Small and medium size businesses employ over 90% of the workforce internationally and the same holds true for Barbados. Indeed, most Governments and Industry leaders believe that start up companies will play a significant role in turning the current global economic crisis around. To this end, the Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation (BEF), in pursuit of its goal to make Barbados the #1 Hub for Entrepreneurship in the world by 2020, spent 2013 continuing its work of advocating and facilitating an entrepreneurship culture and ecosystem in Barbados.
In early 2014 BEF engaged an international expert to assist in establishing a Barbados based Angel Investor Network. The preliminary work has been completed and based on the recommendations received and subsequent engagement with stakeholders, BEF is moving forward immediately with the creation of ‘Trident Angels‘ the first ever Caribbean Angel Investor Network. Early meetings with potential angels and enthusiastic entrepreneurs were heartening, informative and will guide the next steps.
Angel Investing is high risk but a critical source of finance for Start-up enterprises.
It is very exciting to see many local start-ups getting qualified and identified as ready for angel investing and to have a large group of local Angel Investors willing to participate in this opportunity to grow high potential Barbadian enterprises.
The plans to forge ahead are timely given the urgent need for economic growth and employment generation and the recognition by Governments and Business Leaders worldwide that Entrepreneurship is a major driver of economic and social transformation. Entrepreneurship is now at the top of the National Economic Transformation Agenda. Business Facilitation has been identified as key to investment generation and job creation and to enabling high growth potential entrepreneurs.
Several members of the BEF’s board are new, having been elected over the last few months. Board Chairman Peter Boos, is pleased with the team, “these new members of the Board are all passionate leaders in their own right and bring new ideas and energy to the Board. We are all committed to working together to help Barbados realize its full potential as a world class entrepreneurship hub for both domestic and international investors. Helping identify and grow indigenous business with global marketplace potential is our focus. Engaging and partnering with international investors will be important to help facilitate that dream of creating a very competitive and innovative economy”
Mr.Boos confirmed that BEF is working on several other innovative initiatives to transform the Barbados entrepreneurship ecosystem.