The Startup St. Bernard Competition is accepting applications until Jan. 17 from entrepreneurs looking to compete in a pitch competition for an estimated $110,000 prize package to help launch a business in the parish.

The competition, presented by the Meraux Foundation and the St. Bernard Economic Development Foundation, will be held during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week in March at the Meraux Foundation’s Docville Farm in St. Bernard.

“We are thrilled to present the second annual Startup St. Bernard Competition,” said Rita Gue, the president of the Meraux Foundation. “This competition not only gives entrepreneurs a chance to grow their business, it puts St. Bernard center stage.”

The contest is open to entrepreneurs interested in locating a business in St. Bernard for at least two years. The prize package includes cash and donated services such as accounting, legal and marketing help.

To enter, applicants must have been in business for no more than five years or have an existing business that’s creating a new division or entity; have less than $1 million in annual revenue; a maximum of five workers, and be a for-profit operation.

Entries will be scored on factors that include job growth, local capital investment and improving the parish’s image. Five finalists will pitch their business to the panel during a live event.

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