30 young entrepreneurs from across the OECS have been awarded for their innovative businesses during a virtual ceremony held in 9 Member States. The young business owners now qualify for critical support services from the OECS’ Competitive Business Unit and the Sir Richard Branson Centre for Entrepreneurship to help them structure and scale their businesses.
Fostering youth entrepreneurship
Through its Youth Empowerment Strategy (YES), the OECS Comion opened nominations for its inaugural 30 Under 30 in Entrepreneurship initiative launched in 2016 to March 2017.
Eligible entrepreneurs had to be thirty years old or younger at the time of nomination, and be a citizen or resident of an OECS Member State. All eligible applications were considered on merit despite business size, years of operation or industry sector.
The 30 final winners were selected from among 132 contestants who are nationals of 9 Member States: Antigua & Barbuda, British Virgin Islands, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Martinique, Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
Each winner received a certificate from their respective governments who have supported the initiative to promote entrepreneurship as a solution to addressing youth challenges including unemployment:
“The Caribbean has a lot to offer, we just have to be open towards our region…Sebastien Celestine and Jacques Sanquer are both Martiniquans winners and we hope that others will follow their way,” said Alfred Marie-Jeanne, President of the Collectivity of Martinique.
30 under 30 winners to enroll in a unique mentorship programme
OECS Director General, Dr Didacus Jules said the 30 winners have now qualified to receive professional business support from a myriad of business development professionals to help grow their enterprises.
“This cohort will be guided by the OECS Competitive Business Unit under a business mentorship program to aid in their professional and business development skills, technical assistance in sourcing markets for their products and services and financial assistance.
Regional entrepreneurs also need to support other up and coming entrepreneurs which is why we have partnered with the Sir Richard Branson Centre for Entrepreneurship to create a central support hub,” said Dr Jules.
Sir Richard Branson, CEO of Virgin Group congratulated each of the 30 under 30 winners through a video at the end of the virtual ceremony.
OECS 30 Under 30 winners
|Akeem Edwards||Antigua & Barbuda||Donut Ace|
|Regis Burton||Antigua & Barbuda||Nolan Hue|
|Winston Laville||Antigua & Barbuda||LCP Industries|
|Sharie De Castro||British Virgin Islands||Write to Read|
|Mitch Jno Charles||Commonwealth of Dominica||Island Frutz|
|Oudin Samuel||Commonwealth of Dominica||Caribonix|
|Sherwin Thomas||Commonwealth of Dominica||Colour me Fete|
|Prince F Thomas||Grenada||The Soursop Eden|
|Tereika Peters||Grenada||Golden Crust Bakery|
|Shakim J Fortune||Grenada||Herbal Pleasures|
|Kimron Corion||Grenada||I Am Grenadian|
|Jacques Sanquer||Martinique||Outremer Solutions|
|Sasha Herbert||Saint Kitts & Nevis||Paint and Sip with Sasha the Artist|
|Dijaun Jack||Saint Kitts & Nevis||Caribjack.com|
|Janeel Boon||Saint Kitts & Nevis||Boon’s Computer Repairs|
|Shane Browne||Saint Kitts & Nevis||SKN Village|
|Desi Brown||Saint Kitts & Nevis||Poise SKN|
|Wendel George||Saint Lucia||Portable Swimming Pools Rental|
|Larry Shepherd||Saint Lucia||BLDesigns|
|Jonathan Theobalds||Saint Lucia||Tibbs Tech Solutions|
|Kenisha Jn Baptiste||Saint Lucia||KDL Architecture and Engineering|
|Kandice Delice||Saint Lucia||House of Balloons|
|Denell Florius||Saint Lucia||EcoCarib Inc.|
|Randy Lafontaine||Saint Lucia||Top Notch Media, Top Notch Auto Detailing, Saint Lucia Travel and Tours|
|Johanan Dujon||Saint Lucia||Algas Organics|
|Heidi C. St. Clair||Saint Lucia||St. Clair’s Sitting Services|
|Anton Volney||Saint Lucia||Midas Touch Consultant|
|Javid Collins||Saint Vincent & the Grenadines||Specs Aerial Photography|
|Jeronnie Richardson||Saint Vincent & the Grenadines||JSR Communications|
OECS Media Release