Helius - "Illuminating Entrepreneurial Development"

Published on June 24, 2014 um 11:16

Summary of your idea

The primary purpose of Helius is to provide business training and coaching to Necessity Driven Entrepreneurs, or NDEs. Helius is an entrepreneurial consulting company specializing in Necessity-Driven Entrepreneurs. NDEs are individuals who, due to a variety of reasons ranging from minor criminal records, mental or physical disabilities, a lack of education and more, who are unable to find traditional employment. These individuals create work for themselves through entrepreneurship. The training takes the form of 6, once-per-week classes offered at a affordable price. Additionally, services will be provided to help NDEs and other members of the community to build their business plans, prepare to speak to investors, and grow their businesses through the available one-on-one coaching. We would like to gain strong traction in the Durham, NC community - and eventually be able to replicate the model in areas of need across the country.

Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development

Our business philosophy is to provide sustained support to help NDEs become knowledgeable and skilled owners of profitable small enterprises to overcome their financial struggles. By doing this we aim to reduce the failure rates of local NDEs. Helius will provide not only training to NDEs, but also coaching and hands-on work well after our training phase has ended. All graduates get the opportunity of gaining one year of coaching, so that these entrepreneurs are able to get help when they truly need it- during the infant years of their businesses. With more than 50% of all businesses failing within a few short years, Helius will use the failure rates of Helius trained, NDE-run, businesses as our benchmark. We will strive to create a 70% + success rate for our students' businesses.

Plans for implementation and sustainability

We have a prototype of the coursework ready and we plan to begin presenting it to test groups (up to 100 people or 10 groups) over the next 60 days. During that time we'll be refining our product and beginning to present ourselves to the Durham, NC community. We plan to hold our first public class by the beginning of Q4 2014. Though we plan to implement our company first in Durham, NC and then expanding this service across the United States using back-end revenue generation models to fund our services (primarily co-working space/business incubators). We currently are not seeking outside investors, though we have collaboration commitments from individuals within organizations like Bull City Forward, UDI Community Development Group, and Blackstone.

Your profile

My name is Lisa Maida. I'm a 28 year old female and a recent graduate from North Carolina Central University with a Bachelor's in Accounting. I was in the Army after high school but didn't catch the entrepreneurial fever until many years later when I went to college as a civilian. I was Vice-President of the NCCU Entrepreneur Club, and Treasurer of the NCCU chapter of NABA/Accounting Club. My team and I became advocates for entrepreneurship on and around campus, and began teaching others about creating businesses. My co-founders and I have been developing Helius so we could bring our passions and accumulated knowledge to the people in our community who would benefit the most from having a support team.

Stage of Idea

start-up stage

Your idea has a positive impact on

education, poverty reduction, empowerment of women

The Helius founders from left to right; Jennifer Tracy, Geraud Staton, Lisa Maida

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