The Jefferson Parish Economic Development Commission (JEDCO) and Cordina New Orleans Cocktails, in partnership with the Jefferson Chamber and Idea Village, are pleased to announce the winner of the first-ever Cordina Challenge. Billy Bosch with Be Well Nutrition was awarded the top prize for his winning pitch at Tuesday’s event in Drago’s Empire Room.
Bosch, a co-founder of Be Well Nutrition, recently launched ICONIC, a healthy lifestyle beverage made with all natural ingredients. The unique drink provides customers with a delicious taste experience, healthy energy and increased focus. It is the only all-natural and nutritionist developed and recommended product in the beverage category. With a single daily serving of protein, vitamins, fiber and minerals, ICONIC provides consumers with what they need without having to stop for a meal. There’s nothing quite like this drink on the market right now.
The Cordina Challenge is a Jefferson Parish-based pitch competition for local entrepreneurs, held during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week. In an effort to identify, engage with and assist our up-and-comers, JEDCO and Cordina co-created the competition. The goal of the Cordina Challenge is to elevate opportunities for innovators in the area through direct capital, business services and mentorship.
Four local startups were chosen out of 37 applicants to compete in Tuesday’s event. Beau Button of Memorandom, Matt Doyle of Clincate and Jim Blitch and Aimee Adatto Freeman of ZingBoard joined Bosch in competing for the Jefferson Parish prize package.
Each entrepreneur had just seven minutes to pitch in front of a packed house at Drago’s Empire Room. The winner was chosen by a panel of Jefferson Parish business leaders: Choose Taurman, co-founder of the South Coast Angel Fund; Richard Estrada, President of Crescent City Packaging; Jim Hudson, Chairman of the Southeast region of Iberia Bank, Rob Wollfarth, Baker Donelson attorney and Laney Chouest, founder of the NOLA Motorsports Park. The judges scored the entrepreneurs on presentation, innovation, ability to answer questions efficiently, Jefferson Parish impact, viability and scalability.
“I am so impressed with the quality of the competitors who participated in the Cordina Challenge,” says Jerry Bologna, JEDCO Executive Director. “Billy truly proved his company has the capacity to grow and create jobs in Jefferson Parish. I look forward to watching Billy position Be Well Nutrition and ICONIC for the next level of success.”
“It is exciting to witness these early-stage companies preparing themselves for the next steps,” says Sal LaMartina, co-founder of Cordina New Orleans Cocktails. “Just a few years ago, I was in their shoes and I can’t wait to see what they do next.”
“These entrepreneurs are the future of our parish,” says Parish President John Young. “They represent the innovative up-and-comers who play such an important role in the economic viability of our area.
“This is a big milestone for ICONIC,” says Billy Bosch, co-founder of Be Well Nutrition, Inc. “The Jefferson Parish community has been a driving force behind this product at local grocery stores and gyms. With their support, we hope to follow in the steps of Cordina as another local beverage success story.”
Bosch won a prize package worth more than $50,000 in direct capital and in-kind business services, including:
The Cordina Challenge would not have been possible without the support from our business community. We’d like to thank the following companies and organizations for their roles in the Cordina Challenge: Cordina New Orleans Cocktails, The Jefferson Chamber, Idea Village, the Louisiana Small Business Development Center, Launch Pad, Good Work Network, BioDistrict New Orleans, New Horizons, Kushner LaGraize, Gallinghouse and Associates, Michael Osborne Design, Crescent City Packaging, Entergy, Iberia Bank, Gambel Communications, MMI Culinary, the Jefferson Chamber Foundation, Baker Donelson, Anthony V. Ligi Jr. APLC, Drago’s Seafood Restaurant and NOLA Motorsports.