Village Launch begins tenth cohort of grass-root entrepreneur academy with a $9,000 charitable gift from IBERIAbank

IBERIABANK check presentation to Village Launch for $9,000

Greenville, SC – Village Launch is proud to launch its 10th cohort of grass-root entrepreneurs this fall in partnership with IBERIABANK. Village Launch serves as a resource hub that provides business training for emerging entrepreneurs in the Upstate community. The organization serves as a connection point for under-resourced entrepreneurs and experienced business professionals. Their goal is to facilitate grass-roots economic development and to enable individuals to become providers,
contributors, and creators in their communities.

IBERIABANK, since entering the market in 2017, has been committed to bettering the Greenville community. The $9000 IBERIABANK donation will support Village Launch’s grass-roots entrepreneur development programs and resources designed to help grow both the entrepreneur’s business as well as their capacity to employ others.

“We feel strongly about supporting our local communities and since we hit the ground in Greenville have looked for meaningful ways to give back,” said Sam Erwin, IBERIABANK’s Carolinas Regional President. “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.”

Village Launch’s Business Entrepreneurship Academy (BEA) equips entrepreneurs with the tools to jumpstart their business, whether they are in the idea phase or looking to expand their enterprise. The in-depth program validates and expands entrepreneur’s business ideas while educating entrepreneurs on market research, customer development, developing a business plan, financial planning, marketing, branding, social media, and more.

Village Launch utilizes an internationally-based model that has been proven to create grass-root economic development in low-income communities. Village Launch Director, Mallory Boyd shared, “It is exciting to see the evolution of the relationships that are formed in the program but most importantly, how much one business owner can grow and in turn return to their work reenergized and reinvigorated.” Village Launch serves community-based entrepreneurs working to improve their economic outlook; more than 90 percent of which are women and 75 percent are African-American owned businesses.

Village Launch initially began in 2012 as a micro-lending organization to meet the needs of
under-resourced entrepreneurs and has since evolved into a robust entrepreneur development network. Since launching the program in 2016, over 75 entrepreneurs have graduated. Village Launch has also expanded its alumni network to include access to the Textile Hall co-working space in West Greenville and a DHEC-approved, commercial incubator kitchen to serve as an affordable space for food-based businesses.

Village Launch is excited to begin this next class of entrepreneurs and creators. We very much look forward to expanding their network of support and business relationships as each continues on their journey to continued economic success.

Mill Community Ministries ( is a collection of social entrepreneurs working to develop communities for success in Greenville, South Carolina. We are a group dedicated to seeing individuals and communities thrive. Mill Community Ministries is an umbrella organization of social enterprises including, Mill Village Farms (, Village Wrench (, Village Launch (, Textile Hall ( & Village Engage ( Together we make up Mill Community Ministries.

IBERIABANK entered the South Carolina market in April 2017 and in July 2018, opened their first full-service branch at 110 East Court Street in downtown Greenville. IBERIABANK Corporation, a Louisiana corporation, is a financial holding company with 325 combined locations, including 190 bank branch offices and three loan production office in Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama,Texas, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Mississippi, Missouri, and New York, 29 title insurance offices in Arkansas, Tennessee and Louisiana, and mortgage representatives in 86 locations in 12 states. The Company also has 16 wealth management locations in five states and one IBERIA Capital Partners L.L.C. office in Louisiana.

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