Berbice Business Incubator launched
─to foster entrepreneurs
DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, February 12, 2020
The Belvedere Business Incubator Centre (BBIC) in the East Berbice-Corentyne region was officially launched today providing budding entrepreneurs with a facility to hone their practical and theoretical skills.
Dr. Lowell Porter, CEO of the Small Business Bureau (SBB) through which the business incubator is managed said the BBIC has six pods that have specialised functions.
The first three pods will accommodate entrepreneurs for a 3-year programme. After this would have been completed, the seasoned entrepreneurs would graduate and a new batch of entrepreneurs would enrol.
In the three remaining pods, manufacturing equipment will be accommodated for small businesses to process their products at subsidised costs.
The BBIC is expected to be fully operational in March with the onset of more equipment and staffing.
In the feature address, Minister of Business Haimraj Rajkumar championed the facility’s capacity to nurture entrepreneurs.
“The environment created at this centre will lend itself to the creation of a viable business that will be able to stand on their own, be competitive and of course be successful.”
Shafeeza Smith, the owner of Chaezomi King Manufacturing Enterprise told DPI “This facility is a godsend for us manufacturers and small business owners,” remarked
Smith who produces multipurpose coconut products noted the facility will provide suitable conditions with adequate space for the preparation of these products.
“For my dehydrating, I would have had to do it in my oven or in my skillet where I can control the hygiene. This means preparing it in small amounts. I can’t do small amounts and grow. I need to do in large amounts to supply the demand that is out there for the products that I make,” Smith explained.
Meanwhile, businesswoman Melba Lagoudoue who produces and sells a variety of agro-processed treats also anticipates joining the BBIC. She said the facility will aid in developing much-needed skills in the field of finance and marketing.
A confident Lagoudoue said, “that would be able to take me a great way.”
Republic Bank Limited, New Amsterdam Branch Manager, Imran Sacoor cited several ways small businesses in Berbice will benefit from BBIC.
“It is a kind of facility that will be able to attract new and prospective entrepreneurs. To come in and have classroom sessions to understand the practices of small businesses. They will be able to understand the legal environment, the labour market and the marketing environments,” the Bank Manager highlighted.
At present, the SBB is completing an additional Business Incubator, this time in Lethem, Region 9.
Regional Executive Officer for the East-Berbice Corentyne Region, Kim Williams-Stephen along with other government officials and members of the Central Corentyne Chamber of Commerce were present at Wednesday’s event.