Capital One Bank Announces ‘Grow Gentilly’ Small Business Growth Plan Competition For Gentilly-Area Small Businesses that Meet Qualifying Criteria Cash prizes of $10,000, $7,000 and $3,000 for runner-up will be awarded

New Orleans (June 15, 2012) – Capital One Bank, in partnership with the Urban League of Greater New Orleans, today announced the second annual “Grow Gentilly” small business growth plan competition to help small businesses in the Gentilly area of New Orleans grow and create jobs.

The winner of the Grow Gentilly competition will receive a cash award of $10,000. The contestants who finish second and third will receive $7,000 and $3,000, respectively. The top three also will receive technical and professional assistance to enhance their businesses.

“At Capital One Bank, we are committed to Investing for Good in greater New Orleans, connecting our company’s people and financial resources to education, financial literacy, and small business and workforce development,” said Tammy Boyd, Business Banking Market Credit Executive for greater New Orleans. “The Grow Gentilly competition is a great example of how we bring Investing for Good to life for businesses in Gentilly, a historic and important part of New Orleans and the focus of Capital One Bank’s philanthropic efforts in New Orleans. We’re pleased to partner with the Urban League of Greater New Orleans for the second year in a row to offer this competition.”

To be eligible for the Grow Gentilly competition, businesses and their owners must meet the following key criteria:
• Business revenues in the most recent fiscal year must have been $1 million or less.
• The applicant must have owned the business since before Aug. 31, 2012.
• The business must reside in zip code 70122.
• The applicant/owner must demonstrate the potential or desire to grow and create jobs in the Gentilly community.

The competition is divided into two rounds. In the first, applicants will complete and submit an online form to provide a comprehensive overview of their business, including its mission and vision, products and services offered, management plan, marketing strategy and other key information. Each of the applicants then will be assigned a Capital One business banker who will provide insight and help the applicant fine-tune the application. The applicants will then be expected to re-submit their applications after the one-on-on business banker consultation by Aug. 31. Six finalists then will be announced on Sept. 15 and will compete in the second and final round on Oct. 15, during which each contender will make an 8-10 minute business presentation in front of a panel of community and business leaders. The cash awards will go to the owners of the three businesses whose plans are judged by the panel to be the most creative, innovative and likely to succeed and create jobs in the Gentilly area.

The deadline to submit the first-round online application is 5 p.m., July 31, 2012. Applications will be accepted at www.cybergrants.com/capitalone/growgentilly. The site provides detailed information about the competition, eligibility guidelines and a pre-screening checklist. The revised applications must be submitted no later than Aug. 31.

In the inaugural Grow Gentilly competition last year, the winner was the Munch Factory restaurant, owned by Chef Jordan Ruiz and his wife, Alexis. When their restaurant was selected as the winner of the competition, the Ruiz’s were overjoyed, and they knew exactly where they’d be investing their winnings—in an additional industrial-sized refrigerator. “For us to have the money to get the extra refrigeration was the biggest breath of fresh air we could imagine,” Alexis Ruiz said. The Ruiz’s also plan on taking advantage of Capital One’s technology and marketing counseling services to help grow their business even further.

“Grow Gentilly” is part of Capital One Bank’s Gentilly Community-Based Initiative (CBI), a multi-faceted community revitalization project created by Capital One to serve as a catalyst for the redevelopment of the Gentilly neighborhoods in New Orleans. The Gentilly CBI represents a strategic investment by Capital One Bank to enhance and expand economic opportunities for families and businesses in Gentilly.