing partner will be committing $50,000 to potentially be invested in accelerator team companies. Investment will take place after the accelerator ends (no exchange in equity is required up-front) and is not guaranteed. 


Step 4

The Accelerate South program will kickstart on August 27th with a two day acceleration bootcamp. Upon compeletion each company will be featured in the Cox Business Get Started Medical Pitch Competition hosted on August 30th.


Step 5

Companies chosen for the program will then go through twelve weeks of custom-built curricula which is designed to help each company reach its next milestone. Our program is a hybrid program consisting of six on-site weeks and six off-site weeks. This gives you enough flexibility to continue growing your business while you are taking full advantage of our resources and experts.


Step 6

Our program wraps up with a Demo Day during Opportunity Machine's Entrepreneurship Weekend. Graduates of our program will have access to further acceleration and investment capital through the healthcare institutional investors, individual investors and other regional investors.

Healthcare Partners

  • Acadian Companies

    Acadian Companies,what began as a small ambulance company has now expanded to include a diverse suite of services offering the best support in health, safety and transportation covering Louisiana, Southeast Texas, Central Texas, North Texas and parts of Mississippi. In 1995 it was recognized as the largest privately owned ambulance service in the United States.

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana

    Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is the largest private insurer in the state of Louisiana.  They serve the community with 8 regional offices throughout the state.  Establishing their roots in 1934 they have grown and a network that now cater services to over 1.3 million Louisianians. 


  • Lafayette General Foundation

    Lafayette General Health (LGH) is Acadiana’s largest non-profit, community-owned regional health system committed to always delivering excellence. The system has over 4,000 employees, serving the south-central region of Louisiana by aligning with facilities across Acadiana. LGH is a founding member of the Ochsner Health Network.

  • LHC Group

    LHC Group is the preferred in-home healthcare partner for 76 health systems, consisting of 336 leading hospitals around the country. The company’s approximately 30,000 employees deliver home health, hospice, personal care services, and facility-based services from more than 780 locations in communities in 36 states.

  • Louisiana Orthopaedic Specialists

    Thirteen fellowship trained specialist serving the nine-parish Acadiana area with locations in Lafayette, New Iberia, Breaux Bridge and Eunice, Louisiana. The Louisiana Orthopaedic Specialists group focuses on orthopaedics, spine and sports medicine.


  • New Iberia Research Center (NIRC)

    NIRC is a biomedical research facility of UL Lafayette and is the US’s largest primate research facility. For over 30 years, NIRC has been a preferred partner of university, government, pharmaceutical, and biotech institutions for the development and characterization of nonhuman primate models of human diseases for applied and basic research aimed at promoting human quality of life.

  • The Perret Group

    The Perret Group is a single family office investing in and consulting with companies to improve operations and profitability with a value add approach and a strong focus of culture and social responsibility. The Perret Group has a portfolio of funds that include finance, real estate, energy production and services, commodities, education, medical, dental, service industry, gaming and consulting services.

  • VieMed

    Viemed provides home respiratory service to patients struggling with various respiratory diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and various neuromuscular diseases.


Grant Partners

  • Acadiana Economic Development Council

    Acadiana Economic Development (AEDC) is a one stop shop for resources and incentives that play a factor at the regional level. AEDC represents the primary economic development organizations in the Acadiana Parishes (Counties) of Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Martin, and Vermilion.

  • Community Foundation of Acadiana

    Community Foundation of Acadiana’s core purpose is to build legacies and improve communities by connecting generous people to the causes they care about. CFA is one of south Louisiana’s premier philanthropic organization benefiting our region, with a particular focus on the parishes of Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Mary, St. Martin and Vermilion. CFA has realized cumulative gifts exceeding $227.5 million and has made cumulative grants of more than $110.4 million.

  • Lafayette Economic Development Authority

    The Lafayette Economic Development Authority (LEDA) works with businesses as they make decisions to start, expand or relocate to Lafayette, Louisiana, and the surrounding communities. Through innovative collaborations with business, government and education, LEDA strives to grow the community’s business base for future development and diversification. By combining their knowledge of the region and in-depth research, they will work with you to build a strong foundation for your growth and expansion.

  • One Acadiana

    A business-led, privately-funded economic development organization serving a nine-parish (county) area in South Louisiana. Representing more than 1,200 businesses throughout the area, they serve as the central business organization for Lafayette – providing leadership on local issues as well as the services and resources of a traditional business association.

  • Opportunity Machine

    The Opportunity Machine (OM) is an initiative of Lafayette Economic Development Authority (LEDA) in partnership with Lafayette Consolidated Government, Louisiana Immersive Technologies Enterprise (LITE), University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Louisiana Small Business Development Center and the people of the Greater Lafayette/Acadiana region. The incubator goes above and beyond to provide a plentiful amount of resources to help grow business and entrepreneurship, create quality jobs, economic diversity, and regional prosperity.

  • University of Louisiana at Lafayette

    The University of Louisiana at Lafayette (UL Lafayette or ULL) is a coeducational, public, research university in Lafayette, La. It has the largest enrollment within the nine-campus University of Louisiana System and has the second largest enrollment in Louisiana.The university receives more research money than all of the other ULS schools combined, and is rated one of the top 100 public research universities in the nation according to a report by The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government.

  • Winrock International

    Winrock International is a recognized leader in U.S. and international development, providing solutions to some of the world’s most complex social, agricultural and environmental challenges. Winrock manages a portfolio of more than 100 agriculture, environment and social development projects in over 40 countries. It has annual revenue of $100 million, employing over 1,000 staff around the world managed from five Winrock offices and dozens of project offices. Winrock combines technical expertise with entrepreneurial innovation to improve lives around the globe.

Get Started Medical Pitch Competition

Learn More

Presented By:


  • What kind of companies are you looking for?

    We are looking for investment-ready, growth-stage healthcare companies with at least two people (team members) in them. Applicants should have a reasonable valuation, fully-baked business model, market traction and need for seed or angel capital. Prepared term sheets are also preferred to streamline the process for investment.

  • What benefits are offered to companies accepted into the program?

    The ten startups chosen to participate in the program will receive access to titans of the healthcare industry who are willing to open their facilities' doors to test innovative products/services, mentor startups and potentially invest into them as our investing partners – talk about smart money.

    What’s more is that startups will have access to seasoned medical expert mentors, business expert advisers, Professional Service Grants, MBA Candidate Interns, Tailored Curricula, Travel/Lodging Reimbursements along with Office Space in the progressive Opportunity Machine located in Lafayette, La... the Happiest, Tastiest City in America. To round out the programs offerings our complimentary coffee and WIFI pairs well with opportunities for strategic referrals to potential customers and partners, access to veteran entrepreneurs, pitch coaching and our many other services all dedicated to helping you GROW!


  • When are the program dates?


    August 24th to November 16th of 2018 

  • When is the deadline to apply for the program?

    The deadline to apply is 11:59 PM CT Sunday July 15, 2018.

  • Where is the program hosted?

    The one and only, Lafayette, LA. Honored as the "Happiest City in America" by the Wall Street Journal's, Lafayette is the heart of Louisiana's tasty Cajun & Creole culture. Our way of life, ready workforce, healthy entrepreneurial business climate, thriving healthcare ecosystem, Gigabit Fiber, tax-incentives and more attract companies of all sizes to start or relocate here.

  • Who are the investors?

    This investment groups are comprised of SEC accredited healthcare entities and individual investors. Besides investing, each member has pledged to share their business/healthcare wisdom from decades of experience. Some of the corporate investors are first and second generational entrepreneurs that started small and now have thousands of employees with over a billion dollars in annual revenue. You will meet them, their teams, and their network. Some may even be your next client. :) 


  • Is investment into my company guaranteed?

    All investments will be negotiated at the end of the accelerator program and thus no equity in your company will be exchanged up-front. Each healthcare institutional investor and each individual investor has set aside $50,000 to be invested into the Accelerate South cohort; however, investment is not mandatory and thus you may not receive a capital infusion.    

  • How many companies are chosen?

    We are targeting up to 10 companies for acceleration.

  • What can I expect to happen during the three months if chosen?

    Commercialization of your products/services is paramount for Accelerate South. If you are already commercialized, great; growth becomes priority. A three-month curriculum will be customized for you based on your business's next milestone. Additionally, since each entity has a unique pathway to success, a team of experts will map the "next steps" for each company, assuring the highest value of time during our program.

  • Do applicants need to be in Lafayette every day of the program?

    No. We realize that moving away for three months is challenging even if you are from other places in Louisiana. That's why we've developed our hybrid program where one week you are on-site for two days and then the next week, you are back at home-base. Certain events and learning opportunities however will require attendance from all chosen companies. We expect that your main focus during these three months will be spent growing your company, learning from our mentors and working to gain contracts with Louisiana businesses aligned with your value proposition.

  • Do you require chosen companies to stay in Louisiana after the accelerator?

    Nope. Our hope of course is that you will find fertile ground to grow in our backyard or at least have a business presence in one of our Louisiana cities, but business growth may be wiser somewhere else. That’s cool with us, we will be proud to say we have been a part of your journey! 


  • When will applicants be notified of acceptance to the program?

    You will be notified by July 23rd at the very latest. 

  • Is there someone I can call to talk about the program before applying?

    Of course! We suggest starting with Reece Theriot, MBA - Executive Director of Accelerate South. Like you, Reece is also an entrepreneur with over 10 years of experience starting, succeeding, failing and learning in the world of startups. Unlike you (maybe), Reece is an instructor of sales and entrepreneurship at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Reach out at

  • Are there any mandatory pitch competitions during this accelerator?
    Our program features two opportunities to live pitch made possible by our friends at Cox Business. The Get Started Medical Pitch Competition will be held on August 30th.  Our final event will be hosted during the annual regional entrepreneurial exposition November 2nd.



Healthcare Innovators what are you waiting for?

South Louisiana is the place to be!

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