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Monday, 23 January 2017 19:18

Applications open for youth entrepreneurship tech incubation programme Featured

A technology incubation programme that provides business support services for young entrepreneurs in Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean and Haiti is open for applications. The Caribbean Tech Entrepreneurship Programme (CTEP) is an initiative of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the World Bank Group in partnership with the Caribbean Climate Innovation Centre. It tailors support for participants according to the stage at which the entrepreneur or firm is currently operating.

CTEP addresses two main problems faced by youth: the lack of appropriate job opportunities and the lack of a regional strategy to promote entrepreneurship and innovation. It follows the successful Youth Employment in Digital Animation Industries project in Jamaica. Participants from Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines are eligible to apply.

CTEP coordinator, Troy Weekes, speaking from CDB headquarters in Barbados on January 20, 2017, during a video conference with potential participants, noted that CTEP was unique in the way it collaborates with the entrepreneurs that are selected.

“CTEP is comprised of a set of activities that are aligned to three distinct entrepreneurial stages – the Idea Stage, the Validation Stage and the Revenue Stage. Also, it is based on direct consultations with entrepreneurs and it fosters collaboration between partners and stakeholders within the Caribbean entrepreneurship ecosystem,” Weekes said.

Lisa Harding, Operations Officer, CDB and Project Supervisor of the CDB/World Bank Caribbean Animation and Technology Capacity Building Programme, with which CTEP is aligned, said: “CDB is pleased to support the CTEP and encourage our regional youth to take full advantage of the programme.”

Ms. Harding also indicated that “CTEP is an initiative that can contribute to the enhanced capacity of young entrepreneurs involved in the information and communications technology industry, foster opportunities for enhanced employability, improve income-earning opportunities and increase opportunities for entrepreneurship--all of which are important drivers for inclusive growth for CDB’s Borrowing Member Countries.”

The selection process for the 2017 edition of CTEP will take place during the period February 11 – 15, 2017. The successful entrepreneurs and start-ups for the specific tracks will be announced on February 20, 2017. The incubation programme will run from March 1 – May 31, 2017.

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