Kingston, Jamaica, 10 June 2014 – A new partnership to recruit and nurture the next generation of talented mobile entrepreneurs in the Caribbean is being launched today in Jamaica by the World Bank Group, its global entrepreneurship program infoDev, and the University of the West Indies (UWI).
As the Caribbean region is establishing itself as a new global IT hub, the new Caribbean Mobile Innovation Program aims to provide hands-on training, skills-building and mentorship to developers from across the region. More than a hundred startups will be established and supported by the program.
"The entrepreneurs at today’s launch, show that many of the problems being solved by our mobile apps and IT talent are not just regional ones, but global as well. That's why collaboration is so important”, says Julian Robinson, Jamaica’s Minister of State of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining.
The program builds on earlier initiatives such as PitchIT Caribbean and Digital Jams that helped to identify high-potential Caribbean mobile apps entrepreneurs. Partner organization UWI will team up with innovation hubs in six Caribbean countries, to ensure startups across the region benefit fully from the program.
"Innovation and entrepreneurship are key drivers for growth. This initiative is part of our efforts to create the right eco-system for young talents in the region to be investment ready and start new businesses that will create value-added jobs," says World Bank Director for the Caribbean, Sophie Sirtaine.
The documentary startupland, featured at the launch, is an honest account of startup life: it depicts that passionate founders in pursuit of their dreams can change the world, despite the many obstacles. “Creating and growing a startup is only possible with skills, some financing and a lot of persistence and passion”, admits Barbadian entrepreneur Shannon Clarke whose startup is exhibited at the launch. In keeping with the global nature of mobile technology, the documentary will have a worldwide premiere at six other innovation and mobile technology hubs in four different continents.
The program is a regional initiative executed by the UWI Consortium under the Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC), and funded by the Government of Canada.
For more information: www.infodev.org/EPIC
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|Michael Grant, infoDev/World bank Group (Jamaica)||Daenia Ashpole|
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